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Why You Should Think Carefully About Timing Your eBay Listing to Ensure You Get the Most Bids

Why You Should Think Carefully About Timing  to Your eBay Listing to Ensure You Get the Most Bids

In partnership with eBay

With the urge to declutter sweeping across the nation during lockdown, many of us have been left wondering what’s the best thing to do with all this ‘stuff.’ Over the past few weeks we’ve looked at how selling your preloved things on eBay can be a lucrative option for turning clutter into cash, and we’ve shared tips on how to photograph your items for best effect, along with common mistakes to avoid. We’ve even looked at how to simplify the process of shipping sold items to buyers without even leaving home. This week, we want to cover another important aspect when it comes to maximising how many bids your items receive – timing.

If you are new to selling on eBay it can be easy to overlook the importance of timing the close of your auction when traffic to the website is at its peak. Whilst ‘watchers’ (potential bidders who are watching your item) can be gathered throughout the course of the listing, the real bidding action usually happens right before the close of the auction. So, even if you’ve put in the effort to create an eye-catching listing with fantastic images and a detailed description and have gathered a lot of watchers, if your listing ends at 3am on a Tuesday morning, you’re unlikely to have many bidders awake and online waiting to snap it up. So think hard about when to end your auction, and avoid early hours of the morning when people are asleep, and Friday and Saturday evenings when people are out or likely to be socialising with family and friends. Similarly, avoid ending your auction on a public holiday.

So, when should you end your auction for maximum exposure?

Broadly speaking Sunday is widely believed to be the best day to end an auction, when people are most likely to be chilling at home, surfing the net. But weekday evenings (after work and dinnertime) are also popular times for potential buyers to be browsing eBay.

Once you’ve figured out what day and time you want your listing to end, you can work out what day to list it on, depending on how long your auction will run.  You can list your auctions for 1, 3, 5, 7 or 10 days. A 1-day auction is designed for items that need to be sold quickly because they’re time-sensitive, such as event tickets. If time is not of the essence, we recommend listing your item for 7 or 10-days so it has time to be seen by as many people as possible. So, if you were to start your 7-day listing on a Sunday evening, it’ll finish the following Sunday evening. However, you might be better off listing it on a Thursday evening for 10 days. This way it would still end during the peak traffic time on a Sunday evening, but it would also have the benefit of gaining exposure over two full weekends.

As a final tip, we also recommend starting your minimum bid low. This makes it more attractive to potential buyers. Remember though to set a reserve price – that way if the auction doesn’t reach the desired price, you won’t have to part with it, and can relist it. Just be sure to have realistic expectations. Selling your preloved things in eBay auctions can not only line your wallet, it can also be lots of fun!




Jolene enjoys writing, sharing and connecting with other like-minded women online – it also gives her the perfect excuse to ignore Mount-Washmore until it threatens to bury her family in an avalanche of Skylander T-shirts and Frozen Pyjama pants. (No one ever knows where the matching top is!) Likes: Reading, cooking, sketching, dancing (preferably with a Sav Blanc in one hand), social media, and sitting down on a toilet seat that one of her children hasn’t dripped, splashed or sprayed on. Dislikes: Writing pretentious crap about herself in online bio’s and refereeing arguments amongst her offspring.

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