How to Make International Sales on eBay Websites

Consider eBay’s International Market

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eBay users often wonder if they can use one listing to sell items on all of eBay’s websites. With over 30 online marketplaces around the world in dozens of countries, eBay is a great platform for international selling carried out from the comfort of one's own home or office.

But how do you go about creating an auction or item listing that appears on every eBay website, including national eBay websites in other languages?

Can this be done?

eBay's Restrictions

Unfortunately, there is no way to list on all of eBay’s national websites using a single item listing. This isn't simply an oversight on eBay’s part, nor is it part of some unfortunate plan to keep marketplaces separate in order to drive prices up (or down, or any other direction).

The simple problem is that national eBay websites around the world like the ones in Hong Kong, Poland, Turkey, and Thailand are often presented in the languages of the nations in which they operate—not in English.

For this basic reason, eBay doesn’t offer a feature by which sellers can create one listing in their native language and then have it automatically appear on national eBay sites around the world. A feature like this would require armies of translators to help translate every one of eBay’s millions of listings into dozens of other languages, not to mention the need to continue to bridge language gaps as buyers and sellers transact with one another.

Selling Internationally

If you’re interested in selling internationally, therefore, there are two basic options:

  1. Use the English-based eBay International Market. eBay’s International Market at global.ebay.com is an English-based eBay marketplace that gathers English listings from sellers around the world and makes them available to buyers around the world. To list internationally this way, simply choose to make international shipping available to regions of your choosing on the eBay selling form; eBay will handle the rest.
     
  1. List on national language eBay sites directly. More difficult and nation-specific than using eBay’s International Market, this method reaches groups of national buyers that the International Market can’t. To list this way, you’ll need to register separately for national language eBay sites linked at the bottom of eBay’s home page, then post listings to these directly—using the native language of the site in question. You’ll also need to be able to transact and communicate with buyers while using the language in question.

Pros and Cons

When you use the International Market, one listing made from your own native eBay website can receive bids from dozens of countries, with no input from you. The downside is that for the most part your market is limited to shoppers in those countries that speak English and use the (often less popular outside of English-speaking areas) global eBay website.

When you use national language eBay websites, you reach markets of buyers that don’t speak English, often a much larger group in any particular region than shops on eBay’s global website. On the other hand, to list on national language websites, you’ll need to have a very good command of other languages and are limited to selling an item only in one nation and language at a time.

After all, if you actually have only one item to sell but you list it on four separate national eBay websites, you’re in trouble if they all sell at the same time to different sellers!