How much does it cost to sell on online marketplaces?

There are plenty of online marketplaces out there for those who look, it doesn't start and end with eBay. These sites are great for start-up sellers as they allow everyone (even those without vast reserves of technical know-how) to benefit from guaranteed traffic and ease of use, without the added hassle that comes from starting a website from scratch. All of them offer different perks to sellers - and of course varying usage fees. We take a look at some of the main contenders here.

Selling on eBay

Auction site and popular marketplace eBay offers two types of selling profiles; private and business.

Private sellers

As it's free to list on eBay, there's no insertion fee for your first 20 listings every month. When each item sells you will pay 10 per cent of the final value fee on the total transaction amount - including postage. Find out more about the fees and rules around private selling on the eBay Seller Centre. On top of this, if the buyer pays through PayPal - which is likely - you'll also have to pay a fee to PayPal.

Business sellers

You can list up to 65 listings per month before you will need to upgrade to a business account with a monthly subscription. 
Designed to help make selling easy and affordable, business subscriptions come in three forms. The right choice for you will depend on how many items you intend to list each month.
A popular option is the Basic Shop, which allows you up to 600 listings per month. This comes with a monthly subscription fee of £17.38 and offers 200 free fixed price listings. Any additional listings over this amount will cost 9p each. Auctions starting under £1 will have a 4p insertion fee, or 13p for items of £1 or more. 
Another option is the Featured Shop, for listings of between 600 and 5,000, which has a monthly subscription of £52.17. Finally, the Anchor is aimed at sellers listing 5,000 or more items each month. This has a monthly fee or £217.38 and offers free additional listings. A detailed breakdown of the insertion fees for the three models can be found on the eBay
Seller Centre.

Amazon fees

Amazon is fast becoming a popular site for companies of all sizes. Its newest offering allows small businesses and artisans selling handmade goods the chance to compete with larger retailers, thanks to the new Handmade at Amazon community, which will have its monthly fee waived for the first year.
When it comes to selling on the regular marketplace, Amazon offers Pro-Merchant accounts for sellers wishing to shift more than 30 items per month. This costs £25 (+VAT). If you don't expect to sell as many as 35 items you can sign up for the Basic package, which means you only pay a fee when you sell something; 75p per product. More details on Amazon pricing for sellers can be found on the Sell on Amazon pages.

Other marketplaces

Etsy is celebrated for handmade goods, supplies and tutorials, and is also a marketplace that offers a straightforward fee for sellers. As an American-based site, fees (for sellers) are listed in cents; but it remains popular with UK sellers and customers who just need to work out the exchange rate. There is no monthly fee and listings cost just $0.20 each, but expire after four months. When an item sells you will pay 3.5 per cent of the selling price, excluding shipping and tax. UK sellers should be wary of listing items in USD or other currencies other than their own, as this will incur a conversion fee. There are other fees which are variable if you list items with multiple quantities. For more information then visit Etsy for details.

PayPal fees

Many of these market places use PayPal as the main payment option, which means an extra cost to take into account. PayPal fees vary from seller to seller but are between 1.4 per cent and 3.4 per cent of the total sale. There is also an additional 20p fee for each transaction. The standard transaction fee for UK sellers is 3.4 per cent plus the 20p transaction fee. For more information on the exact fees then refer to PayPal.

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