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General Chat => Off Topic => Topic started by: Jim_Campbell on 18 April, 2017, 12:46:25 pm

Title: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Jim_Campbell on 18 April, 2017, 12:46:25 pm
Short version: due to the very generous comp copy policy of some publishers, I've found myself with enough boxes of comics to stock a small shop and I can no longer get to my drawing desk.

I figure I'll keep one copy of everything and eBay the rest, but I'm a bit of an eBay novice. Obviously, the TPBs are easy enough, but would I better off offering mini-series as bundles of the complete run, or as singles?
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Tjm86 on 18 April, 2017, 12:52:16 pm
Personally I'd say go for them in runs rather than singles.  Easier to manage dispatch and less likely to end up with the odd awkward mid run issue.  Leave that problem to potential buyers  ;-)
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: IndigoPrime on 18 April, 2017, 01:02:54 pm
Singles are easier to sell, but a PITA. Series need to be priced low enough for people to bother with. I'd recommend listing everything here first though. I offloaded about half my for sale collection on this forum. The prices were low-ball, to some extent, but then I didn't have to deal with the horror of eBay.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: I, Cosh on 18 April, 2017, 01:15:26 pm
What they said. Break into series or recognisable arcs/runs. Listing single issues is only really worth it if the issue itself is significant. Also, creating 875 individual listings is an absolute ballache, so narrow the stock down first.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Jim_Campbell on 18 April, 2017, 02:09:40 pm
Thank you, gentlemen — much appreciated. I was leaning towards bundles but didn't know if I was making it impossible to sell the things. Given that they're freebies, anything I make over postage is pretty much free money so I can price them fairly attractively.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: JamesC on 18 April, 2017, 02:17:54 pm
Don't forget to offer local pick up as an option.
If people want to buy a few bundles, postage costs can rack up quickly. Local pick up can be a good incentive for local buyers (or even people with friends/relatives near you) to spend more on the comics.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Jim_Campbell on 18 April, 2017, 02:21:13 pm
Local pick up can be a good incentive for local buyers (or even people with friends/relatives near you) to spend more on the comics.

But then people would come to my house and I'd have to put on trousers. If I wanted to have to put on trousers, I wouldn't be a freelancer.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Tjm86 on 18 April, 2017, 02:24:59 pm
W T M I!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: IndigoPrime on 18 April, 2017, 02:46:42 pm
Don't forget to offer local pick up as an option.
If people want to buy a few bundles, postage costs can rack up quickly. Local pick up can be a good incentive for local buyers (or even people with friends/relatives near you) to spend more on the comics.
Although only offering that, rather than mandating it. People never do well when they only do local pick-up. (That's how I got a set of that Marvel partwork for naff-all.)

But, really, Jim: classifieds here first is the best bet.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: maryanddavid on 18 April, 2017, 03:11:05 pm
I'd be interested in seeing a list too!
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Tony Angelino on 18 April, 2017, 07:51:30 pm
I've been selling some of my old (and some more recent) comics on ebay and I think putting a run or limited series up is more likely to sell than single issues for US comics. They may buy the run for one particular issue but if you sell them individually you could be left with a lot of issues that no one wants. 

Speaking of which the Marvel Ultimate Universe comics must be the most unwanted comics ever. I couldn't give them away. Probably down to Bendis taking 25 issues to tell a story other writers might tell in 1.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: IndigoPrime on 18 April, 2017, 07:57:09 pm
I found Ultimate trades hard to shift. Mind you, horses for courses, I suppose. Comes down to luck of the draw – who sees adverts and such-like. After I sold all my trades on here, people were clamouring for some of the stuff I'd sold and that'd been up on my ad for nearly a year!

Speaking of, time to refresh my ad here, too, I think…
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Colin YNWA on 18 April, 2017, 08:57:02 pm
Not much to add to what's been said. I've always sold in bundles unless they are particularly valuable individual issues (not many are these days).

I've not sold for a good couple of years now and often you read that building postage into your price so in the listing its 'Free postage' is a good way to go. It also stops you looking greedy of you under estimate postage (it does happen!). True to say however I've never done this and done okay. I've always been honest with postage and tried to keep it down as best I can, while not skimping on wrapping things well.

The other thing I can offer is there used to be offers for free listing, or not paying unless you sell. Might be worth looking around to see what stuff like that you can still get.

Oh and of course PayPal.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Echidna on 19 April, 2017, 01:04:13 pm
often you read that building postage into your price so in the listing its 'Free postage' is a good way to go. It also stops you looking greedy of you under estimate postage (it does happen!).

I think I'm going to switch to free postage in future, at least for Buy It Now listings where I can set the price and factor in the cost of stamps - I had been offering combined postage to promote multiple purchases, but it only came up once or twice. Plus, like Colin said, free postage means you don't have to worry about accidentally overcharging p&p.

Quote
The other thing I can offer is there used to be offers for free listing, or not paying unless you sell. Might be worth looking around to see what stuff like that you can still get.

eBay let you list a number of items for free each month (I think the number depends on your past performance) so unless you're listing an enormous amount you won't have to pay for anything that doesn't sell. They also do fairly regular offers like 50% off selling fees or £1 max fees - again, the numbers probably depend on your selling performance. Any available offers should appear at the bottom of your Selling page.

Also, as a reluctant trouser-wearer, I envy your trouser-free existence. Keep living the dream.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Tjm86 on 20 April, 2017, 10:31:09 am
I switched to free postage on my eBay activities when it became clear that eBay now take a cut of any p&p fees as well.  Ostensibly to cut down on those who gouge with the postage costs but then they set costs  at such a low rate that it isn't worth the bother.  Also one more reason why I've cut back from using the bar stewards.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: IndigoPrime on 20 April, 2017, 12:10:54 pm
The maximums thing is insane. I sold off a box of Ultimate Spider-Man trades, and even the cheapest courier wasn't close to the maximum price eBay would allow me to set. So, yeah, ramp up your minimum and go for free postage – although do stipulate what said postage will be, or people get really frosty. (Hell, they get really frosty anyway. I've had people on eBay screaming with fury because something they paid for didn't arrive in two days, when the auction itself said usually within five.)
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Echidna on 20 April, 2017, 05:30:24 pm
I've been lucky - the only problem I've had as a seller is one item which got lost in the post. Fortunately I still had the proof of postage so after refunding the buyer I was able to get the full amount back from Royal Mail. Which reminds me: if using Royal Mail, always take it to the post office (comics won't fit in a pillar box anyway) and get proof of postage - if it goes missing they will compensate you up to £20. If the item's worth more than that, use tracked delivery and you're covered up to £50.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Professor Bear on 21 April, 2017, 12:39:40 pm
As others have said, don't offer to combine postage for multiple items without weighing the package/checking the cost of shipping first.  A general rule of thumb with postage is (assuming you're posting in a jiffy envelope and not a box) 2nd class is about 1.50 for 5-6 comics, 3 quid for a "small parcel" of 10+ comics up to 2kg, but so much as a single gram over that weight it becomes "large parcel" (somewhere around 22-28 comics) and the price jumps to around 12-13 quid, so it might be cheaper to post them as two 10-14 comic bundles than bung them together.

Don't combine multiple items to save on postage costs if you're shipping overseas.  Just take my word for it that the chances of this going smoothly and not being a pain in the arse are slim.

Also remember that you can "block" certain buyers from bidding on your items.  Comics eBay is a surprisingly small world and you may want to prevent rematches with problematic buyers.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Mattofthespurs on 22 April, 2017, 07:24:57 am
I've been lucky - the only problem I've had as a seller is one item which got lost in the post. Fortunately I still had the proof of postage so after refunding the buyer I was able to get the full amount back from Royal Mail. Which reminds me: if using Royal Mail, always take it to the post office (comics won't fit in a pillar box anyway) and get proof of postage - if it goes missing they will compensate you up to £20. If the item's worth more than that, use tracked delivery and you're covered up to £50.

I've sold a fair bit of my friend's comic collection for him, usually in bulk, and post them in the long box.
I wrap the long box in clingfilm then two heavy duty rubbish bags very well taped down. Use Parcelforce and always have a voucher for 15% off so it's usually costs around £15, they collect, and there is £100 insurance with that.
Nice and easy and you can tell the buyer the exact date the comics will arrive and the whole thing is trackable. And no lugging them down to the PO.
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Jim_Campbell on 22 April, 2017, 09:22:48 am
I'd be interested in seeing a list too!

Thing is, there isn't going to be a list. It's going to be a case of: open a box at random, flog any TPBs that are in it and set the singles aside. Repeat until I've unearthed enough issues of a particular title to sell in a bundle.

Last question: variant covers. Some of these books seem to have about dozen variant covers on some issues (yes, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, I'm looking at you). Should I leave the vanilla covers together in the bundle and flog the variants separately?

This is complicated! Sorry!
Title: Re: Hive mind help needed: eBaying comics
Post by: Colin YNWA on 22 April, 2017, 04:39:16 pm
Last question: variant covers. Some of these books seem to have about dozen variant covers on some issues (yes, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, I'm looking at you). Should I leave the vanilla covers together in the bundle and flog the variants separately?

This is complicated! Sorry!

Not an expert by any stretch on such matters but if you want to know for sure a quick look on eBay will tell you if the variants are worth a damn. If so yeah sell seperately. If not I'd suggest bundling them in the runs as a sweetener.

If you can't be arsed with that sell them individually at 99p starting price each and see if the market finds them their 'worth'?