Buying on Ebay

Discussion in 'Online Resources' started by akwolf41, Oct 2, 2006.

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  1. akwolf41

    akwolf41 Master Instigator of the BOC!

    Kenai, Ala
    Buying on E-Bay

    by Gene Chambers (akwolf41)

    I have noticed that a lot of people have never bought anything from E-Bay as they didn’t know how to go about it. There are many good buys on E-Bay from rods, reels, line, hooks, boats, motors, digital cameras, etc.

    It can be kind of a scary experience if a person is unsure of exactly how to purchase items without being ripped off or paying too much. I purchase a lot of different items from E-Bay ranging from fishing gear to household items and I enjoy doing it at the same time. If a person reads the information contained in this article and uses it when attempting to purchase needed items, they too, will enjoy the experience.

    I have been an E-Bay member since Sept 21, 1999. I am thought of mostly as a buyer of products and services. Over the time I have been buying on E-bay, I have noticed that a number of bidders do not know what they are doing when it comes to buying a product at the lowest price. I have had friends and acquaintances ask me "How do you buy on E-Bay". They have been somewhat afraid to jump in there and bid or they have bought something and realized that they paid too much for what they had bought, or they stayed up late to bid on an item and the item sold for more that going to the local store and buying it over the counter. The information I am sharing with you is not for the person that knows what they are doing, but a guide to the people that are new to buying and selling on E-Bay. I WILL BREAK THIS INFO DOWN IN CATEGORIES.

    1. Paying for your Items.

    2. Having and keeping Good FEEDBACK

    3. Checking the sellers FEEDBACK

    4. Finding Items you want to BUY

    5. Checking the seller’s listing

    6. Recommended Bidding

    7. Shipping Charges

    8. Communication with the Seller

    9. Be sure to Leave Feedback after you receive your Item

    10. Selling on E-Bay


    I am a believer in using PayPal. PayPal is a service to pay the seller for the item that you just bought. You can sign up for PayPal either on E-Bay or by going to You can use a credit card or a debit card thru PayPal to pay for your purchases. I use a debit card myself as there are some sellers require immediate transfer of funds and a debit card will do that. The reason I recommend PayPal is that as soon as the auction ends, I pay immediately. That way my purchase will probably ship tomorrow.

    If I were to send a money order, I would have to go and buy one and Mail it and maybe 5 to 10 days later, the seller will receive it and then ship my purchase. If I send a check, after the seller receives it, he waits for it to clear the bank before shipping. PayPal also offers some Fraud protection. Check that out on the Paypal Site.


    Buyers and Sellers can know what kind of a person they are dealing with by reading the feedback of the buyer or the seller. Feed back is the # behind the seller or user’s name.

    I.e. Mine is akwolf41(120) You can click on that # and it will take you to the Feedback of that user. Read it. On that page and the ‘Sellers’ listing page will be a % of positive feedback. I personally do not buy from anyone that has low 90% Positive unless I read the negative feedback and determine that the person that left it is a Habitual Complainer.

    You want to pay for your purchases quickly and you will soon find that you will have 100% Positive feedback. Sellers love doing business with that type of buyer. If you are a seller, Make sure you communicate with the buyer letting them know when you shipped and etc and ship promptly. That will earn you positive Feedback. In the future Buyer will not hesitate to bid on your Items.


    This is probably the best measure to assure yourself that you are dealing with a reputable seller. You will read things like "Fast Shipping" "Good Communications" "Recommend" "Item was as Described" "AAAAAA++++++" "Good E-Bayer".

    Feedback like that will give you confidence in the person that you are preparing to purchase an item from, or bid on. Checking feedback is something you must do or you will get scammed for sure down the road in buying at Auction.4. FINDING ITEMS YOU WANT TO BUY

    When you go into E-Bay to try and find say a Digital Camera. Click on the Browse button at the top of the E-Bay Home page. When the categories come up, find the category that you would find ‘Cameras.’ Then go to that link and in the search at the top of that page type in whatever camera brand you are looking to buy or check out. For instance, say a Sony. That will bring up the auction page for just Sony’s. That will work on any item that you are looking for. There are two basic ways to buy on E-Bay. You can buy an item by bidding on it or you can click the "Buy It Now" Tab and you can find items that you can buy now and not have to wait for the Auction to close. You need to have yourself prepared with what model of camera is worth at say Walmart or a local camera store so you will know if it is a good deal to buy it now. Again check their Feedback and shipping Charges (Something I will get into later).


    After you have found the category of the item that you are looking for. Browse the listings in that category. Don’t just jump in and start bidding. Compare all of the items for i.e. Quality, new, used, price, shipping charges, seller feedback, location of the item, etc. Make a point of finding out all about the listing that you may be bidding on. All of that information is on the listing page. USE IT. When you have found "The Item" you want to bid on or buy then use ALL the information included in this article.


    I have noticed over the years that people really like to cut their own throat when it comes to bidding. Remember this is an auction. I will explain how I bid and you will see if everyone did this, you could buy stuff a lot cheaper. Say a listing has 6 days, 23 hours, and 23 minutes to go; you certainly don’t want to bid now. If you are going to try to buy this at auction, WAIT. I find items that will close at an hour when I am going to be around to bid at the end of auction. I check the seller’s feedback, shipping charges and what part of the country they live in, and read all of the listing thoroughly. Even all of the fine print, as sometimes it will tell you info that makes you not want that particular item. Click on the ‘Add to Watch List’ in the upper right side of the page and it will put this listing into your "MY E-BAY" The next time you are on E-Bay click on My E-bay and you will find the item that you are watching. You can click it there, it will open the page with the item you are watching, and you can see what the bids are and when these bids were made. See those people that have bid are just running the price up. But not you as you are smart enough to wait till the end of auction to show your hand. Now say it is coming down to the last hour of auction. WAIT!! You will have to refresh the page to get an exact amount of time left. When its down to about 3 minutes to go keep refreshing the page every 15 or 20 seconds till it’s only have 1 minute to go and you see what the bid is. Say the bid is $12.02 and now you need to think what is the most you would pay and be happy with the purchase. You need to at this time say you decide that you would be willing to pay $27.50 for the item, Bid $27.57(known as a Proxy Bid) Now. If the item has $.50 bid increments on it the next bid would be $12.52. if nobody had bid a proxy bid or bid just ahead of you, you would buy it for the $12.52. But say another person, smart like you, bid a proxy bid also of $23.50, then beings that your proxy bid is more than his you would buy the item for $24.00. I always bid proxy bids at the end and I win most auctions that I bid on using this method. Don’t try and steal an item. Just bid what you would be happy with buying it at and you will be surprised how many times you will steal the item.

    There is another type of Auction on E-Bay that I will mention and that is called a DUTCH AUCTION. On this auction, there is more than one item for auction. There maybe five or ten items of the same. On this Auction you want to bid early as the only way you can be outbid is there are 10 items and you bid the minimum Bid and 9 more people bid the min. bid it will take 10 more bidders to bump you out or over bid you if you are the first bidder. When a Dutch Auction ends, all successful buyers will pay the smallest amount bid. Check out the explanations of Bids on E-Bay. It is explained pretty well.


    This is an Area of Pet Peeves for me. You will see as I have, there are a lot of sellers out there that want to make there money on shipping charges. I guess I am from the old world or something, but I believe that you price your item properly and charge fair shipping charges.

    What I am saying is to scrutinize the shipping charges that they have listed for the item you are thinking about buying. There are usually several listings of the identical item you are looking to buy. Check all and compare shipping charges. When I sell something on E-Bay, I list the item at a starting bid that I can live with and I charge very reasonable shipping charges. If an item weighs a pound or less, it can be shipped by USPS Priority Mail for $3.85 to anywhere in the Continental US including Alaska and Hawaii. Insurance is extra unless the item is shipped by UPS or FedEx and insurance up to $100 is free. Just check the shipping charges as they will be added to your Bid.


    Don’t hesitate to send an e-mail to the seller after you have purchased as most will keep you up to date on when your package is being shipped and some will supply you with Tracking Numbers and etc. Before your Bid on an item, you can ASK the Seller Questions in reference to the item he has up for bid. That link is on the Listing Page. The Sellers are very good at getting right back to you with the info you wanted to know.


    After you have received your item, go into My E-Bay and click on the Feedback icon on your winning listing and send Feedback to the Seller. In most cases they have probably already left you Positive feedback as you had paid promptly. I am Proud of my 100% Positive Feedback and I am sure you will be too. Feedback is what makes E-Bay a trusted place to buy.


    I will hit this item lightly as I am sure in a short period of time you will have already developed your own integrity of how to sell. My main suggestion on selling is to be Honest in your description of the item that you want to sell and and Start the starting bid at a price that you could live with if someone is the only bidder and just bid your starting bid. You can put a reserve price (a price that it has to be or it doesn’t sell). I am not a believer in Reserve prices and never bid on items that have them. If you have to have $100 for your item, then start the bidding at $100. Again, I call that being up front with the Bidder.

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    If you can’t print this from the media that you are reading this from PM me with your email address and I will send you a copy in e-mail.

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    By using this information and if used properly, you will save a lot of money buying on E-BayHappy Bidding
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