Websites That Are Viable Alternatives to Ebay

While eBay may boast the largest online marketplace, it is by no means the only place to buy and sell new and used goods online or otherwise.  Although spectacular in its own right, many eBay buyers are searching for an alternative due to the questionable and rising number of scammers that seem to flood eBay daily.  Additionally, many eBay sellers are also looking desperately for another way to sell so they can avoid the ever-increasing selling fees that eBay seems to grant no ceiling. 

If you’re an eBay buyer looking for an alternative that you may want to check out some of the websites below as almost all of them get far less traffic than eBay, but are not necessarily more expensive as far as the actual price of the item listed by the seller, a few of the sites below do not charge the seller at all or very little and the buyer gets the rewards of this.  At the very least some of the sites are worth checking out.  I’m also providing one or two alternatives that may make some sense although not online. 

Craigslist

Easily in the running with eBay as far as name recognition, craigslist.com focuses mainly on a local buying and selling atmosphere.  You can list as many items as you like for free assuming you follow their very loose guidelines regarding spamming and listing items under multiple categories.  In most areas craigslist.com is still free for sellers however in some high profile locations and with high profile items they do charge a fee to list.  Craigslist can be forgiven for this because maintenance of a website as large and fully networked as this one is, cannot be free.  There’s a great deal of traffic with craigslist.com mainly due to its name recognition and you will find that if your item is priced correctly you will have a great deal of interest outright.  The downside of course is that it is more work for you as a seller and buyer because you have to meet up in order to make the transaction.  Additionally craigslist.com does not offer any sort of protection whatsoever on their end so all sales should be considered final.

Good old-fashioned yard sale

I’m not sure why this one gets overlooked so often, there will be a time, my guess is roughly 20 years from now, when we will all reminisce about how people used to get together on weekends and have sales in the garages and streets and other people would come to the sales to purchase discount goods.  A time without dishonesty or troublesome worries about whether your purchase is protected.  A yard sale is clearly free and if you gather up multiple households at once, it is possible to attract a decent crowd and sell away some of your used merchandise.

Amazon.com

Rumors have been circulating for a few years now that eBay has its sights set on a buyout of Amazon.com.  Personally, I don’t think these rumors are at all rumors, and I think that eBay is undoubtedly trying to purchase Amazon.com.  The reason being that Amazon is number two to eBay’s number one as far as an online marketplace and what better way to root out your biggest competition than  to make them your biggest ally.  But for the time being Amazon.com is independent and is the closest to eBay as far as traffic that you’ll be able to find.  Most of the listings will be listed for free however they charge multiple types of listing fees to sell your item officially.  These fees may actually add up to more than selling on eBay which is disheartening, and in consequence usually when shopping on Amazon you will notice that the prices are even a bit higher than eBay.  Amazon also does not offer PayPal, I’m pretty sure that eBay is refusing to let Amazon use PayPal because that would give them to much of an edge.  As a buyer, you find a decent price on Amazon then go for it, as a seller, you may want to scope out the nitty-gritty of how much Amazon.com is going to take away from your final value because for me it was a bit staggering and I was scared off.

Overstock auctions

An offshoot of the famous overstock.com, overstock auctions seems to almost emulate eBay in every way as far as style and themes.  If you take a look at their site you’ll notice the similarities.  The big difference being that overstock auction fees both as listing fees and final value fees are slightly less than that of eBay, and the downside being of course that eBay gets far more traffic.  If you choose to sell overstock auctions you should be aware of what you’re getting.  Less traffic at less of a cost, it’s a give-and-take.

I offer.com

This is an interesting site with an interesting selling template.  I offer.com focuses a great deal on haggling and bargaining between buyer and seller.  It is essentially an entire website based on the idea of “buy it now or best offer” that is offered on eBay.  The difference being that there are no listing fees of any kind.  You can however choose to upgrade your listings to make them at the top of search results, in bold, or with other perks for a price.  I can attest to the fact that these added perks are not needed to attract traffic however the traffic will not be nearly as much as eBay and will take a bit more time.  But nonetheless, as a seller you will receive offers eventually from I offer.com.

Bidtopia.com

An interesting format in general for buying and selling because they actually separate the two into two distinct accounts, one for buying and one for selling.  You’ll notice very quickly that this website likes to encourage the seller to list all of their items starting at $.99.  If you do not feel comfortable listing items at this low of a price from a website with clearly less traffic, than I would not recommend taking the risk.  Your item could very easily sell for far lower than you were expecting.

Bonanzle.com

This may be the most promising site in the near future as an easy alternative to eBay, when reading their “about us” page, it is clear that they pride themselves on a fast listing service that is also free.  I’m not sure how true that is because I have listed up to 20 items with this site and it was anything but instantaneous.  Keeping that flaw in mind, the site itself is very well organized and does boast a rich and lively community of buyers and sellers.  Bonanzle.com encourages communication and deal making between buyer and seller and a community attitude.  I will say that I have had less success as far as actual deals and sales than I offer or Amazon, but I did meet some nice people and I believe this website will quickly grow because of its innovative format.

Ebid.com

This is another online auction site that offers no listing fees, they will charge you final value fees unless you pay lifetime membership.  If you’re a hard-core seller looking for an eBay alternative then this could be your best bet.  The idea of being able to sell live on a website with decent traffic for free, for life, is intriguing and tempting.  I would recommend testing out the site’s traffic regarding your item specifically before purchasing a lifetime membership.

OnlineAuction.com

This is an interesting website because it has no listing fees nor final value fees whatsoever for the seller.  However you do end up paying a monthly membership fee that ranges from $8-$15.  Traffic on the site is relatively low but rising and I would recommend checking out other websites first.  The concept in general is very intriguing and will likely take off in years to come, but spending a monthly membership for less than 10% of the traffic that may balance out to the same as eBay’s listing fees just doesn’t seem worth it.

Etsy.com

This site is an ideal place to sell old-fashioned or handcrafted goods online, however if you are the technology seller, then this site is definitely not for you.  It has a clear focus based on the above categories.  Eventually I would love to see this site branch out into other areas because the traffic is fairly high considering what a narrow demographic the site is catering to.  I would love to see the full potential of this website in the next few years.

There are far more websites readily available as an eBay alternative than the ones listed, however speaking from experience, these are the alternative websites that seem to shine through.  If you’d like to do some research of your own before posting items for sale on a website then you I would recommend doing a quick Google search to find yourself a website traffic counter.  Alexa.com is without a doubt my favorite traffic counter because it seems to be the most accurate.  This is important for a seller specifically, if you are going to spend time listing items, or worse money to list items, then you better make sure the traffic is worth the effort.  Anyone with a few thousand dollars, some design knowledge, and the will to attempt to make some money can create an attractive website that claims to be an online marketplace, you should always check the traffic a website before giving them any cash.

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