Wednesday, October 17, 2012

How to buy an American Girl doll on eBay, Part 1

Isn't eBay's new logo so classy? I like it a lot better than the old one. For those who may not have noticed a difference (I actually just found out myself a few seconds ago), here is the old logo:
I think that the old logo is all over the place, no pun intended.

Anyway, I thought that I would take the opportunity to do a series of blog posts relating to buying and selling American Girl items on the secondary market. I myself routinely sell American Girl items on eBay; in the past I sold a lot more than I do now, and I'll get more into that in another post. Also, the majority of my collection has come from the secondary market, and a majority of that has come from eBay.

So for those who are new to buying on eBay, let me just quickly explain how it works.
There are two ways that you can purchase items there: one is by auction, where you bid on items against other potential buyers; the second is through buy-it-now, where a seller lists an item for a determined price and the first person to complete the sale or the first to merely click on the buy now button is the winner. Oh, and then there is best offer, which falls under buy now. Here, the seller lists the item at a determined price, but allows interested bidders to send in their best offers and the seller can either accept or deny the offers sent in. Now you can always go to eBay if you need to get a more in-depth explanation of how they work; onto buying American Girl items.

When you are looking for an American Girl doll (I say doll, but these tips can be used when buying American Girl items, or anything, really), you should first determine whether you are interested in buying new or used. This will determine how much you will end up spending. Although, keep in mind that although buying used and TLC may be cheaper on eBay, the costs of repairs may have you spending more overall so be sure to calculate repair costs in your overall spending budget. If you are buying new, your job is pretty much just to set your eBay search to only include dolls that have been described by the seller as new; of course, there are some dishonest sellers, so be sure to pay close attention to the pictures and listing description.

Buying used dolls on eBay require a lot more attention to the details of the listing. I cannot tell you how many times buyers, myself included, have gotten screwed over because they failed to read the entire listing. If there is a doll for a very cheap price set at a buy now, for example, your first instinct is to snatch it up. However, once you win an item, whether it be by auction or buy now, you have entered a legal contract to purchase the item. Now if the item is not as described, you can always return the item, and we will get more into what happens after you receive your eBay purchase later. But sometimes sellers list the doll's flaws in the listing and the buyer was too lazy to read the entire listing, making for an unhappy buyer. So make sure you read the ENTIRE listing and look at all of the pictures. If the listing is unclear, or the pictures are bad, do not bid or buy now until you ask ALL questions or request more pictures. It saves everyone a lot of trouble.

This post talks about buying dolls on eBay in general; I will be writing posts that will go more into detail in the near future. If you have any specific questions about buying American Girl dolls on eBay, or in any other secondary marketplace, please let me know through commenting below.


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