eBay for Small and New Sellers
Small sellers played a huge role in eBay’s first years and its
subsequent enormous success in its first decade.
However, since 2008, the giant online auction site has introduced several new policies, and many small sellers
feel that those changes favor big sellers while squeezing them out.
In fact, some have suggested that by pushing small sellers to the wall, eBay may be effectively digging its own
grave. But is it the case?
When these changes had just been effected by eBay, there was an immediate backlash from small sellers. EBay
representatives were swift in their response and insisted that the disgruntled sellers were the small minority.
True, whenever there are changes announced by a company, the most vocal people are the ticked-off ones. But this
dissatisfied group sure wants its voice heard and for eBay, these are the small sellers.
However, rather than complain about eBay’s favoritism, small sellers are better off spending those efforts on
things that will make them compete favorably with big power sellers. Here are some of the things small sellers can
You see, to take on big power sellers, you need to understand what makes them survive most eBay tides. A company
that uses eBay to liquidate old stock will always survive any storm that comes on the site.
Of course, liquidating old inventory on eBay can only be just one part of a successful company’s overall online
selling plan. This means that businesses that can afford to liquidate on eBay most probably have other avenues of
selling online, other auction giants or their own e-commerce website where they sell at a profit.
Now, small sellers without big stock that can allow them to sell on multiple sites need a completely different
strategy. By all means, eBay is where they need to make a profit. In that regard, it is only niche marketers that
will make it on the ‘new eBay’.
So what’s a niche market? It’s a section of the market at which a
particular product is targeted. The product’s focus is to satisfy the specific needs of that market, including
price range. There are various examples of niche markets in the offline business scene. Take for instance the
oldest Pepper bottler in the world, Dr. Dublin Pepper.
However, it stands out for using the original Imperial Pure Cane Sugar formula for bottling the soft drink.
There are people who can never drink any other type of soda other than that made with cane sugar, and this is the
market that Dr Pepper targets.
There are many examples in television, radio, the music industry and many others.
So, what can small eBay sellers do? The first thing you need to do is to acknowledge the fact that the new eBay
is not a level playing field and in fact, it may be outright unfair. It’s something you can’t influence.
The next thing is to establish where and how you can fit into the new eBay. If you cannot use eBay for stale
inventory liquidation, then your only other option is to find a niche market. Obviously, there could be exceptions
to the rule. But whatever you do, ensure your business is agile as changes are the only constant on eBay.
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