Selling online internationally is a great way to expand your base of potential customers and grow your business, and eBay offers several ways to open up your listings and products to buyers outside the UK. We've taken a look at the different ways you can sell on eBay internationally, how to set up international postage rates and the changes you’ll need to make to your listings.
How to sell on eBay internationally
You can sell internationally on eBay by either adding international shipping options to your listings on eBay.co.uk (basic international selling) or creating separate listings for your products on eBay’s international sites (advanced international selling).
How to sell on eBay UK to international buyers
The simplest way of selling internationally on eBay is to add international postage options to your existing listings on eBay.co.uk. eBay refers to this as basic international selling. When you offer international postage your listings will be visible to international shoppers that are looking at eBay.co.uk, on eBay.com for shoppers in countries without a local eBay website, and will appear on international eBay sites. Buyers can filter out products coming from other countries in search results though.
Listings will appear to international buyers in their original language, however, the price will be converted to the local currency. You will pay the normal eBay.co.uk listing fees.
Setting international postage rates
You’ll have to set up your international postage by using a postage rate table. You can find this under ‘Site preferences’ in your My eBay account and then select ‘Use postage rate tables’. This allows you to specify a flat postage rate for each country, a postage rate for each country based on weight, and a surcharge on top of standard international postage for certain countries.
Once you’ve set up your international postage table you select flat rate postage when creating a listing and your postage table rates will be used. Find out more about international postage here.
eBay’s Global Shipping Programme
You can use eBay’s Global Shipping Programme to send items abroad without having to arrange international deliveries yourself. As a seller you just have to ship items to eBay’s UK shipping centre and then eBay will send the item to the buyer’s country. Find out more about eBay’s Global Shipping Programme.
How to sell on eBay’s international sites
Alternatively, you can sell directly on eBay’s 13 international sites by creating a separate listing for each site that you want to sell on. This requires you to translate your product description into the local language. You'll also need to do some research into what products are suitable to sell in which countries, as well as how to tailor your price and descriptions. Categories will vary across different sites and when creating your listing you will need to select ‘Delivery from abroad’ as the delivery option.
The advantage of listing directly on international sites is that your listings will have better visibility to international buyers, they’ll also be able to see your feedback score, which demonstrates that you're an experienced seller.
You can use your own existing eBay UK account to sell on eBay’s international site and the cost will depend on which eBay Shop subscription you have. Featured or Anchor Shop subscribers will get inclusive Good ‘Til Cancelled and 30-day listings in all 13 countries. Find out more about eBay Shop subscriptions here.
Accepting international payments
PayPal is the easiest way to receive international payments on eBay, and some of eBay’s sites will require you to use PayPal. To get started you will need to set up your PayPal account to receive payments in different currencies - go to ‘My Account’ select ‘Profile’ and then ‘Payment Receiving Preferences’.
Tips for selling internationally on eBay
- Set realistic delivery times and consider using tracked services when possible so that you can keep your customers updated on the progress of their order.
- Understand the laws of the countries that you’re selling to - what VAT, tax or customs charges you might have to pay, and which items are prohibited or restricted.
- Different item specifications will be recognised in different countries. List any measurements in both metric and imperial units.
- Make sure your photos and product descriptions are detailed and accurate to minimise returns. If a buyer wants to return their items you will have to refund the cost of the item and the postage.
- With Zenstores you can compare prices and process international orders using the Parcel2Go integration. Find out more about using Zenstores Dispatch here.