How to Market Listings on Ebay

hand holding phone displaying a yellow sports jacket for sale on eBay

 Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images

eBay is the world's premier online marketplace and one of the largest single buying and selling communities. Because such a massive audience is assembled in one place (171 million users worldwide), the increased potential for visibility makes it easier for sellers to promote their products or business on eBay.

This is why so many sellers come to eBay, to tap into the massive audience on the site. Many large sellers even sell at a loss as part of a customer harvesting strategy. For example, some large sellers use a 99 cent auction strategy for customer harvesting. 

As eBay has evolved, so has social media marketing and alternatives for promoting listings. The name of the game on eBay is to get to the top of search and be seen. While eBay tells us that listings will place higher in search when titles are optimized and great keywords are included in titles, there are some extra things sellers can do to catapult their listings to the top of a search. Some cost money, others just take time to actually do the marketing. 

eBay Promoted Listings

A new feature added in 2017, this is eBay's version of a sponsored ad, similar to Facebook advertising. Promoted listings is a way for items to be placed at the top of a search. Sellers are essentially paying for higher placement. Here is how it works.

  1. Sellers choose which listings they want to be promoted either by choosing a category or individually selecting listings.
  2. Sellers choose an ad rate between 1% and 20% of the sale price. eBay actually offers a Promoted Listings Ad Rate Trend report so if sellers aren't sure how to be competitive, eBay provides a weekly report of "category trends are based on the average and max ad rates set by sellers using promoted listings. We update this information weekly."
  3. Sellers are only charged when a promoted item sells, after a buyer clicks on the ad AND it sells within 30 days. So, not upfront charges, only post-transactional charges after the item sells.
  1. Sellers have access to data that shows ad performance and clicks, so they can adjust the promoted listings for maximum results.

Use Social Media

Promote eBay items on Twitter, Pinterest, your Facebook page, and Instagram. Use this technique sparingly as you don't want your friends to get sick of your constant posting and unfriend or unfollow you. Promote unusual or hard to find items. During the 4th quarter, when people are shopping for holiday gifts, you can be a little more liberal with social media promotion. Just be careful it isn't overkill.

These are just a few simple techniques requiring very little overhead and applicable to every eBay business model or market. The key to consistently selling and making money on eBay is focusing on the details in every listing. Using these strategies can help increase your visibility and promote both your eBay listings and your e-storefront off of eBay.

Create Promotion Boxes

eBay offers promotion boxes, or graphic displays, to help advertise your items in your eBay Store. In promotion boxes, sellers can highlight featured items, announce specials, or describe a variety of ways to browse items. eBay offers 3 types of promotion boxes:

  1. Advertising specific items: Use this type to feature one or more of your Store items. Sellers can highlight items that are newly listed or ending soon, both of which get a boost in search. Choose items manually or allow eBay to feature your items automatically.
  2. Provide links to other parts of your store: eBay says, "Use this type to give buyers alternative ways to find items in your Store. Custom links can point to a Store category, a custom page within your Store, another eBay page, or custom search results. You can also include clickable graphics or pictures that provide access to these other pages. Choose among predesigned graphics or provide your own. Graphics that don't fit the standard dimensions in a location are resized to fit."
  1. Design a custom promotion box: Create your own unique promotion box to show information like shipping and payment details, links to your email newsletter signup page, or your feedback page. Sellers can write their own HTML for the custom promotion boxes, but make sure it is mobile friendly. You don't want to do all the work to get a buyer to your listing then lose them because they can't read the listing on mobile.