eBay is a known treasure trove for good buys and discounted items. Is it still possible to save money shopping on eBay? And the answer is a resounding YES! Here are some quick hacks for you to check out.
Look for local bargains
Another great way to find great items is to look for items marked or tagged as "collection only." These are items that are considered large or bulky. Since they are tagged as "collection only" not many buyers check them out. Just choose this option when you click on advanced search. When you do get the winning bid and you are about to pick up the item, be safe and be smart. Don't go alone and make sure people know where you are going.
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Compare and Contrast
Obvious? Sure. But, this is one of the best ways to save money on eBay. Instead of being spontaneous, take the time to do a little research on the item that you're looking for. Typically featured listings are sponsored by professional sellers who charge more money than an item that is further down on the page.
Additionally, if you read the description and examine the pictures of an item carefully, you may notice that there are some flaws. This means that you may be able to negotiate with the seller to land a better deal.
Check out the going rate for an item
Don't have any idea how much to bid for an item? Afraid that it might be too high? You can easily check out the going rate for it by using the advanced search settings. Look for "sold listings" and filter it by price. When you do, you will see a list of items and the winning bids. That should help you set your minimum and maximum bids for an item.
Capitalize on $0.99 items
Some sellers set $0.99 as the minimum bid hoping that it will snowball and hit a very high price for the item. However, this strategy backfires sometimes and some buyers stay away from such items. Some sites troll eBay and look for items that cost around $1 or auctions that are about to end with no bids. If you bid on these items, make sure you check the shipping fees as some sellers try to recoup their losses by charging more for this.
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Negotiate With the Seller
Speaking of negotiation, you may able to get a better deal on an item by simply getting in touch with the seller. For example, a seller may have a $20 'Buy It Now' option on a sweatshirt. You may be able to get that sweatshirt for $15 just by emailing the seller a realistic and fair bid. If the seller agrees, they will change the status of the listing and you've just saved a couple of bucks.
Automate Your Bids
This can get a little tricky if reserves aren't met, but eBay offers buyers the chance to automate their auction bids. This works by you entering your maximum bid amount on an item and eBay will increase your bid in increments whenever someone else bids on the same item. So, if you want to purchase an iPhone and you set your maximum bid at $300, but the next highest bidder was at $150, then you've won the auction by paying $151.
Instead of constantly paying attention to the auction, you're letting eBay do the work for by placing bids on your behalf during the final minutes of an auction.
Don't Add Items to Your Watch List
Auctions can get very competitive and you're bound to come across those people who will intentionally raise the price of an item either to ensure that they'll get the final bid or just to ruin the auction for everyone else if they can't win the bid. To avoid this, don't watch an item. Bookmark the page to keep tabs on the auction. This way, those competitive bidders won't know how many people are actively watching the auction.
Become an Ebay Sniper
Similar to automating your bids, you can also swoop in at the last second in the last couple of seconds to snag an item at a great price. If you want to learn how to become an eBay sniper, then you should tricks like entering an off number for an auction. As opposed to $20, submit a bid for $20.87 to throw other bidders off.
You can also let tools do this for to make your life a whole lot easier. eSnipe and Goofbid are both services that will automatically place a bid for you during the final seconds of an auction.
Get a Second Chance
Don't feel defeated if you lost out on a bid. There's always a second chance. After the auction closes email the seller and let them know that you're interested in the item. This way if the buyer doesn't pay for the item the buyer can work out a deal for you. There are even eBay sellers who have more than one item in their inventory, so you may have a chance to purchase that item before the seller lists it on eBay. In either scenario, you may be able to negotiate a favorable price.
Download the Mobile App
If you're a frequent eBay shopper, then there's probably a good chance that you already downloaded the eBay app on your mobile device. If you haven't already downloaded the app through the App Store or Google Play, then you should get on top of that. It allows you to track and bid on items wherever you are. That means that you won't miss out on a steal just because you're aware from your PC.
Take advantage of spelling errors
Some items don't get as many bids because of spelling mistakes. You can use websites to identify misspelling combinations to find those treasures on eBay. Playstation, for example, may be misspelled as Playsation, Plastation, or Playstaion. And there were over 400 listings for it!
Benefit from other mistakes
Aside from misspellings, some sellers do not post brand names so they don't get a lot of bids. To get all the details, send the seller a private message instead of asking through the thread. You don't want others to find out about it, in case it turns out to be a winner. Right?
Another seller error you can take advantage of is the seller setting a crazy low price for an item. When you place your bid, sellers cannot edit the price anymore. So it is a win for you.