eBay Classified Ads: A Complete Beginner’s Guide

eBay Classified Ads, also known as eBay Classifieds or Kijiji in some regions, offer an excellent platform for buying, selling, and trading goods locally. As a kid, I remember begging my dad to let me bid on a vintage item of clothing (especially the Nike ACG jacket) on eBay. People would be crazy about bidding on everything from gadgets to old apparel. In addition to its auction-style listings, eBay once had a website dedicated to local, classified listings: eBay Classifieds. But if you tried to find eBay classifieds today, you’d be out of luck. This comprehensive guide is tailored for beginners, providing step-by-step instructions and valuable tips to navigate eBay classified ads effectively.

Key Points

  • eBay is primarily a consumer-to-consumer e-commerce marketplace, which generates revenue through transaction fees and marketing services.
  • Adevinta ASA (ADE) owns eBay Classifieds Group (eCG).
  • eBay classified ads have their disadvantages, such as price wars, limited exposure, Limited Buyer/Seller Protections, and High Competition from Other Platforms
  • Online transactions and ads on the eBay platform, as well as classified listing fees, are the main sources of income for the company.

Brief History of eBay

eBay, which was established in 1995, has been in business for over two decades, ever since the early days of the Internet. Ever since its inception by Pierre Omidyar, eBay has functioned as a digital marketplace, facilitating the exchange of products and services. However, he probably never, in his wildest imagination, anticipated the degree of worldwide acclaim that it has undeniably achieved.

eBay experienced rapid expansion, particularly with dial-up Internet access in households worldwide. Pierre and his co-founder, Jeff Skoll, initiated the formation of a group that would propel eBay into the twenty-first century.

Meg Whitman, who was in charge of turning eBay into a household name, was in charge of this team. With the recruitment of personnel from prominent corporations such as PepsiCo and Disney, eBay underwent a significant transformation, evolving from a mere sales platform to a platform that fostered connections.

Currently, eBay is the largest online marketplace for auction-style sales. It provides a secure environment for buyers and merchants to transact, and users can easily search for any product and place bids.

On eBay, bidding is conducted without charge, whereas sellers are required to pay for each listing. In this regard, two alternatives are at one’s disposal:

  • Insertion fees: Ranging between 30 cents and $3.30, depending on the price set by the seller. With additional selling options included, you may be charged a higher fee.
  • Final value: This is a set fee charged when a listing comes to a close. It will typically be a percentage of the sale value, between 1.25% and 5%.

Upon the conclusion of each bid, the vendor will be duly informed, thereby facilitating the immediate transfer of funds. By obtaining a bid, a legally binding agreement is formed between the seller and buyer.

Who Owns eBay Classifieds?

Adevinta ASA (ADE) owns eBay Classifieds Group (eCG). In 2020, eBay announced that it would sell its classifieds business to Adevinta for $9.2 billion, which included $2.5 billion in cash and 540 million shares of Adevinta. The deal made eBay the largest shareholder of Adevinta, and the combined group has a market position in 20 markets, covering 1 billion people with 3 billion monthly visits. 

Adevinta is a Norway-based classified ad publisher. eBay Classifieds Group operates an international family of leading local classifieds marketplaces in 13 countries

What Does Classified Mean on eBay?

On eBay, a “classified” listing is one in which the seller is offering an item for sale in their local area, often with the option for the buyer to come and pick it up. Listings in the classifieds section are more like local ads than the more typical eBay listings, where buyers can place bids or complete purchases with shipping.

In a classified listing, sellers provide details about the item they’re selling, along with its price and location. Interested buyers can then contact the seller directly to arrange payment and pickup, often negotiating terms in person. Sellers who enjoy in-person interactions with customers or whose wares are particularly bulky or expensive to ship can greatly benefit from this format.

In the same way, regular eBay listings allow customers to make offers and negotiate prices, classified listings on eBay may also allow this. Nevertheless, the main difference is that the buyer and seller usually handle the payment and item exchange separately, rather than on eBay’s platform.

Suppose you’re an eBay user looking to purchase or sell anything locally. In that case, you might find ad listings to be a great tool for connecting with like-minded individuals and facilitating transactions. Here are the categories an eBay classified ad can be created for:

  • Business & Industrial
  • Construction > Buildings, Modular & Pre-Fab
  • General Office > Trade Show Displays
  • Websites & Businesses for Sale
  • Specialty Services
  • Travel
  • Everything Else
  • eBay User Tools
  • Funeral & Cemetery
  • Information Products

How Do I Create Classifieds on eBay?: Tips

Posting classified ads on eBay is a straightforward process that allows you to reach potential buyers for your items. Here’s how you can do it:

#1. Sign in to Your eBay Account

Start by logging into your eBay account. If you don’t yet have an account, you can create one here.

#2. Navigate to the Classifieds Section

The advanced listing form can be accessed once you sign in. Or you can click “Sell” in the top right-hand corner of any eBay page and select “Advanced Tool” at the top right of the page. Both of these options bring you to the advanced listing tool.

#3. Use the Search Bar to Enter the Specifications of Your Item

Search for your product name or describe what product or service you’re selling, and click the “Get started” button.

#4. Complete the Listing Information

Add descriptive images and a catchy headline to your ad to help potential customers visualize what they’re purchasing.

#5. Select the Classified Ad Format and Fill out the Selling Details

Click on “Classified Ad” when you scroll down to “Selling Details” and “Format.” Decide how long your ad will run, choose your pricing, and choose the payment methods you’re willing to accept.

#6. Verify the Item’s Location and Associated Costs Twice

Lastly, be sure to verify where your service or product is located. The final price for an eBay classified ad varies with the listing’s category and duration, however, there is a baseline insertion charge of $9.95. Get a rundown of the costs by clicking on the “Fees” number.

#7. Submit Your eBay Classifieds Ad

To activate the ad, simply click on the “List Item” button after it is prepared for deployment.

Why Should I Sell on eBay?

The online marketplace presents significant prospects for both individual consumers and enterprises. In the contemporary era, it is crucial to engage in sales through several channels, such as your website, physical retail stores, or online platforms like eBay or Amazon. Due to its remarkable levels of success, eBay has emerged as a credible avenue for accessing the market.

Indeed, the eBay marketplace caters to a broader range of entrants beyond small enterprises. The environment is highly competitive, with even well-known shops leveraging eBay’s influence and reputation to entice customers to their brand. The online marketplace of eBay is replete with well-known brands, extending beyond the realm of independent enterprises.

Therefore, what are the reasons for selling your things on eBay? There are multiple reasons why I advise selling on eBay, and a few exceptional advantages are outlined below:

#1. A Global Market

I can think of no other place where you can market your wares to people all around the globe. eBay and Amazon, which receive more traffic than the following twenty online retailers combined, dominate the market. Hence, using a mass audience is good for business.

#2. Know Your Costs

No unpleasant surprises are in store because eBay selling charges are set in stone. eBay gives you an idea of how much it will cost to list an item, and there are many benefits to opening an online store. When compared to sponsored search and other forms of online advertising, this one offers more stability to your online store.

#3. Earn a Glowing Reputation

Keeping consumers pleased is the key to building up your online reputation with eBay. You can establish your reputation and increase the likelihood that customers will shop with you by responding quickly to questions or by providing exceptional shipping and packaging.

#4. Take Part in a Bigger Sale

On eBay, buyers have the option to browse and purchase several goods from various vendors in a single session. Naturally, this is more convenient for the consumer, which leads to more sales.

#5. Range of Payment Methods

Multiple payment options make eBay easy for both buyers and sellers. In addition, PayPal is a useful addition to eBay, since customers are more likely to buy things online when they have extra money in their account.

#6. Simple and Plain

There’s no disputing that eBay is pretty user-friendly. Who needs to spend hours at a time when you can have many listings online in little time at all? It’s a relief for those people.

How Do eBay Classifieds Make Money?

Online transactions and ads on the eBay platform, as well as classified listing fees, are the main sources of income for the company. There is a fee for sellers to put their products up for sale. The final sale price of an item determines how much eBay charges for a transaction.

There are two parts to eBay’s business strategy that generate income: net transaction revenues and marketing services.

We will examine the model thoroughly.

#1. Transaction and Listing Fees

As far as consumer-to-consumer online marketplaces go, eBay is unrivaled. For listings under $1,000, the firm charges an 11% fee to the seller.

If the sale price is more than $1,000, an extra 2.35% will be charged. Due to the exposure their ads receive, sellers are prepared to pay these exorbitant fees. eBay has almost 200 million registered users worldwide.

After a sale is finalized, eBay also takes a cut of the seller’s profit. Depending on the category of the listing, eBay retains 12.9% of the sale price plus $0.30 for each transaction.

#2. Partnerships and Integrations

eBay Classifieds can enter into partnerships with other companies or integrate third-party services, earning referral fees or commissions. For instance, if a user lists a car for sale, eBay Classifieds might partner with an auto financing company and earn a commission for referring users who secure financing through the platform.

#3. Future Growth Engine

eBay believes that the key to the platform’s future success will be a concentrated effort to improve and enhance the user experience. By introducing new ways for customers to search for one-of-a-kind products and compare pricing, the company hopes to decrease friction on the buyer side.

The company will make new tools and more data points available to sellers so that they can develop their businesses on the platform.

#4. Premium Services

The platform has the potential to provide users with premium services, including enhanced listing improvements, analytics, and tools aimed at improving their selling experience. These services usually require a recurring payment or a single payment, which adds to the platform’s income.

Read also: How to Make Money on eBay: 2024 Profitable eBay Selling Tips.

What Are Some of the Disadvantages of eBay Classified Ads?

As much as eBay classified ads offer a platform for buying and selling goods locally, they come with several disadvantages:

#1. Price Wars

If, for example, you type in G-plan Fresco sideboard on eBay, you will see about 75 listings. That means a buyer has 75 options for where they can buy their sideboard, and there are only two ways you can make your listings stand out: good photography and a good price. Photography is important to show that you are a professional seller but the main thing that will make your listing more desirable to the consumer is the price. This often ends in a price war between sellers and is one of the biggest drawbacks of any marketplace, especially eBay.

#2. Limited Exposure

Classified ads on eBay often receive less visibility compared to regular listings. They don’t appear in search results in the same prominent manner, making it harder for users to find them. Without proper exposure, items may take longer to sell or may not sell at all. A seller looking to quickly offload an item may find this limitation frustrating, especially if they’re accustomed to the broader reach of regular eBay listings.

#3. Limited Buyer/Seller Protections

Unlike traditional eBay transactions, classified ads can lack the same level of buyer or seller protection. Transactions conducted locally often involve cash payments or direct bank transfers, leaving both parties vulnerable to scams or disputes. For example, a buyer might pay for an item advertised in a classified ad, only to discover that it’s significantly different from what was described. Without eBay’s usual dispute resolution mechanisms, resolving such issues can be challenging.

#4. High Competition from Other Platforms

In many areas, eBay classified ads face stiff competition from other local classified ad platforms such as Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, or local newspapers. Users may find it more convenient to use these platforms, which have established user bases and may offer features tailored specifically to local transactions. For instance, a seller posting a classified ad for furniture might find more success on Facebook Marketplace due to its popularity for local sales.

How Do You Set Up an eBay Shop?

Establishing an eBay shop can yield tremendous results for businesses. On eBay, you can showcase all of your inventory in one convenient spot, receive genuine reviews and comments from customers, and benefit from the support of a reliable hosting network.

In addition, I have provided a five-step process for starting your own eBay shop and you can read more about the basic process below.

#1. Subscribe to eBay Shops

Signing up for an eBay account is the first and most basic step in getting your business up and running. Your business can boost revenues with the help of the eBay Shop, which allows you to construct, manage, and market stock. You can also track orders online. You should give serious thought to these choices because different subscription levels are available based on the size of your company. Keep in mind that the name you choose will determine the format of the URL before you subscribe.

#2. Set Up Your eBay Shop

Now that you have your initial subscription, you can begin preparing your storefront and creating the website. To get the most out of it and make as many sales as possible, make sure the page is easy to navigate. You should include as much detail as possible regarding the business and its processes.

#3. List Your Stock Online

Now that your shop on eBay is up and running, you can begin selling your wares. After this, what happens? To begin listing your products and attract possible buyers’ attention. Auction style and fixed price are the two choices available here, and each has its advantages. Although most eBay shops offer their items at a fixed price, it may be worthwhile to set the listing to auction if you’re selling an unusual item that’s sure to get a lot of attention.

#4. Maintain an Up-To-Date Account

With the influx of interest, bids, and sales that come with listing many things, staying on top of everything becomes even more important. To expedite shipping and guarantee favorable comments, make sure you are contacted every time a listing ends.

#5. Increase Brand Awareness

It would be a mistake to think that having an eBay shop would automatically promote your business. Your focus should instead be on maintaining a constant flow of consumers who will never lose interest. Notify your customers with newsletters when new items are available or when limited-time discounts are available.

Is eBay Classifieds Free?

No, eBay classified ads are not free. However, there are some ways to lower the cost of your ads. For example, you can choose a cheaper category or use a limited geographic area. You can also choose to have fewer ads or higher-quality ads. Additionally, you can choose to target a narrower audience by setting your filters.

Read also: 10 Free Websites To Create An Online Portfolio: Stand-Out Online Portfolio Examples That Dominate

Ideas for the eBay Classifieds

Here are some ideas to help you get started with eBay classifieds, whether you’re a seller or a buyer. eBay classified ads may be a suitable option for you if you’re selling:

  • The product is too large to be shipped
  • You’d like to be paid in cash
  • Your posting is exclusive to your specific area
  • You’re offering a service

If you’re a buyer, eBay classifieds could be the right fit if:

  • You want to purchase a service or product that can’t be shipped
  • You’d like to meet the seller in person
  • You don’t want to deal with the time commitment of an eBay auction

If eBay classified ads are what you need to find a local product or service, below is a checklist on how to start your search.

Businessyield Comprehensive Checklist on How to Search eBay Classifieds.

By following this checklist, you can efficiently navigate eBay Classifieds and find the items or services you’re looking for while ensuring a smooth transaction process.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the ability to post and search for local classified listings on eBay simplifies the process of connecting local sellers and buyers on a platform with millions of users. It really can be a great alternative to eBay auctions.

Give it a try today, just go to eBay and search for some classified ads. Who knows what hidden gems or bargains you could find?

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