Last Updated on July 25, 2023 by Melissa S.
When you first start selling on eBay, one thing you may not take into consideration is the fees eBay takes on the items you sell. As this can vary, not just in terms of if you are a private or business seller, but also on the item’s category, it can cause confusion into just what eBay’s fees actually are.
In this post, we will look at the differences between eBay fees for business and private sellers, and which service is best for you.
What is classed as a private Seller on eBay?
A Private seller is anyone who sells on eBay who does not have a business account, which is probably the vast majority of people reading this post.
As a private seller, you are not permitted to buy stock to resell, whether new or used. However, if you buy something and then decide it’s not for you, you can list it. (Can you read between the lines here?)
If you’re completely new to eBay, I would recommend starting off as a private seller selling your own unwanted items before deciding if you want to upgrade to a buisness.
What services do eBay charge Private sellers for?
Listing fees – 1000 free listings per month
If you are a private seller, you get up to 1000 free listings per month. Any additional listings after this will be charged at 35p per listing. For private sellers, I can’t imagine anyone needing more than this amount without turning it into a business.
Final Value fees – 12.8%
The final value fee for private sellers is calculated at 12.8% of the item’s value, including any postage and tax, plus a flat rate of 30p per item.
For example, if I sell a toy for £8.50 plus £2.50 postage, the buyer will pay £11.00 to eBay. eBay will then deduct 12.8% (£1.41) plus 30p which is £1.71 in total. I will therefore receive a payment of £9.29.
eBay changed their payment system in 2021, meaning fees are now automatically taken at the point of sale. Although a lot of people were not happy with this change, I have to say after getting used to it, I much prefer it to getting charged for all my month’s fees later in the month.
Depending on how much you sell, the fees can really add up and once I owed over £200 in fees which I hadn’t accounted for. That stung!
Fees for selling Men’s & Women’s Trainers on eBay – 8% (special promotion)
eBay’s official guidance currently states, private sellers can sell under the categories:
Men’s > Men’s Shoes > Trainers; and
Women > Women’s Shoes > Trainers at a special promotional rate of 8%.
There are a number of ways to promote your listing on eBay. These are all completely optional, and not something I personally use often, so it is possible to make good sales without them. But if you have an item that just isn’t selling, it may be worth your while.
|Upgrade||Description||Upgrade Fee Per Listing|
|Reserve Price||Set a reserve price (minimum £50) and your item won’t be sold if bids don’t reach that amount.||4% of the reserve price (max. £150 per item), whether or not the item sells.|
|Add Buy It Now to existing Auction||Whereas Buy It Now listings are free, having both auction and Buy It Now options on one listing gives your buyers the option to purchase before an auction-style listing ends, for a set price.||50p|
|Add Subtitle||Add a line of additional text that appears beneath your listing title in search results.||£2|
|Gallery Plus||Catch a buyer’s eye with larger pictures from your listing in search results when buyers move their mouse over your listing’s thumbnail picture.||£2.50 (Free in Clothes, Shoes & Accessories, Home, Furniture & DIY and Pet Supplies)|
|Listing in 2 categories||Add a second category to get more exposure for your listing||35p|
|Promoted Listings||Advertise your listings to boost visibility via Promoted Listings. Your listings will feature more prominently in search results.||Advertising costs are dependent on the campaign type you select. You’ll either be charged a chosen percentage after your listing sells, or an upfront, flat fee.|
How to save money on eBay final value fees
Several times a year, eBay send special promotions to private sellers for a percentage off their final value fees. Typically this has been 70%-80%. These promotions usually run from a Friday to Monday, as most casual sellers will be listing on the weekends.
All you need to do is click “Activate Offer” and any item you list and sell (usually up to 100 listings) during this time will have a much smaller fee taken. This is a great time to list more expensive items. It is worth noting that in order to get the promotional fee rate, your item must sell before it is automatically re-listed.
This means, if you list your item as an auction and it does not sell, if it is automatically re-listed it will no long be at the promotional rate. Similarly, Buy It Now listings are usually live until cancelled, but under a promotion they are re-listed after 30 days.
Final value fees are not always available to all private sellers. If you maintain a good seller rating then you are more likely to recieve them.
eBay fees for Business Sellers
A business seller on eBay is defined as someone who sells items they have bought (or made) for the purposes of selling for profit. This includes “flipping” used items for profit, as well as bulk buying new items to sell, and dropshipping.
Listing Fees – 30p (or free with Shop subscription)
Business sellers are charged 30p per listing, however those who subscribe to an eBay shop service for a monthly fee will receive a number of free listings per month depending on their subscription level:
Basic (£25 per month): 250 free listings per month, 50 free 7 day auction listings per month
Featured: (£69 per month) 1500 free listings per month, 300 7 day auction listings per month
Anchor: (£399 per month) Unlimited free listings per month, 500 7 day auction listings per month.
eBay encourages business sellers to subscribe to their shop packages, which reduces theses and other monthly fees charged. However, you don’t need to subscribe to a shop service to be a business seller.
To work out which package is best for you, you can compare the additional eBay shop features and fees here.
Final Value Fees for Business Sellers
Final Value Fees vary by category, although they can be as high as 12.9% which is similar to the fees afforded to Private Sellers. There is an extensive list of category fees that you can check here, but here is an overview of some popular categories and their fees:
|Category||Final Value fee % + 30p|
|NFTs, including Art, Music, Emerging, Sports||5%|
|Books, Comics & Magazines||9.9%|
|Cameras & Photography||9.9%|
|Clothes, Shoes & Accessories||11.9%|
|Dolls & Bears||10.9%|
|Health & Beauty||10.9%|
|Jewellery & Watches||12.9% up to £450, then 2% after|
|Pottery, Ceramics & Glass||10.9%|
|Sound & Vision||9.9%|
|Toys & Games||10.9%|
|Video Games & Consoles||9.9%|
|Wholesale & Joblots||12.9%|
*Please note there are some items and subcategories within these sections with differing final value fees. See the source post for full details here.
Premium Service discount
If you are classed as a Top Rated Business Seller on eBay, you can receive a 10% discount on your final value fee. The 30p fee still applies.
Frequently Asked Questions about eBay fees
How do I pay my eBay fees?
As stated above, since the eBay payment update in 2021, eBay now takes fees automatically at the point of sale, so you don’t need to worry about setting money aside every time you sell an item.
Why are eBay fees so high?
It may seem like a lot, but in comparsion to other platforms, or the cost of physically renting a shop, the fees charged by eBay aren’t too bad, especially if you take advantage of promotional offers.
At the end of the day, eBay is a business and have to make money too. Platforms such as Facebook Marketplace that do not charge fees have their own pitfalls, such as dealing with unreliable buyers. eBay’s fees help pay for the service you receive when a buyer does not pay, for example.
Is it still worth it to sell on eBay?
I would say, absolutely. If you are a private seller who just wants to declutter some space, even after the fees you are making money on items that you may have given away for free.
About the Author
Melissa is a working parent who left behind a senior management salary for a better work/life balance. Following her own money saving and money making strategies she was able to clear debt and live a life she loves. Blogging, selling digital products on Etsy and selling preloved items on eBay are her favourite side hustles. Read her story here.