Listing items is pretty easy for me. At this point in the eBay process, I’ve done 90% of the work. All that’s left is to clean up the photos and copy and paste the information into eBay. Follow along with the wacky Scandal Magazine dress from Hong Kong.
Once again, here’s my eBay Process from start to finish.
- Purchase item
- Research/Prep Item
- Measure, Photograph, and Store item
- Clean up Photos/List Item
- Pack/Ship Sold item
Now that we’re all on the same page, let’s talk about the steps in listing.
Cleaning up Photographs
As a point of reference, I do my photographing/measuring downstairs and then walk those items out to the garage when I’ve updated my spreadsheet with its measurements and inventory number.
The next step would be to bring along my SD card from my DSLR to clean up the photos. I use Google’s Picassa since it’s free. Most often, I only use the rotate, crop, and “I’m Feeling Lucky” features.
I’m Feeling Lucky takes a guess at the editing you’re trying to do to the photo. If it messes up the color too much, then I’ll undo it and just play with the Fill Light a bit to get the picture good enough.
Sell one like this
The key to making listing simple is the mega-spreadsheet that I’m using when doing some of my preliminary research. I use the spreadsheet to continue to build the context and relevant information surrounding the item. When I list, I can do it independent of place as long as I have my laptop.
If I was traveling, I could even plan ahead and put my pictures onto Dropbox or something similar, I could truly list from anywhere that had internet access. It’s a neat idea!
One of the cells on my spreadsheet I populate during research is a URL link to the actual research.
Most of the time, this is just an eBay completed listings search link, but it can also be a link to a specific item. The completed list is nice because it can give you a feel for the range of how much the type of item is selling for vs. pegging yourself in with only the one item.
If you’re anything like me, you could have a week or two lag between when you do your initial research and when you get to list. I easily forget the price of an item that I was researching, so having a ballpark range is priceless.
The best part about this is that I’ve already done all of the keyword research so I don’t need to have the item in my hand to figure everything about the item out again. I’m less about reducing touch points on the item and more about minimizing re-work. I don’t double-check any of the previous information that I’ve recorded unless I think something’s up.
Once I see a sold item that’s similar enough, all I need to do is click “Sell one like this” link underneath the listing result.
Once you’re on the eBay listing page, you’ll hopefully have most of the information you need. The item details are copied over from my spreadsheet (brand, size, condition, etc.). Using the .txt templates that are pinned on my task bar makes listing a breeze. I can normally get all of the right information into a listing while the photos are uploading. I’ve become pretty efficient. Plug and play the condition, the measurements, and the inventory number and I’m good to go.
The one thing I do forget sometimes is my inventory number, but I can usually still find the item since it’s still in my super-awesome spreadsheet.
Breaking News – eBay Isn’t Perfect
There are a few pieces of information that either gets misapplied by eBay or just gets left out.
eBay loves to try to get you to the Gallery Plus feature, and if you’re not careful, it will automatically select it for you. Sometimes, you aren’t able to uncheck the box successfully until you’re on the final “submit” page. You can watch yourself click the check box and see the box re-check itself magically in a few seconds. I thought I was losing it the first time it happened!
The package dimensions for shipping also like to be tricky. I think eBay tries to take the information from previous listings, but messes them up sometimes. If I see an issue here, I throw in generic dimensions for smaller items (first class or Padded Flat Rate), but I make sure to have solid estimates for larger or heavier items.
For some reason, eBay really tries to make my items an irregular package size. The damn Irregular item check box randomly gets a tick mark, and this could affect shipping prices. This should really be applied to long items that’s aren’t the more routine cube/rectangular prism.
Finally, the Return Policy and Sales tax information never gets filled in. I end up having to click it every single time. I could probably do it with my eyes closed.
Practice Makes Perfect
After doing this for years, I’ve become really good at noticing any errors. I quickly scan through the listing to make sure that I’ve updated all of the item specifics, that I have all my measurements and inventory numbers, check the pricing and shipping specifics, and finally all of the return information.
When I can scan a listing and find an error, I feel like I’m one of the coders from the Matrix!
That sums up my listing process.
Do you have a listing process? Any tips to make it easier?