eBay can be a great way for many of us to make money. Millions of casual sellers flog their old or unwanted belongings on this auction platform and make a bit of money in return. Then there are the professional eBay sellers – those of us who use eBay to make a living. Our stores stock seemingly endless numbers of products and we make sales on a daily basis, providing us with an income that keeps us ticking over. This, of course, is appealing. It’s a flexible job where you can work remotely wherever you want and where you can be your own boss. Say goodbye to the commute, set working hours and uncomfortable uniforms! But, eventually, you may decide that you want to switch from selling on eBay to selling independently. When it comes down to it, eBay takes a fair chunk of the profits from every sale you make, so you could find yourself selling a whole lot more by setting up your own website and accepting payments directly. eBay also always tends to favour the side of the buyer, and buyers aren’t always honest – sometimes receiving items, pretending they haven’t turned up and automatically being issued a refund by eBay, who you then have to pay back. Running your own site means you have control over your own returns policies. If this sounds good to you, here are a few simple steps that will help you to get started.
Create a Website
First, you need to create a website. This will give your buyers somewhere to browse and purchase your products. Of course, this takes more time and professional help than setting up an eBay store. But it’s worth the investment. It’s a good idea to work with web designers from a reliable company like BPS Designs to get the work done to the best quality and standard. They’ll have plenty of expertise and previous experience in this field, so a collaboration can see your ideas brought straight to the screen! When it comes to your website, you also need to provide good content. Take time and effort when photographing your items for sale. Think of angles, lighting and ensure you show the item in full detail. If you’re producing items and repeat selling multiple versions, you may even want to use a professional product photographer, as other companies would.
Now, to get your loyal and repeat customers from your eBay store to your website. In your eBay listings and on your profile, it may be a good idea to link to your website and offer a discount on their first purchase if they buy directly from you. Make this discount the same as what you’d usually spend paying eBay’s fees. This way, you don’t lose out on what you’d usually earn, but effectively move the customer over to another platform where you can profit more from them on their future purchases!
Focus on SEO
It’s a good idea to focus on SEO to bring new customers to your new site. SEO stands for “search engine optimisation” and it’s a process that can help your website to appear highly in search engine results when potential customers search for what you’re selling. This requires a fair amount of in-depth and specialist work, so it’s generally best to use the services of a reliable SEO agency. This will take the hard work off your hands and deliver high quality results.
Create a Mailing List
It’s always a good idea to give customers the option of signing up to a mailing list. This way, you can update them on new items, sales and other useful information. They keep in the loop and you can entice them back to make a sale. This is a win-win situation all round! Add a mailing list signup form to your site. You can also offer some sort of incentive to encourage people to sign up – perhaps 10% off their first order or free delivery on their first order.
Now, you don’t have to make this switch immediately and in one fell swoop. You can run your independent store and your eBay store alongside each other if you like in order to maximise sales. Just remember to remove sold stock from the alternate platform when any items sell! Hopefully, the above information will help you to get this journey started in the right direction if you do decide to take it!