Ebay: A Guide for Beginners : How to Get Started on Ebay

Last month I wrote about my Top 8 Ebay Tricks of the Trade which you can find here. I had a few people contact me and tell me that they are interested in using Ebay but they don’t know where to begin and they are a little intimidated by it. Not a problem. If you are an Ebay user then you’ll already know what I’m about to say but if you are not experienced with Ebay and want to learn more then keep on reading…

The Basics to Ebay:


What is Ebay?

Ebay is the largest online auction website in the world. On Ebay, regular people like you and me can sell our things to the highest bidder. It is like having your own tag sale, except you are reaching millions of people which means you’ll sell your things for the most money possible. And if you’re buying stuff you will have access to buy things from millions of “tag sales”.

Why Use Ebay?

When you need to buy items you should use Ebay because you will always pay less then retail price. Simply put, once you use Ebay it will change how you shop forever. No longer will you have to pay those insane prices at the mall. You can go on Ebay and pay half that price!!! Do not be intimadated by Ebay, it is like riding a bicycle, it may take a few attempts to master Ebay, but once you learn how to use it you’ll never forget, and using Ebay will be one of the smartest financial decision you’ve ever made. I have saved literally thousands of dollars by buying things on Ebay instead of at the store.

How can I get started using Ebay?

Getting started on Ebay is easy. You can create a Free account in 2 minutes and start bidding on items right away. You can go to Ebay’s registration page which is located here www.ebay.com.  You will need to fill in your information (name, address, and all that other good  stuff).  Registration is free and simple.  They will ask you for a credit card. Rest assured they are not going to charge you anything (buying things on Ebay is TOTALLY FREE).  The ask for your credit card to ensure you are an adult (you must be 18 or older to use Ebay).

 I Registered, Now What?

After registering you should search Ebay for something you want.  When you find something you want you can see how much the current bid is.  If I want a DVD and the current bid is $1 then I would bid the maximum amount I’d be willing to pay for that DVD, so let’s say I bid $10.  The new bid on that DVD is NOT $10.  What happens is this: the person who was winning the auction put in a bid, let’s say their bid was $2.  The reason that the current bid was $1 was because nobody else came along and made a higher bid.  So now I came along and bid $10, since the other person’s highest bid was $2 Ebay will now award me as the highest bidder at $2.25.  If someone comes along and bids $9 on the DVD, Ebay will still award me the highest bid at $9.25.  It is only when someone comes along and bids higher then my maximum bid of $10 that Ebay will award the highest bid to them.  It may sound confusing but after you try it out you’ll see it is rather easy.

 I Won an Auction, What is the Next Step?

When you win an auction your next step is to pay for the auction. At the top of Ebay’s website is a link that says “My Ebay”. If you click on that link it will bring you to your account. There you will see links along the side of the page and one of them is for “Items Won”. Click that link and it’ll show a listing of the auctions you won. Next to that auction will be a button that says “Pay Now”. When you click this it will direct you on how to pay for the auction (the usual payment methods are online payment, check, or money order).  Once you make payment to the seller you should give them 2 or 3 days to ship your item, and 2 or 3 more days for the item to come.


And this concludes Ebay basics.  If you have any questions feel free to post a comment and I’ll be sure to answer it for you.  Enjoy the Ebay experience!

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