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Special Rules For
Selling Software On Ebay.
software is one of the biggest sellers on eBay – after all,
everyone using eBay has a computer, don’t they? There can be
problems, however, if you try to sell certain kinds of software
that eBay doesn’t allow. Used software is a minefield, and you
could end up buying something dodgy to resell without even
Here are the various kinds of software that you’re not allowed to sell on
eBay, and how to spot them. You should always try installing
used software before you sell it, as this might give you a few
This one is reasonably obvious, but pirate software can be hard to spot. The
biggest things to look out for are auctions that don’t have
pictures or only have pictures from catalogues, unrealistically
low prices, and come with no manuals or documentation. Microsoft
software comes with a ‘Certificate of Authenticity’, which you
should check. Software that is on recordable media such as
CD-RWs is usually pirated.
If you see software that offered for download only, it is often pirated –
but not always. Some small software developers allow download
licenses for their software to be resold on sites like eBay.
Type the name of the software into a search engine, and go to
the manufacturer’s site to check. Remember that software you
download is very unlikely to come with resale rights, though.
Beta software is pre-release software, issued by companies for testing
purposes. Companies generally do not give permission for their
beta software to be sold or redistributed, as it won’t be as
good as the final product. Do not buy anything that says it is
‘beta’, and return anything you receive that says ‘beta’ or ‘not
for resale or distribution’ anywhere on the CD or during the
Some companies sell special ‘educational editions’ or ‘student licenses’ for
their software, which are designed to make it affordable to
students and teachers. You can only sell this software if you
are a licensed educational reseller for the company, and your
buyers are educational users. Academic software will usually say
somewhere on its CD or in its installation what it is.
OEM stands for ‘Original Equipment Manufacturer’ – this is software that is
only supposed to be distributed with a new computer, as it came
pre-installed on the computer. The licences for this software
usually stop you from selling it without also selling any
hardware. Look out for the message ‘for sale with a new computer
only’, or similar. Note, though, that it’s usually fine to
bundle any OEM software you come across with computers that you
sell on eBay.
If you sell any kind of software that isn’t allowed, then eBay might shut
down your auction, or your sellers might realise what they’ve
bought and leave you bad feedback. It’s not really worth the
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, how about we try to get you a few
more customers for the items you have that aren’t against the
rules. In the next email, we’ll take a look at the real power of
eBay store newsletters.
About the author:
Kirsten Hawkins is an Ebay and internet auction enthusiast from
Nashville, TN. Visit
http://www.auctionseller411.com/for more great tips on how
to make the most from Ebay and other online auctions.