If You Want To Be A Top Rated Seller These Are My Top Ten Lessons from Selling on eBay

Selling items on eBay has been a popular way for individuals and businesses to declutter, make extra income, or run a full-fledged online store for years. Whether you're a seasoned eBay seller or just starting out, there are valuable lessons to be learned from the experience. 

As someone who has observed my partner run an eBay business over the years, helping with everything from listing to shipping to product sourcing, in this article, we'll explore the top ten lessons from selling on eBay that can help you become a more successful and savvy seller.

1. Research Is Key

Before listing an item on eBay, it's essential to research its market value. Use eBay's search and advanced search functions to find similar items and check their selling prices. This research will help you set a competitive and realistic price for your items, increasing your chances of making a sale.

You can use the Tetrapek software that comes as part of the eBay shop to do detailed research on a product you are looking to sell. However, if you are looking to do a quick, rough research on a product, search on eBay for the product and then filter the function to completed auctions.

This will give you a history of the latest sales and will provide information on reasonable prices.

2. Quality Photos Matter

High-quality photos are your best friends on eBay. Invest in good lighting and a decent camera or smartphone to capture clear, well-lit images of your items. Multiple photos from different angles can instil confidence in potential buyers and reduce the likelihood of misunderstandings or returns.

Always remember these three rules for taking good eBay photographs:

  1. Would you be happy to receive the product as it is after reviewing the photos?

  2. Highlight defects, bumps, scratches and other imperfections

  3. Have a clutter-free and clear background

3. Accurate Descriptions Are a Must

Accurate item descriptions are crucial. Be honest about the condition of your items, and any flaws or imperfections, and provide all relevant details. Transparency builds trust with buyers and can lead to positive feedback and repeat business.

Being Economical with the truth will only increase returns and complaints.

4. Timing Can Impact Sales

The timing of your eBay listings can influence their success. Consider the day and time when your target audience is most likely to be browsing. For example, listing fashion items during the evening or on weekends may yield better results.

Ideally, if you are going down the auction route, the best and simplest rule is to ensure that the auction ends in the evening between 7pm and 10pm when people are likely to be on their phones and more likely to see and bid.

5. Pricing Strategies

eBay offers various pricing options, including auctions and fixed-price listings. Experiment with different pricing strategies to determine what works best for your items. Sometimes, starting items at a low bid can generate more interest and competition among buyers.

These experiments can take many different forms, from A/B testing prices to see which item sells faster to testing charging a set price plus postage or having an all-in price that includes postage.

6. Free Shipping?

Understanding shipping options, costs, and packaging is essential. Offer competitive shipping rates, and clearly state your shipping policies in your listings. Consider offering free shipping and including the cost in your item's price, as this can attract more buyers.

7. Customer Service Is Paramount

Excellent customer service can lead to positive feedback and repeat customers. Respond promptly to buyer inquiries, address concerns professionally, and resolve issues promptly. Your reputation as a seller matters on eBay.

Go onto so-called professional eBay sellers and the amount of bad reviews can be shocking. 

Check out professional eBay sellers' Facebook groups and you will be amazed at the examples people post and the language (bad language) they use towards customers.

Do not be that eBay. Treat every customer as you would like to be treated.

8. Utilize eBay Tools

eBay provides various tools and features to enhance your selling experience. Take advantage of features like eBay's shipping calculator, promoted listings, and bulk editing tools to streamline your operations and improve visibility.

9. Understand Fees and Expenses

eBay charges fees for listing items and a final value fee based on the item's selling price. Be aware of these fees and calculate them into your pricing strategy to ensure you're still profitable. Additionally, keep track of your expenses, such as shipping costs and packaging materials.

I suggest using https://www.ebayfeescalculator.com/uk-ebay-calculator/ as it will even let you know your profit margins. If you are stuck on how to keep track of your accounts on eBay, why not try our eBay Profit and Loss Spreadsheet? Makes doing your eBay accounts a breeze.

10. Adapt and Evolve

The e-commerce landscape is constantly changing. What works today may not work tomorrow. Stay informed about eBay's policies, industry trends, and technological advancements. Be open to adapting your selling strategies to remain competitive and successful.


Selling on eBay can be a rewarding experience, providing an opportunity to earn money while decluttering your space or running a thriving online business.

By applying these top ten lessons from selling on eBay—research, quality photos, accurate descriptions, strategic timing, pricing strategies, shipping expertise, excellent customer service, eBay tools, fee awareness, and adaptability—you can enhance your eBay selling journey and increase your chances of success. 

Remember that eBay is a dynamic marketplace, and continuous learning and improvement are key to maintaining a successful presence on the platform. Whether you're a casual seller or a full-time entrepreneur, these lessons can help you navigate the eBay marketplace effectively and make the most of your selling experience.

Call to Action

If you have been inspired to start selling on eBay after reading this blog post, I highly recommend my book My First eBay Sale - a book I wrote to collate all my knowledge on eBay selling and help people get started in the wonderful world of eBay.

Plus we also have a Profit and Loss tracker designed especially for eBay, available here.

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