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eBay Trading Assistant Tips

Note: This article is about being an eBay Trading Assistant. Here's an article on finding a trading assistant.

This is the 5th in a series of articles about eBay consignment. In the first article we covered some Tips for Starting an eBay Consignment Business. The second looked at eBay Consignment fees. The third explained Signing Up People For Your eBay Consignment Services. The 4th discussed consignment agreements, contracts, and inventory forms.

On this page you'll learn why you should become a trading assistant, and how to set up your account.

What Is An eBay Trading Assistant

The trading assistant program is eBay's way to help their users become consignment sellers. Trading assistants are not eBay employees or contractors, they are just eBay sellers with good feedback who have spent a few minutes signing up for the program.

I just looked at the trading assistants near me with eBay's look up tool, and found 14 people within a 25 mile radius of me. Oddly, I wasn't listed. I'm sure I signed up when the program was new. Maybe I missed an email from eBay? This surely explains why I haven't had a call in a while.

Why Become A Trading Assistant

There are two reasons why you should sign up as a trading assistant:
  1. It's free and only takes a few minutes.
  2. You might actually get some items to sell on consignment.

If you spend 15 minutes joining the program and get a single nice thing to sell on eBay for a commission, it will have been worth your time.

Signing Up As A Trading Assistant

To sign up go to eBay TA signup and eBay will ask you to login. Then it will compare your selling performance to the requirements before allowing you to continue the sign up process.

There's a requirement to abide by the eBay style guide, but that's just about using eBay's logos on your promotional materials. You can just skip it unless you're having something printed.

Once eBay confirms you meet their requirements for becoming a Trading Assistant, click on continue. On the next page there is a long user agreement. You can read it if you want, but it's just eBay's way of protecting themselves from your actions. I don't plan on doing anything they need to be protected from, so I just scrolled down and checked I agree to get to the next page.

Ted with a BuddyL locomotive. They are both from the same era.

On the next page you will set up your profile. Most of it is self explanatory. You can add a picture so I used a picture I already had. I resized the image so it was 80 by 61 pixels. When I clicked continue on the form eBay rejected the image because it wasn't 80 by 80. I just pasted the smaller image into a 80 by 80 blank image and saved it to get the right size.

The page also has an area to put information if you're bonded and helpfully offers you a bond if you don't have one. Few of eBay's Trading Assistants have these bonds so I doubt it's worth the expense.

I also didn't set up a webpage for people to visit. If I start getting calls I'll go back and add one. The next page is Profile: Services. This is where you explain what you sell. The top of the page has a place to add "eBay to Go" code. In don't use that feature and never will so I skipped it as it's optional.

Side Note: if you are using the eBay to Go program code on a website, you're better off using the eBay affiliate program. If you're going to send people to eBay you might as well get paid for it.

Back to selecting services. . .

The page has drop down menu to select what types of items you sell. As you select categories more drop down menus will appear.

At the bottom of the page give specifics about what you'll sell, and your fees. I get a lot of calls from people with NASCAR limited edition crap so I mentioned I would NOT sell those items to save me time under services.

For fees I wrote, "I charge 35% of the ending price, and pay eBay and Paypal fees out of my commission. This means you get 65% of the auction ending amount." This makes it really clear to the owner how much he'll get.

Under terms and conditions I wrote, "I will list your trains and toys so they bring the highest prices at auction. I know these items and the buyers. I rarely use reserves, and the only listing option I use are listing in two categories. If you have many items I will divide them into appropriate lots so the highest bids are reached."

After filling all that in, I hit save and previewed my listing. Hopefully I'll get some calls. The whole process including making the right image took about 15 minutes which includes writing this.

Trading Assistant Tips

Here's some quick tips for trading assistants:
  1. Have your profile public, and include a phone number. The idea is to get calls from people.
  2. Don't waste your time on garbage. I get lots of calls from people with limited edition items that are worth a fraction of the original selling price. It's not worth my time to convince someone there $300 heirloom is only a $50 item.
  3. Be polite to people who call. Sometimes they'll have other things you can sell for them.
  4. If you go to someone's home to pick up items, grab everything you can get them to give you. If it turns out to be worthless, you can give it back.
  5. Don't rely on eBay for your leads. Get out there and Sign Up People For Your eBay Consignment Services.
  6. If you're serious about doing consignment, Get My eBay Consignment package.


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