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eBay Hacks, 2nd Edition by David A. Karp

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Send Payment Instructions

Communicate essential information to your bidders and avoid misunderstandings.

When an auction ends, it is your responsibility as the seller to guide your bidders through the rest of the transaction. Although eBay, by default, will send a notification email to bidders when they’ve won an auction, you may not want to rely solely on that email—or your auction description, for that matter—to communicate all the information your bidder needs to know to send payment. When you email your customers, you’ll need to communicate each of the following:

Thanks.

Thank the customer for bidding on and purchasing your item. Include the title and item number of the auction your customer won.

Shipping cost.

Tell the customer how much shipping will cost (even if it’s already specified in the auction) and explain exactly which shipping method you’ll be using. (Your customer has a right to know what he’s paying for.)

Tip

You can get the winning bidder’s location (and Zip Code for addresses in the U.S.) from the checkout box [Hack #64] at the top of the completed listing page, allowing you to determine the shipping cost before waiting for the bidder to send his street address.

Total to pay.

Calculate the total, including shipping, tax, and any handling fees, and clearly tell your customer how much he is supposed to pay. Don’t make your customer do any math, because he’ll most likely get it wrong. In most cases, you’ll have all the tools you need to calculate a customer’s total before ...

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