Auction Listing Best Practices

eBay offers you 2 ways to list your products – Auction and Fixed Price. Which method you choose will depend on what you list and your preferred selling practice. Here we will focus on the best ways to manage your auction listings.

When you list an item for sale in an eBay auction, you choose a starting price, and interested buyers place bids. When the auction ends, you sell to the highest bidder. 

You can choose whether your auction should run for 1, 3, 5, 7, or 10 days.  A 1-day auction is designed for items that need to be sold quickly because they’re time sensitive, such as event tickets.

Set a starting price in the Choose a format and price section of the quick listing form. If you use the business tool, you’ll enter the starting price in the Selling details section.

Here are some tips on pricing your items:

  • A low starting price can help attract bidders.
  • You can add a Buy It Now price to an auction listing, and it will be shown until the first bid is placed. The Buy It Now price has to be at least 30% higher than the auction starting price.

Fees for auction listings:

  • You may be charged an insertion fee to list your item. You will receive one insertion fee credit for each auction-style listing if that listed item sells.
  • If you’re a non-business seller, automatic relists are free.
  • You’ll be charged a final value fee after the sale.
  • There are also fees for optional advanced listing upgrades and services.

Listing in auction-style format works well if you want to let buyers decide what your item is worth. You may also be able to see a higher return for that item compared to a fixed price listing.

But this does not apply for all items. For example, it is recommended to list a T-shirt at Fixed Price rather than Auction unless the T-shirt is one of a kind or extremely rare.

A recommended method to gain buyer traction is to list Auction and Fixed Price listings at the same time. This can help to attract more traffic and build your buyer base. Over time, you can reduce your Auction listings and focus more on Fixed Price to ensure steady sales.

Note. You will not be able to list the same item as Auction and Fixed Price simultaneously.

Occasionally, you will list an item that is won by a bidding buyer. But, the buyer then does not make payment. How should you deal with this scenario?

  1. Reminder message – Send the buyer a polite reminder to make the payment. Perhaps the auction had simply slipped their mind or they were preoccupied with something else. Most of the time, this method works best.
  2.  Send an invoice – The buyer will receive the invoice via email. Some buyers will pay right away. Others may reply with a reason why their  payment is delayed.
  3.  Set your unpaid item settings – Go to Account Settings > Selling Preferences > Preferences for items awaiting payment and click edit. You can select the timeframe for the buyer to make payment from 4 to 30 days. eBay will automatically send a message to remind the buyer to make payment. You will also be able to opt to automatically relist cancelled items. This way, if the buyer does not pay, the transaction will automatically be cancelled and relisted.
Set your unpaid item settings

4. File an Unpaid Item Dispute – You can open an Unpaid Item (UPI) case in the Resolution Centre if the buyer does not pay. We will get in touch with the buyer on your behalf and ask them to pay you. (You need to report an Unpaid Item case within 32 days after the listing ended, so it is best to enable the automatic cancellation in step 3)

5. Block the buyer – As a last resort, you can also choose to block and report the buyer. We will investigate further and determine an outcome on the buyer’s account.

TIP: If you have gone through all the steps to collect payment and the buyer still doesn’t pay, the transaction will be cancelled and the Final Value Fees (FVF) will be credited into your account. You can go ahead and relist the item.

Be an eBay Global 24/7 Seller