Be Careful Shopping for eBay "Bargains"...
With eBay being such a great marketplace and very useful place to shop it stands to reason that some people don't bother looking elsewhere for items.
When it comes to certain goods, buying from eBay can end up costing you a great deal more than it should.
Towards the beginning of my eBay selling "career" I discovered a readily available item which I could sell over and over again for twice what I paid for it.
This item was not rare or particularly hard to come by yet I could sell it quite easily for £20 when I paid £9-11 for each brand new, sealed copy.
The item in question was a Region 1 DVD, specifically Stephen King's The Stand.
Initially testing the water, I bought 3 copies of the DVD and put them up for auction, one after the other. They went for £10.50, £19 and £22 respectively. As I paid around £10 for each of them I was not willing to accept as little as £10.50 again and so I started to sell them for £20 with a Buy It Now listing.
People would quite happily buy these items from me and, of course, I too was happy as I was making £10 each time for very little work.
What I was most surprised about was that:
(a) eBayers didn't bother checking any price comparison sites (such as those listed below), eBay.com or even Amazon.co.uk where these DVDs were on sale for a lot less and
(b) It took several months for me to get any eBay competition! In fact, by the time someone cottoned on to what I was doing and started to undercut me, I was selling off my last DVD. The film was due to be released on Region 2 shortly afterwards (which I had seen coming) and so I knew I would no longer be able to sell it for £20 when ASDA would have it on the shelves for £12-14.
Selling this DVD was certainly easy money, the only problem I had was waiting for each copy to reach me from Canada so I could list it on eBay. Each time I took delivery, I carefully opened the envelope, removed all trace of where I got it from and then resealed it and sent it off to another happy buyer!
Over the course of about 6 months I was able to source 6 different DVDs which would sell on eBay.co.uk for double the price I paid for them.
These items came from France, Canada, the US and even Brazil!
Apart from buying and splitting wholesale lots from eBay, this is the only way I can see anyone making money from DVDs on eBay. Forget buying from wholesalers, ex-rental DVDs or copies - look for rare films released abroad but not in the UK.
So, what does this have to do with buying on eBay?
The moral of the story is to always check price comparison sites, Amazon and eBay.com to make sure you aren't paying over the odds for items on eBay.co.uk.
If you do find a product you think may transfer into profits in the UK, test it with one or two to make sure it works. If it doesn't work, drop it before you waste money on stock.
If it does work, be prepared to drop the item when someone else cottons onto the idea and starts to undercut you. Some sellers on eBay work on paper-thin profit margins and getting in a price cutting war with them will be very costly on your profits.
Before buying anything on eBay it may pay to check the prices at the following sites:
Until next time, thanks for reading,