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Meet the seller making $20,000 per month!

Hi everyone, 

We have an exciting eBay success story for you this month! Introducing Ben Doyle, who is making an impressive $20,000 per month from running his business on eBay. Keep reading to learn the secret to his success (and copy it for yourself). 

What do you sell?

I sell in 2 niches currently, until the 10th of September it was 3.These days the bulk of my income comes from branded and unbranded fashion.I also sell second hand products and the types of products I sell range from vintage designer clothing to furniture.

I did sell information products on eBay until eBay.co.uk decided to take this category off the site on the 10th September 2012. This has resulted in a loss of around $23,000 a year, so luckily I had other niches to fall back on.

Where do you sell?

I sell the bulk of my inventory on eBay and my own websites. To be honest I haven’t really been interested in using any other 3rd party platforms until recently.

But the recent category changes and the talk of choosing to pay more in the way of final value fees to get higher search rankings has made me think that I should consider other options.

So I have started to sell some of my core products on Amazon.co.uk

I will always sell on eBay because they will always get a high volume of traffic and there are ways that you can leverage that traffic that you can’t with Amazon.

 How much do you earn from selling online?

 All my businesses combined turn over around $20,000 per month on average and is run by myself and my girlfriend.

As I mentioned above, my information product business turned over just less than $2,000 a month on average.

My second hand business doesn’t make much money these days because sourcing the products can be very time consuming so it only really generates a few hundred dollars a month. But the beauty of sourcing and selling second hand products is that the profits margins can be incredibly high. Turning $20 into $100+ is not uncommon.

What was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome in selling online?

I’ve had a few, but I think the biggest obstacle for me was actually starting.

There’s an incredible amount of ways to make money online and I got suckered into more ‘Get Rich Quick’ scams than I care to admit and after these failures I was always left wondering what I was going to do.

Then when I decided that I was going to use eBay, the next problem I faced was what the hell was I going to sell?

I couldn’t get my head around market research and how to conduct it and I found myself just selling odd items that I picked up at auction and at car boot sales.

I remember the stupidest mistake I ever made – I bought a massive TV bracket at the auctions for $16. It was easily worth $200.

I listed it as an auction on eBay at 99p with free postage. Only one person bid on it and they paid just 99p for the item. I had to foot the $26 postage charge so I ended up losing $41.

Naturally I blamed everyone else and just gave up. I didn’t believe that someone like me could be successful. In actual fact, I just didn’t know how to list an item.

It took a few months before I tried again. But I’m glad I did!

What’s your favourite thing about making money from selling items online?

There are too many to list!

My absolute favorite thing about selling online is that I can make money just by sending an email and I can automate a lot of the process.

Another thing is that as soon as you put your business online you immediately have an international audience and the internet is open 24 hours a day. It definitely beats opening a brick and mortar shop in a small town for just 8 hours a day and hoping someone will walk past and take an interest!

And I love the fact that I don’t have to wear a suit for work. I have recently sunburnt myself while working in the garden in just a pair of shorts!

What has been the biggest contributing factor to your online success?

Without a doubt, if there is one thing that has made all the difference it has to be the fact that I use eBay to collect the names and email addresses of as many people as I can.

Either people that buy from me or people that just visit my eBay store.

I can then send email promotions to these people whenever I want which always results in extra sales – sometimes thousands of dollars in just a few hours!

This is something that virtually no one does. People think that this is against eBay policies but when you do it in the right way it is completely within the rules.

Email marketing is incredibly powerful because once you have someone on your email list you can send them to any website you want.

You can send them to your own website, back to your eBay store or to related affiliate offers.

Like most people, I was guilty of just trying to make that one sale with no thought as to a ‘back end sales funnel’ to increase the amount of sales I made.

But if you want to grow your business you absolutely have to build a database of customers and subscribers - once I started doing this, my business changed forever and grew at a rate that I could never have imagined.

People always ask me how I was able to grow my business so rapidly and how they can build a customer list without falling foul of eBay’s policy’s so I wrote an eBook, ‘Auction List Building’ that shows you step-by-step, click-by-click EXACTLY how to do it for yourself.

Want to earn big like Ben does? If you are passionate about creating your own business, I highly recommend that you give Ben's Auction List Building a go. It's fast and easy to get instant access to this invaluable eBook which is a gold mine of information. Best of all, the comprehensive eBook is just US$27! That's a tiny investment for such huge potential gains. Plus, when you order using our special link, you will also get bonus eBooks worth $45 to boost your income even further. 

Plus, you get a full 60 day money back guarantee, so really, what have you got to lose?

Grab yourself a copy of Auction List Building now for just $27, and learn how to sky rocket your book-selling profits!

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19 Comments Add your comment
Free Member
Hey Ben, Your story is inspired me!!! I also am starting my own biz on ebay and my own website. Its been a series of highs and lows, and both in one day at times. My biggest problem is finding suppliers. After being with Gogo dropship for the last 4 months, i just joined Salehoo so hopefully I'm on the right track. I too wish to get sunburned in the garden, I'm gonna check out your book. Thanx for passing on your secrets!!! Ciao, S Micale Socalsellings@gmail.com Reply
Amazing! I, too, thought that once an ebay customer received the product, I could have nothing further to do with them outside of ebay. Thank you for the insight. Here I've been, fretting over not having a big list, when all the time I could have been using my previous customers! Now, if I can just find their addresses... Reply
An encouraging story worth emulating! I sure subscribe to this ingenuity. Reply
Directory Approved Supplier
Thanks for sharing. I also want to sell on ebay. And alice, Can I share my experience of build a E-commerce website ? Reply
Full Member
Great to see someone who is 'living the dream' in 6 years of online selling myself Ebay and website, have never been able to reach that pinnacle, still need a day job to get by. Just wondering is that $20,000 a months total sales or net profit after Ebay /Paypal fees ect ? Yes can see that strategy of gathering a customer database does work, after all that has been going on in brick and mortar stores for ever. Yes Ebay is a great place to attract awesome traffic, but at the same time all it takes is a couple of trigger happy customers to bring you down with a couple of negative feeedbacks, and knock you of your perch. And to be rid of those takes 12 months, no amount of positive feedbacks seem to get you back on top of your game. And 12 months of low sales in any business really hurts. Also if losing $60.00 is the worst he has experienced, then has done really well, personally have lost hundreds of dollars over the years in lost delivery's , products returned for repair and not arriving, replacing items for customers ect. So that loss is a drop in the ocean. Any how has given some inspiration that it is possible to be solely successful online seller, have heard about them yet never met one yet. Reply
this was just the encouragement i needed at this time. aa Reply
Site Admin
Thanks for your comments everyone! I also had a pang of fresh inspiration when I read Ben's story. Like you, socalsellings, I liked the bit about getting sun burnt! Good on you for checking out the eBook by the way. I read it myself and it's a fantastic resource! I've let Ben know about the interest in this story and he will stop by and answer your questions when he can... or when he needs to get out of the sun :) Reply
Site Admin
ShiningStory If you would like to share your story, that would be wonderful. Just send me a private message :) Reply
Full Member
Wow congratulations on being featured Ben! Ben is probably one of the most generous members in TWF and he also recently won the Member of the Month award :) Reply
Free Member
Hey Everyone! Firstly can I say a massive thanks for all your comments. I'm glad my story has helped to inspire someone :). Just to answer a couple of points that pscotie has raised. 1. $20,000 - $22,000 is my average turnover, but because of the way I have got my business set up, my net profit is around 58% on average. Most of the product I sell is unbranded which means that I can control the retail selling price much easier that I can when I'm selling branded product. Competing with other sellers selling Fake Lacoste and Ralph Lauren is a nightmare on eBay. So I tend to sell the higher end stuff to my customers AWAY from eBay once I have them on my list. This allows me to charge the price I want for it which protects my margins. Also, because I have deals and I act as an affiliate for other companies I can make money with absolutely NO investment at all (apart from 10 minutes writing and sending an email). This has a massive effect on my overall net profits. 2. In terms of trigger happy buyers - yes that can be a problem on eBay. But whenever I get a negative feedback I have a look at how the transaction went, what got said in emails back and forward etc. Quite often I can phone eBay and get a negative feedback removed. I'm not saying this happens all the time but it can be done. A lot of people seem to think that eBay don't give a damn about their sellers, that they're just trying to attract more buyers. This isn't true. If a buyer has been unreasonable, call eBay. Here's something else I do. I GET ON THE PHONE TO THE CUSTOMER! For some reason sellers on eBay want to hide behind eBay. They don't want to get in the trenches and actually show their face and contact their customers directly. If you call your customers and can resolve their issues, most are more than willing to change their feedback. And lastly on this subject... Once you have got a substantial customer database, eBay feedback has much less of an effect on your business because you'll be doing more business outside of that platform. Plus the fact you have customers that know and trust you and are happy to spend their money with you. Reply
Free Member
3. Haha, trust me, if all I had lost was $60 in my years of selling online I'd be really pleased! Sadly, that is not the case! In the beginning I lost my shirt more times than I care to remember. Not only on the Get Rich Quick scams that are being peddled around the internet but I lost money to rogue wholesalers who took my money and didn't send me anything. I've had issues at customs that has cost me an arm and a leg. To a certain extent, losing money is a part of business. You're not going to win every time and if you keep losing money in the business you're in, then you need to really think about getting out of that business and try something else where the return rates are a lot lower. I hope I have answered these points helpfully and I welcome any questions. Thanks Ben Reply
I have around 25,000 customer names and email addresses from ebay in the last 6 months. I've always been scared about sending out emails for my websites or ebay shop. As it seems to be OK, with little backlash, I might have to try it! Reply
Directory Approved Supplier
Hi Chris, I suggest that you can put a tracking code in your email. Then you can know: 1, Whether the email is received. 2, What customers do after they receive email. Reply
Full Member
So great to hear about Ben's Ebay success. Would love to see it though. Can someone provide links to his stores and Ebay store? Thanks. Reply
Site Admin
Sorry dps103 but Ben doesn't want to share his store or give specific details about what he sells. In the past, he has had problems with people trying to compete with him. I checked with Alice and she confirms that we don't know Ben's eBay Store name. We understand his reasons and respect his wishes not to share it. This is fairly common for sellers to withhold information about their businesses, especially when sharing with a mass market as this will most likely bring (unwanted) competition their way. Cheers, Richelle Reply
Thanks for the info! I've been an eBay seller for the past year, and it's been a huge ordeal going from zero to hopeful hero. I'm not sure how the next year will go, but I figure each year that I double my sales from learning more and more or at least grow it by percentages - I'm winning extra money I wouldn't have had otherwise! Reply
Hey Ben, Your story is inspired me Reply
Hi, Ben I am a member of bid buy flip, can you advise me to where I am going wrong I have followed your instructions but I am having problems with image shack, when trying to paste my photos into my listing, when I click on the bars at the bottom of the photo when I click on the direct link as you say to upload the photo to the browser I am taken to the subscription page, can you advise me as to what I am doing wrong.
Kind Regards

Charles Reply
Site Admin
Hi, Charles!

ImageShack is now a subscription service, so you'll need to create an account and log in.

If that doesn't work you might head over to the SaleHoo forum and get some advice from other sellers there: http://www.salehoo.com/forum/

They might be able to show you where you're going wrong. Reply
Free Member
Hi Ben
I noticed you add to sell bid.buy.flip in Auatralia. All the comments I find are UK based. Is the information relevant for Auatralia. Do I received goods and post them out or do I purchase from companies who post to buyer Reply
Site Admin
Hi, Heather!

I'm afraid I don't have an answer to your question. I can't find any information about bid.buy.flip. It looks like this is an older article. Reply
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