So, Jon and I run an eBay “shop”. We’re not going to say what our name is or what it is we sell, but we use eBay to make a small profit of around £50 a month. We’re currently working on expanding our product range a little, so that may go up, but in principle we run it just to make a small profit on money that would otherwise be idle or accumulating an even smaller interest in the bank. After all, 20-50% return a month beats any interest rate.
So here’s how to start up such a “shop”.
1: Work out what you want to sell. It needs to be a specific category with a lot of variety in it. For example, “pristine antiquarian books on railroads of Britain” would be too select, but “books”, “railroads” and “Britain” may be too broad. You need a category that’s specific enough to have a consumer base, broad enough to sell a variety of products to each customer and to guarantee return customers and “window shoppers” as well as well-known enough to have a large market or niche enough to have a high-paying market. Taking our examples above, a category such as “railroads of Britain”, “books on railroads” or “antiquarian books” would be more profitable than the extremely narrow or extremely broad categories.
2: Learn about what you’re selling. I don’t think, for a project like this, you need to sell what you already know (although it helps). But make sure to get to know what you’re going to sell. Research brands, authors, designers, critics, prices, etc.
3: Find a good, stable, cheap source of your item. If you’re selling antiquarian books, try antiques stores and thrift/charity shops. If you’re selling jewellery, try online stores or pawnbrokers.
4: Number crunch. Work out what profit you want to make. Do you want to double your investment every time? Make £3 for every £2 you spend? Or simply make a profit? Bear in mind postage and packaging costs both for receiving the item (if you buy it online) and for posting it to your customers. Always add 10% of the final sale onto your costs to account for eBay and PayPal fees. So if you want to sell something for £20, add £2 onto your expenses.
5: Set up an eBay account. Make the account a personal account. They can be far easier to manage at first.
6: Don’t sell abroad unless your country has excellent postal fees.
7: Don’t auction anything except maybe to clear any remainder stock.
8: Don’t accept best offers or returns, this will just end up as money out of pocket.
9: Take several photos of the item right before posting it, including inside the box, the address on the box etc. Always track or get proof of postage when you post it.
10: Don’t review a buyer for an item they haven’t reviewed you for. If after 14 days you have no review, feel free to leave one. This minimizes buyers trying their luck.
11: Don’t let your “shop” sit idle. Make sure there’s always something on sale.
12: When things don’t sell, either try selling them as a bundle and knocking off some of the postage costs or sell them so you break even. If the situation looks very dire, consider selling so that you make a small loss. An unsold item is always a loss.
And there’s the basics on starting and running your own small shop on eBay.
“It was time to challenge myself with No Nothing November once again, but this time I want to extend the challenge to you – my loyal readers.
I want you to join me in “No Nothing November” to get rid of your vices, better your life, and live one month with sheer discipline just to see if you can. And of course, no challenge is complete without a reward – and this is a good one.
I would like you to document your progress on your own blogs, and share them with the #NoNothingNovember hashtag in the title. Once November ends – I will pick one blog from the participants – the blog that impresses me most with it’s author’s No Nothing November participation – and feature it on my site.
Your blog will not only be permanently displayed in the featured blog section – but all of your blog posts for the month of December will be stickied on the first page of Manosphere.com – which will result in a guaranteed spike in readership.
This is a great opportunity for you up and coming bloggers to shine through, and I am looking forward to your submissions!
How To Enter:
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org before November 1 and let me know that you are participating
In November – post on your blog with a title that starts with “#NoNothingNovember” detailing how your battle with your vices and your quest for self discipline is going.
After the end of November, We will post another thread with people’s final progress, and voting will begin.
If you need a place to track your progress, and you don’t have a blog, consider:
Twitter, use hashtag #nonothingnovember
Use this subreddit to post your progress: /r/nonothingnovember
The Rules (and examples): In the comments below – post and update a comment about your #NoNothingNovember progress – including a link to your blog updates (if you write a blog of course).”
So, naturally, I thought it was a brilliant opportunity to also work on giving up some vices for a month, even though I’m not entering the contest, so there’s no incentive other than my own motivation and improved focus.
I noted down the first three vices I could surrender. Turns out that after some introspection they are actually the three things I would most benefit from giving up. So here they are:
No more time-wasting websites. Need to focus on work (got tutoring, translation, essay writing and online tuition now), writing (blog, books) and the home (settling the garden for Winter, stocking up, cleaning down the house) a lot more now that I have more to do in all those areas.
No more interrupting and speaking over people. I’m a bright girl. I’m a reasonably well-read girl. As a consequence I’m also opinionated, loud and forget to shut up. I need to work on that.
No more letting myself get wound up about things. I need to be more decisive about everything and, where I can’t make a decision well or soon enough, to seek and follow advice. Procrastinating decisions only stresses me out and makes me doubt them right up until fruition.
Initial efforts towards each.
I have installed LeechBlock 0.6.6 on Firefox. I have permanently blocked timewasting pages and put time limits on good or useful pages I spend too much time on. I don’t think I’ll dare use Internet Explorer, but if I get desperate I’ll just put the parental time lock on it.
I will wait for others to finish before saying anything in debate or polite conversation. Even when I have a point I want to make or if I find their point or speech boring, I will listen carefully, cheer the Heroes and boo the Villains in my head and keep track. If by the time it’s my turn I’ve forgotten my point then it wasn’t that important. If by the time they’re done my point is no longer pertinent then so be it.
I will set myself time limits for my troubles. If I haven’t found a solution by the limit, I will ask for advice. If advice is offered and it’s the best option and better than inactivity, even if it isn’t perfect, I will follow it. If no advice is found, then I will accept the problem, work my hardest to circumvent it and prevent it happening again and accept that it isn’t worth getting stressed over.
So those are the three things I will quit from Nov 1st to Dec 1st. I will post updates of my progress weekly and whenever there is any trouble or difficulty following through.