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Selling DVDs on eBay

Updated on October 23, 2013

Have you ever bought a movie, watched it, and wished you hadn’t bought it?

A great way to get your money back (or at least some of it) is to sell movies on eBay. Tons of DVDs are sold on eBay every day! It’s relatively easy to get started selling your own. With a little extra time and effort, you can start making money, and a little extra of that never hurt!

Begin by Getting organized! Decide on which movies you want to sell and how much time you’re willing to spend selling them. If you have quite a large stock of DVDs to sell, open a spreadsheet (on Microsoft Works) and list your movies, having separate columns for titles, ratings, genres, release dates, disc conditions, and profit.

Start your eBay seller career with opening an eBay account (it’s free) and name your profile. Consider a user name that is easy to remember. That way, people will remember your name if you are a reliable seller.

Open a PayPal account. PayPal acts as a middleman for all your business transactions. PayPal does take a small percentage of your money, but it’s totally worth it. PayPal protects your interests and your money. You as the seller (or buyer for that matter) don’t have to worry about credit cards or checks bouncing. People trust PayPal, and if you accept PayPal, then more people will trust you.

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Don’t forget the eBay fees! Whenever you list an item on eBay, a fee is added to your account. It’s usually only a few cents, but a few cents can add up! So count your costs, and make sure you have sellable items that will cover the fees. EBay also takes a Final Value Fee when your item is sold.

Research your DVDs before you list them. Calculate how much you bought the DVD for, what condition it’s in, and what the demand for it is. Some DVDs can get 4 or 5 times more profit from what you paid for it! Just remember that with some movies, you will lose money, and with others, you will make a larger profit.

There is a difference between an auction and a Buy-It-Now listing. Both have time limits, but auction allows multiple members to bid on an item, potentially raising the price your item will sell for. I like to offer both auction and Buy-It-Now. This will attract different kinds of buyers. Some buyers like to bid on items while others prefer to buy an item and be done with it.

Create a title for your listing using important keywords, like the title of the movie, lead actors, etc., so that the DVD is easy to find on the search engine.

Honesty is the best policy. Always be completely honest when describing the item you’re going to sell. If someone receives an item from you in worse condition than you described, they will obviously be unhappy and post negative feedback on your profile for all the world to see! So be honest.

There are 5 condition categories for DVDs: Brand New, Like New, Very Good, Good, and Acceptable. List your DVD as Brand New only if the movie is sealed and shrink wrapped. Say Like New when your DVD has been opened but not used at all. Say Very Good is the DVD has been watched but works and looks great. Only say Acceptable if the movie is in the lowest sellable condition.

Communication is key! Be clear in all your communication. And polite. Answer any questions buyers might have as quickly as possible.

On eBay, a number and usually a star appear after your user name. This indicates your feedback score (the higher the better). Every transaction allows for both buyer and seller to comment in feedback to each other. Positive feedback leads to higher scores. The star at the end of your user name changes color depending on how much positive feedback you’ve received. Always leave positive feedback when you can, and the second party will be more prone to leave positive feedback for you.

Shipping can be costly depending on what you’re shipping and where you’re shipping to. Always be up front and clear on how you plan to ship your item and how much it costs. Most DVDs ship well in #0 bubble-lined mailers. Shipping first-class USPS with a #0 envelope will cost around $2 depending on how much your DVD weighs. Don’t forget to calculate how much each envelope costs as well. Ship as soon as you can. The faster the shipping is, the happier the buyer is.

Unpaid items can be a pain. When a buyer wins the highest bid on an item and doesn’t pay for that item, you as the seller need to take action. Try to contact the buyer first, with an invoice and then, if there is still no response, with a message. If the buyer hasn’t explained himself, then you can open an unpaid item case after a certain time limit. EBay contacts the buyer and if, after another time limit, he still doesn’t pay up, you can close the case. Then you will receive a listing fee credit, and the buyer will receive an Unpaid Item strike. Add the buyer to your blocked buyers list so he won’t disrupt your sales in future.

EBay is filled with opportunities to make a little side money. The possibilities are endless! Happy eBaying to you!

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    • Rose West profile imageAUTHOR

      Rose West 

      6 years ago from Michigan

      sharewhatuknow, thank you for your comments! The final value fees can be harmful, I agree. Most DVDs seem to have a better market as Buy-It-Now options, rather than the auctions. Also, it can be hit and miss with the value of a DVD. Many recently made DVDs aren't worth much at resell, but older (from before the 2000s and 1990s) movies are worth more usually. If you have a small number of DVDs to sell, chances are it's not worth your time to set up on eBay. But if you have a large stock of movies, eBay can be a great place to sell them.

    • Rose West profile imageAUTHOR

      Rose West 

      6 years ago from Michigan

      Hi Steph, thanks for your visit! After the auction ends, you can keep track of those items on the Unsold List under your Sell tab. Whether it is beneficial to set up an Ebay Store really depends on how much you sell every month.

    • sharewhatuknow profile image

      sharewhatuknow 

      6 years ago from Western Washington

      Hi there. Enjoyed your hub, but I must disagree about selling DVDs on Ebay.

      I have many, many DVDs and looked up quite a few that I own, on ebay. To my complete disappointment most DVDs had 0 bids on them, and the ones that did have bids were only selling for a couple of dollars, tops. After you pay those ebay and paypal fees to sell them, purchase envelopes and then have to make a special trip to the post office to ship them, it is just not really worth the effort.

      Don't mean to rain on you, but I seriously thought with all the DVDs I own that I could make a good chuck of change selling them on ebay. If ebay would come off those final value fees, then selling items there would definitely be much more lucrative.

    • profile image

      Steph 

      6 years ago

      I've been selling DVD's on ebay with some success. Is there a place to keep the ones that did not sell listed so they can be found after the auction is over? I guess they would be at the Buy Now price. Is it beneficial to set up an Ebay store of DVD/VHS/CD's?

    • Rose West profile imageAUTHOR

      Rose West 

      6 years ago from Michigan

      Hi Julia, thanks for reading! EBay does charge you for Buy-It-Now listings - currently for DVDs, the basic charge is 5 cents. EBay will send you a monthly invoice, and should automatically take the fees out of your PayPal account. You don't have to weigh the items for domestic shipping. People like Free Shipping, but if you want to charge for shipping, be sure to calculate in shipping cost as well as packing cost. You can take in a sample package to your post office and have them weigh it for you, and if you are sending things of similar weight, you can just charge a flat fee. I used to charge $3 for shipping 1 DVD, but now I incorporate that cost into my purchase price and offer free shipping. I hope this helps!

    • profile image

      Julia 

      6 years ago

      Hi I am new to this but thnx for ur information I have a question when you lis the item like dvd ebay charge you for that right but when are you suppose to pay ebay the listing charge is there any time limit???? And also for domestic postage do I still have to measure the weight of the dvd in the weighing scale with bubble envelop?? or jst guess the postage price by checking into other sellers???plz help....

    • Rose West profile imageAUTHOR

      Rose West 

      8 years ago from Michigan

      Thanks for the nice comment, Jane. I'm glad to share what experience I have with you.

    • Jane Grey profile image

      Ann Leavitt 

      8 years ago from Oregon

      I was wishing someone would explain this; sounds like you have a lot of experience in this area! Very helpful-- thank you.

    • Rose West profile imageAUTHOR

      Rose West 

      9 years ago from Michigan

      nutuba, I'm sure your baseball cards would do very well on eBay! Glad I could help.

    • nutuba profile image

      nutuba 

      9 years ago from North Carolina

      There is a lot of good insight here -- thanks for putting this all together! I don't have DVDs to sell, but I do have a ton of baseball cards, and I think almost all of your advice would apply to that as well. Thanks!!

    • Rose West profile imageAUTHOR

      Rose West 

      9 years ago from Michigan

      Thanks so much for reading, dohn121! I've found eBay really easy to use, even if you only have a few DVDs to sell.

      400 movies would take a long time to get through :) Maybe you could take a month off and watch movies 24/7. And then write a hub about your experience of course!

    • dohn121 profile image

      dohn121 

      9 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      You know, I was just thinking about doing this. Although I don't have a lot of movie I want to sell (maybe 10, max) I do have over 400 DVDs in my collection so far and it continues to multiply like a colony of rabbits! Thanks for the great advice! I'll certainly look more into it.

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