Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Selling your swap cards? read this first!

I'll share an email I received today, just the gist of it and not the full email of course, I respect my buyers' privacy.  The question was will I consider giving her a discount as she wants to buy "several" cards.  Ok I am good with this, I am a buyer and a seller, who doesn't want discount?  The undertone of the email however was a little irking because she indicated that other sellers were selling cards 10 for $1.00 and that maybe I should be pricing mine similarly..... hmmm ok then maybe just buy from them was the thought that crossed my mind but I took it as an opportunity to educate everyone on just how much it costs the seller to offer those cards to you.

We are talking ebay here (of course!).  Now it costs $49.95 per month to have a store.  It costs .20c per listing after you have used up your limited "free" listings (which smart sellers use for auctions).  Then ebay takes a minium of .10c as final value fee, then PayPal takes another .30c for you to receive the payment.  If you don't have free shipping then you also pay Ebay another 10% of the TOTAL COST of the item, so say $1.00 for her example, then $1.00 for postage (as that is what most people charge on ebay).  They will take 10% of that whole $2.00, then Ebay again will charge you fees on the shipping too.... This is not even taking into account it cost you to produce or buy that item in the first place!

Feeling a little more sympathetic towards your seller now? (probably not, the cost is all that matters when you are a buyer).  How long do you think your seller will last with business practices like that?  

My suggestion to you is that if you want to sell your cards, keep an eye on what they are selling for on ebay (you can also do a search on what they sold for for the previous 3 months).  Think of the fees too.  If you are going to sell in large volumes (some people have hundreds of cards to sell) then it might be worth opening a store.  Ebay you pay through the nose for them, but you have good exposure.  Quicksales you only pay $5 per month but it's slow there and you really have to bring your own buyers.

If they are rare cards like Coles or Woolworths swap/trading cards then auctioning them would be smarter.  If they are relatively common then you are better off setting "buy-now" prices and taking your chances.  There are some 22,000 cards on ebay au at the moment.  It's easy to get lost in all those listings, especially if you don't have high feedback and the benefit of ebay's Top Rated Seller ranking (which puts your listings higher).

Your other option?  Hang onto them, sell around Christmas time (December-January are top months for sales).  Or you can join a "swap" group and swap them with others.  I am working on this with my facebook group/page.

How to do an Ebay search to check current prices:

1. open the ebay au home page then up the top look for this box (click the pics to enlarge them):

2. after you click "advanced" you will see this screen:

type in the type of card you are searching for, I used Coles swap cards in my example.  Then click the box for "completed listings" rather than 'sold' because you want to see the ones that didn't sell too, that is important because it allows you to see sold items and unsold items, so you can gauge demand.

3.  then the results will come up like this:

and it also shows unsold ones or sold ones in buy-now or auction format if you click here you can toggle between different types, just auction results, just buy-now results or all results:

hope that helps, ask me questions if you need help!

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