Day 345 eBay revisited

I have written several posts about eBay before…

…including posts about packaging up items for shipping…

…I also keep a tally of how many items I have sold on eBay and how much money that has returned to us through these sales on my Give Away – Throw Away – Sell – Use Up page.

Recently I wrote a post about my eBayers Block and how I had a bunch of things that I wanted to sell but just couldn’t force myself to get on with it. Well I am pleased to say the we finally took the plunge and put several things up for auction and had some reasonable success. You will be seeing these items popping up in the item of the day for the next week.

My best success was the sales of my two iRobots. My Roomba vacuum cleaner made just over $100 while the Scooba floor washing robot made over $130 which I was very pleased about. I won’t bore you with the full details as to why I sold these items but I will say that the vacuum cleaner was great and well used (I called it Rupert) but I was never really fond of the floor washing robot so it was a bit of a waste of money.

It takes a bit of effort to get the auctions up and running. I made a list of step involved in this process…

  • Layout the items and photograph them.
  • Upload photos to the computer.
  • Select a category for the item you are selling
  • Decide on a title for the item you are selling (I copied the details off the box in order to be precise).
  • Find the model number of the item for extra detail (if applicable)
  • Type up the item description including condition and things I thought the seller needed to know in order to make an informed purchase. (I copied the details off the box as to what was included).
  • Decide on a starting price and whether I wanted to include a Buy It Now option.
  • Investigate shipping cost. I used two indicators for this…
    • Shipping calculator link
    • Investigating what other private sellers where charging for a similar product.
  • Type all this information into the eBay Start Selling form.

Of course then I can’t leave it alone and check about 6 times a day to see how the auction is progressing. I have to admit I do suffer from a bit of eBay anxiety at times once the auction is up and running which probably causes my procrastination in the first place. There are a couple of reasons this anxiety crops up…

  • Reason:-I am always concerned that someone won’t be satisfied with their purchase and cause me a whole lot of grief.
  • Solution:-I do my best to be as honest and detailed as possible with my item description so that this is unlikely to happen.
  • Reason:- That the item won’t sell and I will have wasted the money on the insertion fee.
  • Solution:-
    • I keep my insertion cost to the bare minimum on items I am not confident about and just hope for the best on the others.
    • I also check to see how this type of item is selling before I decide whether to put it up.

The best mental approach to eBay selling is to just be grateful for the the items that sell well and chalk it up to experience on the items that don’t. I have had a few items that have sold that I didn’t lose on but were hardly worth the effort to list or post but I have had more experiences where I made more money than expected. To see what is possible, read Day 155 A selling milestone about my husband’s exceptional experience cashing in on eBay.

Item 344 of 365 less things

This is Rupert he served me well but I wasn’t prepared to spend $150 to make him suitable for 240v current and besides my smaller home is easy enough to look after without his help. Bye Rupert.

5 Things I am grateful for today

  1. A game of scrabble with the neighbour
  2. Going out for Thai food for dinner
  3. Having a friend to walk with this morning
  4. A cooler day after a sweltering week
  5. Liam vacuumed my car – He needed some pocket money but at least I didn’t have to do it myself.

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow.

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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. Loved my Scooba until it wouldn’t suck the water back up. More so-so on my Roomba. Overall, I love the concept, but the actual design and execution leaves quite a bit to be desired. I have two items up on Ebay right now, and I considering bidding on a $1K item. That would be the most I’ve ever spent on an auction, except on my van. Yes, I bought my van on Ebay, and it was a great purchase.

    • Hi Cindy,
      if this computer deletes what I am trying to write here while I am half way done one more time it will be the next thing to be decluttered out of this house. In fact it my be shattered into small pieces in the driveway. Lets hope it is intelligent enough to understand a thread when it’s typed on the keyboard. Excuse my little rant and I will try for the third time to finish this comment.

      Isn’t it interesting how we have opposite opinions on Roomba v Scooba. I was never happy with how wet Scooba left my floors and it was very sensitive to it’s virtual wall and would turn around to soon. Roomba on the other hand had no virtual wall issues but was great at getting under the beds and other furniture. I would just set him to go, walk away and come back later and he was done and back at his charging station getting ready for his next duty, You can tell I liked it because I named it Rupert and refer to it as he all the time. I gave him a boys personality because I liked the idea of a male doing my housework for me.

      I have never bought much on eBay I usually just use it to sell stuff. I wish my husband would stop looking at Ducati motorcycles at the moment though.

      • lol. and I thought I am the only one gendering household items. My old laptop was def. a HE, he never got a real name. My new Laptop is somehow transgender. I cant really say if its a he or a she, so I decided its a hermaprodite. the external harddrive however is clearly a she and her name is Marge. My vacuum cleaner is called dirt devil (by the company !!) and he is a little screamer, so I sometimes call him dirty devil.

        • Hi Lena,
          I don’t think I have given any other of my household helpers a gender. I did love Rupert though he was such a wonderful help around the house. He worked so well unsupervised although one day he did try to commit suicide down the stairs. Either his edge sensor didn’t work properly or he found me to be an intolerable task master. Luckily I was right there when it happened and grabbed him just in time.

          I do have a friend who names her car Rocket. Rocket is definitely male and I think she and her grand children will be devastated if and when he dies. The poor old thing has been on it’s last legs ever since I have known her for the last four years.

  2. Never had either one although today I wouldn’t mind a robot vacuum because I have vacuuming on my to do list.

    • Hi Willow,
      went they invent a robot to do the ironing I’m there.

      • I know I’m a bit strange but I enjoy ironing, and handwashing the dishes. I use the time to think. But most people are like you, and are waiting for a robot iron – shall we call it “Pressa” or maybe just Jeeves.

        • Hi Jo,
          for some reason over the course of my decluttering we must have decluttered all the clothes that caused me to have a big ironing pile. Now I seem to only need to iron once every three weeks. Actually decluttering my job probably also helped with this also. I am glad you enjoy your chores that is a great way to be. Good for you!

  3. My clutter isn’t that valuable, and eBay intimidates me, so I have had yard sales and straight donations. I used to enjoy yard sales, so it was part entertainment and I made a few bucks. Now I find them more work than fun, so I donate. I look at it as a trade-off: I “pay” for more space in my house with my donations. It’s wonderful to have room!

    • Hi Jo,
      great attitude! I am inclined to agree that eBay can be a bit of hard work. I used to love having garage sales but I declutter so slowly that it would take me 6 months before I would have enough stuff to have the sale and I don’t want in cluttering up my garage for that long. So like you I tend to donate most of it and I consider that the recipient of my stuff is doing me a favour.

  4. Here’s the real reason I love Ebay so much. Not that it happens so very often, but still. Yesterday, I was posting a few unopened board games on Craigslist, hoping to get $5 each for them. I looked up one of the games on Amazon & saw that they only had one left & were asking $45 for it. Say what? Then I checked Ebay. I guess Cranium has stopped making Zooreka & there’s a Christmas run on the game because I sold it Buy It Now on Ebay for $40 plus $11 shipping. This is a game I bought for our extra b-day gift box. Originally it was $20, and I bought it on sale for $10.

    Also, I bought Skip Bo for a stocking stuffer. Look forward to trying it on Christmas morn, Colleen.

    • Hi Cindy,
      that is the reason that I keep going back to ebay even though at times I find it a lot of hard work. When I think about the kick start that Steve made $1200 on that he got for nothing I figure who cares it the odd item passes in or doesn’t sell for much we are already way ahead of the game.
      I hope you enjoy Skip Bo as much as Liam, MIL and I did.


  1. […] to buy and exchange goods. If you haven’t given Ebay or Craigslist a try, use these previous posts to help you on your […]