eBay Alternatives – Alternative Marketplaces To Grow Your Business

I’m not a fan of having all of my eggs in one basket.  With marketplaces cracking down on sellers, making big changes to their search functions that affect our sales, and having the power to wipe out a business with the click of a button, I set out to get my items on as many marketplaces as possible.   It does take a little extra work, but I’ve increased my total revenue by almost 50% when I started utilizing the other platforms.  Here’s a quick rundown on my opinion of them.

Bonanza.com – Sales aren’t like eBay, but they do a good job of advertising on several platforms. It automatically syncs your eBay inventory but not very well.  I feel like I have to cancel 1 out of 10 orders.  Bonanza makes up about 10% of my sales.

Amazon.com – Amazon makes up about 20% of my sales but you have to be nearly perfect or they will suspend your account.  Customers don’t pay attention to the item descriptions if you are selling used items.  You can’t list things as new unless you can guarantee the manufacturer will honor the warranty and the box looks like it rolled off of the assembly line.  I use software called KickSync to sync my inventory from eBay.  Here’s the link to a review I did on it.

Amazon FBA – I do have about 60 items that I sell on Amazon and ship my product directly to them to fulfill.  This works well for a few reasons; 1. Less inventory I have to stock in my warehouse. 2. Amazon Prime members benefit from free 2 day shipping.  I use Amazon FBA for new items I have several of and I can sell fast through them.  The items I send to FBA are usually stuff that I source from online arbitrage that I can just put an Amazon sticker on it and ship it out to them.

Wal-Mart – I’m newer Wal-Mart seller and have been less than impressed.  They like to remove your listings randomly, the reporting isn’t great, they are quick to offer refunds to the customer, and if I want to sync my eBay inventory, I need to use expensive software.  I do make sales (around 5%), but the rewards haven’t started outweighing the rewards. I will power through it until after 4th quarter and see how things go.  I will let you know how it goes.

Groupon – This is my new favorite.  I’ve been selling on Groupon right at a month and sales have made up about 10% of my business this month.  The fees are a little higher than the other platforms but overall it’s not enough difference to not use it.  The only drawback is that it takes a few days for your listing to be approved.  Like Wal-Mart, you can only really sell new items.

Tophatter – This is a fun platform that puts your items up for auction in real time.  There are some drawbacks, like anything else.  For one, the pricing is a little high.  You have to pay to list your item, then pay the selling fees once it sells.  You also can have a hard time getting your item into the auction and can only do 1 at a time.  You can set up your own auction if you have at least 50 items you want to sell at once.  Just be careful with all the fees to do that.

Sears – If you are trying to sign up to sell on Sears.com, you can only register as using Sears Fulfillment.  This is another newer option for me and has been slow to say the least.

Poshmark – Unfortunately, I don’t sell clothing so I can’t give any insight.  I’ve heard from a few clients that they’ve had decent success with higher end brands.  I would love to hear any feedback you have.

Etsy – I’m set up to sell on Etsy but I’ve never added any products.   I’m not an arts and crafts person so this was never the marketplace for me.  They are starting to grow into more new items but it’s still not a marketplace that my items would do well on.  They do probably have the cheapest fees of all though.

Your own site – I have 2 niche sites that I have inventory listed on.  I can say that there are definitely some positives and negatives on this one.  I would say the biggest benefit is that you completely control everything about your site and products.  You have no higher power to tell you how, what, when, and where to list.  cost wise isn’t that bad comparatively.  You can do an easy setup using Shopify, or you can build your own site with WordPress and WooCommerce.  Your options are endless.  The biggest thing you will have to figure out, is how to get people to go to your website to buy stuff.

I know there are a hundred different sites that you can set up shop on.  You need to figure out which one would be best suited for the types of products you sell.  If you have success on a marketplace not listed here, I would love to hear about it.

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