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Shipping cutting into profits?!?! Shipping Comparison Tool

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I have been doing ebay for a while but I have been fine tuning things as i figure out which products sell better than others, areas where I can cut costs, find a more steady supply of products, try and find ways to scale but the one thing that i have yet to figure out if %^&*ing shipping. I seem to play the gambling game with shipping...trying to find that fine line between giving the customer a good, fair price on shipping and charging enough so I don't lose $$. I found the tool below which compares the various shipping options and their prices. Rumor has it that fedex and UPS can be cheaper for larger items... http://shipgooder.com/ The prices just went up for the USPS so i am not sure if the tool has been updated yet. I have not tested it but will be tinkering with it this next week to see if i find mistakes, but it might help in making some shipping decisions. Just a heads up though that I haven't tested to make sure it is 100% accurate. One thing I have started doing to simplify my shipping is to pack the item while I am listing it. This way i can enter the weight, the size etc and get at least a range of what shipping will be. (and then when it sells just tape it up, slap a label on it and out the door. I know there is an option to enter the size and weight etc and then the shipping is automatically calculated and billed to the shipper. (I have no idea if ebay still takes a fee if shipping is done this way....if you know please respond.) I hate doing this though b/c sometimes when i try and do it with other people's items, I go to use the shipping estimator and it doesn't work...so i don't buy it...I don't want that to happen to my listings. It's hard to compete with the big box retailers on ebay b/c they can offer much cheaper shipping... If anyone has any shipping advice, please speak up.

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Ebay takes a 10% of the shipping price whether you use flat or calculated shipping. Make sure if you are going to sell internationally you add about a 10% handling fee to your price, or else that $75 shipping cost will bite you in the ass on smaller sets.

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Ebay takes a 10% of the shipping price whether you use flat or calculated shipping.

That sucks! Why would anyone use the calculated shipping then? They automatically end up paying 10% of the shipping...

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That sucks! Why would anyone use the calculated shipping then? They automatically end up paying 10% of the shipping...

Sorry, I misspoke. Ebay takes 9% (auction) or 11% (fixed price) of the total cost, including shipping.

The advantage (if you can call it that) of calculated shipping is that buyers think they're getting a better deal.

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That's a nice tool to have right there. And as for ebay charging a fee on shipping? Blame the people that abused the system and sold stuff for $1 and charged $100 shipping to circumvent the fees on the site. I hate ebay as much as everybody else, but that move what pushed on them by sellers.

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That's a nice tool to have right there.

And as for ebay charging a fee on shipping? Blame the people that abused the system and sold stuff for $1 and charged $100 shipping to circumvent the fees on the site. I hate ebay as much as everybody else, but that move what pushed on them by sellers.

I didn't even think about that. Must have been before my time...

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I need to get a digital scale to weigh my stuff. I've been guessing for years. I really haven't done too bad. I just try to get a decent average price from other sales on EBay and what those sellers charged for shipping.

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I need to get a digital scale to weigh my stuff. I've been guessing for years. I really haven't done too bad. I just try to get a decent average price from other sales on EBay and what those sellers charged for shipping.

Same here, Using digital scale, Calculated Shipping, not bothering with dimensions and all that crap and it pretty much comes out right on selling sets. However with minifigures I just use Flat-rate because 1 minifig isn't quite one ounce, so it may scare off some international customers seeing an excessive Shipping price.

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You can pick up a decent digital scale for under $20. Makes shipping 1000 times easier. I've had mine for probably ten years and just had to replace the batteries last week. Plus you can print your shipping at home and use the free carrier pickup.

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That's a nice tool to have right there.

And as for ebay charging a fee on shipping? Blame the people that abused the system and sold stuff for $1 and charged $100 shipping to circumvent the fees on the site. I hate ebay as much as everybody else, but that move what pushed on them by sellers.

I've seen hundreds and hundreds of listings that are like that.

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That's a nice tool to have right there.

And as for ebay charging a fee on shipping? Blame the people that abused the system and sold stuff for $1 and charged $100 shipping to circumvent the fees on the site. I hate ebay as much as everybody else, but that move what pushed on them by sellers.

I see it more as like ebay saying "if your gonna steal from the buyers, we want our cut too" My biggest issue with the ebay fees on shipping is that since you need to charge around 10% more for shipping just to break even (after ebay takes their share), or take a loss -and then risk getting a bad feedback for your shipping charges (which ebay forced you to overcharge, just break even).

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I believe shipping costs and fee's is what will separate the men from the boys (or women from the girls) in this LEGO investing world. If you don't take into consideration the hidden costs (paying fee's on what you charge for shipping etc) you will end up losing money big time in the long run. USPS has raised their rates every year for the past few years. I believe FedEx and UPS have done almost the same. I remember some companies (not LEGO sellers) adding on a "fuel surcharge" to the shipping cost of all things. Anyways, always pay attention to the "small hidden fees" that Ebay charges or they will come up and bite you in the end (literally).

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I see it more as like ebay saying "if your gonna steal from the buyers, we want our cut too" My biggest issue with the ebay fees on shipping is that since you need to charge around 10% more for shipping just to break even (after ebay takes their share), or take a loss -and then risk getting a bad feedback for your shipping charges (which ebay forced you to overcharge, just break even).

As Hollywood Hulk Hogan would say: "amen BROTHER"

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Just wondering where u all get boxes that fit Legos good for shipping?

Often, I search work or stores for boxes that look like they have potential. You can probably ask a store for some boxes and they would give them to you....

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Just wondering where u all get boxes that fit Legos good for shipping?

Depending on where you are located, there is a place called Uline that has really great deals on boxes. You usually have to buy at least 25 boxes, but the prices are ridiculously low. And if there is no nearby Uline, I am sure there is something comparable to it in most regions. Just google Uline, or places similar to Uline.

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I believe shipping costs and fee's is what will separate the men from the boys (or women from the girls) in this LEGO investing world. If you don't take into consideration the hidden costs (paying fee's on what you charge for shipping etc) you will end up losing money big time in the long run. USPS has raised their rates every year for the past few years. I believe FedEx and UPS have done almost the same. I remember some companies (not LEGO sellers) adding on a "fuel surcharge" to the shipping cost of all things. Anyways, always pay attention to the "small hidden fees" that Ebay charges or they will come up and bite you in the end (literally).

Yes I agree....that and commissions/taxes. Investors really need to hold onto some sets more than they do to maximize profits. Too many times I read members talk about selling after two or three months because they were excited that the recently retired set jumped in value. Even if a $100 set jumped to $150, taking away cost of set, cost of shipping/boxes and commissions to eBay/PayPal, a seller will be left with minimal return. Another couple of months(or years in some cases) can mean all the difference to actually making money at this sort of investing.

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I offer free shipping and just increase price of item. If it is an auction the free shipping usually intices buyers to bid more.

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