What to Sell on eBay
Are you an eBay newbie or an eBay veteran looking for easy things to sell? Read on to find out some of the things I’ve sold on eBay over the years.
I have been selling on eBay for about ten years. I find eBay one of the best ways to earn my mocha money. It’s not my only way, but it’s definitely one of my favorite ways. Perhaps it’s because after all these years, I know what will sell and what won’t. It’s not that I’m an eBay expert, but more of a serious observer. After all, in order to afford my specialty coffee habit, I have to know where my next $3.59 is coming from!
One of the Easiest Things to Sell on eBay
One of the easiest things to sell on eBay are coupons. I’m not talking about grocery coupon inserts from the Sunday paper (although you could do this too); I’m talking about coupons for percentages off of purchases from stylish stores like J.Jill or Ann Taylor that you find in magazines like InStyle or Southern Living or Better Homes and Gardens. Trust me–you won’t make a lot on these auctions, but they are easy auctions to write, you don’t need a picture to go with your auction (unless you want to but it won’t effect the auction’s outcome), and coupons are easy to ship with just the cost of a first class stamp. One of the better coupons to sell on eBay comes from Coach. Read my post on how to get coupons from Coach.
Other Items to Sell on eBay
Do you have any artistic talent? Even just a little bit? You’d be surprised what a little bit of paint can do to fetch a good price on a vintage or unique item. If you don’t have any artistic talent, you can get some. That’s right, you can learn. I was blessed with a little bit of artistic talent but found that basic painting books by Donna Dewberry like Donna Dewberry’s Essential One-Stroke Painting Reference can help even the helpless of decorative painters. She teaches easy to learn painting strokes for flowers, leaves, birds, fruit, etc. If you can master a few of these techniques, and use your new found skill on items like mirrors, frames, mailboxes, vases, plaques, etc., you can make yourself a little bit of money.
eBay Insider Secret
Want to know a little secret? There’s a market on eBay for roses. Pink roses. If you can learn to paint decent looking pink roses (see above) and apply them on different items, you will sell them. Do an advanced search on eBay for completed items with the terms “handpainted pink roses, ” or “hp pink roses,” and see what items have sold and for what price. Other popular terms with pink roses are “shabby” or “cottage.” I have painted pink roses on black boards, cork boards, frames, mirrors and other items and they’ve always sold.
Are you a handyman and can write clear instructions on how to build a birdhouse or a cottage bench or some other item in great demand? You can sell your detailed plans. The great thing about this is that you only have to write your instructions once, then you can sell them over and over again.
Items I Have Sold on eBay
Items I have sold on eBay include children’s clothes, designer handbags (I bought on sale at an outlet store), books (I find at Goodwill or other thrift shops), household items, magazines (some libraries give old issues away for free), and my personal favorite….old photos and colored illustrations from books.
I’ll tell you why I love to sell old photos and colored illustrations on eBay…you can find them at any used bookstore, or thrift shop. I found a 1912 Princeton yearbook at a thrift shop for $10. As expected, there were plenty of photos of the University’s sports teams. I scanned some of the pictures first to see if there was an interest in the individual pictures before I started cutting the book apart. I figured that if there wasn’t an interest in the pictures, then I would try to sell the entire book for obviously more than I paid for it. Once I saw that there was an interest in the pictures, I carefully cut them out of the book and sold them individually for $4.99 each. What fun!
When selling colored illustrations from books, you have to be careful of when the book was copyrighted. There are plenty of articles written about this subject so I won’t go into it here, but if you find books up to the very early 1900’s with great colored illustrations in them, double check if they’re in the public domain, but chances are you can cut out the pictures, perhaps mat them to look extra nice, and sell them on eBay.
Again, scan them first before tearing a book apart in case you need to sell the book as a whole if there’s no interest in the pictures.
I have also enjoyed taking something old and making it into something unique and different. I once bought some old vanity tray mirrors I found at a consignment shop. I spray painted the gold edges and feet with cottage white. Then I got a few pink beads and wire at a craft storeI wired the beads around the edges so they dangled down. I got more then twice what I paid for the vanity tray mirror, and my time invested was very minimal.
Think Out of the Box
When looking for things to sell on eBay, try to think out of the box. Get creative. Do your research. For instance, if you want to sell vanity tray mirrors on eBay then see what they have sold for in the past. Do an advanced search and check the “completed listings” box. This will give you an idea of how much money you can make and maybe how you can make your product a little more interesting and unique. But most importantly, have fun with it! If it’s not fun, then you won’t want to stick with it.