How To Determine What’s Really
Selling On Ebay.
By Kirsten Hawkins
If you want to make the most money you can on eBay, then you need to know what sells. But how can you find that out?
The Manual Way.
If you’re just starting out, you might find it easier to simply go to your category, tick ‘Completed listings’ in the left-hand menu, and then click the ‘Show items’ button. Sort them by highest price first, and there you have it: the items that sell for the highest prices. In most categories this will change often, but it’s still useful to know – if you think you can get an item quickly for less than the kind of prices it is selling for, then go for it.
eBay's search interface can be slow and hard to use, however, and you’re unlikely to discover everything you could learn this way. There’s more than one way to do things, though.
The Statistical Way.
If you’d prefer to do a little hardcore statistical analysis to determine what’s selling and what not, then don’t worry – you can do that too.
eBay make all their market data available to third-party developers through what’s called a ‘programming interface’ – this basically means that you have a wide choice of programs that can take market statistics from eBay and analyse them for you. Type ‘ebay analysis’ into a search engine for a long list.
In my opinion, some of the best eBay statistics tools out there are made by Andale (http://www.andale.com). Andale are one of the oldest and most established sellers of services for eBay. However, their solution is web-based, and you may prefer to buy a piece of software that you can install on your computer, such as AuctionIntelligence.
These automated programs will almost do everything for you, and come with help and tutorials. You should be aware, however, that eBay charge them for the data, which means that they will never give you their programs for free.
Keep Your Finger on Pulse.
If you want a quick, big-picture snapshot of what people are looking to buy on eBay, then go to http://pulse.ebay.com. This is a page where eBay list the top 10 most searched for words, and the top 5 largest eBay stores.
Looking at it, it’s easy to spot current trends. For example, right now all of the top stores are selling media items, either books or music. That suggests that these are good things to be selling, at least if you want to shift volume. Right now the word ‘ipod’ is at number 4, and ‘ipod mini’ is at number 6 – there are a heck of a lot of people out there looking for a cheap iPod or iPod mini. If you could find a good supplier for them then you could make a lot of money.
If you’re having trouble finding suppliers, though, don’t worry: there’s more than one way to get hold of things to sell on eBay. The next email will give you a few tips.
About the Author: Kirsten Hawkins is an Ebay and internet auction enthusiast from Nashville, TN. Visit http://www.auctionseller411.com/ for more great tips on how to make the most from Ebay and other online auctions.