Finding Products to Sell on eBay

Do you know how many people in US are earning their livelihood

with the help of eBay? According to a new survey conducted on

July 2005 by ACNielsen, a leading research firm, an astounding

724 thousand Americans respond that they rely on eBay for their

main or supplemental income. Apart from these professional

sellers, another 1.5 million people confirmed that they generate

additional income by selling goods on eBay. Last year alone,

around 150 million registered users have sold over US$ 34 billion

worth of goods on eBay. Isn’t it amazing?

Why entrepreneurs are flocking into eBay? Some of the reasons are

quite apparent.

• Starting a business on eBay is easy and quick

• You don’t require large investment

• Anybody can start an eBay business, no special skill is required

• You can sell virtually anything on eBay

• With your eBay business you can have flexible work time

• You have a ready-made market of over 150 million people and


• eBay get 1.5 billion page views each month. You get access to

this massive traffic almost paying nothing.

So, there is no wonder that anybody with slightest penchant to

have their own business will jump into this great opportunity.

But, there are two major problems that many of the would-be eBay

sellers encounter. The first is what to sell and the next is

where to find it.

What to sell?

According to Forrester Research, a major research company, this

year, categories with products purchased by women will have the

most growth in online retailing. Some categories are already

getting more than ten percent of their overall sales through the

Internet, which include: computer hardware and software, tickets,

travel, books, consumer electronics, cosmetics and fragrances,

toys and video games, and flowers, cards and gifts. While

choosing items to sell on eBay, you should also explore the

features available on eBay and other places on the Internet that

show items people search and items people actually buy.

eBay has a complete section called “Seller Central” dedicated to

delivering utmost information to help you succeed in selling

products through eBay. Two links from this section should

interest you. One is What’s Hot


) and the other

one is Category Tips



When you go to the subsection ‘What’s Hot’, check out the

following three areas:

Hot Items by Category

This is a comprehensive report of categories, and products within

a category by the ratio of bid to listings growth rate in PDF

format. The report gets updated monthly and shows which products

have increased demand in comparison to last month. Super hot

products, for example, have over 35 percentage point difference

between bid growth rate and listing growth rate. According to the

latest report, by the way, Sunglasses for men, in particular

Prada sunglasses are super hot.

eBay Pulse

This is another area where you can see the top ten searched

categories, ten most widely watched auctions, list of stores with

most active listings, and other cool stuffs on daily basis.

eBay Summer Catalog

This is a new subsection. It’s a real catalog with pictures and

average price of products. In each category of products there is

a list of top ten summer trends. You, definitely, should check

this out if you are planning to start selling now.

In Demand

On the page “Category Tips” under each category you will see a

link under the name “In Demand”. This area will show you a list

of ten most sold items of this category as well as most searched

items for each subcategory.

You might also like to see what people buy on non-eBay part of

the Internet. The Consumer Demand Index (CDI)

([]) makes a weekly list of

most sought after items. This list could give you the needed

glimpse to the future market trend!

Where to find items to sell on eBay

Your own home

If you are just planning to start selling on eBay, your first

option is to go through your attic, closets and garage. Find

those long stashed items that you will probably never need. These

may include: books that you will perhaps never read, CDs that you

out grew, gifts that you received but did not like much, the list

can go on! Take them out, brush them off and post them on eBay

for sell.

Flea markets and garage sales

Every body knows that garage sales and flea markets can be real

treasure troves! Well, now you can look at them from a business

point of view. Your sales experience with own home items,

hopefully, will help you understand what will sell well and what

won’t. Don’t go for any costly items as yet.

Local liquidators and auctions

Classified sections of local Newspapers’ week-end editions are

good place to look for estate auctions. While buying items from

local auctions determine what are you going to buy and for what

price beforehand and stick to them no matter what! At an auction

there is always a risk of getting carried away!

Go visit some local business liquidators. These are excellent

places to find items for bargain price.

Drop shippers (


When a manufacturer, wholesaler, distributor or importer, after

receiving an order from their retailers, individually pack and

deliver the product to the customer of the retailer with

retailers address as shipper, this selling technique is called

drop-shipping. This is an excellent way to find products to sell

on eBay. Drop ship source directory


) is the place to go if

you are looking for drop-shippers.


eBay itself can be a great sourcing place for you. Check out

wholesale items and eBay business marketplace from your chosen

fields. In order to find wholesale listing, while searching a

product select “Items listed as lots”. You can buy goods in

wholesale and then sell them piece by piece and make decent

money. Of course, you have to develop good knowledge of the

products before doing this.

If your business has grown and you are considering importing

products to sell on eBay, read my article “Importing Products to

sell on eBay” (


The bottom line is there was never a better time to start a

business. If you feel this is really your cup of tea, just go for