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Dear eBay Queen: Do Best Offers REALLY Work?

Dear eBay Queen:

I’ve been selling for 6 months.  I’ve been seeing that other sellers have “best offer” on their listings.  What do I need to do to have this on my listings, and does it really make a difference?

Teresa J; Lake Elsinore, California

Dear Teresa:

I can not say enough good things about Best Offer. I manage a couple of eBay ID’s.  With my own personal ID, everything I list is fixed price with best offer.  For the other ID’s I manage, I only put best offer on some items.  When you add Best Offer to your eBay listings, you’re giving buyers the opportunity to negotiate with you. Once the buyer makes an offer, you can accept, decline, or make a counteroffer.

Here are some of the interesting pros and cons of best offer.

  • After receiving an offer, you have 48 hours to choose how to respond.  I have found the faster you respond the better.
  • If you set up automatic responses in your listing, eBay can accept or decline a Best Offer for you, based on the price limits you select. eBay buyers won’t know what that limit is, and they are encouraged to make a better offer when it’s low.

I don’t like to use “automatic response”, because I like to respond to my buyer personally.  PLUS you never know when I just might feel like getting rid of that item.

  • Even if the offer is SUPER LOW, always respond/counteroffer.  I’ve had buyers offer me $5.00 on a 150.00 item.  I will counter with $140.00 and put a note: Thank you so much for your offer unfortunately with free shipping and returns this is as low as I can go.  and.. They except!
  • Price your fixed price items a little bit above what you want for them when using Best Offer. That way you won’t mind a lower price.

For instance; let’s say you purchased a vintage fishing lure for 12.00 at a garage sale.  You know that you should get 50.00 out of it considering its condition and age.  I would put my fixed price at $60.00 or Best offer.   You’ve got 12.00 in it+ 3.60 first class shipping total 15.60  If your buyer offers 40.00 your still making ok money but I would counter them at 50.00. If they counter offer you back 45.00, I’d probably take it.

Just pick out a few listings and try it out.  I know that my sell-through is better when I use Best Offer.  Make sure you let me know how it works out for you.

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