If you peruse Ebay a lot, you’ll see a lot of members selling website businesses. Often advertising these as “Turnkey”, they claim that the site has been making X dollars a month for the past X months. The businesses include expired domain name searches, online auction sites, credit repair sites, dating and adult sites, etc. Take a look at the current bids or prices – $1.99? What gives? If this site is making money, why would they want to sell it??? Here are some tips to help avoid buying a waste of time.

Take a look at the domain name. Do a Google search for it. Does it show up? Keep in mind how long the seller claims the site has been in business. Go to Internic and do a Whois on the domain name…how long has it existed? Chances are less than a month.

Are there any bids on it? the number of bids is generally a good indicator on how legit this “business” is. If there’s only 25 minutes left on the auction, and there is one bid for a very low dollar amount, this one’s most likely a dog. If it is down to 25 minutes and there are 60 bids on it up to 500 bucks, it’s most likely a keeper.

Proof of income. Some sites show a screen shot of their payment processor. Visit the website. Is the payment processor the same? For example, is the screen shot on Ebay from 2Checkout, and Paypal is the only payment method on the site? Smells fishy to me.

Most of these sites claim to be “100 Percent custom hand coded by experienced developers”. Do some Googling for “website templates”. Look through some of the places that offer web templates for sale. You will most likely run across the design of the website that is for sale. View the source of the site that’s for sale – you may find that the seller forgot to remove the comment code that states that “This site was developed by ” . There are actually websites that SELL turnkey web businesses specifically for sale on Ebay, and they use these templates all the time, over and over again.

If you are still skeptical, email the seller with your questions. If this site is truly on the up-and-up, they’ll be honest. If not, they’ll dodge your questions like a bullet.

One more thing to consider: Often these sites will come with “Dirt Cheap Web Hosting”, for something like $6.99 per year. Think about it – would a TRUE e-commerce site that was getting tons of traffic and sales rely on lowest-bidder web hosting? Nope.

Now, don’t get me wrong – there ARE some good web businesses available from time to time on Ebay…but with the availability of so many free website scripts and templates, they seem to be few and far between. Caveat Emptor, my friends – let the buyer beware.

However, if you want to learn more about running a real ebay business and selling real goods and making good sales,

A new eBay certified software, My Shopping Genie, was introduced on February 1, 2008 and people from all over the globe are getting involved in it!

After three years in development this powerful unique software is available and free to it’s users. And, will revolutionize the already successful eBay.

MyShoppingGenie is unique, convenient and fast! And, with one easy download you will never have to wonder, is this the best deal again! Just enter a search using your favorite search engine and the Genie instantly appears! Finding what you are looking for and accessing your desired items at lightening-quick speeds. The software is amazing.

The already successful eBay is bound to take even more and is offering people the opportunity to go along with them by becoming an affiliate. Afflilate’s are receiving the opportunity to earn money by giving away their free downloads of the Genie, which has already gone global.

Going full-time as an eBay seller is living the dream: making a real income, working from home, being your own boss and all the rest of it. It’s the promise of a million scams, and it’s finally come true – at least for some.

What they don’t tell you in the success stories, though, is that becoming a full-time eBay seller is by no means for everyone. You really, really ought to try it part-time before you even consider taking it up full-time, and even then, caution is advisable. Before you burn your suit, here’s a list of questions you should ask yourself.

How Much Do I Earn From eBay Now?

Work out how many hours a week you spend doing eBay-related things (be honest here), and divide it by the average amount of profit you make in a week. If you were doing full-time hours, would you earn as much as you earn now?

Do I Have a Good Job?

Think about what you might lose if you give up your job to focus on eBay. If you’re in a well-paid job with good promotion prospects then it’s well worth reconsidering: you might get a few years down the line and wish you’d stayed in your traditional job, as you’d probably be the CEO by now.

Would I Really Make Much More Money?

Unless you’re selling a large quantity of small goods, most of what you do on eBay will be waiting for auctions to end – and you can wait at work just as easily as you can at home. This is why whether you would make more money on eBay really depends on what kinds of items you’re selling – for low value items, going full-time could be a good move. For high-value ones, the chances are you’ll hit the limits of how much money you have to invest in inventory long before you hit the limits on your time.

Is my Home a Good Place to Work?

Quite apart from anything else, you might find that the dream of home working is more of a nightmare in reality. People can start to depend on you to get things done that need to be done during the day. If you have a wife and children then they can resent the fact that you’re in the house but refuse to have anything to do with them for large parts of the day. Giving in to any of these things and stopping work for a while will cause your profits to fall.

Can I Survive if it All Goes Wrong?

In the end, would you be able to get by if you had a month or two where you sold literally nothing? Or would you be desperately looking around for a job and cursing the day you ever discovered eBay? That’s the real test.

If you made it through all these questions, then I guess you’re cut out for the eBay life – and even if you didn’t, you’d be surprised just how far you can get part-time. In our next email, we’ll show you how to think like the eBay elite: the PowerSellers.

Every day millions of eBay users log onto their accounts to buy and sell, and don’t have any idea how eBay got its name. They might not really care, either. Like the person who turns on the TV and just wants it to come on and play their favorite television show, many eBay users probably aren’t curious about the fine points of the company. But it’s a fun story and all true eBay enthusiasts will be interested in knowing the history.

Just ask some friends what “eBay” stands for and you’re probably going to get an answer like “it’s maybe an abbreviation for ‘electronics bay’ or ‘ecommerce bay’ or something like that”. But while the “e” could stand for lots of things, if you look up different definitions for “bay” there’s just no way to stretch any of them so they have anything to do with an online auction site. However if we search way back to 1995, the year eBay was founded, we can find some clues.

An explanation you’ll probably see on the Internet, and even in some books about eBay, says that the auction site was created by a young computer programmer named Pierre Omidyar to help his girlfriend, Pam, increase the size of her collection of PEZ candy dispensers. PEZ, if you are not familiar with them, are little plastic containers with character heads that flip back and push out a piece of candy. Pam supposedly wanted a way to enlarge her collection, so Pierre came up with an idea for an online marketplace. Since he was a computer programmer, he put together the code which would become the core for eBay.

Just goes to show you can’t always trust what you read on the Internet. According to Adam Cohen in his 2002 book, “The Perfect Store: Inside eBay” that’s not really the way it happened. The PEZ story, which is widely circulated and believed, was created by a public relations manager to further the myth surrounding the company and has been spread widely ever since.

The real story is that Omidyar was simply a smart man, and he wanted to make an impact with an online venture. He observed the operation of buyers and sellers in other markets and decided that an auction website would be a great service to offer. Ironically, he had never attended a real auction himself. The whole thing started out as a hobby, but the auction site soon was earning enough money so that Omidyar could quit his job and work it full-time. As a computer programmer he did write the original computer code which made the auction site function – in one weekend.

The website launched on Labor Day, 1995 and he called it “Auction Web”. Pretty descriptive, right? Well, Omidyar had earlier founded a web consulting company which he called Echo Bay Technology Group. “Echo Bay” because he just liked the sound of it. There was already a gold mining company who owned EchoBay.com, so Omidyr took the second best option and dropped the “cho” part of “echo” and named his business – you guessed it – eBay. If you go to www.echobay.com today, you’ll see only one simple dark blue webpage with the words, “EchoBay – What eBay could have been!”.

The original website operated as “Auction Web” for 2 years, then officially became eBay.com in 1997.

So there you have it. Maybe that will give you an answer for a “Trivial Pursuit” question, or maybe you can work it into a conversation and impress your friends sometime. Just know that when you buy or sell on eBay, you’ll be one of the few to know the real story of how eBay got its name.

Ask around and you’ll find lots of people that spend a lot of their time looking for good deals. And, face it, good deals can be found everywhere: yard sales, wholesale warehouses, flea markets,… and of course at online auctions. eBay is the biggest and most popular online auction site: as millions of auctions are constantly going on, you’ll most certainly find the stuff you want. But, question is, can you get it for a reasonable price? Certainly you do. If you’re lucky … and smart!

To make sure you’re getting a good deal on eBay, it’s important you do a little research before you start placing bids.

Step 1: Get as much information about the item as you can
Read the auction, every word of it. This way you minimize the risk on disappointment later. What is the seller telling you about authenticity, about guarantee, and of course, about the condition of the item? Remember to also read between the lines: maybe the seller left something out on purpose. It’s very important to get as much information as you can, before you place a bid. Do you want to know more about an item than what you’re told, do not hesitate to ask the seller. eBay provided an ‘ask the seller a question’-link in the right menu of every auction page.

Step 2: Pay attention to shipping details and return policy
Underneath the description of an item, sellers (usually) add shipping details. Read them carefully. Check out how long it will take for the seller to ship your item after your payment has cleared. You don’t want your present to arrive 2 weeks after your mother’s birthday! Even more important, is the information about the shipping costs. For most items, the buyer pays for them, so you need to watch out for sellers that try to charge you more than the actual shipping and handling costs are. This to avoid paying a fortune for an item that was a good deal on itself.

Step 3: payment details
Find out which payment methods the seller accepts. Does he want you to pay by bank transfer, cheque, credit card, …? Mostly, payments through PayPal are preferred. PayPal is an eBay company that enables people to send and receive online payments safely, easily and quickly.

Step 4: check prices
Before you place a bid, surf the web looking for prices available from online and offline sources. You wouldn’t be the first to find out afterwards you would have paid almost half if you had gone to the shop around the corner….

Step 5: get to know the seller
Learn more about the seller. Every eBay member has a profile in the Feedback Forum. This profile has basic information about the member and a list of feedback left by their trading partners from previous transactions. To see a member’s full feedback profile, click the number in parentheses next to their User ID. Be sure to take a good look at it. Unfortunately, there are numerous of dishonest people out there! You can find out a lot about the trustworthiness of a seller by reading what their past customers or sellers have to say!

Following these guidelines, you definitely optimize your chances on finding a good deal on eBay. In fact, these same steps will also help you to protect yourself. Online auctions are a lot of fun, but you need to stay alert. To avoid becoming a victim of online fraud, you better do your bit of research before you place any bids.

“If you can measure it, you can manage it.” Perhaps a cliche, but true nonetheless.

eBay is a business any way you look at it. Sure, it can be an immense deal of fun for both the buyers and sellers, but when you look at it from another view point; you will see that it is a business from the seller’s point of view, the buyer’s point of view, and eBay’s point of view.

More than 40 million dollars a day in business is transacted on eBay. Selling items on eBay successfully is an art AND a science. The good news is that eBay offers many different forms of quantitative information Research to enable you to determine that you are selling the right items, to the right people, in the right way.

Some of the data and research is not free, but much of it is. The available resources include hot items by category, eBay Pulse, merchandising calendar, sales reports, marketplace research, buyer behavioral report, and the eBay solutions directory. These tools are quite easy to use, and the information that can be gleaned from them is extremely valuable.

The Data and Research tools are all accessible through your seller’s account, by clicking on the ‘Advance Selling’ link. Learn to use those tools, and get your piece of that more than $40 million that streams through eBay each day.

Yes, you read that correctly: ten years. eBay was created in September 1995, by a man called Pierre Omidyar, who was living in San Jose. He wanted his site – then called ‘AuctionWeb’ – to be an online marketplace, and wrote the first code for it in one weekend. It was one of the first websites of its kind in the world. The name ‘eBay’ comes from the domain Omidyar used for his site. His company’s name was Echo Bay, and the ‘eBay AuctionWeb’ was originally just one part of Echo Bay’s website at ebay.com. The first thing ever sold on the site was Omidyar’s broken laser pointer, which he got $14 for.

The site quickly became massively popular, as sellers came to list all sorts of odd things and buyers actually bought them. Relying on trust seemed to work remarkably well, and meant that the site could almost be left alone to run itself. The site had been designed from the start to collect a small fee on each sale, and it was this money that Omidyar used to pay for AuctionWeb’s expansion. The fees quickly added up to more than his current salary, and so he decided to quit his job and work on the site full-time. It was at this point, in 1996, that he added the feedback facilities, to let buyers and sellers rate each other and make buying and selling safer.

In 1997, Omidyar changed AuctionWeb’s – and his company’s – name to ‘eBay’, which is what people had been calling the site for a long time. He began to spend a lot of money on advertising, and had the eBay logo designed. It was in this year that the one-millionth item was sold (it was a toy version of Big Bird from Sesame Street).

Then, in 1998 – the peak of the dotcom boom – eBay became big business, and the investment in Internet businesses at the time allowed it to bring in senior managers and business strategists, who took in public on the stock market. It started to encourage people to sell more than just collectibles, and quickly became a massive site where you could sell anything, large or small. Unlike other sites, though, eBay survived the end of the boom, and is still going strong today.

1999 saw eBay go worldwide, launching sites in the UK, Australia and Germany. eBay bought half.com, an Amazon-like online retailer, in the year 2000 – the same year it introduced Buy it Now – and bought PayPal, an online payment service, in 2002.

Pierre Omidyar has now earned an estimated $3 billion from eBay, and still serves as Chairman of the Board. Oddly enough, he keeps a personal weblog at http://pierre.typepad.com. There are now literally millions of items bought and sold every day on eBay, all over the world. For every $100 spent online worldwide, it is estimated that $14 is spent on eBay – that’s a lot of laser pointers.

Now that you know the history of eBay, perhaps you’d like to know how it could work for you? Our next email will give you an idea of the possibilities.

You want to buy and sell items seen on eBay but you are not exactly sure how to go about it. You need to do a little research before you jump in with both feet. At www.buy1-online.com , there are many articles on the “How To’s” of buying and selling on eBay. After reading some of the online articles at this site you will be better prepared and feel more confident about buying and selling on eBay.

Need more reasons to visit this site? Our navigation menu has a misspelling tool that will allow you to find items to buy, that will be missed by people not using this advantage.

Check out the eBay Resources Tool. Information on eBay University features online courses for people who prefer studying at home. Also note a handy classroom finder for courses offered in your area. There are free videos taking you through a virtual classroom. Related links include a Help section and a Learning Center resource.

Another resource tool is the eBay forum. The forum will keep you up to date about the concerns and possible challenges of other eBay members. In the What’s New section is information on some eBay Blogs! The Chatter is now available via RSS feed. There is eBay radio which broadcasts twice a week and an archieve of eBay radio broadcasts. eBay has a free eBook on eBay basics called “The Appetizer”. There are also listings for other auctions on other web sites that might interest you.

If you are running an eBay business, you may not realize that the need for great customer service still exists – even for online auctions. When a buyer receives quality customer service from you, they will potentially do one of two things – or both. They will give you great feedback, and they may look for more of your auctions in the future. If you hope to make a living from eBay, you have to stop thinking of it as an “auction” and start running it like a “business.”

If you owned a brick and mortar business, how would you treat your customer while they were standing at your counter, waiting for you to finish ringing up their order? You would be helpful and respectful of course! You would do everything that you could to guarantee that customers return to your establishment in the future. You would bend over backwards to make sure that their buying experience with you was both satisfactory and enjoyable. Why would you do any less at the close of one of your eBay auctions?

First, act quickly at the close of your auctions. Contact the winner, and congratulate them. Describe the item they have won and how the item will be shipped – even if this information is already part of the description for the auction. Remind them of their winning bid amount, and give them payment options and instructions. Let them know when the item will be shipped.

Close your email by thanking them for participating in your auction. You might even take this opportunity to tell them about other open auctions that you have as well. Think of this contact with the winner as a conversation that you are having with a customer who is standing at your counter in that imaginary brick and mortar store.

Once the payment and shipping details have been taken care of, contact your buyer again. Let them know when the item was shipped – the exact date and time – and when it is expected to arrive on their end. During this contact, let them know that if they have any problems or questions, that they should contact you through the eBay site. If they do contact you in the future, make sure that you answer promptly, and that you do all that you can to make them happy with their purchase – even if it means issuing a refund.

Yes. You should be open to issuing refunds, depending on what the item is. Furthermore, you should issue refunds promptly. Of course, it is reasonable to expect the buyer to return the item to you, at your expense, before the refund is issued – but once you receive the item, issue the refund promptly. This is just good business!

If you hope to own an eBay business, and make a full time living at it, you can easily make that dream come true even if you don’t have a product of your own to sell. eBay provides many people who want to quit their corporate nine-to-five jobs with a way to make a good living, without having to put up a lot of start up capital. This is made possible with the help of drop shippers. Drop shippers send merchandise to the customers of business owners. If you have an eBay business, you are a business owner. This will allow you to offer a wide variety of stock in your eBay store, without having the need to warehouseall of those products!

All you have to do is set up your auction, and sell the product. You then pass the customer’s information on to the drop shipping company. The drop shipper does the rest, and they will even use your company information, as well as your company logo if you have provided it to them. When the product arrives at your customer’s home, they will have no ideathat your company didn’t send it. The drop shipper will package, label, and ship the products that you sell, allowing you more time to set up even more auctions, for greater profits.

You must establish a relationship with several drop shipping companies in order to become successful. In the beginning, most companies will require you to pay for the items that your customers order before they are shipped. You need to fill orders in a timely manner, so you should pay for the items with a credit card for speedy service. Eventually, you will be able to have the drop shipper fill your orders, and then bill you for them later.

When you set up your eBay auctions, make sure that your reserve price is set higher than the price that the drop shipper will be charging you for the item. The idea, of course, is to earn a profit! Depending on the item you are selling, a markup of about 10% should be about right, but you should do some research to see if the item is selling for a lower price in another eBay auction, or through other online sources.

By starting an eBay business using the drop shipping method, there is essentially no financial riskinvolved. The product will be sold before you pay the drop shipper for the item. This is one of the few businesses where you can actually turn a profit before you have expenditures!

E-Bay and Paypal are two giant firms which are involved in sales transactions of customers. E-Bay is an online portal in which buyers could auction and bid items for sale. On the other hand, Paypal is the most popular online payment system used through credit cards. The teaming up of both firms is inevitable because E-Bay provides the goods to be purchased while PayPal provides the resources to be used.

E-Bay has indeed grown as the number one destination of online shopping through auctions. E-Bay offers a variety of choices when it comes to books, food, gadget, technology stuff, and many others. The variety and diversity of E-Bay makes it the most visited site whenever buyers are thinking of something to purchase. It is also a favorite destination for online shoppers who want to have a quality bargain of the items they want to buy. On the other hand, Paypal is the most reliable online payment system utilized whenever holding transactions. The firm claims that they have 16 million users worldwide. Despite of such successes for both firms, there are still many criticisms regarding the nature of both businesses.

E-Bay is often criticized as a portal that is not pro-buyers instead, it some people consider it as pro-sellers. Some buyers accuse E-Bay as not being true to their business and does not really live up to their word. On the other hand, Paypal does not really receive a lot of complaints but when it does, no one seems to mind. This is because their customer service department does not do their job well. No one really assists the customers and when they reply, it seems like the customer waited for 20 years before an action was done.

Due to the partnership of these two companies, many speculated that E-Bay would acquire Paypal. Many people were not in agreement to this deal because they believe that once E-Bay had acquired Paypal, the rotten service of the firm would eventually be more than worst. Aside from that, competition would also diminish in the market. Despite the said speculations, both firms deny that a joint venture or acquisition between the two companies would happen. Both firms insist that they would continue each other’s operations separately and not as a joint company. Both firms also expressed that their partnership between each other is solid but not to the point of collaborating with each other.

Gone are the days when only cash (or cattle in some cases) was the only accepted mode of payment for trades. As the concept of trading evolves, so does the means of paying for items.

Today’s electronic world pushes the envelop further. With the advent of online trading systems such as eBay, many new forms of payment have flourished.

First of all, on eBay, the mode of payment depends on the agreement of the buyer and the seller. Most often, the seller will specify his or her desired payment method. In these cases, the seller often has primacy in the decisions regarding payment modes. However, the buyer may still communicate with the seller regarding a viable alternative if it suits both parties.

The following is a list of common eBay payment modes.

Cash On Delivery
Cash is, after all, still cash. This payment method can be done through a third party courier system or by the buyer and seller meeting each other at an agreed place. The advantage of such is that the exchange of item for payment is done in the presence of the buyer and the seller (or the seller’s representative). However, some people will qualm over the risk present when two strangers meet.

Personal Check
One popular method of payment is personal check. Writing checks is easy and safe. However, many sellers do not like accepting check because they are easy to cancel.

PayPal is the payment of choice on eBay. In fact, eBay owns PayPal.

Using PayPal is easy, convenient, and relatively safe. PayPal acts as like an internet ‘wire transfer.’

After signing up for PayPal, one may send cash over to anyone with an email address using the PayPal system. PayPal also has security features that safeguards against fraud in case there is dispute between the seller and the buyer. This system is best for transactions up to $1000.

Escrow.com is the payment of choice for purchases over $500. Escrow.com holds the buyer’s money from the seller until the seller delivers the item. Only then will the funds be released to the seller. This system makes for a very safe, although highly procedural transaction.

Wire Transfer
This is the payment of choice for countries that do not carry the PayPal service. Wire transfers are risky because the buyer usually has to wire over the funds before the seller sends the items. The chance for non-delivery of items is high.

Other Payment Systems
The number of third party payment services is steadily on the rise. Their systems for payment vary. However, to be successful they must be convenient to use and safe as well.

It is a known fact that people tend to buy and sell items on the internet using the eBay online interface. Here you usually interact with eBay directly; but with the eBay software eBay api, you communicate with the eBay database directly using XML format. With this, you can provide a custom interface, specialized operations and functions that were otherwise not affordable by eBay interface.

With the help of eBay api you can submit all your items to be listed in eBay and get the current list of eBay categories. Information about items listed on eBay can be viewed using the eBay auction software, eBay api so that you can get higher bid information for items being sold. With eBay api, it is also possible to display your eBay listings on other sites and leave feedback about any other user at the end of a commerce transaction. It is possible for you to create stable and custom interfaces that meet your business needs with eBay api as it is not dependent on eBay user interface.

Another useful eBay software on the internet is eBay checkout. By listing with eBay checkout, your buyers can pay you immediately on the end of your listing as payment details are specified here. you can also specify if you need a deposit in eBay checkout, while having the provision of being listed with paypal to receive your money faster. Any special instructions to be given to your buyers like shipping discounts can be listed using eBay checkout.

On using eBay checkout, you end up with fewer unpaid items, reduced emails requiring payment options and choices, more sales for your products and faster and more convenient payment. EBay checkout is an eBay software that is very useful in speeding payment for products you sell in eBay. So it can be seen that auctioning and making money through eBay is very much more convenient and easy today with the many eBay auction software available on the internet.