Fleabay : My friend, my enemy

Posted by Ub3rG33k on Dec 18, 2012 in Brain Dump

I’ve been taking part in the Year of Shame challenge for less than three months now, and already it’s had a massive impact on my gaming. What I’m finding is that Im realistically getting around ten hours worth of gaming time a week. Based on this, the odds on me getting through even a quarter of the games before the next generation consoles come out are pretty slim.

A couple of weeks ago, I saw an announcement via the Nintendo newsletter that if you owned a 3DS XL, they were kindly giving away one of the following games for just registering your console. New Art Academy,Super Mario 3D Land,New Style Boutique,Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask or Freakyforms Deluxe. After spending over 24 hours debating if to get a free new game (as it allowed as part of the challenge), or take this opportunity to replace a currently unopened game with a digital copy…I decided on the latter. I put my factory sealed copy of Super Mario 3D Land on eBay, and it sold for a total of £26.99, and await my digital copy on the 1st Jan 2013.

Based on the fact that even if I was to quit my job and play games for 12 hours a day, seven days a week, at best I would probably get through only half of my pile, so I’ve decided on the following. Every week (starting again after Christmas), I will pick ten games from my shelf and put them on eBay. I’m looking at my games in a totally different light at the moment, and looking at them with the following thought in mind…”Am I really going to get chance to play this before the next generation comes out”, if the answer is no, it gets put on the pile to be sold. I remember spending a fortune in the weeks coming up to the challenge on games that I just couldn’t live without having in my pile, now, some of these games are straight on the ‘to sell’ pile.

As it stands I’ve sold twenty games resulting in a total of £149. That may not sound like a lot, but it’s 20 games missing from my pile, and an average of £7.50 a game, these very same games when scanned with the Game or HMV Replay iPhone app are being offered as a trade in price ranging between 50p and £6. To pick an example, I sold Transformers : War For Cybertron (with french manual and covers…don’t ask) for £15, HMV offered £4 Trade in bucks, or £2 cash. Another example would be Uncharted 2, Trade in £6, Cash price £4, sold on eBay for £9. I could go on and on, but you get the picture.

Now it’s not all been perfect and I’ve learned a few lessons along the way. First of all, every game I’ve sold, eBay have taken a 10% cut, secondly, Paypal then take a 5% cut for using their service (aren’t they the same company?). Postage of the game costs £1.20 (use large letter (at 0.19kg) and not small package (the default) as this is nearly twice the price. Every game has been delivered so far so I suspect this is the one that I should use), and the cost of a bubble lined envelope can range from 10p to 25p dependent on where you buy them from. Although these are all things to be aware of,  I’m still making more then if I’d have traded them in and got store credit, and somehow it doesn’t feel as dirty.

So tips for anybody that may follow suite.

  • Add £1.49 P&P (May not look as appealing, however if it does sell, you won’t be out of pocket. Also, eBay don’t take a cut of the P&P)
  • Have the game run for 10 days. (Let’s be honest, with the price the game is selling for, another couple of days won’t hurt, and it also gets more exposure)
  • Have the item end between 6pm and 8pm on a Sunday (This is statistically the busiest time on eBay, it costs 6p to schedule your listing and can be done a couple of weeks in advance)
  • Start at 99p or less and have no reserve. (With this you are gambling a little, however it does peak bargain hunters interest very early and I’ve had a minimum of 5 watchers of every item, take into consideration that the watchers will get an email reminding them the item is going to end and hopefully start a bidding war in the last 30 minutes of the auction)
  • Don’t use the stock photo (Buyers tend to have more confidence in the condition of the item they are buying if they can see a picture of it, otherwise they are relying on your description)
  • Ensure the description is correct (If you cover has marks from price stickers, or slight marks on the disk but plays fine, tell people, at least they know exactly what they’re buying, and this should ensure you get positive feedback)
  • Nip to your local pound shop and pick up a DVD/CD cleaner (having a spotless disk will hopefully get people to add you their favorites list, and hopefully have them coming back for more)

As I continue to dwindle down my pile, I’ll post up any tips I learn along the way, but the above seems to be working for me. For the first 20 items I was offering free postage, however after finding out about the 10% cut, the 5% cut, the postage price, I came close to making a loss on two items, however as a whole, I’m making a profile which evens things out.

If you are at all intregued on how I’m getting on, or what prices games are going for, my eBay page thingy is http://myworld.ebay.co.uk/d5120, however please note, there will be no items there until 8pm on the 27th December


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