Supplementing Your Auctions with an eBay Store

In: Auctions|How To|Information|powerseller

10 Feb 2010

The final step in your creation of a successful eBay business is to set up your own online storefront to offer additional merchandise to your auction customers. If you’re selling printer cartridges, direct your buyers to your online store selling paper and other printer supplies. If you’re selling collectibles, direct your buyers to your online store selling non-auction collectibles. Or, in Caitlin’s example, she can direct buyers of her iron-on transfers to her store selling T-shirts and sweatshirts as well as additional transfers.

Another benefit of selling merchandise in an eBay Store is that eBay will automatically advertise items from your store on the Bid Confirmation and Checkout Confirmation pages it displays to bidders in your regular auctions. These “merchandising placements” help you cross-sell additional merchandise to your auction customers.

Setting up your own online storefront is surprisingly easy to do, thanks to a service called eBay Stores. An eBay Store is an online storefront where professional eBay merchants market fixed-price goods, in addition to their traditional auction items. If you’re a heavy seller thinking of making the move into real honest-to-goodness retailing, eBay Stores is a relatively painless way to start.

You access the eBay Stores home page at

Do You Qualify?

Just about any seller can open an eBay Store. All you have to do is meet the following criteria:

  • Be a registered eBay seller, with a credit card on file
  • Have a feedback rating of 20 or more, or be ID verified
  • Accept credit cards for all fixed-price sales

Given that accepting credit cards can mean using PayPal, you can see that you don’t actually have to be a big traditional retailer to open an eBay Store. Any individual meeting the requirements can also open an eBay Store, thus making eBay Stores a great way for entrepreneurial types to get started in retailing.

Why would you want to open your own eBay Store? Well, it certainly isn’t for casual sellers; you do have to set up your own web page, and keep the store filled with merchandise. But if you’re a high-volume seller who specializes in a single category (or even a handful of categories), there are benefits to opening your own store. These include being able to sell more merchandise (through your store) than you can otherwise list in auctions; being able to display a special eBay Stores icon next to all of your auction lists; and being able to generate repeat business from future sales to current purchasers.

eBay Stores are great for small merchants who don’t otherwise have a Web presence. They’re overkill for the casual seller, however and probably not worth the effort for larger retailers.

You also have to pay eBay for each item you list and each item you sell just as in a normal auction. The difference is you’re not listing for a (relatively short) auction; you’re listing for longer-term inventory.

eBay Stores also offers a full assortment of listing upgrades, just like the ones you can use in regular eBay auctions. These enhancements gallery, bold, highlight, and so on are priced according to the length of your listing. You can also offer multiples of the same item in Dutch auction format.

Setting Up Your eBay Store

Opening your own eBay store is as easy as clicking through eBay’s setup pages. There’s nothing overly complex involved; you’ll need to create your store, customize your pages (otherwise known as your virtual storefront), and list the items you want to sell. Just follow the onscreen instructions, and you’ll have your own store up and running in just a few minutes.

When you’re ready to set up your store, go to the eBay Stores home page and click the Open a Store button. When you accept the user agreement, the store creation process begins. On seceding pages you’ll be asked to choose a store theme, enter a store name and description, provide a logo (or choose from supplied clip-art), and then choose a subscription level. On the last page you’ll click the Start My Subscription Now button, and then eBay will create your store. It’s that simple!

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