eBay noob question?


King Louis' Mistress
Aug 8, 2006
I missed the 15 cent listing day, but I'd like to put something up on eBay. This is my first time, and I've got a couple of questions:

1. How much do they charge you to list? I'd like to put something up for $50 + shipping. How do they charge you?
2. If I want to put HTML in my listing, do I have to code it as though I'm making a whole new page, or can I just go ahead and type <img src whatever?

Thanks! :smile:
Oct 30, 2006
Fees will depend on the site you are listing on. I'm assuming you wish to list on ebay.com? If so, here's the website to help you calculate fees: eBay.com Fees. You'll have to pay a listing fee, and a final value fee if you sell your item.

With any type of listing, not just a buy-it-now, you are able to modify the listing and price anytime except 12 hours before the auction ends. After the 12 hour mark, you cannot modify the price. You may be able ADD things to the listing, but you can't change what's already there. Also, if you choose an auction method (rather than a buy-it-now), and someone places a bid, you can not modify the listing. You can add more detail , but you can't remove what's already there.

With html, you can simply start with <img> if you want to add a picture. You don't have to create the page from the scratch with <title>, <head>, etc.

Hope that helps.


Dec 29, 2006
You CAN direct enter HTML as you wish. So if you're a web designer and have webspace you can simply skip any other listing service, code your own page and use your own hosting for pictures. A caveat, don't put an Email address in the auction. Another caveat, you can't host the auction elsewhere... all the HTML/description must reside on Ebay so that it cannot be changed outside of their control. That prevents people from changing the terms or description of an auction at will.

If you aren't an HTML design pro or would rather have someone else host the pics, forget using Ebay to create your auction. Head over to Auctiva and sign up. No charge and no strings, you DO NOT have to use their checkout and can code your own HTML and skip theirs. Why use them? They host more images than Ebay, at higher resolutions, and do not charge for doing so. They also have many listing templates/designers that are visually appealing and don't charge for those either. That gets you out of having to noodle with HTML as well if you like their formats.

Ebay is fairly inexpensive. Here's their fee page. Where it gets expensive is when you add the listing upgrades such as bolding/highlighting/border, gallery images, featured listings, etc. The only option I use on every auction is the gallery image. For big-ticket/popular items I'll use the "featured" listing option that puts it in a section at the top. I NEVER use "home-page featured". It's nowhere near visible enough for what it costs and they don't even guarantee your item will get shown during it's run. You pay them through PayPal or with a credit card. They invoice monthly and get REALLY snippy when you don't pay on time. ;)

You CAN lower a BIN if no one's snapped the item up yet, and can even do a second chance offer if the item doesn't reach a reserve. BIN without a reserve doesn't work very well, as the BIN option goes away with the first bid.

Ok, you didn't ask but if this helps, also some of this MAY be obvious to you so please take no offence:

On writing your listing. Using someone else's pictures and/or description is positively verboten. Big big no-no. Can get you kicked off Ebay. Will almost certainly get your auction pulled. What you can do and indeed I think is a great idea is to view completed auctions of like items and look at the most successful items. For ending values that're over the moon, look at the buyer. It's probably fraud (new registrant, int'l bidder, hijacked account, etc) unless the item is remarkable in some way. For items that look like good sales, note the images used and what's described. You'll also want to see the authentication threads for your item here. Everything they use to authenticate you want to take a photo of and describe in *explicit* detail.

Detail really is the key word. The better the photos, the more photos, the better the description, the more bids you'll get. Make sure the photos are large enough to show detail. This is why I use Auctiva. Ebay doesn't have a large enough 'supersized' photo. I use 1024x768 as a photo size. Auctiva automatically downsizes them for use in the auction. When someone clicks on them, they are taken to a page where they can view them fullsize. Realize that if the picture is fuzzy or dark , it won't show what you want to show and buyers will go elsewhere.

For 'quick fixing' of photos, I like Picasa. It can do minor corrections for color, contrast and brightness with one click and is wonderful for importing, organizing, resizing and exporting photos. You'll want to export the photos, thereby having Picasa resize and recompress them. Auctiva WILL NOT do this and you don't want your buyers tapping their fingers while trying to download a 1 megabyte picture!

Good luck! I would NOT do a buy it now. It tends to scare away bidders. If you're worried about the price, set a reasonable reserve. Be realistic about your item. If you have a bag that's 3 years old with moderate wear, it's not going to bring what a new bag with tags will (I know I'm stating the obvious but ya never know).

As it's your first time, I would ONLY sell to the United States and select the Ebay option to only allow bidders with PayPal accounts. That'll get rid of 90% of the scammers. On PayPal payments. MAKE SURE your PayPal account is verified. I believe this requires linking to a bank account. I would recommend that it not be your primary checking account if possible.

There's a setting in PayPal that will only allow payments from verified users. You want that. ONLY ship to a confirmed address. Don't let anyone talk you out of that. If they balk, refund their money, go through the Ebay process to cancel the transaction and get your listing refunded, and move on. You'll want to put that in the payment terms in your auction as well.

I also just re-read and realized the item you're talking about is $50. *ROFL* Ignore most of the above. My apologies! I am way too ADD.


Work hard, play hard
May 4, 2006
There's a setting in PayPal that will only allow payments from verified users. You want that. ONLY ship to a confirmed address. Don't let anyone talk you out of that.

Just know that paypal cannot confirm addresses in Europe. :cursing: It will not do it, period. Believe me, I pleaded with them several times (I live in Switzerland). Just know that by expecting a confirmed account of all bidders (non-US bidders also), you will limit your buyers and bidders to mostly U.S. :smile:

I'm always sad when I read this, because the seller won't sell to me, even when I can't change my account, though I have been on ebay for 4 years and have a 100 % positive record. :sad:
Oct 30, 2006
We can't confirm addresses in Australia either and I too have 100% feedback! Only US, UK and Canada can have confirmed addresses. That leaves the rest of the world! So if you want to limit your customers, then send it to confirmed addresses only... Go by the buyer's merits, and maybe even if ask if they have a Paypal verified account - which everyone can have. my2c