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Researching Things to Sell on eBay with eBay Pulse

There are several tools and resources available to help with your research when deciding what to sell on eBay. Some are free, some are subscription based and others are available for a one-off fee.

A useful free resource is eBay Pulse. It shows the most popular searches, largest stores and most watched items within any category on any given day. Below is an image of the main eBay Pulse page which shows an overview of the whole eBay marketplace on July 9 2010 and, as you can see, the most popular searches are for products within highly competitive areas.

eBay Pulse

It would be extremely difficult for a newcomer to successfully compete with the established sellers of these hot products but with thousands of categories and sub-categories to choose from, there is no need to go head-to-head with the big guns. By digging down, you can find many far less competitive niches with lots of enthusiastic buyers.

Click on the ‘Categories’ drop down menu just above the Popular Searches list and select a category that interests you. For this example we’ll use our own favourite, Collectibles. This will bring up lists of the most Popular Searches, Largest Shops and Most Watched items within the whole Collectibles category. But we can dig even further by scrolling to the bottom of that page and clicking on the “See More eBay Pulse Categories” link, just below the list of Most Watched Items.

eBay Pulse

This takes us to a list of sub-categories within Collectibles, under each of which is a list of even more sub-categories. This list ran to eleven pages on the day we took these screenshots, so there is certainly no shortage of categories to choose from. From that list, you can click on any sub-category heading to be taken to its eBay Pulse page, or you can dig down further still and click on one of the even more specific categories beneath it. We looked for a category that we hadn’t previously explored and chose Native American: US from within Cultures & Ethnicities.

eBay Pulse

We now have a mine of information at our fingertips.

eBay Pulse

For instance, a glance at the Most Watched items shows that there is some interest in Navajo jewelry, so if that was a niche that we were considering persuing we would click through to each of the Navajo jewelry auctions in the list. From that, we could see the current price of the item, the starting price, how many bids there had been so far and how long the auction had left to run. We could check the sellers’ completed listings and if they specialise in this niche we could get useful information from their past auctions.

We could also click through to the stores in the Largest Stores list and look at their completed listings in the same way. Or we could select a sub-category from the Popular Searches list which would take us to the current listings for that particular niche. For example, by clicking on Moccasins we found that there were currently 337 current listings. We then selected the Show Only Completed Listings option in the menu on the left which brought up 205 results. From this, we could see what percentage of items ended in a sale, how many bids they got, and we could work out the average selling price. We could then use our findings to decide whether or not selling within the niche would be a viable proposition.

eBay Pulse is an incredibly useful research tool which many people overlook and we strongly recommend taking it for a test drive.



  1. Hi, another fantastic post with step by step instructions. I tip my hat to you.

    Stumbled and tweeted.

    R&R, Barry

  2. Lynn says:

    Hi Barry

    Thanks for Stumble and Tweet ;-)

    I hope the Challenge is going well for you.

    Kind Regards

  3. Hi Lynn, This was definitely a great guide to make our Ebay experience become easier and a lot fun. Thanks for sharing the resources. I have learned that eBay Pulse is a daily snapshot of current trends, hot picks and cool stuff on eBay. The best part is, you can narrow down your search by category.

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