How I Started My eBay Store

Three months ago I went to a sample sale in NYC and found an A-W-E-S-O-M-E deal on brand name lipsticks. So awesome that over a span of five days I went four times (including two times in one day) and spent $287.30 on 117 items, averaging $2.46 per item.

At that point in time, I had never sold anything on eBay, or anywhere else online. I did my due diligence, researched the price those items went for on eBay, and priced mine just below the lowest price (while staying profitable). I bought a 50 pack of padded envelopes from Amazon for $13, or $.26 each. I learned eBay takes a 10% commission on Total Sale (sale price + shipping) and Paypal’s commission is calculated as Total Sale*0.029+$.30. Lastly, First Class shipping at USPS ranges between $3.66-$4.06 depending on distance.

I was antsy at first and promoted my listings on eBay for an additional 7% fee on Total Sale. That may not sound like much but it really ate into my profits. My best-seller was going for $18 with free shipping included, and after all fees and expenses (not including boosting fee) I was profiting ~$9. The boosting fee for an $18 item is $1.26, which equates to 14% of profit. After I realized this, I stopped promoting my listings and learned to be patient.

The most sales I had in one day was 6. But there was a 9-day span when I didn’t sell anything. I have since stopped obsessing over sales. They come when they come, and I see online selling as a hobby that happens to make some extra cash every now and then, instead of an income stream I depend on.

It has been 3 months and I have now sold 55% of my inventory, made $1157 in gross revenue, and netted $462 after COGS and expenses. However, I haven’t found any deals since then that’s nearly as supercalifragilisticexpialidocious but I am on the lookout.

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