How to Sell Digital Products on eBay

While it may not be possible to hold or taste digital products, they are still some of the most consumed items in the 21st century.

For many years, however, it was actually against eBay policy to sell digital products. eBay may now allow the practice, but there are some important caveats.

Read on to discover the what, why and how of selling digital products on the eBay marketplace.

What are Digital Products?

Put simply, a digital product is an item sold online that does not have a physical form. They are also sometimes referred to as digital goods or intangible assets.

Some examples of digital products include:

  • eBooks
  • Courses
  • Audio
  • Music
  • Software
  • Photography
  • Digital art
  • Graphics

Why sell digital products on eBay?

Selling digital products can be a lucrative business opportunity. This is mainly due to the potential of high profit margins.

  • There is a low barrier to entry, with digital products being relatively inexpensive to create
  • Digital products are delivered electronically to buyers, saving the seller the hassle of packing and shipping items
  • The risk of losing an item while being shipped is eliminated
  • The process of selling digital products can be automated,
  • Digital products do not perish or wear out and can therefore last a long time
  • Digital products can usually be sold and distributed repeatedly, without the need to source more inventory or restock
  • There is no need to store and manage inventory
  • Digital products can usually be sold and distributed repeatedly, without the need to source more inventory or restock
  • Often a product of creativity, the uniqueness of digital products means that there is less direct competition

Of course, there are some downsides to selling digital products. One major consideration is the lower perceived quality compared to physical products. Some buyers will always prefer tangible goods that they can hold in their hand.

Another significant issue is the risk of replication. Digital products are inherently easy to copy and share. Unscrupulous buyers may take advantage of this.

Selling digital products on eBay

Sellers are allowed to sell digital products on eBay as per the ‘electronically delivered items policy.’ According to eBay, the purpose of this policy is to protect intellectual property and also ensure that buyers are purchasing authorized items.

The main part of the policy focuses on the placement and format of digital product listings.

All eBay sellers, as a general rule, are allowed to sell digital products but only in the Everything Else > Information Products category as a Classified Ad.

Classified Ads

Classified Ads operate a little bit differently than standard Auction or Buy it Now listings.

With Classified Ads, the contact details of interested buyers are sent directly to the seller. The transaction is then completed away from eBay.

Sellers cannot share the information with any third parties or contact the buyer for any other purpose than finalizing the sale.

It should also be noted that there is no feedback option when using Classified Ads to sell products on eBay.

Approved digital product sellers

To sell items outside of the Everything Else > Information Products category, sellers must provide authentic verification of ownership or authorization to sell digital products.

So called ‘pre-approved’ sellers also have to:

  • Be verified on PayPal 
  • Disclose to buyers that the the digital products will not qualify for eBay Money Back Guarantee 
  • Sell the product online only (no local pickup)
  • Agree not to maliciously damage any electronic device
  • Avoid violating anyone’s privacy
  • Disclose properly to buyers all requirements to receive delivery of the digital product(s)

Sellers who do not comply risk cancellation of listings, demotion of listings from search results, lowered seller rating, selling restrictions and even account cancellation.

Terms and conditions

Sellers who are considering selling digital products on eBay should be careful to do their research and take note of the following ‘small print.’

eBay Money Back Guarantee

As mentioned above, electronically delivered goods do not qualify for the Money Back Guarantee. This should be clearly communicated to potential buyers.

Correspondingly, there is also no seller protection for sellers offering digital products for sale on eBay.

In the event of something going wrong with a digital product transaction, eBay will not step in to help for neither buyer nor seller.

Banned items

No matter if you’re an approved seller or not, the following digital items are not allowed to be sold on eBay:

  • Software keys without authorization to sell
  • Digital copies or codes of movies, included as part of a physical movie item purchase, without the physical disk

Sellers who are not approved to sell digital products cannot list the following items in the Everything Else > Information Products category:

  • Tickets
  • Digital trading cards 
  • Domain names 
  • Online gaming virtual items 

Do you sell digital products on eBay and have some tips and tricks to share? Please let us know in the comments section below

Gemma is our all things eBay expert. Originally from the UK, she now lives in Canada and travels extensively. You can read about her travels at her blog Off Track Travel.

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