Profitable Paper Piecing on eBay--Part 1


Why sell paper piecings on eBay?

eBay is a great way to make a steady part-time or full-time income from a hobby that you love! Selling paper piecings has its ups and downs, but overall it is a rewarding and lucrative venture.

Getting and Understanding An eBay Account

To get started selling paper piecings on eBay, you will need to set up an account. If you already have an account, you many want to consider changing your user ID to reflect your status as a Paper Piecer. Find something that can be easily abbreviated for your titles so that you can create a name for yourself that is easy for potential customers to find. You can also use your entire ID in your titles. Some examples are:

User ID is a*scrapfanatic and abbreviation in titles is A*
User ID is CherryRedSpyder and abbreviation is CHeRRYReD
User ID is Luvspaper and uses luvspaper in titles

If you don't yet have an account and want some information on starting to sell, visit http://pages.ebay.com/help/basics/n-selling.html

This will give you detailed step-by-step instructions to help you get started!

When you are ready to list, keep these things in mind:

Choose a Category
Paper Piecing = 11792 OR
Toys&Hobbies, Hobbies&Crafts, Arts&Crafts, Scrapbooking, PaperPiecing

Title
Make sure it contains the phrase "paper piecing" (without the quotation marks) since many people find these items by searching for "paper piecing" in the titles. Also try to include an abbreviation of your user ID to help create a recognizable name for your paper piecings. If there is room, try to list any extras you have in your auction such as shaker, beads, buttons, etc.

Description
Start your description by giving all of the basic information about the paper piecing that you made. List the dimensions and a brief description of each part of the set.

Also let people know if you used pens and chalks to add detail to your sets. If any part of your set is computer generated, it is a good idea to note this in the auction.

Let everyone know whether your background paper is included or not.

Make sure you let your potential customers know if you use all acid-free, lignin-free products when making your sets. A lot of people also list information such as "comes from a pet-free, smoke-free home."

At the end of the description list all payment and shipping information.

You want to make sure that customers know the following: what payment methods you accept/ prefer, your shipping rate, how the items will be packed, whether or not you offer insurance and how much you charge, and your email address for any questions.

Minimum Bid
Set the price at the absolute minimum you are willing to accept for this paper piecing. Most auctions start in the $3-10 range. Adjust your minimum bid price according to time, materials used, and the detail of the piece.

Auction Duration
You have a choice of 3, 5, 7, and 10 day auctions. Most paper piecers use either 5 or 7 day auctions. It is a good idea to have your auction extend over Sunday evenings because it is a very busy time.

Learning About Optional Photo Hosting Services for High Quality Photos eBay allows you to host one photo per auction free of charge. This is a great service, but unfortunately the photos are not very clear. To get the clearest photos possible, find a photo hosting service. Some free and easy to use options are http:// www.photobucket.com and http://www.webphoto.com There are also low cost, reliable options like http://www.villagephoto.com It is a good idea to use a photo hosting service along with the free eBay photo in case one of the services "goes down." This way people can still see some type of photo for the auction.

Studying The Paper Piecing Auction Market
To see which paper piecings are selling the best, go to http://www.eBay.com and type "paper piecing" in the search box. When the search results page comes up, click on "Highest Priced First." This will allow you to browse through the best-selling auctions. Take notes. Note which themes and styles are selling well and try to come up with original designs that fit into those themes/styles. You can also click on "Completed Items" to see what the end price was for recently listed auctions.

Copyright Issues
Did you know that each time you create an original paper piecing it automatically has copyright protection? You do not need to register a creation to have it protected.

It is a good idea to put a notice with your auctions when it is an original design. If you are using a pattern from a Tole/Pattern book, you should not use a copyright notice. A basic copyright notice looks like this:

Copyright 2002 Your Name Here

This also means that all of those other original paper piecings that are listed on eBay are protected. It is okay to browse around and get ideas and inspiration, but you should never make copies of paper piecing that you see.

For more information on basic copyright protection, visit http://www.nolo.com

Read Profitable Paper Piecing on eBay, Part 2

Copyright 2002 Antuanette Wheeler

www.misstonigifts.com">http://www.misstonigifts.com

Miss Toni Gifts started out as a small pin sales site and blossomed over the last few years into a pin/bookmark combo design business.

We are three women who have known each other forever. We have all been involved in scouting, scrapbooking and general arts and crafts for a LONG time. This is really a family affair because Glenda is the Mom, Toni is the daughter, and Missy is a friend for over 20 years!


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