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Home & Garden Selling Guide

Tags:  selling | home | garden | appliances | toolsWrite a guide!

Time to redecorate? Changing the kitchen from stainless steel to retro? Got four blenders at your bridal shower? Whether you’re getting ready to redo your whole house or are just trying to clear out some of your unused items, eBay makes selling your Home & Garden décor and appliances fun. With millions of eBay shoppers looking for decorative pillows, scented candles, coffee makers, espresso machines, pet supplies, power tools, and furniture, it’s easy to turn your stuff into cash on eBay.

Cash In on Home & Garden

Cash In on Home & Garden

Many Home & Garden decorators and weekend warriors use eBay not only as a place to find new furnishings, tools, and appliances, but as a way to help fund their next home purchases. Whether you are saving up for that new recliner for the living room or have been wishing for power tools for your next big project, selling on eBay is the perfect way to earn extra money. Swap out your unused pieces—those drill heads at the bottom of your toolbox or your spare bedding taking up closet space—and earn money towards your next home purchases.

What's It Worth?

Already have an item in mind? Visit Home & Garden Seller Central to find out the average selling price of similar pieces on eBay. You can also search completed listings to see how others are selling similar items.

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Find Out What's Hot in Home & Garden

Find Out What's Hot in Home & Garden

Millions of people come to eBay in search of Home & Garden products—everything from the latest IKEA furniture, lamps and lighting, to swimming pool, spa, and hot tub supplies, area rugs, and even major appliances. The following provides just a small sampling of the myriad of Home & Garden that you could sell on eBay. To get a real-time view of what’s in demand, what buyers are searching for, and what items are selling the most, visit Home & Garden Seller Central.

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Get Top Dollar for Your Home & Garden

Get Top Dollar for Your Home & Garden

Once you know what you’re going to sell, it’s time to think about how to attract Home & Garden buyers. Here are the top tips from eBay’s most successful sellers.

Help Buyers Find Your Items with Keywords

Keywords are a great way to attract buyers to your listing, especially when used correctly in your Listing Title. Use your 55 characters wisely, and try to anticipate what buyers will be searching for. Find out what is being searched right now with our list of Top Home & Garden Searches. Be sure to include common search terms like “patio furniture” and “Pottery Barn,” when appropriate. State important characteristics of your item—what it is, brand, make and model, size, material, and color. Of course, you should only include keywords that are relevant to the item you are selling. You can also search current and completed eBay listings to see what other sellers include in their titles.

In your Listing Description, make sure to include both basic information and details about your item. A good description is concise, well organized, and easy to read. Create bold section headlines, bulleted lists, and be sure to restate the information featured in your title plus more details such as dimensions, condition, estimated value, and any other interesting features. Also note if your item has been in a smoke free or pet free home—it helps assure buyers that fabrics are smoke-odor free and will not trigger any pet allergies. You can also insert photos or links to videos that highlight the unique attributes of your item. Think about your listing from the buyer's perspective. The more information you provide, the more likely the buyer will be to place a bid on your item.

Here are some terms commonly used by other sellers to describe their Home & Garden appliances. Make sure you only use a term when you are sure it applies to your item. 

  • New In Box (NIB): An appliance that is new in box if it remains in the original packaging from the time of purchase and has not been opened.

  • Gently Used (GU): A product is gently used if it shows slight signs of wear such as scratches. Wear should be superficial, and should have no effect on the product’s capabilities.

Other common abbreviations used in the Home & Garden for fabric items such as pillows, drapes, slipcovers, and bedding include:

  • New With Tags (NWT) or New Without Tags (NWOT) or Never Been Worn (NBW): Products that have never been washed or worn can fall under NBW. If your items still have retail tags attached, you can list them as NWT. If tags have been removed, but your item has never been used, it is NWOT. Any items listed under either of these three should have no flaws.*

  • Excellent: Excellent condition products have been previously used and have only very slight wash wear. It should still have no flaws.

  • Very Good: Articles that have been previously used with moderate wash wear/fade, but no visible flaws are considered in very good condition.

  • Good: Previously used items with minor visible flaw(s) and/or significant wash wear/fade can be considered in good condition.

  • Fair: Previously used products with significant visible flaw(s) and/or heavy wash wear/fade are in fair condition.

  • Poor: Items that are no longer usable and has severe flaws/damage is in poor condition, but may have desirable and useable element(s).

Do Your Research

If you don’t know much about your item, a little research can help you understand what you are selling which can lead to a higher return. Examine your Home & Garden products for any brands and model numbers. For fabrics, look on tags to find out materials, thread count, and care instructions. Find out what features your item has by looking through instruction manuals or online. All of these details will give you a better estimate of your item’s value, and educating your buyers can increase the attraction of your item.

Showcase Your Home & Garden with Great Photos

As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words! Photos are the closest you can get to putting your Home & Garden products in the hands of potential buyers. Here are some tips on how to best represent your item:

  • Choose the Right Background: Use a contrasting, solid backdrop. By placing your Home & Garden products on a solid black or white backdrop, you draw a buyer’s immediate attention onto the item. This is easily achieved by hanging a bed sheet or placing poster board behind the item. Most importantly, avoid background clutter that can distract buyers or confuse them regarding what you are selling. If you are selling more than one item in your listing, take pictures of the set as a whole and of individual pieces.

  • Cover All Angles: Take pictures from multiple angles and distances, zooming in on important details. Make sure highlight any bands, model numbers, and details. Zoom in to show textures, patterns, and colors. Always include photographs of any flaws—it gives the buyer a clearer idea of what they are bidding on and builds buyer trust.

  • Use Proper Lighting: Natural light tends to give the best representation of your item, however direct sunlight can have the nasty effect of shadows. Find an area that receives indirect sunlight. Try taking your item outside on a sunny day and photograph it in a shady area. If you can't seem to find an area like this, or would prefer to use indoor lighting, try surrounding your item with desk, overhead, or floor lamps. Above all, avoid using your camera's flash which causes distortion and shadows.

  • Add Gallery: Including a Gallery photo with your listing is extremely important for success. You can attract attention to your item with a photo next to your listings in search results. In addition, when a buyer uses “Picture Gallery” to look at search results, your listing will be shown. Your Gallery picture should be a very clear, uncluttered view of your item. Since it is the only photo visible on search pages, make sure it provides a good representation of your item.

Maximize Profits with Low Priced, No Reserve Listings

Auction style listings are a great way to create excitement around your Home & Garden products, which in turn can develop into a bidding frenzy among buyers—which could result in a higher selling price for you. The keys to a successful auction style listing are to get your first bid and encourage bidders to continue bidding.

  • Low Starting Price: Getting that first bid is critical, as other buyers are generally more likely to jump in if they see there are already bids on an item. To do this, many sellers prefer to set an opening bid below what the item is actually worth. Try beginning with a low starting price—such as 99 cents—to jumpstart bidding activity.

  • No Reserve: Be careful when setting a reserve price. Buyers may lose interest in an item if they place a bid and find it doesn't meet the reserve. Because they do not know the reserve price, they may assume the seller is simply asking too much for the item. To prevent this from happening, try listing your item with "No Reserve." Items sold with "No Reserve" typically attract more buyer interest, as buyers know that they will actually win the item if they are the high bidder.

  • Accept PayPal: Buyers want to know that they can pay securely when making a purchase on eBay. By accepting PayPal payments, you can build buyer confidence and helpprotect yourself. PayPal transfers payments to a bank account of your choice and notifies you when a payment has been received. Best of all, PayPal offers free online tools to make managing your payments easier. You can even print shipping labels and track your shipments.

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Ship Your Home & Garden Products

Ship Your Home & Garden Products

Specifying reasonable shipping and handling costs in your listing is essential for smart selling—and it improves your search ranking when buyers sort by total cost. Never leave a buyer wondering how much shipping will cost.

Calculate Shipping Costs

Often times, shipping costs will vary by distance. To make sure your shipping charges reflect this, incorporate a shipping calculator into your listing. With the shipping calculator, eBay can automatically calculate the shipping cost for your buyers based on the size and weight of your item and the buyer’s location. You can also program the calculator to add in the cost of packaging materials and your handling fee.

Select a Service Option

To protect both you and your buyer against loss or damage during shipping, consider purchasing shipping insurance for your package—especially for higher priced items. Shipping insurance is available through most postal carriers, and can be purchased while you pay for postage. You can factor in the cost of shipping insurance into your shipping cost—but make sure you state in your description that you are doing so. Buyers want to know that they are paying extra for shipping for a good reason. Shipping insurance generally covers both lost and damaged items.

If you are selling larger items such as furniture and large appliances, freight shipping might be the easiest and cheapest way to get your item to your buyer. Freight shipping is usually reserved for items over 150 pounds, and is available in the United States and Canada. Find out more at the Freight Resource Center.

Package Your Home & Garden Products Securely

After your item sells, you are ready to ship it off to its new home. Make sure you package your item safely and securely. Use bubble wrap, foam, or other packaging materials to make sure your item is not damaged during its move. If you take an item apart to ship it, include a list of pieces and instructions on how to put it back together. Here are a few steps to think about:

  • Wrap It: Individually wrap items and provide lots of cushioning (bubble wrap, peanuts, foam, corrugated dividers, or crumpled paper). Be careful if you choose to reuse newspaper—the ink can rub off and damage your items. If you use foam peanuts, be aware that they may shift in transit, so overfill your box. Bundle any wires, fasten them with a twisty-tie, and place them into Ziploc bags. Remove any glass and package it separately wrapped in glass-skin or plastic to avoid scratches. If you have a hollow piece, stuff the inside tightly with packaging material. If any pieces could be damaged by water, make sure you wrap them with a layer of sealed plastic. Remember, wrap and pack firmly—you don’t want to hear any rattling!

  • Box It: If the item is on the smaller side, you can order free USPS Priority Mail boxes right on eBay—the United States Postal Service will even deliver them right to your door for free! For larger items, use a corrugated box with rigid sides, intact flaps, and plenty of room for cushioning on all sides. Don't exceed the maximum gross weight of the box (usually printed on bottom flap).

  • Seal It: Use strong tape designed for shipping, rather than masking tape, cellophane tape, string or paper over-wrap. Once you’ve sealed up your package, you can pay for shipping and print shipping labels right from your PayPal account. You can even request a pickup from USPS or UPS, saving you a trip to the Post Office or UPS location.

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Build Your Reputation

Build Your Reputation

Communication is the key to a successful transaction. Make sure you’re available before, during, and after the sale. Answer any questions about your item promptly. Include a thank you note in your package—it’s a great way to surprise and delight your buyer and encourage them to leave you positive feedback.

Always Leave Feedback

Feedback is extremely important for all eBay users. Consistent positive feedback lets buyers know that you manage transactions well and that you care about your reputation. One way to help ensure good feedback is to communicate well, represent your item truthfully in your listing, and be polite. Also remember your buyer’s feedback score is as important to them as yours is to you—so be courteous, thoughtful, and truthful when leaving feedback.

Express Yourself

Be more than just a username to your buyers. Introduce yourself through your About Me page and MyWorld. Add pictures, keep track of your favorite buyers, and tell the community about your interests and collections. Show your expertise by writing Reviews & Guides. Connect with other Home & Garden enthusiasts on the Home & Garden Discussion Board. Remember, be yourself—and have fun!

Sell for a Cause

Support your favorite cause and enhance buyer trust and loyalty at the same time. eBay Giving Works listings tend to sell at higher final prices, because buyers are more willing to purchase, and often pay more for, items that benefit a nonprofit. Get more exposure and receive a receipt for your tax-deductible donations!

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