This Article is About
ebay
sluggish economy
spending money
current state
conclusions
niche
bargains
auctions
Ebay Imploding Slowly?
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Ebay Imploding Slowly?

I want to share with you what I noticed about a niche that I have an interest in and knowledge of: quilting. I can't really speak about all of Ebay. I don't go to Ebay much (I am in no way an Ebay expert), and my knowledge of it is pretty much from 5 years ago (when I spent more time there than I do now). That is why the difference stuck me so strongly when I went there this week. So many of the listings were auctions with zero bids!

I tried sorting it the various ways Ebay offers, but there it was - listing after listing with zero bids. Given this sluggish economy, I figured it was lots of people trying to sell their stuff to make a little money, and hardly anyone was buying.

I was sorting on "quilting" and there were over 17,000 items! That is a LOT of quilting stuff for sale. It seriously had me drooling, because I was seeing a TON of bargains. But I, (like everyone) am being careful with my money, so I couldn't go on the huge buying spree that I wanted.

Not trusting my off-hand conclusions, I went to the Ebay forum, and here is what I found people were saying:

* I am forced to start things at a .01 because otherwise nobody looks!! I am so open to advice... I just do not know what else to do? This used to be how I made ends meet... so much for that anymore.

* Don't expect an answer from EBay on this. They ignore everything and set down rules from above. Their concern is income and only income. I also like the fact that you can be killed in feedback by a buyer but as a seller you can't do a thing about a rotten customer.

* I have had days and weeks like you are feeling. Sales right now are very soft. The more common items are not selling except, as you say, for low low money.

* With the current state of the economy, many people are only spending money on the essentials.

Oh, yikes, that pretty much confirmed my conclusions. I didn't find anybody posting something that said "sales are good, what are you people doing wrong?"

I only have one answer to this lousy economy - everybody needs to start buying things again. I will do my part and go buy a quilting book up there at Ebay. If you are interested in quilting things, I encourage you to go and take a look. You might find a bargain.


Street Talk

It has been my belief and experience that eBay works best for high demand items and items that have a certain degree of scarcity. Yarn and knitting supplies may not have enough demand to cause the bidding frenzy that makes eBay effective. In my own business I buy cell phones locally and sell them on eBay for a profit. My auctions run for 1 day and start at a penny and I never lose money due to lack of bidding activity. Occasionally I lose money but usually it is because I overpaid for the phone to begin with. In the case of these knitting supplies you may be able to pick up bargains from eBay and sell them locally on Craigslist for a profit.

Reply
  about 9 years ago

It might also have something to do with it getting too expensive to do business on eBay. Opening your own online store might be the answer.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

You are right! I believe Ebay is contributing to this by their pursuit of the buyer's needs over the seller's needs. But add that to the lousy economy and it is doubly bad for the sellers.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
AJ  

Wow, I hadn't thought about how the economy was affected Ebay. I'm curious if Craig's List is struggling as well...

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
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