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When we first started selling on eBay we were listing a couple of items per week. Even though I knew that people made big money doing it, it was just a way for us to get rid of things around the house. It wasn’t until two of the best items in our eBay store sold on the same day and had an extra $300 hit our bank account that we caught the bug. The question quickly changed from “how many items should I list on eBay per day” to “how can I list as many items as possible on eBay per day!”
However, if you’re still in the beginner’s boat and want some direction for building your new business or side hustle, we have lots of advice to give. How many items you list on eBay daily will depend heavily both on your goals and the types of items you’re selling (houses vs. shoes for example). However, there is a good rule of thumb if you want to grow your eBay hustle:
Aim to list 2-3x the number of items that you want to sell per day. If you want to have $100 worth of sales per day, list whatever number of items adds up to $2-300 dollars. For new sellers, a goal of 30 items per week (5 items a day with one day off) is a good place to start. Once your eBay store has several thousand listings you can typically slow down your listing pace while maintaining your sales.
That’s not to say you have to hit those numbers. Even if you are only able (or desirous) to list a couple of items per week, you can make good money on eBay. However, the way to building a business is fairly clear: more inventory to sell.
More listings means more money…
Long story short, if you want to sell more on eBay, you need to list more. I have seen so many people complaining of “slow sales” when they only have 20 items listed. Here’s the reality, unless you are selling items that are in extremely high demand, you will probably need at least 300 listings before you start having consistent daily sales. Even when we had 1,000 listings live we would have the rare day without sales.
So, once you’ve figured out the basics of sourcing, listing, and shipping, you need to put serious effort into increasing the number of items you list on eBay daily.
Is it necessary to list on eBay every day?
Nearly every eBay guru out there (or all the self-proclaimed eBay Influencers on the ‘gram) love to chant about the importance of listing items on eBay daily. But why? Is it just to stay motivated or does it tickle the fancy of the eBay algorithm?
The truth is, we don’t know exactly what effect daily listing has on eBay’s algorithm and your daily sales. After being in the industry for many years, reading lots of posts, and talking to hundreds of resellers, here’s what we do know:
- New listings get preference in search results. The longer you have an item listed, the less likely it is to sell.
- People who list more, sell more. Nobody actually knows if this is because they get a bump in search results or simply have more things available for purchase.
- eBay prioritizes “active” sellers. Meaning if you are consistently moving product they consider you to be a safer bet to show to sellers. If you have very few items listed and very little sales history, it’s a risk for eBay to send your listings traffic because they don’t know how well you’ll handle it.
When we were new sellers, we found it helpful to list daily. It kept us moving forward and it did seem to have a positive effect on our sales. Once we hit 1,000 active listings we changed to having separate sourcing days and listing days. With a high number of listings active our listing habits didn’t seem to affect sales as much.
So, to sum up, you should be listing daily on eBay when you start out. It will keep you accountable and might give you a bump in search results. Aim for 3-5 listings per day at a minimum but just remember, the more you list the faster you will grow. Once you have built up your store inventory to a comfortable level, the gross value of items you have listed becomes more important than the number of items you’re listing daily.
How many listings do full-time eBay sellers have?
When it comes to the number of listings live, there is a debate in the eBay community on the subject of quantity vs. quality. The amount of money you make obviously varies wildly based on your average profit per item, how fast it sells, and how many of them you can get listed.
To give you a rough idea of numbers, the full-time eBay sellers I know typically have between 400 and 5,000 items listed which most falling in the 800ish range. If you have limited time to list, you have definitely hit $10k/month in sales with only a couple hundred items live.
High Volume Listing
Creating a business plan when you first start selling on eBay will highly influence the number of items you need to list per day. This includes the type of items you sell (and for how much), the quantity you can get them in, etc.
The truth is, the majority of people decided to go down a route which will require them to list an unreasonable number of items per day, barring them from ever making a great full-time income on eBay.
If you focus on selling low profit-margin items (because they’re cheap and easy to acquire) you can easily find yourself on the listing-hamster-wheel where you have to list 50+ items per day if you want to make big money. This is why we see many clothing sellers who focus on mall-brands maintain stores with 2-3,000 listings. At $5 profit per item, it’s easy to see how difficult it can be to grow your business.
The other problem is that high numbers of listings often require hiring help which also eats into your profits. If you want eBay to be a sizable side-hustle or potentially a full-time income you need to find a better way than listing dozens of items per day.
Making big money with fewer listings
If you want to make big money on eBay but don’t like the idea of listing thousands of clothing items, don’t worry. You can do it with far fewer listings. The formula for making with fewer listings is simple: you need to sell high-profit items and sell them fast.
The easiest way to do this is to simply stop listing the items which aren’t bringing you maximum profit. The Pareto Principle tells us that 80% of your profits come from only 20% of your sales. So if you focused only on the high dollar finds you could feasibly work far less while taking only a slight pay cut (we talk more about that here).
Define Your Listing and Income Goals
When it comes to deciding how many items you should list on eBay every day, choosing a goal is crucial. If you just want to make an extra $1,000/month, listing a couple of good items daily (long-term) could be totally adequate. However, if you want to be building something that could turn into a full-time income consider ways that you can list faster and more efficiently.
At the top-end, there are people who claim to list 40-50 items per day (without help). In my experience, this is extremely difficult to maintain, even as a full-time seller. We can definitely list 50 items per day but we can’t also source 50 items, inventory 50 items, and ship orders from the day before.
In our store, we focus on high dollar items (our average sales price is around $50) and maintain $10-15k/month in sales while listing 2-300 items. However, when we recently moved to a new house (and moved our storage unit as well) we listed fewer than 10 items in a month and still had over $8,000 in sales. While this obviously depleted our inventory, highlights the importance of having a large number of items listed. When we started the month we had around 1,700 items listed with a total value of around $70,000.
If your business model is similar to ours: mostly thrifted items (a bit of liquidation), mixed bags of items (some clothing, some hardgoods), mostly full-time (we have another business to run) then I would suggest shooting for at least 10 new listings per day as a starting point. Many people suggest 15-20 but I believe that very few people hit that consistently and you’ll be better off being realistic.
No matter how many items you choose to list on eBay every day, just remember that long term consistency trumps short term intensity. So buckle up for the long term, get listing, and get some sales. Happy sourcing!