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Spotlight On: Ruby Lane Online Marketplace

Following last week’s blog post on selling on Amazon.com, I thought I would shine the spotlight on Ruby Lane in today. If you haven’t heard of Ruby Lane, get familiar, because Ruby Lane is fast becoming a preferred marketplace among online sellers.

What is Ruby Lane?

Ruby Lane is much more than just another eBay alternative. It offers a platform for you to launch business and promote your business. Like other emerging marketplaces such as Addoway and Bonanza, Ruby Lane has a focus on antiques, art, collectibles and artisan jewelry. 

Who shops at Ruby Lane?

According to Ruby Lane, their website visitors are well-educated web users who are comfortable buying online and have disposable income to fuel your business. 87% of Ruby Lane buyers are female and 93% are aged 40-79. Furthermore, 76% of users who come to Ruby Lane earn more than $50,000 per year.  

What are the fees like?

Ruby Lane does not take commissions on sales, but that doesn’t make selling on Ruby Lane cheap! To set up your shop, you will pay a one-time fee of $75 then a $15 monthly maintenance fee. Additionally, you will pay a $20 advertising fee which goes towards online and print advertising. You also pay a one-time listing fee of 30 cents for each item. If you sell over 150 items, you will get a discount on listing fees.

That’s a lot of fees! However, if you are making regular, profitable sales, the fees are money well spent. So how are Ruby Lane sellers going? Let’s take a look at the traffic levels and profitability of the site.

How much traffic does the site get?

Ruby Lane gets over 1.8 million unique site visitors each month, or 60,000 per day. Note: “unique” visitors mean just that; if someone visits the site more than once, it’s only counted as one visit. That makes 60,000 a pretty respectable level of daily traffic!

Even more important than traffic is profitability. The good news is that sellers on Ruby Lane are reporting good rates of profitability. Ruby Lane was recently rated as the 3rd most profitable marketplace, second only to eBay and Amazon. With less competition and lower fees and both eBay and Amazon, you can be fairly confident in selling on Ruby Lane!

While the fees on Ruby Lane are high, but they appear to have the traffic and ready-buyers to make the fees worth it in the end. However, as with all online marketplaces, you will need to work to earn sales: Listing your items is only half the job!

Have you tried selling items on Ruby Lane? How do you rate it? Share your comments below. 

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15 Comments Add your comment
Thanks for keeping us abreast of what is going on, on the internet. Sounds like Ruby Lane is going to give the others some competition. Reply
Thanks Alice for the heads up on Ruby Lane. I will look into it. Reply
You're welcome guys! It's certainly a marketplace to look into. You might want to check out their Facebook Page and see what other sellers are saying about the place - it's a great way to 'spy' before you dive in (on any marketplace!).

Let me know how you go! Reply
This article has definitely sparked my interest. It sounds like like great investment opportunity. Reply
Very good article. Great to see numbers and not just opinions! Your effort is appreciated. C. Reply
I took the plunge today, my new shop is in approval request mode. Until the 31st, RL is waiving the $75 fee!! that's right, I put $25 into a fund acct and that's all I paid....it was easy, enjoyable, no pain at all....I do look forward to switching from Ebay....I get back with you later! -=brenda BWs Vintage Collectibles Reply
I took the plunge about 1 1/2 weeks ago, paid the $75.00, the $25.00 deposit and put $50.00 into a fund account. I put the required 10 items on line and have been waiting for 4 days to hear from them. I have e-mailed them twice and they have not responded, or even acknowledged that they received the e-mail. They haven't given me negative or positive feedback. They have every bit of information on me, and yet I cannot even get a "back to you later" from them. Anyone else have this problem. If there are issues with quality, photos, terminology,prices etc., I wish they would contact me and let me know. Any suggestions? Reply
I have been a shop owner for 5 years on Ruby Lane and have 1000's of items. Ruby Lane has a flagging system that you have watch for.

some staff person decided that they were going to look at every one of my 550 items.

I was flagged for not showing metal mark clearly 4 times
not adding acid testing to my description

not being able to prove that items were over 20 years old, even thought I purchased them in the 1980's 4 times

and a few others.

this all happened in 3months and now they are threatening to close my shop.

also, if you do not list daily, your items will be pushed to the back of the listings.

they use to be a great site for sellers, but no more.

and by the way ,, many other sellers can have the same issues but Ruby Lane is not concerned with those shop owners.
They have targeted me for some reason. Reply
I have to say that I found the set up process a little complex. When I first submitted my shop I was contacterd by a reviewer within 2 days with some minor changes they wanted me to make. As soon as I had made them I re-submitted and was fully approved within 24 hours. I opened my shop in Mid October and after 12 weeks it has really taken off. I made $1500 over the course of my first Red Tag Sale and have sold strongly there for a new shop. My perception is that although shoppers are savvy and like to bargain you can realistically sell better class merchandise there than you can on eBay or Etsy. I will certainly be giving my shop at least 6 months before I make a decision as to whether to continue. Reply
Hello Norma - I have opened a shop on Rubylane and managed to sell 2 items so far - I would love to learn from you and increase my sales- How can we be in touch ?
Hi, I've been selling on Ruby Lane since December, 2012. While I did well during the most recent Red Tag sale, day to day sales are few and far between. I have over 100 listings, and in 4 months have only sold 24 items. The jury is out on whether I will remain here, but at the moment a $64 monthly fee is preferable to the $800+ monthly fee on ebay. I have yet to do the math to determine if hoarding (RL fixed price) or flipping (eBay auction) is more profitable.... Reply
I think Ruby Lane is the last resort in Antique buying and selling. The prices of items are outrageously high and is this because of the monthly fees? I don't know where the sellers are basing their prices on because I think 90% of Ruby Lane's sellers are not selling. Buyers will resort to Ebay where you can get the best deal whether you are buying, selling or flipping.
As a seller not good. And the returm policy for dealers is not good. Buyers have all the power. I will keep trying but so far not good. Reply
I like Ruby Lane. Having opened a store within the last couple of months I have had steady sales while building up my inventory of stock. I had been heartily sick and tired of Ebays endless rule changes and poor treatment of sellers, so I appreciate that Ruby Lane treats it's store holders as customers. There is a lot of help and advice to assist in getting your store up and running the images look great, and the whole site exudes quality. As with anything, what you gain from the site is proportionate to what you put in, but for dealers in antiques and collectables I believe it knocks Ebay into a cocked hat. Sellers stock is vetted prior to opening and buyers can have confidence too. I wish Ruby Lane continued success. Reply
"I bought an item from Cat Roe from Coyote Moon Antiques. The seller refused to send the item after realising the value of the item. I'm outraged and disgusted with RubyLane for allowing sellers such as her. If you find an item you want, don't buy from RubyLane. The sellers will check the value of the item the moment you buy it and you could find yourself with no item at all. VERY DISAPPOINTED " Reply
I'm sorry you are disappointed, Jack. You have made an assumption that I refused to send the item to you after realizing the value of the poster you wanted to purchase. However, as I tried to tell you, the opposite is true, as I found out that the poster was a reproduction and you were quite adamant that you were looking for an original. At that point, I could not just send it to you so that you could return it to me. Sometimes a mistake is just a mistake.... Cat
This is an interesting article. I've only shopped from RL and all transactions have been great. I was thinking about doing either RL or eBay at some point in the future so I'm glad that in addition to the article that there are comments from sellers.

I couldn't figure out how to leave comments on RL so I just wrote the sellers. Most people are just trying to make a little money so even if there is a small issue on eBay or etsy, I always give the best reviews to help bolster their business because most of the power is with the buyer. I've heard horror stories about people complaining and pretty much wanting something for free. Reply
Redpectfully, why does your fee information for Ruby Lane not match the information on their website? They say $100 set up, 19cents per item, and $69 a moth for the first 80 items. So, where did you get your info? Reply
Site Admin
Hi Scott! This article was published in 2012, so it's not surprising that some of the prices have changed. Reply
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