Making money online with ebay

Making money online with ebay
November 15, 2016 Lauren Howells
How you could be making money online with ebay

Making money online with ebay is by no means a recent thing. Since it was founded in 1995 as an online auction site called AuctionWeb, people have been making money online.

Here at CashLady short term loans, we thought we would take a look at some of the ways you could make money online.

What was the first item sold on ebay?

According to, the first ever item to be sold on ebay was a broken laser pointer for $14.83. The purchaser of this broken laser pen apparently knew it was broken. He reportedly said he was a collector of broken laser pointers.

How are people making money online with ebay now?

People use online auctions such as ebay to make money in a wide variety of ways. Some people sell on ebay part time and use it as an extra income to their day job. For others, selling on ebay is a full time job.


Making money online with ebay by selling clothes

One way to make money on ebay is to sell clothes. Some sellers choose to sell new clothes and others choose to sell second hand clothes.

Only last year, the Daily Mail reported that 53-year-old Linda Lightman was making $25 million a year by selling clothes. She started out selling her son’s video games and then her own clothes.

A student reportedly made £30,000 selling old clothes on ebay. She then used this to fund things such as holidays and a car.


There are many sellers making a living out of selling used books online through ebay. According to this list of the world’s top ebay sellers, 2 out of the top 3 top ebay sellers are selling books. This shows that there is money to be made by selling books.

Home and garden stuff

Home and garden items seem to always sell well on ebay. Stores such as ‘thinkprice’ and ‘delhanway2009’ appear as some of ebay’s most successful sellers.

Making money online with ebay does not mean you have to sell just one thing

When you are thinking about how you are going to make money online on ebay or other online auctions, why just restrict yourself to just one type of item?

In an article in the Daily Mail a couple of years ago, online seller Cathy Hayes revealed she made money from a wide range of different products on ebay. This was not just pocket money. Cathy said that she was earning £100,000 a year from selling ‘bits and bobs’.

In fact, she ended up being able to quit her day job and live on the profits from her ebay sales.

Some of the most creative ways people are making money online with ebay

Books, clothes and things for the home and garden are always popular sellers on ebay. But making money online with ebay does not necessarily mean that you have to restrict yourself to these more everyday things.

People all over the world are selling weird and wonderful things on ebay to make money. Use your creativity when it comes to thinking about what to sell – you may be surprised by how much money you could make.

Significant Objects

Significant Objects tested out a hypothesis on inexpensive items. They that selling a low-value object with a fictional story about it, the object’s value would increase.

They did not fool buyers into thinking that the object’s story was true – they made it clear that it was a fictional story.

At the end of the experiment, they had sold $128.74 worth of ‘junk’ for $3,612.51. This shows that the more interesting an item is, the more it may sell for on ebay.

Loom band clothing

Items do not necessarily have to have a back story to do well on ebay.

In recent years, loom bands have been big business. In 2014, someone decided to make a dress out of loom bands and then sell it on ebay. It originally sold for £170,100.

The person who ‘won’ this dress then backed out and the dress was eventually sold for £510.01.

However, this is still an expensive dress. When it comes to making money on online auctions, it is a good idea to do your research about what is popular and selling well.

Then use your creativity to see how you could put a spin on it.

Weird ways people are making money online with ebay

If a dress made of loom bands selling for £170,100 was not enough, there are even stranger ways people are making money online with ebay.

Strange food for sale on ebay

The Daily Mail recently ran an article revealing the weirdest foods that people were selling on ebay.

Some of the stars include:

  • A bag of bacon-flavoured popping candy
  • BBQ bamboo worms
  • 50lbs of Oreo filling

Also someone is selling large Gummy Bears, containing 51 servings of these much-loved sweets.

Life for sale

People do not just make money out of selling goods on ebay. Back in 2008, Ian Usher listed his entire life for sale on ebay.

This included his car, house and job. Originally from the UK, Mr Usher sold his Australian family home and everything in it, including his motorcycle and jet ski. He decided to do this after his wife left him.

His ‘life sale’ also included an introduction to his friends and allowed the buyer to have a trial run at his job at a local rug shop.

In the end, he used the £216,000 he made from his ebay sale to buy a tropical island near Panama.

Used toilet rolls

Making money online with ebay can be as easy as selling used toilet rolls!

If selling your life seems a bit extreme, there are many other ways to make money on ebay.

One of the more strange ones is selling used toilet rolls – just the cardboard bit, of course.

People use these empty tubes for arts and crafts projects. Why not sell something you were going to put in the bin anyway?

A quick scroll through ebay reveals that you can expect to earn around £10 for 60 empty toilet rolls.

Egg cartons are another item that you might think you should just throw away. However, some people sell these on online with ebay and earn some extra money. People usually buy them for arts and crafts projects.

Empty perfume bottles

People sell empty perfume bottles on ebay to make money. It may seem crazy but people actually do buy them. They use them for everything from crafts projects to wedding decorations.

Air for sale

Back in 2015, a bag of air from a Kanye West concert was pulled from ebay after reaching $60,000.

Some Canadian entrepreneurs were also reportedly selling cans of fresh air. They said that China was one of their main target markets.

Amazon – another alternative to making money online with ebay

Many people think of ebay when it comes to selling things on online auctions. However, ebay does not have to be the only option.

Amazon Marketplace is another option to sell your goods. However, unlike ebay, you sell your items for a fixed price. Amazon is not an auction site.


Making money online with ebay can be a full time career or a part time hobby.

For some people, selling on ebay has allowed them to make enough money to quit their day job. Ebay has enabled some people to make enough money to make a great life for themselves and their family.

Ebay has even given some people such as Ian Usher the ability to sell their lives and start again.

Some people have used ebay as an opportunity to start up businesses selling things such as clothes or household goods.

Ebay has showed us that if you are creative, you can make money from almost anything. From strange food stuffs to used toilet rolls, it seems that many strange items can make you money.

By being creative, you could stand even more of a chance of your items being successful. Significant Objects showed that an item with a fictional story could be worth more than the item on its own.

This could mean that items that have a history may do better than those that do not.

Whether you want to sell clothes or used toilet rolls, household goods or empty perfume bottles, ebay can be a good place to start making money.

Research what is selling well at the moment. Look at other successful sellers for tips. Use your creativity to think about what to sell.

You could be making money on ebay, too.