How to Open An eBay Small Business

By Prev Info - January 18, 2023

The eBay marketplace has been around for a long time now. Many people sell new and used items as a hobby. Others find that it is an excellent method for reducing the clutter in their garages and attics. Quite a few people have dedicated their time and effort into building an eBay small business. 

How to Open An eBay Small Business

This is not just a popular pastime for them. To open an eBay small business, you must complete market research, product sourcing, listing, shipping procedures and other tasks that are unique to an eBay seller's success.

Things You'll Need

eBay seller account

Photo storage account

Payment processor

1 - Register as an eBay seller. 

Even if you have already bought things on eBay, you need a seller account. Go to the eBay main page and click the "Sell" tab. Choose "Seller Resources" from the links in the page footer. Complete the registration form and provide verification of your identity. You can use a credit card, debit card, checking account or eBay's I.D. Verify alternative. You will pay $5 for this service. Decide what payment methods you will accept from buyers. If you elect to use PayPal, you will need to have a PayPal account or register for one.  

2 - Get educated about the eBay marketplace, selling fees and tools for sellers. 

Take the time to learn eBay's rules and restrictions. Brush up on the site's unique vocabulary. Visit the eBay forums to meet other sellers and get tips about choosing auction types, scheduling auctions and best auction closing times for many products.        

3 - Research the eBay market.

 Review the categories that you plan to sell in and find recent selling prices. Check the eBay Pulse page for top searches, updated hourly. Study hot products and seasonal items. Look through eBay's Want it Now section to spot potentially profitable products that buyers need.       

4 - Find reliable sources for the products that you decide to sell. 

To compete and profit, many sellers buy wholesale, use drop shipping services or purchase items at estate sales and inventory liquidations.      

5 - Select the products' selling option, auction or fixed price. 

Take photos of your items and upload them to a photo-hosting site or use the photo storage on eBay. Write descriptions of your products.      

6 - Use eBay's auction listing tool to create listings of your auctions

enter the URLs of the product photos, set shipping charges and the start and end times. There are many third party services that you can use to make the auction process more efficient. Some are free or low cost. The seller's forum members will often discuss the pros and cons of both free and paid tools.       

7 - Monitor your bids. 

Keep a calendar of auction end dates so that you can contact the winning bidder promptly to congratulate him and request payment. Your eBay customers may also have questions during the time the auction is running. Respond to information requests as soon as possible.       

8 - Pack and ship the products that you sold.

Prompt delivery is a big part of customer satisfaction. Keep shipping supplies on hand so that you can make visits to your post office or another carrier a routine event. Depending on your location, you may be able to arrange package pickup from your home.

Tips & Warnings

Set up systems to manage the back end of your eBay small business -- licenses, taxes, fees, expense records and insurance, in accordance with IRS regulations and your local laws.