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Holiday Selling Guide

Top Ways to Maximize Sales

Start with a great listing

Capturing the attention of eager holiday shoppers begins with a great listing. Follow these tips to make sure your items get noticed!

Maximize your item title

Include keywords that buyers will search for, unique or descriptive attributes, and always check your spelling. Your item title is critical in helping users find your items, so use each character wisely and use descriptive keywords. And don’t forget to keep titles short and concise when listing on a mobile device.

Load up on pictures, they’re free (Motors Vehicles excluded).

Now up to 12 high-quality pictures per listing are FREE—so load up! High quality pictures turn browsers into buyers. Visit the eBay Photo Center and download a free photo guide with tips and tricks for taking great pictures, including how to optimize your pictures for buyers shopping from a mobile device.

Price it right!

Buyers are always looking for the best deal—even before the holidays—so make sure you’ve priced your item competitively. Remember to keep a close eye on recent sales activity and pricing for your item from similar current and completed listings on eBay as the season progresses.

Consider adding Best Offer to your Fixed Price listings. Doing so gives buyers the chance to purchase the item right away, at a reduced price, as long as their offer meets your minimum. Using Best Offer can boost your sales and you'll often get something very close to your stated price. You can also set it up to accept or decline offers automatically.

Offer free shipping, and make sure you ship fast

Buyers appreciate the convenience of shopping online and many have come to expect free shipping. It can be a deal-breaker, so consider offering free shipping to win their business.

By offering free expedited shipping to buyers, you’ll extend your holiday selling season. Plus, it guarantees the Fast N’ Free logo shows up on all listings for U.S. buyers.

Be sure to read all our Shipping Best Practices.

Set a competitive return policy

Offering a simple and generous return policy can help generate increased sales. Be sure to choose a return policy you can support and one that strives to exceed buyer expectations. Consider:

  • Accepting returns for any reason
  • Providing long return windows—30 days during the holidays is recommended
  • Paying for shipping on all returns.

The good news is that only a very small percentage of items are returned on eBay, and most sellers find that the buyer confidence and sales that a generous return policy gives them delivers a significant advantage. Learn more about minimizing returns.

Use item specifics

When looking for gifts, buyers will search on key details such as brand, color, age, gender, size, etc. This information is essential for all categories, especially in hot holiday categories such as Toys & Hobbies and Fashion.

Include unique product identifiers

Search engines look for common search terms like UPC, EAN, and ISBN numbers, so be sure to include these in your listing whenever possible or find a match for it in our catalog. For categories where codes like these aren't available, use eBay item specifics to make your listings easier for holiday shoppers to find.

Provide prompt customer service throughout the season

Always respond to buyer questions within two business days. Download the eBay mobile app and answer buyer questions from wherever you are. And whenever possible, be sure to use eBay member-to-member email, as it protects you by documenting your communications with eBay in the event of a dispute. And starting in October, you’ll be able to include up to five pictures in your My Messages email.

Prep your eBay Store for the holiday rush

As the holiday season approaches, make sure you have the right eBay Store subscription for your holiday sales. Depending on the sales volume you expect and the reporting and marketing tools you need, it may make sense to upgrade your subscription to save on fees and increase your holiday profits. Check our Fee Calculator to see which package best suits your selling activity.

Take advantage of all the great marketing tools that come with an eBay Stores subscription (learn more by visiting ebay.com/stores):

  • Create a holiday-themed header for your eBay store. Set up holiday categories like Gifts for Her, or Gifts Under $25. You can even add holiday-themed promotional boxes highlighting special offers, new items, holiday sales, and more. With the Listing Frame tool, in one click, you can add your store header, search, and category navigation to all of your item pages.
  • Include links to your Store within your listings and use keywords throughout. Search engines look at every area of your store, so optimize your pages with keywords that are likely to attract buyers.
  • Promote your Store and build repeat business with email newsletters using the free Email Marketing tool that comes with your Store subscription.
  • Customize promotional flyers that advertise your Store, highlight interesting products, and promote your sales and special deals—and be sure to include them in every shipment.

Make the most of social media before the holidays

Spread the word about your business, build a community with people who share your passion, and give your customers a way to connect with you—all of which can pay off in customer loyalty and repeat sales. Best of all, you can set up a Facebook page for your business, tweet about your store, and blog to your customers at no cost. Start building your social network on Facebook and Twitter now—and have buyers in place for the holidays!

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