First off, ‘free shipping’ to you isn’t really free – you built the cost into the price of the product, and eBay takes a cut of your transaction. eBay is charging Final Value Fees, which is a percentage on the buyer’s fee i.e., the total transaction amount (product + shipping), so whether you include or do not include free shipping, you still have to pay that fee. However, by increasing the product’s price slightly and marking the shipping as free, it could have a positive, psychological effect on the potential customer. Reviewing your competitors in your selling niche can be a factor: are they offering free shipping? Someone who has an eBay store and is either a power seller or highest rated top seller may feel less compelled to offer free shipping, as his record will help convince the buyer to shop from him. On the other hand, if you have not sold on eBay for long, not offering free shipping may put you at a disadvantage. Another thing that can be insightful, is to perform an advanced search of eBay’s completed listings and check the “free shipping” boxes to review results. Like many things, try out and see what is best for you. One thing a majority of sellers agree on is that for heavy items (electronics, etc.) free shipping is a no-no.
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