Once items are listed on your eBay account, all you need to do is wait for bids (in case of auctions) or orders to come in. For auctions, the item goes to the buyer who makes the highest bid and you are left with the task of packing and shipping the item. For new eBay sellers, the packing and shipping process can be quite intimidating. The need to package the item properly to ensure safe arrival and keep shipping costs to a minimum can be daunting. Here are some tips that will help newbie sellers on how to properly pack and ship eBay merchandise.
Invest on a weighing scale. It doesn’t have to be an expensive one. If your are selling small items, an ordinary kitchen scale will do. You just need to know how much your item weighs so you will have an idea how much you should charge for shipping and include it in your listing. The eBay online shipping calculator is a useful tool that will give buyers an idea of how much shipping will be by simply providing the weight of your item. Don’t forget to charge nominal handling fees to cover for packing materials such as boxes, bubble mailers, bubble wrap, packaging tape, etc.
Immediately inform your winning buyer via email. Let him/her know that you will send the item as soon as payments are made. Also reiterate the shipping option you will use to send the item (U.S. Postal Service, FedEx, or UPS) and how long you expect for the package to arrive.
Properly pack your item in sturdy packaging. Fragile items should be well cushioned with crumpled paper, bubble wrap, packing peanuts or any appropriate packing materials that will protect the item from damage due to impact, bumps and falls. eBay itself is a treasure trove for cheap packing materials such as bubble mailers and poly mailers.
You should send the package as soon as the item and shipping charges are paid. If there are problems and you can’t ship immediately, it is but fair to inform your buyer and explain the cause of delay.
eBay offers a convenient shipping option on your online account. In My eBay, there is an option to “print shipping label” which automatically determines the buyer’s address and print the information on the shipping label.
Alternatively, you can use the similar option from PayPal. Simply click on “Print Shipping Label” which will take you to a shipping window where you confirm the address, the weight dimensions and the service you would like to ship with and then prompt you to print the label using your home printer. Paypal will charge you with $0.18 extra for delivery confirmation but this is worth it! USPS charges $0.75 for the same service!
You can use ordinary plain white paper or sticker paper which will add to the cost. Attach the shipping label to your package. Stick clear packaging tape over the shipping label to protect it against the elements but avoid the part with bar code.
Take the package to the post office or shipping company or have it picked up by the carrier of your choice.