Six Tips to Find the Hot Items to Sell on Ebay

It’s Money Making Monday and that means it’s time for another Making Money with Ebay Post!

The first post of this series explained the fees when you sell on ebay and how to create an account. This post will look at what you should sell! You can sell almost anything on ebay, but there are a few resources to help you decide what will sell best.

  • TIP ONE: Ebay Pulse will tell you the most popular search terms and the most watched items. That can really help you determine if an item is “hot” or not.
  • TIP TWO: MPire Researcher will let you know about the previous month of sales for the item you search. If you want to sell a pair of lucky jeans and mpire tells you that there were 20 listings that didn’t sell at all over the last month then you know it isn’t worth your time.
  • TIP THREE: Keep the time of year in mind when deciding what to sell. College textbooks sell for more at the start of a new semester (January and August). Weddings are highest in the month of June so bachelorette items sell the highest in April and May (other wedding items usually go for the highest in Feb/Mar since weddings take so long to plan). Gifts sell best in November and December. Clothes will only sell high if they are in the correct season. Jewelry should be sold in January and February so it can be purchased for Valentines Day.
  • TIP FOUR: Stick with what you know! Just because an item is hot doesn’t mean you should sell it. I specialized in children’s clothes. Nothing fancy, not ever listed as a “hot” item, but it sold well. I knew the brands, I knew the condition, I knew what sort of a lot I could put together and still make a profit. When my husband picked his items to sell he stayed as far away from the clothes as possible – even though he knew I was making money on them. He didn’t know what to look for. He did make money on comic books, baseball cards, and “odd” items. I usually missed those.
  • TIP FIVE: If it is a cheaper item or it costs a lot to ship then make it a “lot”. One book (with the exception of textbooks and some hot books) or one clothing item will never sell as well because it is going to cost at least $5 to ship. Lot them up, or sell them in large groups. This way the postage isn’t as high of a percentage of the total cost. You will also see this done in some of the small collectible item categories.
  • TIP SIX: Specialize in one thing, but be open to anything. If you see something that you know is a hot item (and you know it well enough to answer questions) then pick it up and sell it! But don’t be on the constant lookout for the ever changing hot item. Pick something to specialize in that might not be “hot”. You will still make a good profit if you know it well enough to pick out a value. 90% of what I sold when I turned $10 into $980 was children’s clothes.

Exercise: Sit down and brainstorm what you are good at, what do you work with everyday, what do you know? Come up with 5-10 categories of items that you think you could sell. Then go to mpire and ebay pulse to see which of those items are hot! Narrow your list down to 2-3 categories and spend a little time this week figuring out everything you can about selling in that category!

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Precious January 26, 2009 at 3:46 pm

Fantastic article. Thanks for all the tips!


2 Chopper Wallpaper January 27, 2009 at 1:28 am

Thanks for the tips!


3 Van January 27, 2009 at 3:27 am

Great blog – I am learning to make money by spending less – an amazing phenomenon!


4 LittlePeopleWealth January 27, 2009 at 4:24 am

You’re welcome everybody 🙂 Making money by spending less is the best way!


5 tommy January 27, 2009 at 6:00 am

Thank you for your tips too. I’m the seller from ebay


6 So Cal Savin Mama January 27, 2009 at 4:11 pm

ebay seller here myself…Super awesome tips! Thanks!


7 LittlePeopleWealth January 27, 2009 at 4:52 pm

Glad to see so many sellers 🙂 As we get further in the ebay tutorial I will set up Mr. Linky’s so you can showcase your auctions!


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