selling items on ebay and other websites

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Forum topic by ssull4167 posted 07-07-2012 01:11 PM 2346 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View ssull4167's profile


31 posts in 2679 days

07-07-2012 01:11 PM

Im just wondering if anybody sells their project items on ebay at all and if it is a good place to sell your projects. Also is there any information on how to get started on ebay. I was also wondering if there is any other good websites out there to sell your wood projects. How do you go about shipping items. Thanks alot for any input any of you have. It would be greatly appreciated.

20 replies so far

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3131 days

#1 posted 07-07-2012 03:14 PM

They have two nice video courses on along with hundreds of other fine courses. However, it’s a paid site. I think that they may have a short trial and I think you can just join month by month, You can learn a lot in a month if you put your mind to it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View knotheadswoodshed's profile


225 posts in 2437 days

#2 posted 07-07-2012 03:21 PM

you can also try Etsy, its much cheaper than Ebay to list and sell.
here is a link to one of my shops, I also have my own website.
Lots of options for selling your work.

-- Randy - "I dont make mistakes, I make design change opportunities"

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3912 days

#3 posted 07-07-2012 04:10 PM

ebay is not much good for selling handmade items. Fees are excessive
and the system isn’t designed to help shoppers find handmade goods.

ebay is great for selling tools and any sort of mass produced and easily
shipped goods.

Etsy on the other hand is designed to sell handmade goods and it’s also
a great site for selling all sorts of vintage and collectible goods.

I mostly ship via USPS parcel post because the insurance coverage is
very good and the rates reasonable. If you ship heavier things
you’ll need to look at other shippers like UPS.

View waho6o9's profile


8556 posts in 2841 days

#4 posted 07-07-2012 04:24 PM

Maybe try Craigslist to keep your shipping and commission costs down.
Judging by your fine workbenches and desks you might want to contact as many
general contractors, interior designers, and trades people as possible and let them
know about your products and services.
Make up some business cards and pass them around.
Get yourself a website & a business email address and you should do well.
Good luck my friend.

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3573 days

#5 posted 07-07-2012 04:34 PM

ebay doesn’t seem to get results for handmade woodwork and esty seems overcrowded. I put some of my work on esty a while back and never had a sale from it.
I sold one box through and just recently sold one through
I usually ship UPS for a $25 shipping fee…however I recently shipped a box to Canada and it ended up costing me $59 instead of the $25 I charge.
I have the best experience doing art shows…especially the better ones… and giving out business cards everywhere and anywhere I go to anyone who doesn’t run away. I find it really helps to have a good quality product photo on your card that is printed on quality gloss paper. A business card with just text or a logo usually gets thrown away.

I put my card in any envelope I mail…including bills. Made s sale to an employee of the cable company who ended up with a card I put in with my payment.
You gotta do all types of marketing and be innovative.

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3912 days

#6 posted 07-07-2012 04:56 PM

If you list on Etsy you won’t sell anything except by fluke unless:

1. your work is dramatically underpriced
2. you list new items regularly
3. you promote your esty store on other sites.

You can actually “list and sell” on etsy, but you must list often
and with gusto to do so.

View knotheadswoodshed's profile


225 posts in 2437 days

#7 posted 07-07-2012 06:04 PM

@ Loren…
and how exactly did you come to that sweeping (and completely inaccurate) conclusion, may I ask?

1) my items are not “dramatically” underpriced, by any means
2)I do not list new items regularly, as it takes time to build my boxes (although I do renew items regularly)
3) I dont promote my etsy store anywhere

Etsy is like anything else, you need to work at it, just like everything else in life…too many people post something expecting it to magically sell all by itself and then complain or badmouth the venue, when it doesnt happen.

Etsy (and my other sites) has paid for ALL of my equipment, ALL of my woods and supplies and a good part of my bills.
Oh yeah, and MOST of my beer:)

-- Randy - "I dont make mistakes, I make design change opportunities"

View Ted's profile


2875 posts in 2476 days

#8 posted 07-07-2012 07:38 PM

When it comes to woodworking, I think Loren is right on with his sweeping conclusion. I’ve been browsing Etsy woodworking shops for a long time now and there is one thing I consistently see – the shops making any sales are drastically underpriced for the quality they are selling, and I haven’t seen a store yet that makes more than a sale every couple of days at best. Most seem to make a sale every couple of weeks – if they have good quality that is priced way too low.

Note that I am referring strictly to woodworkers selling on Etsy. It may be a completely different case with other crafts and/or vintage items. I haven’t been comparing them because that’s not what I’m interested in.

One thing I will disagree with Loren is point #3 – you promote your esty store on other sites. I would do the opposite and promote my other sites using Etsy. I see a lot of sellers doing that. Sometimes the first line in their bio is “Check out my other site for more…” I guess Etsy doesn’t care as long as the seller pays the 20 cents to list their items, and the 3% of any sales made.

I see Etsy as a source of promotion, but not so much for selling in and of itself. If anybody knows of a woodworker doing really well on Etsy, please provide a link to their store – I’d like to see it.

-- You can collect dust or you can make dust. I choose to make it.

View knotheadswoodshed's profile


225 posts in 2437 days

#9 posted 07-07-2012 08:44 PM

everyone is entitled to thier opinion, however ther is a BIG difference between “browsing” shops and actually doing.
While I am by no means getting rich, I AM paying my bills and supporting my woodworking addiction.

Perhaps what you are not seeing while you are browsing these shops, is all the custom and corporate orders that dont get reflected on the etsy stats.
What Etsy does for me (and others that I know) is to get our “brand” out there.

I could put up a couple of links, but I am not sure they would appreciate that, however, if you really do “browse” they should be pretty easy to find.

As a side note, more than a few renowned box-makers have Etsy shops, Doug Stowe and Mike Mikutowski to name a couple.

As far as sales, what do you consider doing “really well”? I personally consider averaging $2000.00 a month pretty good. and do you really think that its any different for a Brick and Mortar store, you can bet they dont get sales every day either.

I do completely agree that point #3 is about the worst thing you can do.

I dont mean to sound argumentative, but in my mind, statements backed up by experience carry more weight than those that dont.

obviously, selling online isnt for everyone, and it certainly isnt easy by any mean, but I have made out pretty good in the 3 years I have been there and I know a few boys from MO have as well.
So in summary, saying that you will only sell something on Etsy by a “fluke” is inaccurate.

-- Randy - "I dont make mistakes, I make design change opportunities"

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3912 days

#10 posted 07-07-2012 09:02 PM

I have more experience manipulating and promoting an
Etsy store than I would like to admit. I did it because somebody
I loved wanted to sell on there. In the past 4 years she’s
made something like 1500 sales and I was aware of the
entire process and in some cases developed and implemented
SEO tactics to drive traffic to her Etsy store and get the
photos of pieces widely indexed in Google images.

You probably misunderstood me got your hackles up. Your 116
Etsy sales in a little under 3 years indicates a pattern of listing
items often doesn’t it?

Of course you’ve gone off like a loaded gun and assumed I
meant that all 3 criteria I listed must be met.

Whether your work is underpriced or not I don’t know. That’s
a matter of your costs and how much your time needs to be
worth. In terms of product choice, fancy boxes aren’t a
bad choice.

But you’re the Etsy expert here, in your own opinion. Hold forth
and teach if you want. If people learn from you, good for them

View knotheadswoodshed's profile


225 posts in 2437 days

#11 posted 07-07-2012 09:23 PM

not bragging by any means, just pointing out that selling on Etsy isnt a “fluke” as you put, and as you just proved yourself, as you are selling “100’s” of vintage items.
I also never stated I was any kind of “expert” nor do I pretend to be. I was merely relating what Etsy has been like for me.

You stated your opinion, I stated mine, the OP can make his own choices, I erred in my “sweeping conclusion” statement and for that I do apologise for the poor choice of wording, I had no intention of pissing you or anyone else off.

-- Randy - "I dont make mistakes, I make design change opportunities"

View tyskkvinna's profile


1310 posts in 3250 days

#12 posted 07-07-2012 10:57 PM

Any online sales portal is going to give you what you put into it. You can’t just throw a few things out there and wait for the sales to roll in. I have good luck on ebay—but not with woodworking. I have good luck on Etsy, but I put a lot of work into it. It’s worth it, but any site—you have to maintain listings (add new ones constantly to stay “fresh”), promote the pants off of it and participate in various places to ensure it gets seen.

-- Lis - Michigan - -

View ssull4167's profile


31 posts in 2679 days

#13 posted 07-08-2012 05:28 PM

Thanks a lot everybody for your input . That was a lot of great information. Hope to talk to you all again.

Shane Sullivan

View lj61673's profile


262 posts in 2664 days

#14 posted 07-08-2012 07:53 PM

I’m going to take the unpopular route and side with Loren on this one… a degree.

I have had an etsy site for a little over a year and have made about 60 sales, so I have a little insight into what it takes to make a sale.
Point #2 above rings very true, at least for me. I find the vast majority of my sales come right after an new item is listed or an old one is renewed. I guess it has a lot to do with the Google or Craigslist mentality, that is to say not many buyers are willing to go more than 2-3 pages deep to find a particular item. If they don’t see what they like right away they tend to lose interest. That is why I try to relist an item at least once every two to three days.
I also sell a large percentage of my items to other etsy store owners as they seem more adept at locating an item they want.

As for the pricing, I will side with Loren here again. But for a different reason. I can, and do get 30-40% more for my items at craft shows than I can on etsy. I guess there’s something about actually holding an item in your hands and examining it firsthand, something that can’t be appreciated from a photograph. Also, there is a pervasive feeling that comes from internet shopping that something bought online SHOULD cost less.

View dust4tears's profile


397 posts in 2413 days

#15 posted 07-13-2012 06:49 PM

good debate,... I have wondered about this topic myself.

Anyone else have ‘results’ about Ebay, Esty ect? (Good or bad results)

I am building up a product base and soon need to start off loading it….so, I too can pay for my addicting habit~

-- Ride hard or go home~

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