For our very first post we thought we would give some tips for new sellers and visitors to our website who are thinking of setting up shop selling makeup and cosmetics on eBay.
Selling on eBay is easy but making a profit can be tricky if you don’t know what you’re doing. Here’s our step by step guide to help you set up your account and make the most out of eBay.
Buy the right makeup & cosmetics stock at the right price
With so many companies trying to get your business choosing which one can be daunting. One of the options for eBay sellers that require the least amount of effort is using a drop shipping company. The benefits are that you do not need to hold any wholesale makeup & cosmetic stock and the drop shipper despatches the items for you. Unfortunately the profits here are very low, the prices are not controlled by you and you’ll find other eBay shops that are exactly the same as yours and you need to stand out in the crowd to be successful.
Alternatively you can buy your own wholesale stock which does mean that you’ll have the initial outlay but you’ll be more in control and earn a bigger profit. You can dictate what you sell and for how much.
Ensure that you give your customers a choice of products. If your customer searches for “cheap makeup” or “lip-gloss” within your shop, you should have three or four different options for them to choose from which will make it much more likely that you’ll get the sale.
Makeup & Cosmetics categories
You get to choose, as an eBay seller, whether you’d like to sell general makeup & cosmetics or market your shop as a specialist in one particular area. This really does come down to your preference and both have their advantages. A specialist shop will require less wholesale stock whilst general makeup & cosmetics shops will more than likely average higher individual sales.
Some of the niches you can consider are:
- Eye make-up
- Lip make-up
- Nail products
- Skin care
- Brands ie: MAC, Urban Decay or Rimmel
Presentation is everything
Keep it simple and to the point. There are so many eBay pages that have large, bright text that appears to “shout” at you from the screen. You want your customer to remember your page (and your shop) in a favourable light so keep it clean and simple with all the relevant information.
Your text is very important for search engines (including eBay) but for your customers the images tell them almost everything they need to know. Most people will pay more attention to a good high resolution picture than an incredibly detailed description.
Make your description relevant
Don’t just copy the description from the manufacturer’s website. Put some time and effort into your description and make it your own. You want to stand out from everyone else and if you all have the same text you’ll just blend into the background which means you’ll find it very hard to be picked up by search engines including Google.
Sometimes we all get stuck when faced with a blank page so this is a perfect opportunity to use the manufacturer’s text as inspiration. You can say exactly the same thing but in your own words. If you have used the product yourself then you can use this to your advantage with your own opinions and tips for use. Don’t get too flamboyant with your language; remember the customer is looking for useful information here, not an English lesson.
It can be tempting to reuse certain keywords in order to show up on search engines quicker but, whilst it may get people to your page, having the word lip-gloss a hundred times probably isn’t going to sell your product. Worst case scenario is that the search engines will treat you as a spam entry which is certainly something you want to avoid at all costs.
You can also link sell to other, relevant products that you are selling. For instance, on a page for a Revlon foundation you can also link to the matching Revlon concealer or powder. The products are used together and chances are the customer will be looking for both items therefore maximising your sales.
The price is right
When using eBay’s auctions to sell your products always make sure that they end on a weekend during the daytime which is when traffic will be highest on the site. Most of your products in your eBay cosmetics shop will use the sites “buy it now” option.
Do some research, look at your competitors prices. You want to be cheap and competitive but still make a profit. Supermarkets use a trick where they offer a “loss leader”, one product that they sell at an incredibly competitive price in order to get the customers into their store. Obviously you don’t want to be selling anything at a loss but it’s worth offering a couple of key products at a minimal profit so that you entice customers into your virtual store. Once there, they can look around at your other products where the profit margins are larger.
Give good customer service
You don’t have to work too hard to get a great feedback score on eBay but it does give potential customers confidence in you.
If you are asked questions on eBay always respond promptly otherwise the customer might go to someone who does respond quickly. Occasionally you’ll see the same question asked repeatedly from different customers. If this happens then make sure the information is given in your description. It shows that you’re listening to what your customers are asking and that you put the customer first.
The majority of positive feedback is left when the products arrive quickly so wherever possible try to send the customers purchases out the same day. Many eBay sellers take their time despatching parcels so if you want to exceed your customers’ expectations, and get positive feedback, post their goods as soon as possible. You’ll stand out from the crowd and customers will remember your swift delivery for their next purchase. If, however, you are experiencing a delay in sending the items always communicate with the buyer. They’ll respect you for this and will probably still give you good feedback. Lack of communication is one of the biggest reasons for negative feedback and lost sales.
Occasionally you will come up against problems or even a complaint. If this happens you can still win the customer round by listening to their comments, reacting appropriately and following up with them to ensure that the matter is resolved. In some instances this does mean you’ll have to forego your profit but look at it as an investment in your future feedback score.
We hope that this guide has given you an insight into being a successful eBay cosmetics seller. Check out our site to see which products you could be selling and could help make you a success. Not only do we offer a large range of cheap makeup & cosmetics products at prices which allow for good profit margins but we stock high, mid and value range products to suit every budget.