A large and passionate network of buyers help to make sports cards some of the most popular collectibles in the world. However, collectors– or former collectors– who wish to get the most out of their cards should adhere to some simple, easy-to-remember tips and suggestions.
It’s important to keep in mind that for certain items, competition may be so heavy that your chances of making anything worthwhile will be small. If all you have is a box full of incomplete sets from the late 1980s and early 90s, you’re better off following this advice. However, if you have some decent material, following the best practices for selling sports cards on eBay can give you a fighting chance of making your listing stand out among the crowd.
These insights are primarily for those without a lot of experience but even if you have sold before, there are some good reminders.
Take High-Quality Pictures
Condition plays a major role in determining a sports card’s value, and a capable camera is needed to take high-quality pictures that demonstrate the nuances of a card’s condition. If excellent pictures of a sports card (or cards) aren’t captured, potential new owners can 1) opt not to bid at all or 2) become dissatisfied when they receive their items; this will lead to all sorts of trouble, potentially including returns and/or negative feedback.
If selling single cards, use photos of the front AND back.
You can use a good quality phone photo or better yet, get a scanner.
List in the Right Category and Utilize Listing Features
For as generally useful as it is, eBay’s quick-categorizing system isn’t optimal for sports cards. This system automatically assigns a category to a product based upon the keywords in its title; the selected category is usually accurate for non-card items, but sports cards’ many variables and keywords often render it insufficient or incorrect. Many sellers don’t notice category errors until long after an auction has concluded. See which category others have listed their items in and make your decision based on that. This info is available at the top of each product listing.
Buyers of sports cards often browse one or two categories for new items; incorrectly categorized items can easily fall beneath their radar, selling for less than market value as a result.
Utilize all of the various options in eBay’s template such as “Era”, “Year”, etc. You never know how people are searching. It only takes an extra few seconds.
Identify Correctly and be Descriptive
If you’re selling a complete set, list it as a “complete set” not just a “set”. If it’s a lot, try using that word or “partial set” (or even “partial set lot”). If you’re selling a single card, be sure to include the year of issue, the player and the card number. You might also include a team name in the title as some team collectors search that way. If selling a graded card, be sure to include the grade (“BGS 9” or “PSA 7”, for example).
Describe your cards as accurately as you can. Don’t fudge on condition. Again, it’s better to be a little conservative and call your cards “EX/MT” rather than “MINT” unless they’ve literally never been handled. If there are any with significant corner wear or creases, point that out. Provide an overall condition based on approximate percentages.
Do you combine shipping multiple purchases into one cost? Be sure to indicate that so the buyer knows he won’t be double charged for shipping.
Prior sales should give you an idea how to set your Buy it Now or auction starting price. Research recent and historic sales by using the “sold” search function.
eBay’s But It Now option is ideal for sports cards with well-known values; those that the sellers are sure will sell for a specific amount. Inversely, cards that aren’t particularly common and/or may be worth a substantial amount should be sold in auction format, which allows buyers to drive the sales price up with their demand.
Additionally, lots should be avoided for especially valuable sports cards. Most collectors are in the marker for one or two unique cards, and they aren’t willing to pay a substantial amount extra for unwanted cards. The ultimate sales price will drop as a result.
Keep in mind that eBay and Paypal will each take their cut so while you want to be competitive with your pricing, don’t forget you won’t actually receive the amount of that last bid.
The last thing that buyers of sports cards want is to see their dream items damaged or lost in shipping; buyers who’re worried about this becoming a reality are far less likely to bid on or purchase a card.
A sports card’s product description should emphasize the dependability of the seller; one or two sentences won’t cut it. Be thorough and professional. Use proper grammar.
Shoppers who feel as though they’re buying from a reliable seller are more likely to bid, and more bids mean a larger profit for the seller.
It’s not hard to sell sports cards on eBay and you might just get addicted to the extra money you’ll bring in. You can start selling here. If you’re new to eBay, registration is quick and easy.