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  1. #1
    Repurposer started this thread.
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    Can you make a profit on Ebay?

    Years ago pretty much anything that was listed sold on Ebay and people knew they had to include shipping in their costs. Now with the saturation of just about everything being sold on the site and those who ship for free how can there be a profit in this especially if the item sold for only 2 bucks. Out of that comes a listing fee and commission for Ebay.



  2. #2
    RLS0812's Avatar
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    Exclamation

    You can make a profit *if* you selectively buy and list items that have higher profit margins.
    There are some folks who specialize in Ebay resale, and claim to make over $100,000 a year.

    My average profit margin ( after all expenses ) averages out to $1.07 per item.

    Edit: Ebay + Paypal fees are a combined 12.9% and there is no listing fee for the first 50 items per month - unless you have an Ebay store, at which case more 'free' listings, and lower fees.

    ( Note: super low shipping fees are usually from China sellers, who don't have to pay very much to ship to the US )
    Last edited by RLS0812; 10-02-2016 at 02:34 PM.

  3. #3
    mikeinreco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RLS0812 View Post
    You can make a profit *if* you selectively buy and list items that have higher profit margins.
    There are some folks who specialize in Ebay resale, and claim to make over $100,000 a year.

    My average profit margin ( after all expenses ) averages out to $1.07 per item.

    Edit: Ebay + Paypal fees are a combined 12.9% and there is no listing fee for the first 50 items per month - unless you have an Ebay store, at which case more 'free' listings, and lower fees.
    Yes I have friends with multi-million dollar business who use Ebay exclusively
    BUYING ALL COMPUTER SCRAP WORKING OR NOT
    CHECK OUT MY BUYERS THREAD http://www.scrapmetalforum.com/scrap...nic-scrap.html

  4. #4
    webuyselltradestuff's Avatar
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    sure no problem making a profit on Ebay, IF you know your market (ie what to buy) and consistently list and sell those items. As long as you have a place to hold the items and the margins are good enough, then you are good....ie your $2 item example...ummm, NO. You can't even pay the time it took to list it. My cost per hour and profits per hour needed FAR exceed that. You just need to stop trying to sell like the dollar store (that only works because you have 100K items in one place and they come to you)....sell higher end stuff that is still in demand and ride it until the wheels fall off...then sell the next thing.
    PROFIT is made when you BUY/ACQUIRE NOT when you sell

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  6. #5
    AuburnEwaste's Avatar
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    Profit on ebay is easy! My general rule is that unless I can sell an item for 20.00, I won't list it.(Or list it in bulk to make up for it) There are exceptions, such as small items that can be shipped for a few bucks like CPU's and RAM.

    Knowing your shipping options is important. You need to be able to look at an item and decide the cheapest way to ship it. USPS regional rate boxes are a lesser known option that can save a ton of money.

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  8. #6
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    I list items if I can get more than scrap value on it no matter the selling price. This month I have made over $100 profit where it would be about $2 in scrap. Make sure to do your research. Look at the sold listings before listing any item. If you can't make a profit or it seems that it doesn't sell fast then I scrap it. Always factor in EBay Fees / shipping / paypal fees before selling.

  9. #7
    Breakage's Avatar
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    On the low end, my margin can slide below 15%. On the high, it's more like 70%. The lowest margins tend to be for books, which I sell more of than anything else but the markets are so flooded you can't really expect to get rich on them. I ship for free just so I can get an automatic five star rating for fees but sometimes it can be a challenge. I tried to establish a quarterly average margin for everything but without a store, eBay deletes the broader sales data within 90 days. That makes it difficult to keep anything but a running tally in a separate spreadsheet. I just haven't reached the point, yet, where my volume justifies that much more work.

    To be clear, when we say "margin," I like to think everyone understands it refers to the amount of money, expressed as a percentage, representing the actual profit from each sale, but that consensus may not be the case. It's not a dollar amount; if you say you have a $1 margin, that doesn't tell much. If you are making $1 on every $3 sale, that's pretty good (33% - a 50% markup) but making a $1 on a $50 sale is not a good sign, unless you sell hundreds per month and they come prepacked for mailing.

    Low margins are not a terrible thing with high turnover in play. Wal-Mart, for example, tends to have small profit margins, item to item. But they are banking on massive turnover rates to work in their favor. If one store spends $350K on inventory at the beginning of the month, and they sell it all at a 10% margin inside that month, they clear $35,000 after all overhead, labor, and shrink is accounted. Not too shabby. Few of us could manage Wal-Mart's inventory levels but even at lower levels, the model holds water. I have the same attitude about books. As long as they sell quick and I can pack them out easily and swiftly (and the Media Rates stay easy to remember), I will keep doing it. At least, they add up to a few more dollars per month than I would have seen, otherwise. But once you start getting into things which don't fit into Flat Rate boxes or ship cheaply as Media or First Class, you have to have more insulation in the margin.

  10. #8
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    I cant keep up with everything between dismantling and listing on ebay. I try to list several items like 10-15 a nite. All I can handle. That said my average before shipping is about 2k a month or 25 grand a year. Factor in shipping costs, returns, etc....clear perhaps 19k - 20k.

    Curenntly run two accounts with vpns to hide ip so they dont get linked together and closed down. So that is only one account. The other one is slow moving crap that might take months to sell, but will eventually.

    I have been as high as 4k a month. But really was 2k after buying the crap and pay labor to dismantle...

    I pretty much sell auto parts I get from scrap cars I buy. I really dont run general scrap, but used to part out the white goods like washers and sell parts.

    I also was dabbling in selling flat screen tv parts. But the cost to buy them from people including gas wasnt worth it really. Plus high amount of returns due to people having no clue how to fix their tv. So return a good item I would have to resell.

    Now this is online money. This doesnt factor in scrap money which is cash bla bla bla.

    So realistically as a scrapper.....I think I average 50k or thereabotu a year between ebay and scrap money even with the the low prices. If I had help and could list everything i have in inventory....i probaly got 20k here.

    But alasa only got 4k up right now....:>

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  12. #9
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    It takes 6 months to know if you actually made money on eBay since a customer can return an item for up to 6 months from date of purchase. eBay always sides with customer and refunds money automatically if you refuse. I had a custom that waited just over 6 months once to complain about a purchase. Luckily I was protected at that point. Who waits almost 7 months?? crazy If you have more volume you can afford to lower prices. If you have one or two items, you will likely be priced higher and have to wait longer to sell. However, I sometimes pay a little more if the seller is closer to me as I know on average I will get it sooner. So there are many many factors in this loaded question. Happy selling!

  13. #10
    Sirscrapalot's Avatar
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    Yes you can make a profit on ebay.

    Short. Simple. an Direct.

    Is it worth it all? Only you can decide. Some folks love it, some hate it. Most on here that use it, do well.

    Either way...good luck to ya!

    Sirscrapalot - Rock you like a hurricane. - Some Band nobody ever herd of............../end sarcasm

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  15. #11
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    First thought about making money on ebay is by selling stuff as all the responses have shown. But lately I've been making money by buying. Not a whole lot 50 bucks here, 100 there. But with the great prices offered by some of the buyers here, I've been picking up lots of scrap computer stuff and all I have to do is rebox it and print a label. It is hard to win due to (I'm guessing) home refiners paying well over what the buyers here pay out. But you can win quite a few. I have the best luck with the "make offer" auctions. I got a box of 30 lbs of ram for what came out to be about 12 bucks a pound. Quick easy 50 dollar score. And best part is, I usually do my bidding at work while in the bathroom. Nothing better than getting paid to drop a deuce, except getting paid twice while doing so. Lol.

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  17. #12
    Sirscrapalot's Avatar
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    One can do very well buying off eBay an selling elsewhere to.

    In my old life(business) I'd do the same. Buy on there an resell elsewhere(not online), profit, rinse & repeat. As our older members know, I at one time sold on eBay. Not scrap related stuff, but stuff I bought wholesale(True Wholesale.). This was before I got into ewaste/scrapping. Nowadays while I don't sell on there anymore(I prefer face to face sales) I do still buy now an then, but even that's rare for me now.

    If you got the time, patience, an the will to deal with eBay, their hoops, the occasional bad buyer, etc....then go for it. Just know it's not all peaches and roses, but it's not all piss and vinegar either.

    For those new to the forums and/or selling on eBay, do yourself if a favor an learn market research. There are programs out that will do it for you on sites like eBay and Amazon. You can also do it without a program..just makes it harder in my opinion. Work smart, not hard as the saying goes. Far as what program..consult the archives I've mentioned one or two in the past. As I don't work for them..I don't do free advertising for them either.

    So yea..if you made it through all that above...Good luck to you future eBay sellers, and continued good business for our pro ones.

    As always...YMMV.

    Sirscrapalot - It is better to meet danger than to wait for it. He that is on a lee shore, and foresees a hurricane, stands out to sea and encounters a storm to avoid a shipwreck. - Charles Caleb Colton

  18. #13
    t00nces2's Avatar
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    No, I do not seem to be able to make a profit on ebay. Every time I list a product and it sells, it seems to go for exactly what it is worth. There is no gain whatsoever. Just once it would be nice to actually get paid more than what the item is worth. It seems to be an exactly equal exchange of goods and value.

  19. #14
    Sirscrapalot's Avatar
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    Please see post above yours in regards to market research.

    Will save you from those kind of things. Input your product, an get the info on it. Past sales, how many, what's hot/not, etc etc etc.

    You can save yourself a lot of time an heart break with said program.

    Further proof I'm right with my little motto tho..YMMV.

    Sirscrapalot - Sitting on the dock of the bay..- Otis Redding

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    No surprise, buyer gets refund $812.00 and 18.7 grams of gold.

    Hello Alloy2,

    We finished looking into your case and we decided it in anagiota xxxxx
    favor. Here's the case information:


    Buyer's name: anagiota xxxxxx
    Buyer's email: doroXX@mail.com
    Transaction ID: 4RR2602289043841S

    Transaction date: 23-Aug-2016
    Transaction amount: $812.00 USD
    Your transaction ID: PP813405786C64377

    Case number: PP-405-240-865-901

    Refund amount: $812.00 USD


    We've already refunded them the money from your account and the case is now
    closed. Unfortunately, there wasn't enough money in your account to cover
    the refund
    , so your PayPal account balance is now negative.

    That means your account activity might be limited until you bring the
    account balance to (or above) zero. You should also know that any money
    going into the account will go toward bringing your balance back above zero.

    Sincerely,

    Protection Services Department


    Please do not reply to this email. This mailbox is not monitored and you
    will not receive a response. For assistance, log in to your PayPal account
    and click the Help link in the top right corner of any PayPal page.
    The art of survival is a story that never ends. American Hustle.

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  22. #16
    Sirscrapalot's Avatar
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    @Alloy2....now thats a shot to the pocket book.

    I have other things I could say, but I'm told we're a family friendly forum an I need to use my filter.

    Needless to say...I'm game if you wanna go egg their HQ.

    Sirscrapalot - .........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sirscrapalot View Post
    @Alloy2....now thats a shot to the pocket book.

    I have other things I could say, but I'm told we're a family friendly forum an I need to use my filter.

    Needless to say...I'm game if you wanna go egg their HQ.

    Sirscrapalot - .........
    Thanks for the gesture, but I've already been working on plan "B".

    I'm on a small acerage and have used that Kubota tractor to till the ground, then used flaming technology for weed and seed control then planted a bunch of Russian Red hardneck garlic, from one acre you can produce 33,500 pounds of this stinky S%#$.

    Garlic is selling at $12.00 a pound so it's expensive to get the seed you need for a ;large crop, which led me to do some research on how to propagate via cell culture in vitro my test tube babys.

    Eighteen years of ebay, it was time to call it quits just neede this little 800 dollar nudge.

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  25. #18
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    Think this may have been my salvation, by not linking my PP account for automatic fee payments they were not able to legally access my bank account. Nuff said.


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  27. #19
    ScrappinRed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alloy2 View Post
    No surprise, buyer gets refund $812.00 and 18.7 grams of gold.

    Hello Alloy2,

    We finished looking into your case and we decided it in anagiota xxxxx
    favor. Here's the case information:


    Buyer's name: anagiota xxxxxx
    Buyer's email: doroXX@mail.com
    Transaction ID: 4RR2602289043841S

    Transaction date: 23-Aug-2016
    Transaction amount: $812.00 USD
    Your transaction ID: PP813405786C64377

    Case number: PP-405-240-865-901

    Refund amount: $812.00 USD


    We've already refunded them the money from your account and the case is now
    closed. Unfortunately, there wasn't enough money in your account to cover
    the refund
    , so your PayPal account balance is now negative.

    That means your account activity might be limited until you bring the
    account balance to (or above) zero. You should also know that any money
    going into the account will go toward bringing your balance back above zero.

    Sincerely,

    Protection Services Department


    Please do not reply to this email. This mailbox is not monitored and you
    will not receive a response. For assistance, log in to your PayPal account
    and click the Help link in the top right corner of any PayPal page.
    Was it a "not as described" case? What reasoning did the buyer give? I would've been on the phone so fast with eBay fighting that...
    ~You have to start somewhere to get anywhere~

  28. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScrappinRed View Post
    Was it a "not as described" case? What reasoning did the buyer give? I would've been on the phone so fast with eBay fighting that...
    `Item not recieved, processed shipping label through my PP account the tracking number is useless not worth the paper it's printed on.

    I enjoy a good game, I've been check mated by a savvy buyer, I'll never get the money or the gold back but do have some recourse which could result in the buyer having the gold confiscated or possibly paying double duty plus a fine for defrauding customs.

    After 18 years selling on ebay, I've had enough of the BS.

    Last year the Goverment took half my pension leaving me $550.00 to live on ebay did not save my A$$ I did, had a great time on the Honda VT1100 and the sailboat life is a never ending adventure. Now for plan "B" growing garlic.

    Today was my birthday and nothing is going to spoil it or any other day going forward.

    CPC abbreviation for Canada Post Corporation.


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