When it comes to listing your sports cards up for sale, eBay is the leading platform for turning your cards into cash! However if you're new to sports cards, or have only sold cards in social media groups, then starting the eBay process can be rather daunting! But rest assured, once you fully understand the procedure, listing your cards becomes quite mechanical. To help you begin, we’ve decided to explain the process behind listing sports cards on eBay, and what measures YOU can put in place to optimize their success!
Taking ‘Clean’ Photos
The first step of listing your sports card begins before you even open the eBay app! Making sure that the photos you’re using in your listings are of high quality is CRUCIAL to the success of your sale. Good lighting, crisp resolution, clear backgrounds, and front and back of cards displayed, are all factors to consider when taking photos of your cards! Your listing is a visual advertisement of your card, so sloppy photography isn’t going to entice people to purchase your card off the market.
Once you’ve begun your listing within the ‘Selling’ tab, the first required field that needs filling is giving your listing a title. There is somewhat of a set structure you can follow when giving your sports card a title, and it's really no different than describing its features. Things to include; Sport (AFL, NBA, NFL), Manufacturer (Select. Panini, Topps), Series/Release (Optimum, Supremacy, Footy Stars), Year the card was made, Insert type (DPS. Captains Signature, Headliner), Variation (Copper. Gold, Platinum), Player Name & Serial Number (if required).
*Tip - Adding other features such as if your card is low-numbered or jumper numbered, can help increase interest in your listing.*
Setting Up Your Listing
Once confirming your listing title, you’ve officially begun the process of posting your listing on eBay! From here, add your prepared photos and ensure that the front of card is the cover for the listing (usually photo #1). Much like your title, you need to provide eBay with ‘Item Specifics’, so that your card can be properly categorized and maximize search results! The only fields that NEED filling are Condition (Used), Graded (is your card graded or not?), and Sport. You are then given the option of including any other parameters you deem important to your listing, some may be already filled out depending on your listing title.
The Category section should automatically be filled out, however if you need to manually specify which category your card belongs to, it's under Sporting Goods -> Sports Trading Cards.
The ‘Description’ before alteration should just be your listing title repeated, however the description is the place to alert buyers of anything out of the ordinary. For example, if your card has a rough edge or a whitened corner, adding these details in the description will be beneficial and helps save time dealing with a potential return request. Transparency is always the best policy!
In terms of the options you have when pricing your card, you can either list your card for ‘Auction’ or set a ‘Buy It Now’ price. Here’s a breakdown of both these options:
Auction - This option allows you to list your card to be sold to the highest bidder within a specific time frame. This type of listing is good during the beginning of a new release, where cards don’t have a limited perceived value, OR really in-demand cards. Outside of those two exceptions, auctions can be really HIT or MISS. Unless you're setting your starting bid at the lowest amount you’re willing to take, it’s quite common for auctions to finish below expected ‘Buy It Now’ prices. Unless you’re catering for the above exceptions, or needing money, we’d recommend AVOIDING this type of listing. However, if you do choose the auction route, make sure your auction's scheduled finishing time is during an ‘active’ time of the day (i.e. not 2am in the morning!).
Buy It Now - The more common type of listing, ‘Buy It Now’ allows you to set a desired asking price for your card which then gets placed on the market amongst other cards that fit its description. If you are unsure how to price the card you’re listing, feel free to refer to one of our resources ‘How Much Is My Sports Card Worth?’ to get a better understanding! Other factors that need to be considered when setting an asking price include; current accessibility of the card, previous comparative sales, insert sentiment etc. Once you’ve nailed down a price, a popular strategy amongst collectors is to list the card higher than your theoretical “sell price” and encourage ‘Best Offers’. Taking offers is essentially a bartering process for your listing between the buyer and seller, until a price is mutually agreed upon. However, there's always a chance someone might snap your card up for the increased price!
* Tip - An important point to consider when listing cards, is the eBay tax that is taken away from your sale price! The eBay tax on collectibles is 12.8% so when putting your card up for sale, remember that you’ll only receive 87.2% of the money owed.*
To finish off your listing, the intended method of postage must be selected. You can choose to post domestically, or have the card picked up locally if the buyer lives in your area. Most of the time domestic post is required, so here are the necessary steps to successfully mail your sold card;
Measure dimensions of card in both size and weight, if you’re unsure on these details there’s a toggle which skips this process, but remember bigger parcels cost more to send!
If you’re using carrier packaging, you have the option of sending your package with tracking, registered post, express, sent with signature, etc. You also have the option to send your post through untracked mail, however we’d advise to avoid this method of post when available, as responsibility falls on the seller if the package were to go missing.
When the postage method has been chosen, it is then to the seller's discretion how much they want to charge for postage. Most of the time it’s just the cost price of the envelope, label or stamp, however some buyers try to get a competitive market edge by offering cheaper postage!
Following these steps, you should now be able to list your sports card for sale! One last consideration that should be mentioned is the impact of the ‘Seller Feedback Rating’ when attempting to sell sports cards. If you’re starting a fresh eBay account, your seller (or buyer) rating will start at zero. Which can be a red-flag to certain buyers who prefer dealing with experienced sellers. Therefore, it’s important that when you do make that first sale, the transaction is made as easy as possible. Once you get that first positive feedback review from a buyer, you’re off and away!