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The Web Ask Steven Smith
Tips for Selling Collectibles on eBay.

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Tips for Selling Collectibles on eBay. - Courtesy of Steven Smith


Yes, collectibles! Collectibles are where eBay started, and they’re still one of its biggest areas – however much they might want you to believe they’re not. eBay's most hardcore and long-time users are almost all collectors of something or other – it is quite common to post what you think is a mundane item, only to have collectors suddenly go to war over it because it is somehow linked to something they collect.
Collectors are the people on eBay who really do pay top-dollar for things that seem like junk to you and I – not to mention to the people you’ll be getting your stock from! That’s why you can make so much profit on collectibles. Here are a few tips.
Go to people’s homes. People’s homes are full of things that someone out there collects – they are the best and cheapest source of collectibles out there. Sure, you might find something if you hang around at enough garage sales, but you’d have competition. Getting invited to people’s homes to look around should be a dream for you, and one you’re doing your best to make a reality.
Buy on other auction sites. You’ll be surprised how much money you can make if you buy the collectibles that people sell on smaller auction sites like Yahoo Auctions, and then list it on eBay. These sellers will often be perfectly knowledgeable about their item, but simply getting a lower price because they serve a smaller marketplace. Sometimes you can almost double your money.
List in non-collectible categories. If your collectible doesn’t have a category of its own under ‘collectibles’, you might prefer to list it in a category that has something to do with the item but nothing to do with collecting. What you will often find is that people browsing a category for their favourite thing will pay more for your collectible than actual collectors would.
Do lots of research. Never list something you think might be valuable without searching and searching to dig up every piece of information you can on it. Everything you find out is likely to be useful when you come to list it.
List every tiny, tiny detail. Remember that collectors really care about the most seemingly insignificant things. An item from one year can be worth thousands while the one from the year before is near-worthless, or an item that is one shade of a colour can be worth far more than one of a subtly different shade. It’s not worth puzzling over and it’s not worth trying to pass your items off as something they’re not – just make sure you put absolutely everything you know in the description.
When you are listing items that require close research and description down to the tiniest detail, however, don’t be tempted to steal someone else’s work! Whatever you do, don’t take another seller’s description and try to pass it off as your own, as this could have all sorts of consequences for you. Our next email gives you a guide to eBay’s policy on ‘description theft’.

 

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