Startup Advice

Setting up your own eBay shop

Charlotte Harwood

Selling on eBay is easy. And if you get it right, it can transform your business.

Known as the place to go for absolutely everything, eBay is the online market that lets anyone sell anything to the highest bidder. If you’re looking for a discontinued teapot or novelty steering wheel cover, eBay is probably your first port of call. You can even spend real money on an air guitar, if that’s your thing.

Plenty of people use eBay to make a bit of extra cash from something they no longer want or need. But there’s more than just pocket money to be made if you’re interested in setting up your own eBay shop – and here’s how to get started.

How does an eBay shop work?

The best place to start is by understanding how an eBay shop actually works. Any eBay user can set up an online shop within the site itself, and through that virtual shop you can list all of the items you’re putting up for auction. Then it’s just a case of letting the bids roll in, with items going to those who put the most cash forward.

Setting up an eBay shop also means you can go one step further than the average person selling their unwanted items online. With an eBay shop, you can list products for longer, and even receive discounts on charges.

Get started…

There are two options available if you’re looking to start your own eBay shop. If you already have a business, you’ll need to register and set up a business account. To do this, you need a UK address, which eBay will use to send you a confirmation letter in the post. You’ll also need your bank account details to hand so that you can set up a direct debit to cover your monthly subscription fee.
On the other hand, if you don’t already have a business and are looking to start up from scratch on eBay, deciding on your business name and what you want to sell should be top of your plan of action. Once you’ve done that, you can get going with registering your shiny new eBay shop business.
In either case, you’ll need a PayPal account so that transactions can be made. PayPal is eBay’s preferred portal for online payments, and makes it easy and secure for buyers to transfer money over to your account when they buy from your shop.

…then get rated

Anything with a high number of positive reviews is naturally more appealing to consumers than something littered with negative feedback or a mixed bag of testimonials. So perhaps the most important thing to think about when running your own eBay shop is customer service – that is, making it as excellent as you possibly can.

Negative customer reviews can’t be removed from eBay, so take every precaution you can to deliver the best possible customer experience from the word go. Display your products accurately, sell at fair prices, and make sure they’re well packaged to avoid damage in transit. Deliver quickly and you’ll earn extra brownie points from your customers, with patience levels dipping drastically in this want-it-now day and age. And most importantly, be nice to your customers. One slip up could be disastrous, so remember the adage that the customer is always right and stick to it – even in those cases when they’re not. If you do get some negative feedback, do whatever you can to get things back on track.