How To Buy Something On Ebay

Want to get started buying on eBay but not sure how? is a great place to buy virtually anything - but if you've never purchased anything online, how do you get started? This short article will walk you through getting started on eBay and making your first purchase.

Step one: Have a look around eBay

First, get yourself familiar with eBay and what it has to offer. If you havn't already, go to and look around.

Step two: Sign up for an eBay account

The next step is registering which is quick, easy and free. To register all you need to do is fill-out an online eBay form with your information. You will be asked for your name, email address, real address, & phone number. You will also be asked to choose a member-name and password. Don't worry about your privacy - eBay is one of the largest and most trusted companies on the internet. They will not sell your personal information or abuse it in any way. To register go to the eBay sign up page by clicking here. or go directly to After filling-in the registration form eBay will send an email message to the email address you provided. Check your inbox and follow the instructions to activate your account. If you have questions about registering, see the eBay help page.

Step three: Find something to buy!

Now that you have an eBay account, you need to find something to buy. For beginners, the easiest way to find something is to use the eBay search page. Once on the eBay search page just type in what you are looking for and a list of auctions will be displayed.

When buying or bidding on something for the first time, look for something cheap and inexpensive. This will let you get a feel for how the auctions work without the stress or pressure of worrying about something going wrong and loosing a large sum of money. Once you've found something cheap, place your bid by clicking the "Place Bid" button and entering the maximum amount you are willing to pay for the item. eBay will automatically increase your bid amount in small increments up to the maximum amount you enter.

What is Buy It Now?

Many eBay sellers offer a Buy It Now (BIN) option. Using Buy It Now will bypass the auction process and lets you "Buy it now".

Pay for your items:

Once you win your auction or use the Buy it Now option it is time to pay. You can pay via Pay Pal or with credit card. I recommend using a credit card because of the protection it offers, but many sellers only accept PayPal payments. PayPal also offers fraud protection if you follow their guidelines, and is generally very safe to use.

Congratulations, that's all there is too it!

Ok, there is a lot more to learn, but I've covered the basics. If you have questions, post them below and we will answer them as best as we can.


To learn about selling on eBay, see the page on How to Sell on eBay





If you use your credit card with PayPal, then it's just a charge on your credit card statement.
If you use a bank-account with PayPal, the funds come direct out of your bank account.

Im interested in buying something on ebay before the bidding goes up, Will the seller sell the item to me before the deadline is up? & how do I pay with a debit card when there's no BUY IT NOW button to click? What do i do next?

I'd check to see if they have a store... a lot of sellers will have a buy it now of an item AND an auction (in hopes to get more money)

You could also use the 'contact seller' feature and ask them...

But, if the price is unusually low for the item, chances are you're SOL... the purpose of ebay auctions is for people to bid against eachother so the seller can make as much money on the item as possible... if you message them saying 'I only want to pay this really really low price, I think you should sell it to me even though others will pay more if you let the auction continue' is pushing it, and likely to just make the seller mad...

There's a lot that goes into selling on ebay, fees, dealing with people trying to con you, harassment, people not paying and wasting your time only to make you relist the item for another fee...

So take a minute to consider the seller, whether what you're asking is fair, and be curteous... for every person trying to make a buck, there are hundreds trying to screw them out of it... try not to be the latter.

As an addendum, I think eBay considers it volatile for a seller to contact bidders regarding reduced disposal of items that failed to reach reserve limits.

I just bought a item on ebay, and it goes to the pay now option, i clicked pay now, and chose to use a credit card. ok so how do i actually put through the credit card information since it didnt ask for any. i saw that ya'll said something about paypal. but i was putting it through a credit card so i dont think that would even have anything to do w/ paypal. any help would be great. im lost and dont feel comfy just handing this person my credit card info through email. thanks.

You should get an email notification... or go to the listing page.

I'm not certain as to whether the seller would see your credit card information though.

My personal opinion, would be to set up a paypal account, and add your credit card through that... once you've completed setting up paypal and adding your card, you'd login to your paypal account through ebay, and you'd choose to use your credit card since there's no paypal balance to use. That way you could feel safe that the seller is not ever seeing your credit card info (I'm not positive if they do since I've never used a credit card directly on ebay)

if i use paypal and have the monthly payment plan and i buy something and dont have the full amount right away can i make payments like monthly or do i need to have the full amount

hi (: ive bidded on this item that i want... and im the only bidder and it ends in like 14 hours and summit... but how do i know that i've paid... cos im using my debit card on ebay i dont know if i need to do anything :L please help (:

You will get a notice telling you won, maybe instructions on how to pay and that's when you pay - it doesn't automatically happen, if that's what you're asking.  You can also sign on to your eBay account and get to the payment screens through your "Won" auctions link.  You will get confirmation screens and it will be obvious that you are paying.  Be sure the terms (shipping fees) are what you expected.  You should also get an emailed receipt after the purchase. If you are going to use eBay a lot, consider setting up a PayPal account.

I won on ebay item but I only have credit card not pay pal how do I use credit card I thought the seller had credit card buy it shows up only perferd pay pal? what do I do now cancel my order?


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