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Ten Tips for Increasing Sales on eBay

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Whether you're a brand-new eBayer or an old hand, these 10 tips can help increase interest in your auctions and can translate into more sales.

1. Accept multiple payment options. The more payment methods you accept, the more likely you are to find a buyer. The question is whether or not you want that buyer. There are plenty of above-board buyers who prefer to pay with money orders and cashier’s checks but there are also fraudulent buyers who will attempt to pay with fake money orders. You must decide how much risk you are willing to accept.

2. Take good pictures. Buyers want to see the items they are interested in purchasing. Make sure the pictures are clear and close-up. Use natural or ambient lighting and a neutral background.

3. Write detailed, compelling descriptions. Include any and all identifying characteristics and features, including the item’s condition, when it was made, and any flaws. Try to anticipate questions potential buyers may ask and address them in your descriptions.

4. Work to maintain your eBay feedback rating. You won't be able to please everyone all the time, but your feedback rating is your reputation. High seller ratings and positive feedback raise buyers’ comfort level buying from you, so treat each customer right to make sure you build a solid reputation among the eBay community.

5. Provide good customer service. Just because you don't have to meet your buyers in person or talk to them on the phone doesn't mean you can provide shoddy service. Responding promptly to inquiries can help facilitate a sale. If you are slow in responding to bidders’ questions they may lose interest in buying your item.

6. Open an eBay Store. Store sellers enjoy special perks such as the option to add search inventory along with their listings, which can lead buyers to other auctions. Plus you have a central location to drive your customers to, and a place where only your merchandise is featured — without competition.

7. Let them Buy It Now. Sellers who meet certain criteria can offer fixed-price "Buy It Now" listings. Neither you nor the buyer needs to wait for the end of an auction cycle — you get your payment sooner, and buyers get their merchandise faster. This is a great way to move more merchandise, especially if you have a product that's in demand.

8. Choose multiple listing categories and upgraded features. Listing your items in multiple categories and using feature upgrades like text bolding and highlighting and additional photos can increase your chances of selling an item.

9. Try shorter auction times. Just because seven-day auctions are the norm doesn't mean you're stuck with weeklong listings. Sometimes short auction cycles can create additional demand, especially for high-demand items.

10. Offer satisfaction guarantees, warranties, or returns. Every consumer feels more comfortable with some sort of guarantee, warranty, or the option to return an unsatisfactory product. Most low-volume sellers prefer to sell their items "as is," so offering some kind of guarantee is a great way to set yourself apart. Make sure you post your return policy prominently.

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