Buying on eBay is not difficult, but you need to be aware of some details. This e-commerce site works with direct sales and auctions. And, depending on the occasion, bidding can be a better option than buying outright. See the tips and learn how to buy on eBay in a safe and simple way.
How to buy items on eBay from Nigeria
eBay offers two types of buying and selling: direct, where you pay a fixed amount, and auction, where interested parties bid and the product (used or new) takes the highest bidder.
Many sellers often offer products that can be purchased either with bids, for those who are willing to try their luck and pay a lower amount, or for a fixed amount, if you don’t have the patience for auctions. There are also rare items owners only use the auction model.
To find a product, search and refine it using the controls at the top to display all offers, only direct sales (“Buy it Now”) or only auctions (“Auction”). You can also choose whether you want to see only new, used or refurbished products (“Refurbished”).
As eBay is an American site, it has product offers from virtually every corner of the world, and some sellers, individuals or companies do not ship to Nigeria, because of our tax system and problems with the Post Office. So always keep an eye on delivery options. Although, there are courier services you can use to ship your purchased item to Nigeria.
How to Ship Items Bought from eBay to Nigeria
There are several courier services that ship items to Nigeria but for the sake of this post, I’ll be using Heroshe,
- Go to heroshe.com and register for an account
- You’ll be given a US address
- Now, add or change your shipping address on your eBay account to the address on your Heroshe account
- The item you purchased will be shipped to Heroshe’s warehouse (the address Heroshe provided you with)
- Heroshe will process the item and then you will be billed according to the weight of your item
- You can now proceed to make payment to Heroshe for shipping
- After which the item will be shipped to Nigeria
- You can decide to choose the option to pay $10 to have your item delivered anywhere in Nigeria or pick them up for free in Heroshe’s Lagos office.
How to buy as a guest (no eBay account)
eBay allows purchases as a visitor, without the need to register on the site, but with some conditions:
- The sale price cannot exceed US$2,000;
- The product must be available through direct purchase;
- The seller needs to have feedback equal to or greater than 50 and a positive rating of 98% or more;
- Payment must be made by PayPal, credit or debit card.
How to Bid on eBay
To place a bid on a product for sale in the auction mode, you must click on “Place bid”. This amount must be greater than the reserve price, the secret minimum amount the seller is willing to accept for the sale. If a trading session ends with no one bidding that exceeds the reserve price, the seller can choose not to sell.
If you bid and someone else matches your bid, you will be notified by eBay and instructed to bid again if you wish. If no one matches your bid at the end of the trading day, you will take the product and pay the bid amount plus shipping as stated in the ad.
Direct Offer (Best Offer)
Some products for sale will have another option, called “Best Offer”. By clicking this button, you will be given the option to make an offer for the amount you are willing to pay. The seller will have the option to accept, reject or make a counter offer in another amount. Basically, it’s eBay’s “bargain” mode.
How to pay for eBay purchases in Nigeria
eBay encourages the user to make their payments through their PayPal account, an option available on the payment page. However, you can pay in other ways.
If you have an international credit or debit card, you can register them by pointing the mouse to your name in the upper left corner and clicking on “Account settings”, “Payment Options” and ticking the option “Credit or Debit card”, filling in the following the fields with your card data.
The other option is to use eBay discount coupons or gift cards, sold by the store itself. With them, just type the code in the “Enter code” field at the time of payment.
Beware of currency exchange: As eBay works with users from all over the world, most of the offers will be in dollars, while other products can be sold in euros, pounds, yen and other currencies. Therefore, always be aware of the exchange rate before closing a purchase;
Note the shipping options: Many sellers, especially Americans, only ship products via courier, such as FedEx, which in addition to being more expensive, collects taxes on departure. Thus, you will have to pay the value of the product, shipping and ICMS right away;
Reserve money for taxes: Even if you buy an item shipped via a cheaper method, chances are high that the product will be taxed when it arrives in Nigeria. So, calculate the tax amount before closing the purchase and set aside the extra money needed, to avoid surprises.