It’s been said that antiques and collectibles are some of the hardest items to start selling on Ebay. It’s also known that these items have potential to become the biggest sales. So what should an Ebay newcomer know before they list their first antique or collectible for auction?
First, the market for antiques and collectibles is a slow moving market. If you need to turn a fast profit, you would do better with seasonal, general, or limited lifetime items. Ebay is a wonderful marketplace for antiques and collectibles, but these items aren’t usually fast sellers. This is because there is such a limited supply of rare items, coupled with the fact that demand is also limited to people who both want and can afford the items. As you can see, you should prepare for certain antiques and collectibles to be with you for a long time before the right buyer comes along.
Another obstacle for new Ebayers is the high buy-in cost of an antique business. This merchandise doesn’t come cheap. Furthermore, finding a great deal on a rare item has a lot to do with luck and connections. Merely wanting to be an antique dealer isn’t enough. You need to have a passion for, and strong knowledge of, your merchandise. To offset the high cost and limited sales potential of antiques and collectibles, use a variety of sales channels. Listing on Ebay is a good decision, but Ebay alone might not clear out your inventory. Look for online and offline auctions dedicated to antiques. Get to know your local dealers. They are often a good source of information.
If you do have expert knowledge of your items, make sure buyers know. They will be more likely to buy from you if they know you’re experienced. They want to know that they are getting an item of value, not a cheap (or expensive) imitation. By demonstrating your knowledge of antiques and collectibles, you are reassuring buyers that their money will fetch them something rare and wonderful. Buyers will also be more likely to spread your name and bring repeat business if you treat them well. Be known for your outstanding customer service as well as your high quality items.
Finally, stick to brands and trends that have lasting value. Certain brands are known for their rarity or their resilient workmanship and beauty. These will always be in demand. As for market trends, watch out for hot fads that are here today and gone tomorrow. If you know enough about your product to capitalize on a buying frenzy, go for it. Just be aware of the risk you’re taking. You could end up with an inventory full of merchandise whose proverbial ship has sailed. A safer bet is to ignore the rises and falls of the market and focus instead on items that will always be wanted.
Ebay is famous for its antiques and collectibles, and for good reason. This nontraditional marketplace with its enormous global following is the perfect setting in which to list hard to find items. And sellers who deal in antiques are some of the most satisfied merchants on Ebay. Often, they get to buy and sell items that they are fond of, which makes their online auctioning seem more like play than work. Each transaction does take some effort, but the rewards are worth it.