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I have never offered it as a seller. As a buyer I would ask for like $1 or $2 off (used to buy kids clothes, prices $10-$20). Well I got a very fair offer on one fan (sell BIN for $49.99... guy offered $45)... Then I get a second. The next one offered me $25 INCLUDING shipping (I have shipping at $17!). I guess people really do want something for nothing! I was just flabergasted by the offer! ~Steph
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I use the "best offer" feature. I like it most of the time. I do get the occasional stupid offer (like $1 for a $20 suit), but usually about 75% of my offers have been good. Buyers seem to really like the best offer feature as well. I started pricing my items a few dollars higher than what I really needed them to be. That way, when they make me an offer, it is usually about what I wanted to begin with. Also, I sell alot of the things at their price with no offer, so I end up doing better than before the "offer" was introduced.
I'm pretty curious about this feature. I really like the idea of having the ability to haggle with the seller a bit. But I've got a couple of questions:

1. What does eBay charge to use Best Offer?

2. Is it really as simple as one click to deny? I guess what I'm really wondering is is it set up so that you can add a personal note and does it seem impersonal if you don't? I think if I made an offer to a seller and got a canned rejection I might be a little put off (although I've never tried it to see how it works).

3. Can you set it so that offers below a certain minimum get an automatic decline and you don't have to mess with it? And, if so, is that on a per-item basis or can you set an across-the-board percentage?

I am pretty new to it(as you can see) but I know there isnt a cost to it. Also, you can add a personal note. I have told buyers that $25 doesnt even cover my supplies and fees. Its the truth. Since I am starting with no feedback, I am accepting decent offers (2 at $40 and one at $45). I figure its a sale, I am still making $15 on the $40 sale and I can build my feedback from there. Starting out with a big fat 0 next to my name doesnt help sell. I just cant believe that I have had 5 buyers so far offer me HALF of my fixed price! Its just insulting to me. Oh yeah, it is easy to deny. You get an email and it tells you that you have an offer. You then either click accept or deny. If you deny, the next page gives you the box to fill in a little note to the person who offered. I cant see where we can haggle with them??? Steve???

Sorry, forgot, I dont see a place to automatically deny certain offers.
For the most part, I'm selling fixed-priced items for what I'm selling them for, and they aren't so expensive that there is a lot of wiggle room on pricing. With rising silver costs, my inventory costs have gone up, but I haven't changed many of my prices...yet.

The one thing I'd consider doing best offer on is something that ebay doesn't let you use it on... store logos. At least those are the errors I got last month. I have finite costs with selling jewelry, but when the main cost is my time and creative energy, there are times when I'm open to negotiation. Oh well! No best offer for me, I guess.
Actually, it is two clicks. You get one screen that says "You Have an offer" You have a decline and an accept button. when you click decline, it gives you a screen saying "Are you sure you wish to decline this offer", and a box to type in an optional message. The counter offer is now available in some categories, but not all. If the customer is anywhere near my lowest acceptable price, I usually type in "Thanks for your offer, but the lowest I can accept on this item is--. If you would like to purchase it at this price, I can change the price in my ebay store.". If it is a stupid offer, I just click deny and leave it blank. I also like the fact than when they make you an offer, you have the option of looking at their feedback. I have had some offers that prompted me to update my blocked bidder list!
Wow, I'm surprised there's no fee involved with the feature. I may just have to experiment a little with it..

Thanks for the answers!

Oh, and Steph -- be prepared to be insulted quite a bit! Lots of people on eBay are looking for bargains. They figure they've got nothing to lose by making a ridiculous offer -- I'm sure some people accept them.

That reminds me. I know of one eBay store in which the prices are amazingly high. I looked through this seller's sales for the past 30 days and there are a whole lot of "Best Offer" transactions so apparently it works for some people. Maybe it makes the customers feel like they're getting a great deal or something when they're actually paying around market value?
Originally posted by megnsamsgrace:
I cant see where we can haggle with them??? Steve???
what i did was in the reply box said "i can't go quite that low on this, but I could do $xx.xx" (knowing that the person would probably counteroffer, and wording it in such a way as to not totally put him off if he thought my counteroffer was too high).

the buyer then replied with a counteroffer that was closer to my price, which i accepted.

i dont remember if it let me put in the price in the counteroffer or not, but even if it doesnt, you can put it in msg.

hope that helps

--------- edit ----------

i just went and looked, and ebay let me put my counteroffer price in one box and my message in another.

And what i said was "I cant go quite that low, but I can meet you pretty close to there. I could go down to $347 for you."

buyer then counteroffered with $325.00 and I accepted, and gave him a feel-good message by saying something to the effect of him being a tough sale. dont remember exactly how i worded it (and dont have record of it) but essentially told him that it really hurt to sell it so low, but that i'd do it for him. End result, He's happy, I'm happy Smile
Last edited by wayoutwest
Originally posted by Rick Bradford:
I looked through this seller's sales for the past 30 days and there are a whole lot of "Best Offer" transactions so apparently it works for some people. Maybe it makes the customers feel like they're getting a great deal or something when they're actually paying around market value?
my thoughts are that the typical ebayer is shopping on ebay because s/he wants a deal. And once they submit an offer, they become emotionally attached to the piece. after working to get it, through series of negotiations, they end up feeling like they got a great deal and are happy.

I could be totally wrong, but that's my thoughts on it.

It doesnt fully transfer to ebay, but nonetheless - We sell mainly at shows and customers there want a deal and want to feel like they got a good deal. We used to not haggle at all except on the expensive pieces ($200+). We upped our prices 25% (what used to be $200 is now $250) and can now haggle on most pieces. I can give the person 10% off and sometimes they take it right away, sometimes they want to haggle more. I can still go down to 20% off and i'll be right back at where we used to be on price, the customer feels happy cause s/he got a deal, and we get sales that we might have missed out on in the past because of not haggling. And, other customers that dont haggle have been just fine with higher prices. Course part of that is cause our main line we buy cheaper than most wholesalers, so for many items we were really too cheap.

but anyway, haggling in person on transactions has really helped our sales, so hoping to have similar experience on ebay. time will tell.
Part of the best offer thing is to HAGGLE. It's like when you go to buy a new car. You offer a RIDICULOUSLY LOW PRICE. And he/she sort of gasps and tries to get you to go up a bit. I don't generally do the best offer because I sell items for women and as a woman, I never liked haggling (until recently). My mother and I did a bang up job when my parents went to purchase a new car. And to be honest, I've done it when I receive an already purchased item, but something is wrong with it, but I still want it. I contact the seller and ask for a bit of a refund. Both times it has worked.

Here's what I think some sellers might be doing--which is what I used to do. Say you have an item up for auction--you're hopin' for a big windfall, but you have a similiar item in your store for a reasonable price--but still, you're thinkin' I could probably get more for this one because it's a color everyone wants. So what to do??? Inflate the similiar item in your store (probably to a ridiculously high price) and check the best offer option. Done it--it works. And in my research, I can see sellers doing this. They're selling a Barbie for say 150.00 with best offer, but that same doll is in auction at 9.99.
Originally posted by AngelLisa:
Frown I feel left out, lol. I've used best offer on a few things and have never gotten a offer. I gues no one really wants my stuff. Well no wait, sales are good so that isn't the case don't know why I haven't had a offer, I have a complex now.

NOT Wink

LOL! I was just thinking the same thing. I've used it plenty of times, but never got any offers. Hmmm...
WoooHooo ...I'm in the "IN Crowd" now. lmao Got a best offer today on some fabric samples, had them for 6.99 and they offered 5.00. I had it listed at auction for 4.49 but didn't sell so I raised the price and put it in my store. This is the third time something didn't sell at auction and I uped the price and it sold not long after, the other two payed my new price though.

Sales were GREAT today, Got 8 auctions closing all are sold, and also had 7 or 8 sales from my store, Doing the happy dance. Okay well it's Great for me anyway.

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