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Is it just me or has ebay gone completely pants for selling?

(16 Posts)
Flibbertyjibbet Mon 10-Mar-14 09:58:52

I have used ebay for 10 years now. For buying stuff, and for selling things that my family has finished with. Often branded stuff, everything in good condition, only charge actual postage etc etc.

Normally list 5 or so items at a time, and have phases every few months of listing 30 or so items over a few weeks. Usually some things will go for 99p, very little doesn't sell at all, and I make enough money to pay for some cheap flights each year.

A few weeks ago I started my usual 'spring clear out listings'. Only the same sort of stuff as I usually do. Definitely nothing crap. Not clothes, as those are too subjective when the sellers gets them. Lots of photos, clear descriptions etc etc.

I start everything at 99p. Always. No matter what I think its worth. This has always attracted a lot of watchers for my items and I get good prices.
But this year....Only about half of my stuff is selling at all. the other half has nearly all gone for 99p, and when you factor in the paypal fees, and the fact that ebay now charges fees on postage charges as well.

Of last nights items, some ds games, craft stuff and a some next shoes (worn once), half didn't sell at all. The others have gone for 99p, which in the case of the lovely shoes means that by the time I've paid all the fees I will end up with about 20p... which will be taken up by the gaffer tape for the parcel!

I'm also greatly put off by these new 'policies' that you have to pick for postage and returns etc. I just want to be able to bung the postage price in the listing, not set up bloomin policies for every different price and try to remember which is which!!

Anyone else finding that ebay has gone pants for selling? Are people put off by the tons and tons of new stuff on there so that the old bargain hunters have gone elsewhere?

If so, where are you selling now? I'm just listing a bulky item on with a fixed price and see how that goes. Am very new to facebook but will try the facebook local pages if people think that's worth trying?

HolidayCriminal Mon 10-Mar-14 11:32:36

Your Ebay habits are going to have to change if you want to make a success of it in future. Don't do 99p starts unless you are happy to sell for 99p (and who would be?). Wait for free listing periods & list for the minimum you can stand to sell for.

Some People swear by local Facebook selling pages, Free ads still, Ebid or Etsy for some items.

Google "Ebay Cassini"? which is the new search engine for Best Matches, and what it likes.

Flibbertyjibbet Mon 10-Mar-14 13:10:34

Thanks for the comments. I've always started everything at 99p as that gets an awful lot more watchers, and the more watchers you have, the more bids you are likely to get. But this past few weeks there's hardly been any watchers sad

Usually in a batch of stuff I will have say 4 things go for decent prices and one for 99p so it doesn't matter so much.

This past month though its been 3 things selling for 99p and two not selling at all.

Of the two things that sold last night for 99p, the buyer has asked me to combine postage, which I always do whenever it will be cheaper. However when the two items are combined, it takes the parcel up into the larger size bracket and is double the weight, so there is only about 10p to be saved! Emailed the seller to explain this and she emailed back all grumpy saying that she would then pay for the two items separately, so I can't even save anything on the paypal fees. The items are new and would cost £15 -£20 each if bought from a craft shop so its disappointing they went for 99p each.

Haven't heard of ebid, will check that out.

Might start putting things like computer games on a fixed price with buy it now and free postage. And other things on a min price on free listing weekends. Seems to take away the fun of ebay though, as it was always a risk starting at 99p but almost always worked out well £££.

Or I might take a bundle computer games and dvs to the game exchange. Hand em over, get instant cash. Seems very appealing today.....

nickstmoritz Mon 10-Mar-14 22:34:06

I agree with Holiday. Don't start at 99p It's just not worth selling anything for that. Make a bundle of your craft items and start at what you might like to get, as long at is reasonable then it will probably sell even if you have to re list on free weekends. I often list with free P&P now for smaller items and include this in the starting price. I tried a couple of 99p starts lately just to see and had loads of watchers and not many bids. The end prices were less than I normally would have started the item with so I definitely won't be doing it again.

frogs Mon 10-Mar-14 22:37:35

Mixed recent experiences here. I also generally always start at 99p, unless it's a very obscure item.

Things that have gone well recently having started at 99p:

Star wars Lego minifigures (silly amounts of money for tiny bits of plastic)
Old Jigsaw handbag (£40+)
Meditation CD (£15)
Shoes/boots by Camper and Hobbs (£20-40)
Random bits left over by our builders in the course of doing new kitchen, including surplus bits of Ikea kitchen fittings (anywhere between 99p and £40+ )

But yes, some other stuff that I expected to go for more did go for 99p, including some quite collectable bits of kitchenalia. But you can tell after a few days whether an item has viewers/watchers, so I have occasionally taken an auction down if I could see it was going to go for the starting price.

I've just listed some White Stuff clothing starting at 99p, that generally sells well (1/2 to 2/3 of the new price) so will see how that goes.

nickelbabe Mon 10-Mar-14 22:40:06

the problem is that ebay is now a lot bigger than it used to be.

So, now we have to learn the new rules.
the postage thing is a bind, but A*****n marketplace has done it or ages (which i also hate)
the problem with the postage thing is that they did it because people used to add really high postage so that they could put a low listing price and still make the money, and ebay didn't get a cut. but now you have to put the postage higher than it should be because you have to factor in what ebay will take above the actual cost of postage.
it's not very clever.

but, yes, nowadays you have to list at the lowest price you'd be happy to sell for. In fact, a lot of people won't look at a 99p item anymore (unless it's woth 99p) because they think it's going to be shit (because everyone now listsd for minimum desired price)

frogs Mon 10-Mar-14 22:45:24

I know people get very evangelical about the question of starting at 99p or not.

I suspect it depends what you're selling - for items that you know will attract a lot of interest (eg clothes by White Stuff or Boden, outgrown Hollister stuff, Star Wars Lego) then I find I get more interest and better final sale price by starting at 99p (plus saving on listings fees).

But I think that for more obscure items, or conversely item that are ten a penny on ebay (see what I did there?) then you probably would do better starting higher or do a BIN.

TeenageMutantNinjaTurtle Mon 10-Mar-14 22:47:33

From a buyer's perspective, I do my best to avoid eBay these days. There's too much new stuff that's actually cheaper on Amazon, too many stories of scams and the quality of used items seems so variable now, you just can't trust the process.

I used to buy all of dd's clothes 2nd hand on eBay but now I find it cheaper just to get things from the supermarkets...

Not sure what you do about it, but I know a lot of people who still make good money from car boots and bring and buy sales.

MrsCakesPremonition Mon 10-Mar-14 22:51:13

I've started selling stuff on Gumtree (bigger bits usually).
Much less hassle and no fees when you sell.

Viviennemary Mon 10-Mar-14 22:53:54

I don't buy much on ebay these days. I just can't be bothered bidding. I don't mind buy it now if I really want something and the price is sensible then I just buy it. But I'm not wasting time bidding and then being sniped or is it snipped. Just too annoying.

nickstmoritz Mon 10-Mar-14 23:07:37

After what I said - I do actually agree that it is fine to start stuff at 99p if it is really sought after and I would do that - Lego is always popular.

Car boots are too early for me and when I did try one it rained and people wanted stuff for virtually nothing but it wasn't in the best of places though.

frogs - I have had mixed luck with White Stuff. A really nice dress went for £5 this wkend (one of my 99p start experiments) so I was a bit disappointed.
Ebay is a bit more of a faff now with all the new rules, DSRs and high fees but I haven't found anywhere else yet. I wanted to sell some concert tickets that my DD isn't going to be able to use but the ebay Stubhub thing is just confusing so I might try Gumtree for that.

nickstmoritz Mon 10-Mar-14 23:14:22

Viviennemary I think you're right. Lots of people actually prefer to just buy it now if the price is ok. I usually get sniped at the last minute so would probably just put an amount in and leave it. If I do win, great, if not, never mind. Always hope other people will have a bidding frenzy on my items though smile actually this doesn't often happen especially as I list at what I'm ok with usually. Things quite often just go for that price or if not I relist, maybe a bit cheaper.

Flibbertyjibbet Mon 10-Mar-14 23:22:11

Interesting comments re buying.... I hadn't realised I go for reasonable BIN prices too most of the time.
Perhaps the thrill of the auction has become stress of the uncertainty of bidding!
And I also check amazon to compare prices.
Have put a couple of things on preloved this evening will see how they go.

InspirationFailed Mon 10-Mar-14 23:31:35

I've recently sold a few bits on eBay but I found it really stressful. I sold a new phone and it sent for £400, I spent the whole time convinced that after I posted the phone they buyer would demand a refund, say it wasn't as described etc and that I would end up with no phone and no money.

I sold some lego (£40!) and had it as collection only, except the buyer was the other side of the country, so I had to arrange a courier, they collected the parcel then decided that they hadn't collected it, then lost it, then delivered it days later.

Plus there is one buyer, who bought something for spares and repairs, it was clearly stated that the item doesn't work, who keeps messaging me asking for tips on how to fix it.

And now I have an £80 invoice from eBay shock I thought that the discounted amount that went into my paypal account included the eBay fees.

I am just going to charity shop the rest of my stuff I think.

Flibbertyjibbet Tue 11-Mar-14 17:13:01

The fees would mostly be from the phone. Think its nearly 10%?

The discounted amount that goes into your paypal account includes the PAYPAL fees which take a good chunk out, then ebay takes about 10% I think, excluding listing fees.

I usually work it on a 20% reduction in my 'takings' for fees. And when something sells for 99p its more than that in fees, as paypal take a fixed amount first, then a %. Or something like that.

It does sound like you have stuff worth a few quid, instead of ebaying it have you tried facebook local... I was even eyeing up the ad cards in the supermarket this weekend, might try that for larger household goods.

Re the lego, some buyers only bid on collection only items, as they go for less money. I had someone do this when I sold a pram, I didn't want any scammers saying it wasn't as described etc. Ended up having an email row with her as she insisted that all I have to do was put it in a bin bag and wait in for a courier..... Luckily she threatened me with bad feedback so I was able to report her to ebay for feedback extortion and she got a strike and I was able to cancel the transaction.

DownstairsMixUp Tue 11-Mar-14 17:16:19

I actually think Ebay is pants for BUYING! Most stuff is cheaper on amazon and just an example, people will pay 40 quid for a pair of second hand vans and i just think it's not worth saving a tenner when you can get a new pair for fifty. Furniture is something that goes for tons to! You used to be able to get real bargains but now I tend to use facebook and gumtree for buying and selling.

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