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How to Sell Your
Crafts on eBay
craftspeople and photographers are successfully selling their
wares everyday on the online auction site, eBay. According to a
recent analysis of eBay sales, a crafts-related item is sold
every nine seconds, a scrapbook item is sold every minute, and
40 cross-stitch items sell in an hour on eBay. Sales of craft
items on eBay have grown almost 60 percent in the past year,
according to TheBidFloor.com.
But, at the same time, many would be sellers are listing their pieces for
sale on auctions and getting no bids, concluding that eBay just
Here are some tips from James Dillehay, craft artist, eBay seller and author
of the new book, "Sell Your Crafts on eBay" (Warm Snow
Publishers), on how to profitably sell your wares online:
1. Anyone who can type and has access to the Internet can sell on eBay. But
the creative person has an advantage on eBay when she turns that
creativity toward researching overlooked opportunities.
For example, during the months before Christmas, more than 3,000 Christmas
items are sold every 24 hours on eBay. Research methods outlined
in Sell Your Crafts on eBay showed that between February 12 and
March 12 of this year, 4,107 auctions with 'Christmas ornament'
in the title completed successfully at an average price of
$17.34. Imagine how much more money a smart crafter can make all
year long knowing how to ferret out this kind of information
from eBay sales.
2. A word's spelling impacts an item's profitability. For example, the word
'handmade,' spelled as one word, was part of 2,233 auction
titles with an average closing price of $16.29. However, auction
titles that included 'hand made' as two words were found in
1,358 listings, but with an average auction closing price
higher, at $27.81, or $11.52 more profit per item.
3. Go to eBay.com and find the search box. Type in the word or phrase that
describes your art or craft item. Then scroll down the links on
the left side of the page and click on the link for "completed
items." Here, you'll be able to see the demand for this type of
product. Do searches for your items every two to three weeks to
chart buying patterns.
4. Find out how much people are willing to pay for your wares. Click on the
link that says "highest price." This will give you a list of
completed auctions from highest priced items to lowest priced
ones. You want to know what people are willing to pay for items
like yours. If you can't make and sell your product for a
profit, eBay might not be your marketplace.
5. Determine how much money you'll make on your product. To determine your
profitability, use the cost of your materials plus the cost of
your labor plus the cost of your selling price, which should be
the minimum price to recover your expenses. If it takes you
eight hours to make a piece of jewelry and the highest priced
similar item sells on eBay for $26, you won't make a profit.
6. Look at the elements of successful sellers of products that are similar
to yours. Examine their winning auction titles. Observe how much
detail they use to describe their item. See if the seller used
any of eBay's special features such as gallery photos or a bold,
featured listing. Evaluate the starting price, starting day of
the week, and duration of winning auctions.
For more tips on how to sell your craft items on eBay, consult a resource
book like "Sell Your Crafts on eBay," by James Dillehay. It
offers-more than 200 easy-to-learn tactics and tips that help
sell art, craft and theme-related items for a profit on eBay and
on other online auction Web sites.
About the author:
James Dillehay is a 20-year crafts veteran and nationally recognized
expert on craft business. Author of eight books, his articles
have helped readers of Family Circle, Better Homes & Gardens,
Country Almanac, Working Mothers, The Crafts Report, Sunshine
Artist, and many other magazines. James serves on the advisory
boards to the National Craft Association and ArtisanStreet.com
For more information, see