eBay International: Is it worth it?

Remay Villaester (May)
16.07.20
4 minute read

By selling your products on eBay international you have the fantastic benefit of opening up your listings to hundreds of thousands of more buyers. By selling internationally, you will grow your market and your base of potential buyers considerably. So, there is undoubtedly significant money to be made by selling to international buyers.

However, there are some restrictions and blockers when it comes to selling internationally, and we will list these blockers and discuss some things to keep in mind so you can decide whether eBay international is worth it. We will also demonstrate how you can save money by using TransferWise when selling your products internationally on eBay.

Pros and Cons of Selling Internationally on eBay

Here are some benefits of using eBay International:

  • The best thing is that the program is free to join and use. You will not incur any enrolment fee or charge for using eBay International.

  • If you’re a UK seller, eBay international is very convenient.

  • You will not have to complete any customs forms or calculate duties or taxes, which is very convenient.

  • eBay's simple-to-use listing, selling, and inventory tools make it straightforward to sell all your products on the website.

  • Because of eBay’s seller protection, if you get any negative feedback because of the loss or damage to any product in international transit, eBay will remove these negative reviews from your account.

  • And if you decide to cover the buyer’s postage expenses to the UK shipping center by offering free domestic postage, eBay International will also reward you with a five-star rating.

Cons

  • Not all products and countries will be eligible.

  • Heavy or bulky goods, extremely fragile products, and precious goods, such as antiques, are often not good contenders for international sales. It is better to sell them domestically.

  • Some international buyers can be put off by the slow delivery times.

What are the things to Consider before Going International?

As an e-commerce seller, you have the responsibility to make sure that you are not shipping restricted or prohibited items. Just because it is legal to sell a specific product in the UK does not necessarily mean it is also legal for your international customers to buy. Most marketplaces, such as eBay, help you in this regard by providing you with updated lists of these items.¹

Prohibited and restricted items can vary considerably between countries, and it is your responsibility as a seller to ensure that the import and export of a product are allowed by local law. Also, note that if customs officials intercept prohibited items or goods, then the sender is also liable for prosecution. Keep in mind that some commonly prohibited and restricted items include ammunition and firearms, fresh-cut flowers, smartwatches, and backyard poultry supplies.²

Products that are sold internationally are also liable for higher shipping costs and additional customs fees on arrival. And note that it is often not possible for most sellers to know about these customs fees beforehand.³

Where can I Sell?

You can use eBay International to sell to customers in the following countries:

CountriesCountriesCountries
AntiguaBarbudaGrenada
AustraliaBoliviaGuatemala
ArubaBrunei DarussalamHonduras
AustriaCanadaHong Kong
BahrainCambodiaPortugal
BahamasCayman IslandsRomania
BarbadosChinaSlovakia
BelgiumChileSlovenia
BangladeshColombiaSpain
BelizeGermanySweden
BermudaGreece
BrazilGibraltar

And the good news is that if you are an eBay seller from the UK with a featured or anchor shop subscription, you’ll also benefit considerably from the same allowances as international sellers based in the following countries, usually at no extra cost:

CountriesCountries
AustriaGermany
AustraliaItaly
Belgium (Dutch)Poland
Belgium (French)Netherlands
Canada (French)Spain
Canada (English)Switzerland
FranceThe United States
Ireland

You can also pick and choose which countries you would like to use eBay International for. This provides you with a powerful and useful tool to tailor your shipping strategy. You do not need to make your products unnecessarily expensive for countries that you can ship to on your own.

How to Save Money on your Sales?

Selling your products online is an excellent way to make some money, and platforms, such as eBay, make this possible. As you are selling your products to people and businesses in different countries, you will need a way to manage your international payments. This includes currency conversion exchange rates and foreign transaction costs. Your choice of payment platform will determine how much you will spend on commissions and fees. And this is where TransferWise is excellent as it can help you save money on international sales.

With TransferWise, you can send money internationally and enjoy secure maximum transfers into over 40 currencies and save as much as 90 percent over most local banks. Isn’t that great!

Here are some benefits of using TransferWise:

  • Fair and reasonable service fees as well as mid-market rates – a main market differentiator

  • Enjoy next-day delivery for a majority of currencies

  • Multi-currency account in EUR, USD, GBP, AUD and NZD - perfect for avoiding fees for receiving international payments from your customers or merchant account like PayPal or Stripe. Using TransferWise’s real exchange rate when , you’ll end up getting more money from your sales.

  • Transaction costs are always transparent. This is unlike many other providers that add a markup to the real currency exchange rate in addition to their standard fees

  • Simple-to-use app

Additional benefits include:

  • Payments to vendors and suppliers in over 40 currencies
  • A unique integration with Xero for multi-currency accounting
  • Multi-currency debit card attached to the account
  • Automated batch payments through open API to save you time and streamline the process

Summary

When it comes to selling globally on eBay, the key to your success is to localize your product listings and then offer outstanding and consistent customer service. While selling internationally can be complicated, eBay International can help address many of the issues that sellers face, such as international shipping, customer reach, customs and duties, and currency conversion, etc.

Start saving today with TransferWise

Sources:

  1. eBay help article - Policies
  2. eBay help article - restricted items
  3. shipping easy article

This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

TransferWise is the smart, new way to send money abroad.

Find out more

Tips, news and updates for your location