How Does eBay Work?


How does eBay work?

As I'm sure you know, eBay is the world’s largest online auction website. Anyone can register for free on eBay and then sell or buy items.

What can you sell? A few things are prohibited like foodstuffs, but apart from that you can sell pretty much anything from ipods to jeans, toys, jewelry, crafts and so on…

Find out more about what to sell on eBay here: Products to sell on ebay

You can either trade in auctions or in the ‘buy it now’ format.


Here’s how each works:




Selling Items On eBay

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If you want to sell in an auction you can choose how long the auction runs – from 3 days to 10 days.

You then list your item by writing a title and description and uploading a photo or several photos of your item.

You decide when the auction starts (which affects when it ends) and you decide what the starting price is. Many auctions start at 0.99.

You can also choose a reserve price if you want to ensure your item doesn’t sell well below it’s value.


To sell in the ‘buy it now’ format you do all of the above steps except you don’t choose a starting price, you simply put the selling price, in other words the price you will accept for the item.

When the item sells the buyer sends you the money by cheque or postal order or pays online. You then send the item once the payment has cleared.

eBay take a percentage which varies according to the starting price of your item and the final selling price. Other than that the profit is all yours. They list all their fees on eBay itself.

So, you can make some money on eBay quickly and relatively effortlessly.

After all it only takes 5 to 30 minutes to list one item, and if that sells for a good price (say $20 - $50 profit) that’s a good income if you sell a few items each day.

How many items could you list each week?

This is just a brief summary of what's involved. Make sure you check out the links at the bottom of this page to find out more about selling items on eBay.

There is a lot to learn to sell successfully, because there are many people competing for the buyer's attention on eBay.

It can be all to easy to list items only to discover a week later when the auction ends that you have had no bids!

Don't worry, I have lots of information to make sure that doesn't happen to you!

You can start here:

eBay success system


How To Buy On eBay


How does eBay work for buyers? If you want to buy on eBay you simply type into the eBay search box (near the top of the page in eBay) what you are looking for.

Pages of relevant items will then be displayed for you to browse.

You can then choose to view the items starting with either the lowest price or highest price first.

You can also choose whether you want to view items being sold in auctions, or ‘buy it now’ format.

If you choose the auction format you can then choose to view the items that are selling soonest. That way you can spot some real bargains.

For instance if an item is selling in 2 minutes and has no bids, and it’s starting price is 0.99 you could be in luck.

Chances are, you could be the only person who bids, so you will ‘win’ that auction.


However if the item you want has 20 bids, and minutes left till the auction is over, you may miss out as the bids can come fast in the final minutes of an auction.

If you place the winning bid on an item, you will get an email notification telling you that you are the 'winner'.

You then need to pay, either online or by sending a cheque assuming the buyer accepts cheques.


How does eBay work after you have bought your item?

Well, once you receive your item you leave feedback about your experience to help other buyers on eBay.

If you are unhappy it's best to contact the seller first and see if you can resolve things.

Don't just leave negative feedback as the seller may not be to blame, for instance if the item was damaged by the postal service.

It's all to easy to get carried away when you are bidding on eBay and before you know it, you have bid too high for something!

So, make sure you decide what your highest bid will be and stick to it!


How does eBay work to protect me as a buyer? There are many good sellers on eBay but as with all things some may not be so good.

What you can do is check out the previous feedback a seller has had before you buy from them.

Make sure it is mainly positive and you should be fine!


How does eBay work if you can't resolve a problem direct with the seller?

If you do have serious problems that you can't resolve you can contact eBay and they will act as intermediary to sort out any dispute between a seller and buyer.


That’s the very basics of how does eBay work.

If you want to sell on eBay there’s lots more you need to know so, just follow the links below for lots of useful information to help you sell successfully.

Click here for ALL the top information about making money on ebay

Return from How does ebay work to Making money on eBay - lots of tips to help you sell successfully

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