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Lots of eBay lessons in a very short amount of time

Some of you who have been following my exploits over the various social media platforms of late (probably three of you) might have possibly noticed that I have gotten into flipping items on eBay more seriously as of late. If you weren’t aware… well yea. So I’ve been listing a lot of things on eBay. That’s basically it, that and shipping things when and if they ever sell. It’s fun. It makes enough to pay my few bills and it seems like the more time I put into it on a daily basis, the more money it can make.

Time in can be shipping items that have sold, which is a process I’m learning to love and have previously sucked at. Or still somewhat do. More on that later. Time in can also be searching for an item I have to sell for a family member to see if it is selling, what for, and then taking the additional time to list and describe it as best I can and then hope it sells for something that won’t piss off said friend of family member.

It’s fun. But there have been a few lessons in the last week that I’m not too happy to have had the opportunity to enjoy so soon into my new enterprise. First that comes to mind, ship one item from start to finish at a time. Do not print all your labels at once, box everything at once, and then apply labels to boxes after they are closed. I was only shipping two items, two incredible hulk items I found for a steal and was super excited about until one of the item’s recipients contacts me with a polite, “As much as I’d love to keep this cooler item, something got mixed up here.” message and I jumped back into customer service mode from back in my office days.

Shipping labels from each recipient to the other were generated quickly, apologies were written and sent quickly, a resolution was explained quickly, and only the slightest bit of worry about exposing two customers addresses to each-other crossed my mind and I crossed my fingers that they’d appreciate the quick resolution of my complete fuck up and hopefully not be too pissed. I offered them both refunds, luckily they were gracious, citing, “we all make mistakes / are human” and telling me to keep the money. One panicked bit of worry dealt with. Lesson only cost me some dignity and 14 dollars to generate the two new shipping labels. Now I pack items one at a time from start to finish.

Next lesson, might be obvious, but if you are going to sell an item that has been opened it would be wise to check and make sure all the pieces are there. So I have a few model cars I am selling right now, I opened up this previously opened box, saw all the pieces were bagged, saw the instructions were there, saw the plastic sprue things that the pieces had originally been cast onto while in the mold, tossed them figuring they were trash anyways. Closed the box, listed it for 6.99 and was done with it.

Now, it sounds like I checked. I looked, I saw the pieces. But I didn’t grab the instructions and look at every single piece and make sure it was there. And I think I should have. I think this was a mistake more of laziness. I wanted to hope and assume all the pieces were there and not have to deal with it. Just be done with this item and move on to the next one. Instead of taking my time and making sure to not list something incomplete I just rushed through the process and ended up having to refund the buyer of the model car because the BODY OF THE CAR was NOT IN THE BOX.

How the fuck did I miss that? Are you kidding me? So what do I learn from this? Well, I already know I’m lazy, and I don’t see myself changing that quickly. So for the immediate future I’ll only sell items that are sealed or are strictly as is. I don’t like making such stupid mistakes. All I can tell the dude is I’m sorry I sent you an item with a missing part and refund him. In the meantime I look like an idiot because how did I miss that the car body, the most important piece, wasn’t in the box?

Oh well, packaged items from now on. Maybe as I get more into this and develop a more refined work ethic I’ll find myself motivated to nitpick a 150+ piece item that might bring $6.99 in if I’m lucky. Could you imagine if it had been something insanely rare and sold for $1000 or more and I had to refund it because it didn’t have the body in it? I may need to focus better while I’m working, looking at those two things.

That’s all I guess. 🙂

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