There's Gold in Them Thar' Auction Sites!

by Drew Michael
Copyright 2006 The Business Junction

Click here for free PDF download of this article

So you have been considering venturing into the online auction world. Many people think about doing just that, only to never take the steps needed to actually fulfill their dream. They start to look at the steps that must be taken and often become overwhelmed. Hopefully, we can eliminate that fear.

There is no doubt about it! Auctions are hot and thousands of people are generating enough profit operating a home-based auction business that they don't have the time for a real 9 - 5 job. eBay alone claims that there are almost 750,000 people making a full-time living selling on their site.

It doesn't take a lot of expertise to be an auction seller, but you need to do your homework so you don't end up with a lot of unsold merchandise.

And for the 90+% of our readers that have only heard about eBay, you're in for a big surprise. There are hundreds of online auction sites available to you, many of which are as good as, if not better, than eBay.

eBay might be the King of Online Auctions but they have been facing a lot of stiff competition at the same time they have been alienating a lot of existing sellers. Some speculate that eBay has just gotten too big. Increased fees, complaints (a recent search of eBay complaints on Google returned over 5,000,000 listings), not to mention that when you place an item up for sale it can get lost among the massive number of items at The fact is that buyers will find it harder to find your product unless you are well versed on using keywords and keyphrases so that your offers show up in a users search.

We are not suggesting that you avoid using eBay. But we are suggesting that you not place all your eggs in one basket, so to speak. Offer your items on at least 5-6 auction sites and you are more likely to reap better results. 

What You Need To Begin Selling On Online Auctions

Product To Sell
Ideally you want items that can be purchased in small quantities at a low price that will turn over a good profit. There are a lot of wholesalers that can supply product in bulk. But before you buy have a good idea of what these items sell for at online auctions. You can't use product that forces you to set your pricing higher than your competitors. Here is a short list of some good wholesalers:

123DropShip at 
Andale Suppliers at 
AuctionSection at 
Bargain West at 
Catskill Gifts Wholesale at 
CZF Wholesale at 
Doba at 
DollarDays International at 
Drop Ship Source Directory at 
ezGoo! Business Resources at 
FTH Wholesale at 
Global Sources at 
GoldenMine at 
goWholesale at 
High Margin Products at 
Idropshipper at 
Liquidity Services at 
MBK Wholesale at 
PehnecGems at 
Reseller's Wholesale Outlet at 
Roden Surplus Imports at 
SaleHoo Limited at 
The Wholesale Suppliers Registry at 
Vendio Services at 
Vista Wholesale at 
WholesaleDiscs at 
Wholesalers Catalog at 
Worldwide Brands at 

Auction Templates
You will need a professional looking auction template so customers will find your offers appealing. Most are very easy to add photos and text to so you should not be intimidated trying to use them. Some auction templates can be found free or for a low price. Some good sources for templates are:

Auction Lizard at 
Auction Resources at 
Auctiva at 
Alou Web Design at 
AuctionWraps at 
FreeForm at 
MyEasyWebTools at 

Photos and Descriptions of Products
Quality photos and keyword intensive descriptions are important to attract and keep potential buyers on your auction pages. Poor quality photos are a quick turnoff to buyers so make sure you display photos that present a quality image of your product and company. Descriptions should not be overly excessive as most buyers will not take the time to read manuscripts. But they should be long enough to provide a good impression and description of your product. They should also contain as many quality and relevant keywords as possible. After all, it is through keywords that most buyers will find your auction pages. Don't rush through this process. Do it right and you will reap the rewards. There are a lot of offers on every auction site and most of it is either poorly presented or duplicates of other offers. Take the time to be unique and use the right keywords and people will find your offer before your competitors. Some web sites that can be helpful resources in this area are:

AAANDS Image Hosting at 
Auction Essentials at 
AuctionImage at 
Auction Pix Image Hosting at 
FotoHost at 
FreePictureHosting at 
frogmagix at 
ImageHostPlus at 
myPhotoDrive at 
ProPicHosting at 
Prosperpoint at 
ranchoweb at 
SSI Image Hosting at 
Trak Auctions at 
Vendio Image Hosting at 
Village Photos at 
Virtual Auction Ad Pro at 
YourImageHost at 

Customer Service Policy
Do your homework and research how established sellers work with customers. If you start to get too many complaints you're in real trouble. Potential buyers will know about it in no time and it will not matter how unique or well priced your product is...they simply won't buy. You can find a list with links of eBay's Top 100 Sellers at Check some of their sites to see their customer service policies. You may also want to take a look at how they promote money-back guarantees to their buyers.

Auction Feedback Tools
This is a must-have tool for an auction seller. Feedback is extremely important to your success. Too much negative feedback can put an end to your auction selling business faster than anything else. Use one of the free feedback tools available at:

FeedBackSite at 
Vrane at 

Auction Fraud Protection and Escrow Services
Make sure that you are protected. There are several services available which offer fraud protection and escrow services. These services are designed to protect both the buyer and seller and should be considered a must for high-value items or when either of the parties has doubts as to the legitimacy of the other. Some of the better services can be found at:

Bidfraud at 
Ebayers That Suck at 
Internet Escrow Services at 
National Consumers League at 
National Fraud Information Center at 

Auction Counters
A key tool for selling online is an auction counter. It can quickly tell you how many people have visited your pages and how many bids have been submitted.

Andale Counters at 
inkFrog at 
Shoporium at 

Auction Software
Auction software is also an important ingredient to online success. There are several products available that have a lot of different uses. Some will help you build your complete auction pages with templates, photos and descriptions without having any HTML knowledge (perfect for beginners) while others are designed to monitor your auctions and there are even others designed to snipe various auction sites to keep you informed, and a few that will automatically submit your auction listings to various auction sites. Here is a list of sites that encompasses all categories of auction software.

Aucmento at 
AuctionPro 2000 ezAd Creation Software at 
Auctionspice at 
AuctionStealer at 
Auction Submit at 
AuctionTamer at 
Auctiva at 
Bidnapper at 
Ernie's Enhanced Everyauction Software at 
eSnipe at 
GeoAuctions Premier at 
HammerTap Software at 
iSale at 
MAS at 
PixMatrix at 
PowerSnipe Auction Sniper at 
Shooting Star at 
The Auction Software Review at 
The Poster Toaster at 
ViewTracker at 

Merchant Account
You'll need a merchant account to process orders. While many use PayPal we have found that the complaints relating to PayPal have been drastically increasing over the past few months. For that reason we cannot recommend PayPal. There are well over 100 alternatives to PayPal so you won't find it difficult to find a payment processor. We still recommend that you have at least two options available to process online orders. Some good choices are:

AlertPay at
Auction Checkout at 
Auctionpay at 
Authorize.Net at 
CCNow at 
Paystone at 
StormPay at
Note: A complete list of over 100 payment processors can be found at 

Shipping Providers and Materials
You'll need packing materials and boxes for your shipping needs. Try to avoid recycling old materials unless they are in excellent condition. Remember, how you present your product reflects on you. Use old shipping materials and it does little for your image. It also might not fair well while being shipped. You also have to ship your product unless you are using the services of a dropshipper so use a reputable carrier. For most needs you'll find the United States Postal Service will suffice. Here is a short list of companies that can fulfill your shipping and handling needs.

Bubblefast at 
Fast-Pack at 
FedEx at 
MrBoxOnline at 
United Parcel Service at 
United States Postal Service at 

Online Auction Sites
Get Ready To Sell Online. Once you have prepared your products for presentation it is time to begin posting at online auctions. You won't have a problem finding good auction sites and our recommendation is that you post offers on at least 5-6 sites, more if you have enough product and time. Here is a detailed list of auction sites and we recommend that you still check each out before making a final decision. at 
Auction1 at 
AuctionAddict at 
Auction Fire at 
Auction Lotwatch at 
AuctionGuide at 
AuctionScape at 
Auction-Warehouse at 
Bid4Assets at 
Bid-Alot at 
BidChaser Marketplace at 
Bidclever at 
Bidz at 
blujay at 
Buyit Auctions at 
BuySellTrades at 
CQout at 
eBay at 
eBid at 
Ebidup at 
eHotBid at 
ePier at 
FreeTrades at 
General Auction at 
ItsGottaGo at 
LowBidWin at 
Mighty Bids at 
OnlineAuction at 
Quick Bargin at 
QXL at 
Shoporium at 
SkyAuction at 
StormPay Auctions at 
The Auction Man at 
TotalBids Online Auctions at 
uBid at 
Voovy Auctions at 
WeBidz Auction Site at 
Yahoo! Auctions at 
Your Auction Sale at 

Auction Search Engines and Directories
These are a few of the better auction related search engines and directories.

All Auction Tools at 
AuctionBytes at 
Auction Lynx at 
AuctionZip at 
BidFind at 
BidHopper at 
ReallyFirst at 
The Internet Auction List at 

Auction Forums
Auction forums are a great place to learn and share ideas with other sellers. 'Tips and Tricks' of the trade are the main topics and an occasional visit will certainly do you no harm. Rule of thumb...don't spam! The following is a list of the better auction forums available to auction sellers.

AuctionBytes Forum at 
AuctionHintsForum at 
BHD'S Auction Newsletter at 
e-Powersellers at 
GoodTopics at 
The Auction Board Online Auction Discussion Forum at 

Miscellaneous Resources
You might find the following resources handy from time to time to find more product to sell, more auction sites, online help, etc.

Auction Help at 
DeadZoom at 
Getestore at 
Knubi at 
Online Traders Web Alliance at 
PowerSellersUnite at 
The Auction Board at 

This article was originally published by The Business Junction on April 24, 2006.

About the Author: Drew Michael is a webmaster and marketer. He is the owner of The Business Junction at, a major software and entrepreneur directory. For a free subscription to The Business Junction Newsletter and free software downloads subscribe at: 

Reprint Rights: You may reprint this article so long as this entire resource box is left intact and all links remain live. Please send an email to: newsletter[at] and a copy of your newsletter containing this article would be appreciated.

Article Source: The Business Junction at 

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