How to Create a Good eBay Listing - dummies

By Marsha Collier

When you write descriptions for the items you list for eBay auctions, be sure that you describe your items clearly and completely. Mention everything about the article; if the item is used or damaged, be sure to describe the flaws. When you’re honest up front, you’ll have a happy buyer. Remember to include your terms of sale and specify the types of payment and credit cards you accept. Be sure to include appropriate shipping charges, too. Following is a checklist of some of the things to mention:

  • Size, style, color (garment measurements in inches are also valuable because sizes aren’t universal across brands)

  • Condition (new, new with tags, used, gently used, well-worn)

  • Manufacturer’s name

  • Year of manufacture (if vintage, it’s always good to mention an era at least)

  • Fabric or material

  • Any damage to the item

  • Special features

  • That you’ve stored it in a clean, dry place (if you have)

After you list all the facts, get excited and add a little showmanship in your description. Think infomercial! Think Shopping Channel! Whoopee! These people know how to make things sound so good that you feel that you must have whatever item they’re selling. You can do the same, if you just get those creative juices flowing.

No matter how great your text is, a photo imparts much more information to potential buyers. Even if you aren’t a professional photographer, you can take acceptable photos if you remember a few things:

  • Zoom in on your item: Don’t leave distracting background in your pictures. Crop any extra background in your photo-editing program before you upload the images to eBay or your image-hosting site.

  • Watch out for distracting backgrounds: If you don’t have a studio tabletop, or if the item is something that won’t fit on a table, try to make the background of the photo as simple as possible. If you’re shooting the picture outside, shoot away from chairs, tables, hoses. If you’re shooting in your home, move the laundry basket out of the picture.

  • Be sure the items are clean: Cellophane on boxes can get nasty-looking, clothing can get linty, and all merchandise can get dirt smudges. Not only will your items photograph better if they’re clean, they’ll sell better too.

  • Check the camera’s focus: Just because a camera has an autofocus feature doesn’t mean that it makes pictures come out crisp and clear automatically. Low light, high moisture, and other things can contribute to a blurred image. Double-check the picture before you use it.