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Thread: Selling on Discogs and Amazon vs eBay

  1. #1
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    Selling on Discogs and Amazon vs eBay

    I've been selling(vinyl)on eBay for several years, but am considering diversifying to Discogs and/or Amazon. Does anyone here have experience using those marketplaces? What are the pros and cons?

  2. #2
    Discogs
    Pros: you don't pay listing fees
    Pros: your item stays up for sale for an unlimited time
    Pros: total seller fees should be considerably lesser than eBay's (at least they were when I abandoned eBay)
    Cons: selling price is fixed and has no possibility to be increased by bidding (which is perfectly OK for me)
    Cons: a sale can be sometimes be cancelled by buyers request (which occured to me in very limited occasions)
    Cons: you don't have any visusal view on the specific item for sale, as you can't upload individual photos - so you rely on seller's description, which is usually very brief

    I've completely abandoned eBay in favor of Discogs many, many years ago without looking back...
    Macht das ohr auf!

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    I recently made my first purchase on Discogs, and it went well, but there are some things I don't quite understand.

    I placed my order, only to find that the seller accepted only paypal. I had a dormant Paypal account which required a bit of sorting out and some telephone assistance from the Paypal people (you don't want or need to know the details). before it was usable again. This took a couple of weeks, during which time i anxiously kept a watch on the item to make sure my order was still in the loop.I did message the seller explaining the reason for the delay in payment.

    My question is: from the seller's point of view, I could have just been playing for time, keeping my order active while at the same time checking out other sellers on Discogs, eBay or elsewhere for a cheaper price. Had there been another offer, from someone able to pay immediately, I think he would have been justified in accepting it rather than waiting for me. There were very few copies on offer, and most of them were for much higher asking prices. Was I just lucky that no one else wanted it at that time?

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by bob_32_116 View Post
    Was I just lucky that no one else wanted it at that time?
    Nope, the moment you order an item it is not available anymore for anyone else and can't be found anymore, unless seller has multiple copies for sale. I for one wouldn't have waited that long and would have cancelled the order because IMHO you as a buyer should have checked out the payment options a vendor has listed (and they can vary from seller to seller).

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisXymphonia View Post
    Nope, the moment you order an item it is not available anymore for anyone else and can't be found anymore, unless seller has multiple copies for sale. I for one wouldn't have waited that long and would have cancelled the order because IMHO you as a buyer should have checked out the payment options a vendor has listed (and they can vary from seller to seller).
    That's fair enough. In that case, I'm glad I took the trouble to keep the guy informed what was happening.

  6. #6
    Member LASERCD's Avatar
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    Turning it around for a moment...

    As a buyer I've had much better experiences on Ebay than Discogs. You can get good deals on Discogs and there is no bidding but overgrading is a constant problem. Sellers don't understand that NM doesn't mean its OK for vinyl to have a scratch that runs from the lead-in groove to the dead wax. The other problem with Discogs is that you can't have a meaningful exchange with the people that run the site. You just deal with a series of automated emails.

    At least with Ebay you can visually see the album cover and perhaps get some sense about the vinyl condition.

  7. #7
    'aang 'hoot' Don Arnold's Avatar
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    I've been a very-part-time seller on eBay and have been quite satisfied overall. I've sold I think 5 LPs, all auction, ranging from $60 to $440, and somewhere around 30 CDs, some auction and some BIN. For my money, it's a decent system which, like any, has it's pros and cons. A few bullet comments to expand:

    * I don't incur any selling fees because (a) I don't sell enough and (b) I don't buy into any of the upgrades
    * Ebay has refined what they do over the years and are a fairly well oiled machine. True, they make money, but they're in business to do so.
    * The way I see it, when I list a cd or lp, I'm opening up the the world as my marketplace
    * I rarely start an auction (or list a BIN) for less than I'm willing to part the item for. Obviously I hope to get more! Sometimes that happens, sometimes not. If an item doesn't sell at the price I'm asking, I simply relist (for free) when I feel like doing so.
    * I've really enjoyed the mostly pleasant communication with buyers, and in fact have continued an online friendship with one, who has bought several batches of discs from me now.

    I look at discogs for the purposes of gathering selling price data and it looks like it's a worthy alternative to ebay, though I'm content for now to stick with what I know and for what has worked.

  8. #8
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Found a few nice rarities from my want list on Discogs, and I was thrilled, but they weren't particularly cheap. Amazon marketplace is an excellent, simple system, at least from a buyer's perspective, but the one major flaw is you're paying the flat shipping rate for each individual item, when sometimes I'm buying several from the same seller. At least on Ebay you can arrange for bulk shipping.

  9. #9
    False Number 9 Pr33t's Avatar
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    I'm with Spyros - I find discogs infinitely easier to use, and have moved the bulk of what I have for sale there. Since I'm more on the detail oriented side of things, the time it takes to list on ebay is just too daunting. I will offer to take photos for anyone interested in a specific item, and I give a written description of all conditions, as warranted (a NM disc that is truly NM doesn't need more than that ).

    I do agree with Ken when it comes to being a buyer. I still do the bulk of my purchasing on Ebay as it tends to be easier to gauge the condition before ordering, but I've never actually had a problem with an order from Discogs.

  10. #10
    For selling, I still mostly use Ebay, though I haven't tried discogs. Discogs seems more appropriate for rare items. I sell a few things on Amazon, usually my band stuff. Amazon's fees are quite high now.

    From a buyer's perspective many sellers on Amazon and Discogs way overprice their stuff imo.

  11. #11
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Interesting to note that since last year's U.S. postal rate skyrocketing that sent everyone else's single-CD rates to Canada from between 8 and 10 bucks, I'm still paying $3.49 per disc from amazon's flat rate. I imagine that is to change at some point but I thought it would have happened by now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spacefreak View Post
    Discogs
    Pros: you don't pay listing fees
    Pros: your item stays up for sale for an unlimited time
    Pros: total seller fees should be considerably lesser than eBay's (at least they were when I abandoned eBay)
    Cons: selling price is fixed and has no possibility to be increased by bidding (which is perfectly OK for me)
    Cons: a sale can be sometimes be cancelled by buyers request (which occured to me in very limited occasions)
    Cons: you don't have any visusal view on the specific item for sale, as you can't upload individual photos - so you rely on seller's description, which is usually very brief

    I've completely abandoned eBay in favor of Discogs many, many years ago without looking back...
    Just a couple of questions:

    Does Discogs allow buyers to make offers, or can they only buy at a fixed price?

    Do you get money in your account instantly like on eBay, or is there a waiting time involved?

  13. #13
    False Number 9 Pr33t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calabasas_Trafalgar View Post
    Just a couple of questions:

    Does Discogs allow buyers to make offers, or can they only buy at a fixed price?

    Do you get money in your account instantly like on eBay, or is there a waiting time involved?
    1. You can choose the option, just like with ebay. Either list it at a fixed price, or check the box to make offers available. One serious flaw I find in the discogs system is that the buyer can only make a one-time offer, and there is no mechanism in place for the seller to make a counter offer. On the flip side, I have found that if the buyer has made a serious offer, and I send them a message with a counter offer, a deal can be worked out in the end. And then you get your fair share of people low-balling you with ridiculous offers that you can easily decline.

    2. You are paid instantly via PayPal once the buyer has paid the invoice. Like ebay, the buyer checks out and you receive notice of the order. You set the shipping and send the invoice, and then wait for the buyer to pay.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Calabasas_Trafalgar View Post
    Just a couple of questions:

    Does Discogs allow buyers to make offers, or can they only buy at a fixed price?

    Do you get money in your account instantly like on eBay, or is there a waiting time involved?

    1. There is an option to accept offers on an item, however the seller has to activate it upon uploading an item for sale. Then, if the buyer sets an offer through this selection, it has 3 days to respond to the buyer whether his offer (at a reduced price than the one displayed as fix), is accepted or not.
    It is true that counter offers do not exist automatically (as Pr33t correctly wrote) but you can always email the buyer and upon agreement "cancel the order upon buyers request" and sell it to him off the system.

    2. You are paid via Paypal and you have the option to directly send the buyer a Paypal invoice through the system, by just adding postage fees. Payment through Bank Transfer (IBAN account) is also an option, which I mostly use in european sales, as fees are considerably lower and money is directly deposited at your bank.

    As it's been foretold, selling on Discogs is infinitely easier to use than eBay. Plus as a buyer, you can find way more interesting options on available albums. Now my buying is also 75% Discogs - 25% eBay and I rarely had an unpleasant transaction (probably 2 times out of over 500 purchases).
    Last edited by spacefreak; 06-19-2014 at 01:36 AM.
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    Does Discogs limit the number of items or the dollar amount you can list at one time? That has been my problem lately with eBay, as I'm bumping up against the dollar limit, but have a lot more items I want to list.

  16. #16
    ^^
    No such limits exist on Discogs. There isn't the "one time" notion. You upload as many items you can, for whichever amount you want and you can update the list infinitely. Imagine that it is like having your own store and the stock is visible to everyone.

    There are also the options to temporary unlist any item or your whole inventory and then relist it at will. Very helpful f.e. if you are on holidays and you don't want to sell at that period. And all this at no additional cost.

    Another plus is that one can see the whole inventory of an individual seller, catalogued by genre/subgenre/style/format/price. A disadvantage is that there is no seller search function, but as you get used to their system you can easily locate your favorite sellers.
    Last edited by spacefreak; 06-20-2014 at 01:07 AM.
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    thanks. Spyros, how are you listed on Discogs?

  18. #18
    False Number 9 Pr33t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spacefreak View Post
    A disadvantage is that there is no seller search function, but as you get used to their system you can easily locate your favorite sellers.
    If you know the username, you can type u:username in the search box to bring it up.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Calabasas_Trafalgar View Post
    thanks. Spyros, how are you listed on Discogs?
    Currently as spacefreak. But I'm not selling everything collectable; mostly cheapos that I have double or that I am upgrading formats...
    Macht das ohr auf!

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  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by spacefreak View Post
    There are also the options to temporary unlist any item or your whole inventory and then relist it at will. Very helpful f.e. if you are on holidays and you don't want to sell at that period.
    There is another positive side effect to this unlisting and relisting of items: anyone who has an item from your inventory on his Wantlist @ Discogs will get a notification that an item from their Wantlist has become available.

    In case some are interested here is my inventory: http://www.discogs.com/seller/ChrisEfterklang

  21. #21
    Member helicase's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisXymphonia View Post
    There is another positive side effect to this unlisting and relisting of items: anyone who has an item from your inventory on his Wantlist @ Discogs will get a notification that an item from their Wantlist has become available.
    As a buyer I like this feature too. I've got mostly hard to find stuff on my wantlist on Discogs, so it's nice to hear about it as soon as a copy goes on sale. Some sellers seem to relist a bit often, though; for some items I get a message almost every week, which gets rather annoying.

  22. #22
    Member davis's Avatar
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    I've been selling CDs at Amazon for over 10 years.
    Pros: listing is free & stays listed until the item sells or I delete the listing, can change price anytime for free, my sales money goes straight into my savings account.
    cons: my seller rating is 100% but very few buyers give feedback/rating, my sales are sporadic

  23. #23
    False Number 9 Pr33t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by helicase View Post
    As a buyer I like this feature too. I've got mostly hard to find stuff on my wantlist on Discogs, so it's nice to hear about it as soon as a copy goes on sale. Some sellers seem to relist a bit often, though; for some items I get a message almost every week, which gets rather annoying.
    I get some DAILY. I wish there was a way to make the notifications only weekly...

  24. #24
    I should try Discogs, but I prefer selling on eBay because there's the potential to get more than you originally asked for. There were cds I listed for 10$ and wound up with 40-80$. Plus, buying and selling, I get to see the objects, bulk ship, contact the sellers/buyers and buy overseas (Paypal handles conversions). I have bought from sellers on Amazon, but if you're using certain gift cards, you are going to have a problem (the battle of Roger Dean's Dragon Dreams that resulted in long phone calls with a difficult gift card company and Amazon, who are often more than not very accomodating, and the subsequent purchase from I think it was either Alibris or Abe's Books, who sells records and cds too, a wrong book that the mail guy destroyed and finally getting in the end the right book and several free items from Amazon).
    "Alienated-so alien I go!"

  25. #25
    False Number 9 Pr33t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rune Blackwings View Post
    I should try Discogs, but I prefer selling on eBay because there's the potential to get more than you originally asked for. There were cds I listed for 10$ and wound up with 40-80$. Plus, buying and selling, I get to see the objects, bulk ship, contact the sellers/buyers and buy overseas (Paypal handles conversions).
    Other than the auction format, this is exactly what you get with discogs. And it takes about a minute to look at the selling history of the item and see where you should price yours. I'd seriously suggest giving it a chance. Other than crazy collectible vinyl and non-music items, I don't see myself using ebay to sell anymore. It's that much easier.

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