Advantages Home shopping, Bargains, to the door Delivery
Disadvantages Some fraudulent members
WARNING THIS IS A LONG REVIEW.
United Kingdom: - http://www.ebay.co.uk
International: - http://www.ebay.com
Opening an Account.
Opening an account is quick and easy with eBay. All you need to open an account is a valid email address and a credit card to confirm your address. There are ways to get confirmed without a credit card but it is a little long winded and I personally have never had to do that as I had a credit card to open my account.
Firstly, you will need to fill in all you personal information in the boxes required, ensuring that everything is spelt correctly. You will need to choose a user I.D. when you register and a password. There is a password security measure at this point of the form that will indicate to you how secure your password is. This will also not allow you to register a password that is not secure. Once you have completed this you will be taken to another page to fill in your credit card detail to confirm your address and details. Your card will not be charged in anyway for filling these details and the details are only used to confirm your name and address re correct and real. It is 100% free to join EBay and to bid on items however; there are fees for being an EBay seller. (See Below).
Vehicles, Parts and accessories.
Collectables from thimbles and fine china, to works of art and memorabilia.
Arts, crafts and all sorts of hobby materials.
Office supplies, Paper and envelopes.
Toys, teddies and Action figures.
Dolls, dolls houses, miniatures and Train sets.
Music CD's, DVD's and Video's
Electrical, Home and Office.
Computers, Printers, Scanners and all accessories.
Mobile Phones, phones, cases and accessories.
Computer Games, Console Games and even Board games.
Furniture, Fixtures and Fittings for the home and Office.
Camera, Pictures and Picture Frames.
Paints, Inks and Stationary Products.
Tools, Nails and D.I.Y. accessories.
Clothes, Hand Bags and Shoes.
Plus many, many more.
You can buy the items you want from EBay in three main ways:-
2. Buy It Now.
Some EBay members who are selling new items on EBay, multiple items or have a shop on EBay will usually list the item with a `Buy It Now` price. These auctions mean that you can buy an item immediately for the `Buy It Now` price on EBay. When you take this option, the seller usually expects immediate payment to be arranged and this will end the item listing immediately. (Unless a multiple item listing.)
How to Bid.
To bid on eBay you must be a registered member of EBay. To bid on a `Buy It Now` listing is easy you just click on the `Buy It Now` button and this takes you to the page that ensures that you are logged in correctly and requests that you confirm your bid. If you confirm you bid you are legally bound to complete the transaction with EBay and its register member. Once you confirm the contract you have then won the item and if a single item listing ended the listing early. You will then need to arrange with the seller for payment of the auction won.
To bid on a best offer you must click on the box in the Best Offer section at the bottom of the page of the listed item. Type in the amount you are willing to offer insuring that you enter the amount in pounds and pence and include the decimal point. You can then enter the Best Offer bid, again you will be asked to confirm this bid which is legal and binding if the seller accepts. You will be notified if the seller accepts or declines and if they accept, you must arrange payment as this again will end the item listing. If the offer is declined, you bid is removed and you are not legal bound to purchase that item any longer but you have not won the item so will need either to either make another offer or pay the Buy It Now price to ensure you win that item.
To bid on an auction is very similar to Best Offer in such that you have a box to type the amount you are willing to bid with a decimal point and pounds and pence in the place a bid box at both the top and the bottom of an items listing page. The amount you bid must be at least the minimum amount stated by the box you fill in. Either at this point, you can enter the minimum bid required or you can enter the maximum amount you are willing to bid in at this time. If you bid your maximum, the listing will only show the minimum amount required but will have registered your maximum bid. This will stop anyone who bids lower than your maximum amount from winning the item you are bidding on. (Both options of minimum or maximum bids have there downsides. Please see point 5 of other info.)
How Long Do Auctions Last?
Some listing on EBay have a reservation price. This is when the seller has set down a price, which is the minimum that they gave to sell the item for. You can bid on the item but you will be told if it is below the reservation price and you are not guaranteed to get that item if you are the highest bidder at the end of the auction but it is still under the reserved price. The seller has to choose at there own discretion as to whether they accept the highest bid by contacting whoever made that bid, but they do not have to sell the item if they do not want to if they feel the price was not high enough. You do incur extra fees when selling an item with a fixed reserve price and the extra fee is also payable even if the item does not sell.
EBay offers sellers a variety of options from which to choose from as to how they accept payment for there items they are selling. The seller is obliged to offer at least one option of payment but most eBay members choose to offer two to three various options on which you are able to make payment by.
The choices available are:-
Paypal via a credit card (this covers all major credit cards but you need to register with paypal to use this option).
Cheque made payable to the seller (the seller will send you details of who to pay and where to send the cheque with there invoice to you via email).
Postal order (this runs on the same basis as paying by cheque).
Cash on Collection (This is for EBay members who are listing an item as available for collection only facility).
Bankers Draft / Standing Order (This is entirely at the discretion of the seller and not used very often due to having to give out bank account details)
Delivery and Collection.
Only a minority of items available on EBay are available for `Local Pick-up Only` options, and is usually used on large bulky items and vehicles, it is great if someone local to you is selling something as you can pick up a bargain as not as many people are bidding on this item, however that is not guaranteed. Although you save on postage you have to realise, you are going to be paying for the cost of transporting it yourself, as well as making all the necessary arrangements to collect the item and find the address etc.
Almost 99% of items sold on EBay everyday and listed are usually via delivery. The seller will usually set a fee, which is stated on the item listing for the postage, packing of the item, and sending it to you. When you pay for an auction you have won, you will clearly see that the postage and packing is stated and you are liable for that fee. The seller is then responsible for insuring that they securely pack the item and dispatch it to you. Always insure the seller is going to obtain proof of postage and check to see if you are covered by postal insurance or whether the seller is charging an extra fee (either optional or not) for insurance. Postal charges obviously vary from seller to seller; as you have to take into account the size and weight of the item, you are buying or selling. Sellers will sometimes offer a choice of postal options as well that gives you the choice of which option you want to use.
What is Feedback?
Feedback is comments other EBay members have left when you either Buy or Sell something on EBay. It indicates to you whether the EBay member is a good or bad member of EBay. You are given a choice of feedback options to choose from whether you are buying or selling. These options are positive, neutral and negative. Always check when dealing with another EBay member that they have a good feedback score, and try to take some time to read some of the feedback that member has received as this will give you an idea as to whether the member is trustworthy or not and give you an idea of the quality of service they provide.
Good EBay members always have a minimum or 97% on there feedback score so take the time to check before bidding.
Items Not As Described / Damaged.
If you have received an item that is damaged or is, nothing like the description of what you thought you were purchasing again contact the seller about the matter and see what they have to offer as a solution. If you are not happy with the solution try and explain to them what you would like done about the matter. If they still do not wish to sort it out, you can take the matter further and begin an item dispute with EBay and they will try to resolve the issue with your help and the help of the seller. It is important that you try to solve any issues with the Buyer / Seller first before contacting EBay.
Selling with EBay.
If you choose to sell an item on eBay, you should be aware of the following points:-
2. Make sure your item listing and title is spelt correctly so that members just searching for an item via the site search engine will get to see your listing.3. Always give a clear and accurate description of the item you are selling and insure you list any fault, flaws or damage to the item you are selling so that the buyer knows exactly what they are bidding on and the quality.
4. Always try to list a picture using the upload system available on eBay so that buyers can clearly see what they are bidding for, and if there is any fault or damage to the item, you should always try to show a photo of that too. Listings with pictures have a higher chance of selling on EBay.5. Always try to offer a variety of postal services whether it is first class, second class or recorded so that the buyer has a choice of postage options.
6. Always try to offer a variety of payment options on your listing as not everybody has a credit card or Paypal account and if this is the only service available, they cannot bid on you item.7. Always ensure that you pack items you are selling well and that the package is safe, secure and clearly labelled with the correct spelling of the address and postal code.
8. Always obtain a receipt as proof of postage as you may require proof when dealing with a dispute over an item, or insurance due to loss or damage.9. Try and make sure you post your item as soon as possible after payment is received as EBay members are demanding of a fast service. Ensure funds have cleared from cheques or postal orders first though.
10. EBay charges a fee for listing your item to sell on EBay and this is still payable even if the item does not sell. In addition, there is a fee on the amount that you actually sell an item for on eBay, these fees are not huge but you need to be aware of them. EBay will send you an invoice each month with any fees owing to them on the invoice plus ways to pay the invoice.
Receiving a Parcel.
When you receive an item you have bought on EBay, it is always best to check the sticker on the front of the Parcel from the post office. This sticker will clearly tell you how much the item cost to post. Check the quantity and quality of the packing; you are then able to judge as to whether you feel you have been charged fairly for the postage and packing costs. If you feel you have been overcharged a lot then contact the seller and ask why, it could be a genuine mistake on there behalf when calculating the postage for the listing and will usually happily offer you a refund of the excess. If they do not and you feel you have been overcharged more than £1.00 for postage and are still not happy you can raise a dispute with EBay.
When selling an item it is usually a good idea to measure and weigh the item you are selling and then check the postal costs with you local post office or www.postoffice.co.uk to get a guide to the price. Add the price for packing materials to this price and remember the parcel may be slightly heavier or bigger with the packing so compensate a little with that in mind. This is a good way to get an idea of what you should be looking at to charge for postage and packing when selling you items on EBay.
IMPORTANT: - NEVER CLICK ON A LINK FROM THE EMAIL IF YOU HAVE NOTHING BUYING OR SELLING ON YOUR ACCOUNT.
It is also important to know that under no circumstances should anyone buy or sell illegal copies of CD's or DVD's. If you buy an item that is an illegal copy, contact the member immediately complaining and report this matter to the correct department of EBay.
2. Sellers have to pay a fee for listing there item on EBay, which is, payable even if the item does not sell, and they are charged another fee for the amount the item actually sold for. These fees are calculated by a percentage basis and vary depending on what you are selling.3. Always take the time to check other member's details before bidding and avoid members who regularly receive neutral or negative feedback as they have obviously received this feedback for a reason. If unsure, you are able to read what the neutral or negative feedback is to help you make a decision.
4. Never add extra to the cost of postage and packing to compensate for extra money for the item you are selling, as this is unfair to the buyer and illegal on EBay.5. Try not to place you maximum bid until close to the end of the listing unless you will be unable to watch the final few minutes of the listing, as sometimes it can raise the price on your wanted item out of your maximum bid range before the listing even comes close to ending.
6. Always try to solve any problems with regards to buying, selling, loss, damaged or not as described with the seller first before raising a dispute with eBay as most members are only too glad to try and sort matters out amongst themselves, and this service is only there for those who have chosen not to be helpful or disagree with you point of view.7. Always try to set yourself a maximum amount you are willing to bid and do not go over that amount or you could end up feeling you paid more than you really wanted to for an item.
8. If you are waiting to bid until the end of the auction you should always give yourself enough time to register and confirm the bid (and sign in if necessary), always try to bid your maximum, or at least above the minimum amount required in the last two minutes as this will give you more chance of winning the item as another member could be bidding the minimum at the same time as you and it goes to the bidder who registered there bid first ad cause you to lose the auction bidding.9. Always remember to change your password and secret question regularly and never give your details out to anyone.
10. When selling an item, always ensure you pack the item well to protect it from damage in the post and always obtain proof of postage.Important: - When contacting a member with regards to you being unhappy with some part of the service, or an item damaged / not received always be polite and never suggest that the other eBay member has done anything wrong. It is most likely that they have not done anything wrong but everyone will respond better when asked politely. In addition, EBay will not tolerate any form of aggression, threats, abuse or otherwise, they will freeze your account and try to stop you opening another.
My opinion of EBay.
I personally have been using EBay for about four and a half years now and have not had hardly any problems on the site. I am however always careful and alert when it comes to receiving emails from EBay. I was personally caught myself by clicking on a link via a spoof email and have since managed to sort it all out with EBay who were extremely helpful and get my account back safe and secure. Since this has happened, I have been very alert on this matter and this is why I am able to tell you all to do the same. I think EBay is a fantastic site where you cannot only get a bargain, but you can get it delivered to your door as well. It also offers great opportunities to people who make stuff at home to sell there items on EBay without having to think of costs like renting premises etc. It is no wonder that the site continually goes from strength to strength. EBay always seem to be updating there security features on the site as well which is very reassuring. I am not saying it is 100% safe but if you follow the EBay rules on Buying, Selling and security it is an extremely good site. Therefore, I am giving this site 9.5/10 and highly recommend it.
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