View Full Version : Dalsgaard's PfP Challenge

05-02-2014, 08:52 AM
I can see it has been a while since anyone has done one of these, but that shall not deter me from doing one (and maybe letting it die a slow death).

Before 2014 I had never bought or sold anything on eBay (although I had checked it out on occasion), but I thought it was about time to try it out and maybe make a few bucks off my hobby. I read some tutorials and tips on using eBay to sell miniatures (Darklord's excellent tutorial included) and took the leap. I wasn't sure it would end well as I didn't have much of a rating, but with a few extra tips from DL I made a listing on my IG Commissar (http://www.ebay.com/itm/251440225036).

I must say it is going well beyond expectations. So far it is at $18.50 with 3 days left and there have been over a thousand views and 18 people has it on their watchlist (I assume that is good), so I'm hoping for a boost to the final bid. I'm hopefully optimistic, that it will make $25 or more.

I figured I would start out with 10 (as per tradition) and go for how much I can make before I forget about this thread or tank completely in an auction, so the current tally looks like this:

Starting funds: 10
GW Commissar: -8.20

Current Funds: 1.80
Current Profit/Loss: -8.20

I've already decided on my next mini for the challenge, which is the new Dwarf Lord from GW, Belegar Ironhammer. I figure that a brand new model has a bigger chance of bringing in the dough, than an older one. I will probably keep mostly to GW models as they seem to be easiest to sell and with a few years away from the hobby, there are plenty of minis in the range I want to paint.

05-02-2014, 02:45 PM
good stuff mate, I will probably restart mine at some point after real life stopped me painting for a year.

Ebay can be quite thrilling at time (or disappointing!!)

I wouldn't read too much into watchers I have had auctions with 30-50 of them watching and not sold.

What I found was after a while 75% of my painted stuff got bought by the same 2 or 3 people so if you can keep listing reguarly then better as it keeps them active. ideally always having something on auction is best (so a mini a week!)

will keep following this and see how you get on

05-02-2014, 03:50 PM
That pesky real life can really put a dent in one's brush-licking.

Good to know that watchers doesn't mean much.

I hope that by concentrating on GW stuff I might sell to people who needs stuff for their armies, as my level isn't quite good enough to hope, that people would actually buy my stuff for display yet. It would of course be nice to get some regulars, but one step at a time.

I hope you get your PfP thread started up again soon DL, so I wont feel so alone :-)

By the way, I was wondering about buyers' habits as to when they bid on something. Do people generally wait till the last day of an auction, or aren't there much of a pattern to how auctions goes?

05-02-2014, 04:35 PM
GW is deffo your best bet and the best of those are Space Marines and then the most common chapters, ultramarines,etc

What some painters do is study a new codex and look for characters in there that there are no miniatures produced for, then create such a mini through conversion. bit more laborious but will gain you some extra coin

05-02-2014, 05:11 PM
That's a good idea, but as far as I know GW aren't really doing many rules without minis anymore (something about lawsuits and stuff).

My biggest concern about doing the dwarf next is, that Fantasy doesn't seem to be as popular as 40k, but it is a really cool mini, so I will take the chance. I was thinking starting it at a bit more than the price of the mini and do free shipping. That way I at least don't lose money and have a cool mini for my cabinet if it doesn't sell.

05-02-2014, 06:01 PM
I wouldn't go free postage, just make it clear as to what postage you are using so people know that you aren't just trying to make money on it (seen that quite a few times, bugs me to hell.)

Also be careful with new releases as they can sometimes flood the market with people trying to get a piece of it so it might be worth looking at the release before etc. Plus if you are painting models that you like then if they don't sell there is no harm in you keeping them :)

05-02-2014, 06:08 PM
The thing is, the eBay fee is $1 less when you offer free postage so it only costs me around $7 in "lost" income (I still have it set too high on my current listing). I hope that the big green "free postage" mark at my listing will bring more buyers and give me those $7 in higher bids. It might not work, but it is worth the experiment.

Good point though on the flooded market. I will have to keep that in mind.

05-02-2014, 08:41 PM
Oh yeah, fees. Shouldn't have forgotten those. It's all a case of finding the right point on the scales but still not putting people off. That said, if people want something bad enough, they'll pay for it.

05-02-2014, 08:47 PM
That's what I'm counting on :-)

And the more finished minis I sell, the less I have to argue with the wife about filling our cabinets with them.

05-02-2014, 09:29 PM
I hear ya. I'm on a current "sell to buy" plan for minis and my fish tank. Sold $20 worth of corals last night, so I got that going for me! Woot.

I'll be painting some minis and selling them soon as well. I find it tough to make money though. Not expecting huge dollars but it sure is a kick in the pants when you paint a $8 mini on a $2 base and it sells for $14 and after fees you earn $2. /Awesome!

To answer one of your earlier questions, I see most activity in the last day, especially the last hour. Always end on Sunday nights if possible. Also I find CMON credits for adds really help as well, 2x to 3x as many views. (has been about a year since I sold minis on ebay though) ...but what do it I know? I make a 50 cents an hour wage painting :fret

05-02-2014, 09:39 PM
I've learned NEVER to begin calculating what I make per hour when painting minis. Two years ago I got 100 for painting the Bloodthirster pictured in my avatar (commission) and I probably used something like 30-40 hours on it :-/

On the other hand, I know a guy who makes a living off painting crappy tabletop minis on commission...

Anyway, good to know that there might be a last-day rush. I would have started the auction so it ended on a Sunday, but I didn't have the patience to wait starting it and didn't want to pay extra for a 10-day auction.

I would have thought the CMoN adds wouldn't help much as I thought most people on that site actually did their own painting.

05-02-2014, 10:09 PM
Aye, a lot of the members might do their own painting but a lot of people look over there without signing up to look at the pretty pretties.

05-02-2014, 10:13 PM
That makes sense I guess.

05-02-2014, 10:45 PM
though dont waste credits on rushed TT jobs, save em for your better pieces

14-02-2014, 12:14 AM
Good luck with this! I'm in a slight state of flux with mine. I really resent silver paint at the moment!

I reckon you'd be better of with 40k stuff if you're selling to the mass gaming market. Also, depending on your feedback, you may want to increase that by purchasing some small items and getting a better score...


14-02-2014, 10:35 PM
After spending a lot of time on eBay the last week or two I think you are right about 40k being easiest to sell. Rumor says that a new knight titan is coming next month. That might be a good bet :-)

Meanwhile the buyer for my commissar didn't pay up, so now I am standing here without a sell and a new mini already bought. I guess I will have to do a loan on future profit.

Funds before today: 1.80
Belegar Ironhammer: -13.00

Current Funds: -11.20
Current Profit/Loss: -21.20

I will put the Commissar up for auction again and hopefully it will do better with the things I've learned so far.

15-02-2014, 12:10 AM
That sucks on the unpaying bidder. At least that was a problem before the item was sent though, Mum (who has an ebay shop for knitting stuff) had several people around early December decide that items hadn't shown up and demanded refunds despite not allowing for Christmas post delays and not paying for recorded delivery.

There are fools out there, so it's important to keep your head up.

Good luck with Belegar :)

16-02-2014, 11:23 PM
Yeah, I am a bit worried about sending stuff without track and trace, but postage from Denmark is already expensive as crap, so I will have to take the chance.

I relisted the Commissar and hope it ends better this time.

22-02-2014, 02:55 PM
Time for an update.

My relisting of the commissar is currently at $20.50 and ends tomorrow. Meanwhile I finished Belegar Ironhammer and listed him as well, for a ten-day auction. To try something different I offer him with free shipping. The starting price is $39.99. I want to see if the free shipping can attract more buyers and both the mini and postage is covered by the starting price.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/251458017509 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Games-Workshop-GW-Warhammer-Fantasy-Dwarf-Lord-Belegar-Ironhammer-Well-Painted-/251458017509?pt=Games_US&hash=item3a8c10d8e5)

I have also listed my finished Stormtalon, but that one is outside this challenge.

24-02-2014, 11:05 AM
Yesterday I sold my Commissar for the second time (this time the buyer actually paid). Although the payment is held back for a while, I will still count them as received and make a new status.

Funds before today: -11.20
IG Commissar: $26.00
PayPal & eBay Fees: -$5.30
My Take: $20.70 = 12.41

Current Funds: 1.21
Current Profit/Loss: -8.79

While that doesn't look to good, it was still a profit of 4.21 on the commissar alone and it should look better when (if) I sell the dwarf.

24-02-2014, 03:23 PM
small acorns mate. I assume youre a new seller on ebay? They introduced the no payment until goods recieved malarky. Another way to protect buyers and screw sellers.

Dont forget to add the non paying bidder to your blacklist

24-02-2014, 04:44 PM
Yep, never sold anything on eBay before. Actually it is fine by me, that they hold back the money for a few weeks. I think it is a good way to protect buyers from new (untrustworthy) sellers.

I've made sure to report the non-payers and I've added a block to my current auctions so people with bad reps can't bid.

24-02-2014, 07:52 PM
Is the no payment till goods recieved just for new sellers or is it for all of us?

24-02-2014, 08:03 PM
Just for new sellers I believe. I haven't checked what constitutes a new seller, but I assume it is until I've had a certain number of successful sales.

24-02-2014, 08:07 PM
oh thank god. I was about to hate sleaze bay just a little bit more.

24-02-2014, 08:09 PM
90 days after your first sale you are no longer classed as a new seller so exsisting accounts are unaffected.

selling x amount or a certain monetary total also removes the new seller thing though not sure what they are. I think in the US its $250 or 25 transactions

24-02-2014, 08:16 PM
Okay, that doesn't sound too bad. If I am to get anywhere with this challenge, I hope I hit $250 sold before 90 days from yesterday :-)

24-02-2014, 08:25 PM
oh thank god. I was about to hate sleaze bay just a little bit more.


24-02-2014, 09:12 PM
The ease with which you find appropriate/weird photos DL, shows you spend too much time on the interwebz :-)

25-02-2014, 12:57 AM
Lol! Wtf is that? A jogging bike?!

25-02-2014, 09:41 AM
Lol! Wtf is that? A jogging bike?!

I dont know. I really dont see the point of it, it cant offer support and must surely make it harder to jog. Maybe its a flinstones bike!

@Dalsgaard : You should see whats on the onion sites!

05-03-2014, 09:34 AM
Belegar Ironhammer sold for $42, which is a bit more than the starting price, but I had really hoped he would go higher. Nevertheless it is a sell and, hopefully, a positive feedback.

Funds before today: 1.21
Belegar Ironhammer: $42.00
PayPal & eBay Fees: -$6.14
Postage: -$6.52
My Take: $29.34 = 17.57

Current Funds: 18.78
Current Profit/Loss: 8.78

At least I'm in the green now, but I think I have to set my starting prices a bit higher from now on. I don't seem to have a problem selling my stuff, but I generally (if you can say that after three auctions) only get one or two bids.

My next buy will probably be the dwarf engineer Grimm Burloksson, which I am going to paint up for my challenge against Spectral Dragon and then sell, so it might be a few weeks before I have anything on eBay again.

05-03-2014, 09:52 AM
Starting price is a bone of contention and theres no hard and fast rules. basically theres three options I think. Start low 0.01 or 0.99 or something. You'll get more interest and more bids but you have to climb a lot more to get to your target level and there is a risk it sells much too cheap and you lose money. the other factor is if you underprice things peope can percieve it as cheap. If you came across a Porsche for sale at 2000 you would immediatley thing there were major problems with it.. getting morepeople involved in the bidding though can create a bidding frenzy and this is when prices overinflate.

Another option is set at the price you want. Now you may want 99 so set at that, but now you will recieve much less interest and its probably a case of getting no bids or 1 bid. bear in mind also more expenisve to list at higher prices. i do use this tactic sometimes with my better work but only when ebay put on free listing weekends. this means you can list at a high price for free. if it sells great if not its cost you nothing to try.

Now you can also go middle of the road. Consider what you think is the minimum price you would take and start at this say 39.99. you wont get as much interest as the low price but will get more than the higher price. You are more likely to sell at a lower price than the high one but its more likely to sell in the first place. This is usually the variation i go for.

What you can do if you have sufficient work coming through is do a mix, have some at the mid or higher price but also throw in the odd cheap one, this gets people looking at your stuff so you get cross promotion and selling the odd bit for less gets your customer base up. If people buy your stuff and like it they will bid that bit more next time.

Also bear in mind some things have a naturally higher sale price than others. A 1993 rank and file goblin from some unknown company wont ever be as desirable as the newley released Ultramarine character. so bear this in mind too.

05-03-2014, 10:04 AM
With the dwarf (and the Stormtalon I also had listed) interest definitely wasn't a problem, even with a mid starting price. Both got almost 2000 views each, which was as much as the commissar I started at $0.99. I think that as long as I paint Warhammer stuff, it will not be that hard to get people interested. If I wanted to sell one of my Confrontation minis I would start them at 0.99, but I wouldn't dare do it before I have more feedback and is a bit more known.

I think you are right about setting the price too low making people think there is something wrong with it. I priced the dwarf at half what other people charged for the same model with worse paint jobs and that might have made a few people wary.

I think I would rather set a minimum price I am satisfied with getting and maybe having to relist it a couple of times, than setting the auction at a low starting price, running the risk of practically giving it away. I'm sure I will change that as I get a bit more comfortable with using eBay, but we'll have to see how everything pans out.

05-03-2014, 12:20 PM
sounds like a plan. Also not ureif your aware but if you relist the item and it sells you get the first listing cost refunded anyway

05-03-2014, 12:26 PM
I wasn't aware of that, but until now at least, the only starting fee I've paid was for a ten-day auction. Apparently higher starting price doesn't add fees at the moment (may only be on eBay.com).

05-03-2014, 12:46 PM
well yeah check the local one, I am going off .co.uk so there might well be variances.

05-03-2014, 02:12 PM
I have what I consider to be quite a fair bit of ebay experience and use it to help fund my hobby. I like going to the local bring and buy twice a year and grabbing a few ebay bargains.

Anyway here a few tips that will help you, sorry if they seem obvious but I am just passing it on in the hope something there will help you.

- Starting price is a bone of contention but I would always start low with anything Warhammer. This is because there will nearly always be a large interest and they are well informed regarding prices and value.

- A long listing is the best way to go, always take the longest listing to get the most attention keeping in mind you will then hit the buyers who search for newly listed, then the weekend browsers and evening browsers etc

- Here is my most important tip. Timing is everything! If you list your items to be sold at the end of a month or on the 1st of a new month you are helping people spend their wages. Also bank holidays are gold dust when people are bored and shopping on their computers. Weeends are best and between 5-30 - 20:00 is prime time. Never sell anything over night!

Always hit the largest viewing groups so e.g. a 32mm knight from an unknown company would be listed under warhammer and somewhere in the description you could put can be used with Empire etc or would make a good Kurt Helborg - you get the idea.

I still find that ebay suprises me but I think one of the most important things to get your head around is the ebay and postage charges and you seem to be getting to grips with that.

Anyway, good luck and good fortune to you :)

05-03-2014, 02:29 PM
Thanks for your input phatkid. It's always good and much appreciated to get some know-how from old dogs like you and Darklord :-)

05-03-2014, 02:36 PM
good stuff Phatty though I always finish my auctions around 8-9pm on a Sunday - peak internet time apparently. Also Bank Holidays etc are good but bear in mind summer ones folks are more likely to be in the pub or the park

05-03-2014, 02:45 PM
I assume the hours you both list are US times?

05-03-2014, 02:58 PM
I assume the hours you both list are US times?

its irrelevant, 8pm here 8pm there, whatever is local for you

05-03-2014, 03:03 PM
I just thought, that since most people on eBay are Americans, it would be worth catering to their preferences/shopping patterns.

05-03-2014, 03:37 PM
I just thought, that since most people on eBay are Americans, it would be worth catering to their preferences/shopping patterns.

Possibly BUT! Americans are in general quite insular and tend to buy from the US so ask are they your biggest market?

05-03-2014, 03:41 PM
Most of the people I have sold to have been European but that could be a chicken and egg thing.

Hey and less of the 'old dog' I was surely a cat in my day!

Lol Anita disagrees she says definitely an old dog - sigh!

05-03-2014, 03:50 PM
I just thought, that since most people on eBay are Americans, it would be worth catering to their preferences/shopping patterns.

I also agree with Brett on this, the biggest Market for GW is the UK ad Europe, in addition to that when you search an item it will localise your search and only offer international results after the local search, I prefer to buy from the UK first and then Europe simply because it means I will get my purchase sooner.
If you buy from the US or China you could be waiting a month or so, GW fans often want to be on the TT with their new additions the next weekend!

05-03-2014, 04:03 PM
I would do 8pm Sunday Denmark time (so start thursday 8pm Denmark time)

05-03-2014, 04:20 PM
Good to know.

By the way, the reason I use the US eBay is, that the UK website wouldn't allow me to sell when I'm not located there (didn't bother to see if there's a workaround). I believe there's a German one as well, but I don't speak German. Anyway, the US site, doesn't sort by country.

Of the three minis I've sold, one was to a US customer and the other two to Europeans, so you might be on to something.

05-03-2014, 04:31 PM
you do get US buyers (my last mini went there) but Ebay is all about maximising potential so its usually a choice on majorities.

Folks do sell on ebay Uk from abroad as theres an option to screen them out (which I do) I know the denmark ebay link goes to the US one so it might be countries that dont have their own go there. Isnt there a big auction site in Denmark that ebay bought out?

Oh and your gonna lose tonight!

05-03-2014, 04:39 PM
Yes there is a Danish site, but only for Danes (sellers and buyers) and that is really too small a population to get any consistent sells.

What am I going to lose???

05-03-2014, 04:43 PM
Ah, football. I'm sure you're right. We still celebrate the European Championship in 1992, because we've sucked ever since.