How to Choose the Right Category for Your eBay Listing
3 of 11 in Series: The Essentials of Listing an Item on eBay
On the first page of eBay's Sell an Item form, you need to select the main category for your item. After you select your main category, you land on the official working portion of the Sell an Item page.
Many eBay sellers will tell you that selecting the exact category isn’t crucial to achieving the highest price for your item — and they’re right. The bulk of buyers (who know what they’re looking for) just input search keywords into eBay’s search box and look for their items. Potential buyers, though, will select a category and — just as if they were going to the mall — peruse the items and see whether one strikes their fancy.
With tens of thousands of categories, finding the right place for your item can be daunting. You need to apply some marketing techniques when deciding where to place your auctions. You can list an item in two categories, but you have to pay double for that. Does your budget allow for it?
Consider these ideas and techniques for finding the right category for your item:
Check out other sellers' successes: To find where other sellers have successfully sold items that are similar to yours and see the prices the items sold for, you can perform a completed item search from the More Search Options page. In the Search box, type your item keywords, select the box to search Completed, and then indicate to have your results sorted by highest prices first. After you have your results, select the completed listings with the highest priced bids. At the top of the auction page, you’ll see the listed category. You may find that your item is listed successfully in more than one category.
Find out who's currently selling your item (and where): Check the active listings; are lots of people selling your item? If you see that you’re one of forty or fifty selling the item, you need to get creative as to where to list yours. Evaluate the item and its potential buyers. In what categories would someone shopping for your item search?
Use subcategories to catch in-the-know buyers: Most bidders scan for specific items in subcategories. For example, if you’re selling a Bakelite fruit pin, don’t just list it under Jewelry; keep narrowing your choices. In this case, you can put it in a costume jewelry category that’s especially for Bakelite. The real Bakelite jewelry collectors out there are guaranteed to know where to look to find the jewelry they love.