Are you looking to start an online business with no money?
Then eBay dropshipping can be the thing you are looking for.
You can begin dropshipping on eBay without any investment in inventory and capitalize on the 138 million active customer base without marketing costs.
You can dropship anything from consumer wearables to clothing apparel without physically touching any item.
However, without knowing the correct process, you’ll become one of the 90% of eBay sellers that don’t make any income.
So in this step-by-step tutorial, I’ll walk you through the entire process to establish yourself as an eBay dropshipper in 2023.
eBay Dropshipping (At A Glance)
Before we dive into the step-by-step process, let’s answer three of the most frequently asked questions:
Is Dropshipping on eBay Allowed?
Dropshipping on eBay is allowed, but you’ve to pay final value and store fees to the e-commerce company.
eBay allows 250 free listings, beyond which you’ve to pay an additional 35¢ per listing.
As a dropshipper, you will be responsible for timely product delivery and overall customer satisfaction with the items listed for sale.
You are not allowed to list an item and buy the product from another marketplace to ship to the customer.
Violation of eBay policies can lead to the cancellation of your listings.
Do You Need a Licence to Dropship on eBay?
You may require a seller’s license if you buy goods from a wholesaler and sell it on eBay for economic profit.
Most states require you to pay sales tax if you reach a specific transaction number or value limit.
If you purchase goods from any other middleman or don’t fall into the sales tax limits, you can be exempted from taking a sales license.
It’s best to check your resident’s state and local laws to know the best legal recourse you can take for your dropshipping business.
How Much Does it Cost to Dropship on eBay?
There are three types of eBay fees to dropship in the eBay marketplace.
First, you must pay 35¢ per listing beyond 250 free monthly listings.
eBay takes a 12.9% cut + 30¢ from each sale upto $7500 sale price.
However, this cut% varies from different product categories.
Beyond the $7500 sale price, the fees drop to 2.35% on each item sold.
You’ve also got to pay $4.95/month as store fees for up to 250 listings, with higher pricing for increased listing size.
eBay Dropshipping Rules To Know
Apart from the definition of dropshipping, you must know the relevant rules.
It will ensure you adhere to the company policies and don’t run into any trouble later on.
Your supplier must not be a retailer:
eBay clearly states, “Drop shipping, where you fulfill orders directly from a wholesale supplier, is allowed.”
Wholesale suppliers are the ones that don’t directly sell to the public.
You should ensure that your supplier agrees to package goods mentioning your business name on the label, not theirs.
Otherwise, you’ll violate eBay’s dropshipping policy and may face a permanent ban from their platform.
2. Invest in Inventory Management and Customer Satisfaction:
The e-commerce platform clearly states that as a dropshipper, you are directly responsible for timely product delivery and overall customer satisfaction.
So, investing in the best dropshipping suppliers like Dropified is a must.
They’ll help to automate your dropshipping business with real-time sales alerts to your supplier to make the product delivery.
You must also adhere to eBay’s return and exchange policies to ensure buyer satisfaction.
3. You Cannot Source Products From Other Marketplaces:
eBay clearly states that listing a product for sale and purchasing it from another marketplace (say Amazon) to fulfill the order is against its policies.
Such practices can lead to canceling listings, lowering seller ratings, or an indefinite account suspension.
It is technically legal to dropship from Amazon to eBay in North America (as of now), provided that you don’t deal in prohibited items.
However, it’s better to avoid it as it may lead to complications in the future.
How To Do Dropshipping on eBay: Step-By-Step
Now, we will outline the entire process of entering a dropshipping niche on eBay for a complete beginner with no capital or prior experience.
1. Find a suitable product niche:
Before you find suppliers or setup up your eBay sellers account, you must conduct market research to find profitable products with higher margins.
An ideal dropshipping product should be:
- Repeatedly purchased by customers (like organic tea).
- Have a low return rate.
- Easy to ship and deliver (e.g., headphones).
You can visit eBay’s “best selling items” page to find product categories that are popular among buyers.
Go through the statistics, connect with experienced dropshippers on FB groups and LinkedIn, and then decide on the product to start dropshipping.
You can use Google trends or Facebook Audience Insights to gain better insights about your target audience to prepare a buyer persona.
2. Prospect And Vet Suppliers
The next step is to prospect and vet a dropshipping supplier that is efficient and reliable. It’s a crucial step as a good supplier relationship ensures customers get the product on time and there are no cancellations or delays in shipping.
You can choose online suppliers like Dropified or local wholesalers to ship your products.
Here are the factors to keep in mind to vet suppliers for your dropshipping store:
- Timely delivery promise
- Options for fast shipping
- Wide shipping range
- Safe shipping without spoilage
- Low fees.
You should check whether your supplier agrees to apply your branding on shipped products and provides you with stock footage so you can use them in your eBay store for product listings.
3. Fix Product Pricing
Product fixing can feel like rocket science as there are many variables to consider, and the success of your business entirely depends on it.
Here are the key factors to consider:
- Product cost per supplier.
- Supplier’s margin.
- eBay listing fees.
- Shipping costs.
- Product price of your competitors.
An ideal product price should be sustainable for your business and affordable to end buyers.
So continue to tweak pricing even after your store is live based on buyer data.
Consider giving discounts during festive seasons like Black Friday to boost sales.
Give concessions on bulk purchases (like one item for $12 but 3 for $25) to increase profits without extra shipping costs.
4. Open your eBay seller account:
After you’ve selected your product and vetted your supplier, it’s time to open your eBay seller account.
Follow the steps mentioned below:
- Head over to https://signup.ebay.com/pa/crte and select the business account shown in the screenshot.
- Enter a decent business name that is suggestive of your product line and does not violate eBay’s business name guidelines.
- Frame an alphanumeric password and click on “Register”.
- Enter your tax ID obtained from your state/local government.
- Select your payment method [Merchant credit card or PayPal].
- Subscribe to the eBay store plan as per your needs.
- Fill in the shop and shipping details to finalize your seller account.
5. Create your eBay Listing:
It’s the most crucial aspect of your dropshipping business.
The algorithm will promote a well-optimized product listing to potential buyers, whereas a poorly made listing will attract no traffic or sales.
Here are the points to consider:
- Write grammatically correct product titles and descriptions with relevant keywords, product categories, and key selling points.
- Mention the correct condition of the product you are selling: whether it’s new, certified refurbished (as shown in the screenshot), or used.
- Include reliable item specifics, including item size, color, and, most importantly, high-definition product image.
- Be transparent about your return policies and encourage buyers to leave customer reviews.
6. Manage Product Listings
We’ve already discussed using online eBay suppliers like Dropified to automatically feed order details to the supplier for fast product delivery.
You should also establish your store’s reputation by maintaining healthy relations with your supplier, listing only quality products, and inviting positive customer reviews.
Finally, never forget to
- Respond to critical customer reviews and solve their complaint professionally.
- Remove out-of-stock or discontinued product listings.
As you gain experience, you’ll determine the correct pricing and optimization tactics to increase profit margin by offering better value to your customers.
Other eBay Dropshipping-Related Tutorials To Check Out
Dropshipping is one of the best ways to make money online without managing physical product inventory.
You can start with eBay to tap into its giant customer base.
Here are some more eBay dropshipping tutorials to check out:
- Dropshipping on Shopify: Learn the step-by-step process to identify a profitable niche and set up your dropshipping business on Shopify.
- Dropshipping on Amazon: Know the entire process to start dropshipping on the largest e-commerce platform in the platform with no money or experience.
- Dropshipping on AliExpress: Here’s the step-by-step guide to using AliExpress to set up your dropshipping store on different platforms like Shopify and eBay.
eBay dropshipping is one of the profitable ways to make money as a beginner, where you can capitalize on a large customer base with no upfront cost on physical inventory or marketing.
However, you need to know their dropshipping rules beforehand.
The chances of your success will depend on your right product choice, supplier reliability, and ability to handle product listings.