There are a variety of sources to selling products online, whether it is to get rid of some clutter around your home, or to make a profit for your business. I could go into detail on the many different avenues I have tried to sell my products online, but for now I will try to just summarize the possibilities and go into more detail later. So, if you are interested in learning more about a specific area, let me know in the comments!
Facebook is a source that most of us already have at our fingertips. We are still learning how we can use this tool to its fullest potential. The first way you could use Facebook to sell your items is to post what you have on your wall. Just take a picture and write a little description about what you are selling. Another way, would be to join a common interest group located in your area. Selling groups have been popping up all over the place and get a lot of attention! Most times they have more members than you have friends, so you get that added exposure. For serious sellers, one of the most important ways you can use Facebook, is to create a Fan Page. This will let you showcase your products, while offering a place to advertise your business. I heard on the news the other day that there are 1 million small business on Facebook, but that is considerably low compared to the 20 million small business that exist today. This is a wonderful tool to showcase your product, interact with your customers, and build relationships. It should not be underestimated! There are also many apps that are available that can offer you an actual store, shopping cart, and connect to your existing platforms, but I will have to save that for another post.
eBay has been around for awhile, so it is one of the more familiar sites to sell your products. eBay has expanded their horizon to cater to the needs of all levels of eCommerce entrepreneurs. You could have a personal selling account, which offers you 50 free listings a month. Basic store subscription for small and beginning sellers. Premium store subscription for those that list many items and have a considerable amount of sales. Anchor store subscription for those with a high volume in sales. Each level offers you discounts and free listings, the higher the level the more you pay and save. There are great tools and resources available to store owners on eBay.
Etsy has been around for a while, but is still a new concept to many people. It is a selling platform, which is more like a community, for handcrafted items and vintage items. It is free to have a store on Etsy, which is wonderful, and the only fees you pay are 20 cents per listing that lasts 4 months and a small fee when the item sells. The people there are very friendly, and there are many forums and teams available to help you along the way.
Amazon has now offered store subscriptions to sell your items on their site. This is a great source to those of you who offer new or like new items. As I offer handmade, vintage collectibles, and business services I have not really explored this option to selling. I have heard that it works well for some sellers and offers reasonable fees. Amazon.com is the leader in online sales today with growing numbers. This is an area that I may have to look more into with that huge market, it would be a waste not to!
This is like a classified listing site that is free to use, and has sections devoted to jobs, housing, personals, items for sale, items wanted, services, community, gigs, resumes, and discussion forums. The only problem with this avenue to selling is, it is buyer beware. You should protect all of your personal information when using the site. It is vulnerable to spam and email marketers. It is still a great source to buying, selling, and trading and with the fact that it is free to use, you cannot beat that!
And There Are Others
TIAS (The Internet Antique Shop)
So, which is the best source to you selling your products online? I would have to say that you need to look at what items you are selling and the volume of sales you have. It is important to find the platform that best fits you products. I currently use Facebook to sell all of my items. I list them in groups, on my fan page, and on my personal page. I have an eBay store for all my treasures that I find, but it is really only good for high demand items and unique items. I try to stick to books, collectibles, and home and gardening things in my store. I also have an Etsy shop to sell my handcrafted items and I offer some business services. I do use Craigslist in buying and selling items, just not as often. I have found that I always get email spam and I do not like meeting strangers. This is just works for me with the type of items that I sell. My advice is to do some research and find the platform that works best for you. I wouldn’t limit your self to just one source of selling, and definitely take advantage of what Facebook can offer you. I am by no means a high volume seller, but I have done my research. Good luck on your adventure to online selling! If you have any questions I would be happy to answer from my experiences. If you would like to check out my stores you can follow the links below.