By Georgina Chong-You

Imagine having a garage sale to make extra money to take the vacation you’ve always wanted or as a stepping- stone for your own business, only you wouldn’t have to walk outside your home to do it. This is eBay selling: selling online from the comfort of your bed, quite possibly in your pajamas. And the only time you would have to get up would be to snap a few pictures of the items you are selling. Sound good?

“Make money online” tactics and tips are always circulating the internet, causing one to ask if whether eBay selling is a lucrative and worthwhile endeavor. Successful entrepreneur, Ken Myers, once said that eBay “has grown into more than just a place where people post items that wouldn’t sell at a yard sale.” His tips for building a lucrative and successful eBay business include determination in your sales goals, finding the right products to sell, and marketing yourself and your products in order to increase sales.

So, if making money on eBay seems like something you would like to pursue, then you may be wondering where to start!

5 Ways to Start Your eBay career

WHERE TO START

The best place to start is, in your home. Look around every room in your home for items you haven’t used in quite a while, old or spare parts to new items you’ve purchased, or that vintage tea set you inherited from your great grandmother but have no space in your home for. The more inventory you have the better to choose from when selling. Once you’ve gone though the things in your home, you can then move on to getting a wider selection of inventory through sources like Craigslist, where you can find items for free, or even auctions, where you can find rare collectibles to be sold to high bidders. Once you’ve built up your inventory of items, you will be ready to test out whether those items can be sold. Then you can create an account on eBay.com.

CREATE AN ACCOUNT

If you are internet savvy in any way, then this will be easy for you. Creating an account on eBay is free of charge, and the hardest part may be figuring out a “seller name”, or user ID, that you want to be known for, and a password that you can easily remember. No matter what you do online, it is important that you protect yourself. The anonymity of the internet oftentimes creates a false sense of security. There are scandalous and sometimes dangerous, individuals who may try to steal your identity or your personal information, so be aware and protective of your online presence.

BECOMING A SELLER

The next step will be for you to establish yourself as a Seller on eBay. eBay has basic fees that are required to be paid by sellers in order to use their online platform to make money. And, you will need to create a secure payment method, like PayPal, for how you will accept payment for the items you sell online. Angie Nelson, from Work at Home Expert.com, has turned eBay selling into more than just a hobby but a lifestyle. Her 15- year experience selling on eBay carries worthwhile tips on how to maximize your profits, avoid pitfalls and have fun while selling. She recommends that as an eBay seller you consider yourself as a reputable business.

CONSIDER THE COSTS

Once you’ve established yourself as a business, you will have costs to consider: eBay fees, PayPal fees, and shipping costs. Now, you cannot avoid the necessary fees to eBay and PayPal for selling items and receiving payments securely, but your shipping costs can be scaled down by making a few smart moves like, including your shipping costs in your sale price, finding a at rate to ship within the United States, and even printing your shipping labels from home.

FIND YOUR NICHE

Finally, Angie strongly recommends that once you’ve got your sea legs in the ocean of eBay selling, you should then find your niche—sharpen your focus and find a product(s) to sell exclusively that will generate a continuous profit. This will help you avoid pitfalls of burnout or lack of products, and help you reap the benefits of maximum profits on eBay for a long time. For example she has been exclusively selling Littlest Pet Shop toys on eBay, as there is always a demand for them.

Whatever your reason for making extra money, online selling on eBay is certainly a great place to start!