Since its launch in 1995, eBay has become one of the best destinations for people looking to sell everything from rare collectibles to electronics through clothing. But there is a difference between just selling a few items and building a business on the platform.
It is possible to start a commercial activity using eBay as the main market. But as with anything, there are pros and cons to consider before jumping into.
Danna Crawford, eBay sales coach and founder of Power Selling Mom said in an e-mail interview with Small Business Trends, "I think every business can benefit from opening a store eBay Bringing your goods to the world's largest online market can not only increase the exposure of your business, but it can also help build your brand.This can be a start of learning, but the rewards are great! "
Advantages and Disadvantages of an eBay Store
Here are some pros and cons to consider on eBay before using it to start your own ecommerce business.
Benefits of selling on eBay
Integrated shopping base
With 171 million active users in the first quarter of 2018, eBay is one of the most popular online ecommerce destinations today. You do not need to spend a lot of time or money marketing your business – these shoppers are already browsing eBay for a variety of different items.
Characteristics of the community
To develop your store and learn the tips and tricks for running a successful eBay business, the site offers community features such as discussion forums and question and answer forums. So you can learn directly from other sellers who have found success on the platform.
Crawford says, "eBay is more than just a market, it's a community of people who help people and work together!"
Unlike building your own site from the beginning, setting up a storefront on eBay is relatively simple and fast. You must sign up for an account and purchase a subscription to the store. Then you can customize your storefront in a few clicks and start adding products immediately. You do not need to invest a lot of time and money to start your business.
Protection of sellers
Crawford says, "eBay has an excellent reputation not only for the protection of buyers, but also for the protection of sellers."
The site has been known for years as the one that actually protects buyers in the event that a seller does not ship a product or engage in any kind of fraud or wrong direction. However, there are also seller protection measures in the event that a buyer fails to pay or not file a refund guarantee claim without proof of fault.
Multiple Selling Options
Unlike many other popular market sites, eBay offers both auctions and Buy It Now options for sellers. So, if you just want to have a normal store with fixed prices, you can. But if you want to potentially do even more by letting some items go to auction, you can. You can also set minimum prices so that you do not have to sell these items at unbeatable prices if you do not want them.
No competition from eBay
In addition, eBay does not sell any products. Thus, when buyers browse the site, they only see the items of third-party sellers. It also means that the platform has no interest in making your products more difficult to find in order to guide buyers to its own line.
Crawford adds, "The promise of eBay is that they will never compete with us. EBay does not sell products on the site.They do not compete with their vendors."
The disadvantages of selling on eBay
Compared to other e-commerce platforms, eBay's selling expenses are actually relatively low. But they still exist. The site charges an insertion fee when you register an item on eBay and a total value fee based on the total price of the sale. There are also optional charges if you want to make your products easier to find. The exact costs vary depending on your seller's subscription model and the price of your items, but you can see a full breakdown here.
Starting in 2017, the gross merchandise volume of eBay is $ 83.9 billion. So even if eBay does not sell any product, there are a ton of other vendors on the platform that you have to compete with. So, even if it's easy to configure yourself and you can certainly take advantage of the large number of integrated buyers, you still have to find ways to put your shop and products away from all of them. these other options.
Great Deals Buyers
In part because of its debut as primarily an auction site, eBay has become known to many consumers as a bargain site. While there are certainly buyers willing to pay the price for rare collectibles, there are even more who are looking for the cheapest possible prices. There are countless articles and buyers' messages guiding others to loopholes or tips for getting the lowest prices possible. And eBay even has a separate section of the site for offers. So, if you are looking to sell high priced merchandise, it may not be the best platform choice.
Less visibility for slow shippers
Crawford explains, "eBay rewards vendors who can ship items on the same day or at least one business day. If you have "custom" objects and you can not ship them as quickly, there are exceptions to the rule. However, you will receive more exposure by offering a fast shipping. Customers do not like to wait for their items. "
So, if you do not have the time or the ability to ship your items quickly, this could have an impact on the visibility of your shop. So that's another situation where eBay might not be the best choice.
When you create your own website from scratch, you can control just about every aspect of the appearance and operation of your store. However, the general layout and operation of an eBay store are fairly standardized on the platform. So you can add some details about your branding and the rules of your shop, but other than that, most things are already determined for you.
Periodic modifications of the site
Crawford says, "The eBay platform is still working hard for improvements, and with improvements, this will result in website changes." Vendors who can not adapt to change may The key is to adjust your business model quickly and adapt to changes.Bing in mind, if eBay changes anything, the reason is to benefit to We can not understand, but learning to adapt to change and trusting eBay is the key. "
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