It’s 2021 and a brand-new eBay selling year.
But many of 2020’s same old challenges linger on. So how do you prepare your business on eBay for the unknowns that lie ahead??
Let’s break down eBay selling into two manageable concerns:
First, we’ll talk about inventory. Because without inventory, you’re basically out of business. Second, we’ll look at ways to get sold items safely to your buyer. Because if you can’t do that, then again, you’re basically out of business.
But here’s the good news: As an online retailer, you’re always open on eBay! And I’m going to share with you my proven, actionable strategies for addressing your concerns about inventory and shipping, so you may rest assured that your business can indeed not only stay afloat, but thrive this year!
Let’s talk product sourcing in 2021.
How and where can you find new merchandise with which to stock your eBay store’s virtual shelves?
Sure, many brick-and-mortar retailers have closed up shop. That doesn’t mean you have to! No matter how and where you acquire your inventory, it’s always smart to be alert for and test new sources.
For example, do you thrift? Great! But have you tried retail arbitrage? That’s where you buy merchandise at brick-and-mortar stores, then flip it on eBay. Opportunities for retail arbitrage abound, from NWT clothing on clearance to health and beauty products with limited nationwide availability to marked-down seasonal décor and a gazillion other possibilities.
If you already do retail arbitrage for your eBay selling, have you tried online arbitrage?
That’s where you find merchandise on eBay and/or other ecommerce sites that you can buy at a low enough price to allow you to mark it up and resell it on eBay for a profit. My video Score Hot Selling eBay Inventory has some super ideas for you in this area.
Two eBay sourcing pro tips:
Look for eBay listings with misspelled brand names.
Sort search results by “Ending Soonest” and look for undervalued items, especially in auction listings.
Don’t forget about wholesale! With many wholesale shows now taking place online, this could be the perfect year for you to try sourcing some wholesale lines.
Remember: Multi-quantity/multi-variation listings only have to be created once to run for months as GTC (Good ‘Til Cancelled), and they’ll move up in search results with every item sold from that listing. It’s much less labor intensive than listing one-off items, which (obviously) end each time the item sells.
So consider complementing your one-of-a-kind inventory with a commodity product — or two!
Now let’s consider shipping. You probably have a favorite carrier, or at least one that you use more than others.
That’s fine, but do keep an eye on what the other carriers offer. In addition to their discounted USPS rates, eBay has partnered up with UPS and FedEx. It pays to compare prices to ensure you’re making smart choices about how to ship your sold items!
However you’re shipping, be sure you have a backup provider.
eBay Labels is pretty reliable, but should it go down or get glitchy, you’d best be prepared to turn to an alternative source for generating your shipping labels and packing slips.
If you’re shipping globally, you may want to start using eBay’s (GSP) and (eISD) exclusively. These shipping services offer special protections for sellers. Furthermore, eISD is cheaper than USPS First Class International.
One thing is certain: 2021 is fraught with uncertainty.
Get ready now, so that when the curve balls come your way, you’re ready to knock ‘ em out of the park!