Don’t you just love to find good deals on yarn? Today, I’m going to let you in on a little secret I have for finding some of the best and least expensive yarn around.
With this secret and these tips, you’re going to have to keep those knitting needles flying ninety to nothing to use it all up!
eBay yarn buying tips
I am always checking out places to find some discount yarn deals.
But you may have guessed that my ‘secret’ may not be all that secret. After all, who hasn’t heard about eBay? The catch is you knowing how to find the deals and how to avoid the pitfalls. You can do both by following these tips.
Tip #1 — Finding the best deals
eBay is a big website. You can quickly become lost and overwhelmed when searching for yarn deals if you don’t know where to look. Here’s what you do:
1. Go to eBay.com
2. Find “Home & Garden” in the top menu, point your mouse at it, and in the drop-down menu that follows, click on “Crafts.”
3. In the next window, find the sub-heading “Yarn & Needlepoint”
4. In that category, click on “yarn”.
Voila! You found all the yarn auctions. But…we’re not done yet! Look at the left-hand menu again.
Do you see the different categories? You can search by “Material” (i.e., yarn fiber), “Style,” “Weight,” and so on. In each of these categories, you’ll see a link next to the heading that says “see all.” Clicking this link will take you to every choice in the category.
Keep looking in the left-hand menu and you’ll see several more helpful categories. You can choose a price range, you can choose a specific seller if you have a favorite, and so on.
You can even get super picky and look for auctions that offer things like free shipping that will save you money.
Tip #2 — Check the seller’s feedback rating
This is essential and easy to do. When you find an auction that you are interested in bidding on, click on it. When it takes you to the detail page about the yarn, look in the top right-hand part of the auction.
There you’ll see useful information including the seller’s name and their feedback score. If you click on the number in parenthesis beside the seller’s name, it will take you to their feedback page.
Check the number of transactions that have completed, how many positive comments they’ve received, and how many negative. Read some of the comments. If the seller has a bad feedback rating, stay away. When you see a seller with a rating of 95% or higher, that’s pretty good. Got a seller with a 99.9% feedback rating? You’ve got a winner!
Tip #3 — Buy from top-rated sellers
If possible, buy from top-rated sellers. How do you know if they are a top-rated seller? Up by the seller’s name in the top right-hand corner of the auction, you’ll see a symbol that looks like an award ribbon. It will say, ‘Top-rated seller.’
What exactly does this mean? Glad you asked. To be awarded the top-rated award, the seller must consistently earn 4 or 5 star ratings from eBay buyers for delivering excellent service, shipping quickly, and providing accurate item descriptions. The seller must also sell at least $300 worth of merchandise and have a minimum of 100 selling transactions each year.
In addition to these high standards, eBay also regularly reviews these top-rated sellers to make sure they stay top-rated and don’t rest on their laurels.
Tip #4 — How to know a good deal when you see it
Now, since we’re all knitting addicts here at Knitting for Charity, you quite possibly have many prices of yarn memorized. But just in case you don’t or you don’t know what a good deal in an online auction is, we need to revisit our left-hand menu again.
When you’re on the yarn auctions page, look under “Show Only.” See where you can search for completed listings? Check that.
This might sound silly at first, but by browsing through auctions that are complete, you can see what yarn sold for. This way you know if you’re getting a good deal or not.
Tip #5 — Check the details
Before you buy, check out all the details. Check what the seller is charging for shipping. Don’t just assume that because you’re buying yarn, which is relatively light, that shipping won’t be high.
High shipping charges is how some sellers make their money. Watch out for this.
Tip #6 — Check out seller’s stores
Many eBay sellers do this for a living. Not only do they have regular auctions, they also have eBay stores. Often, if an item doesn’t sell in an auction, it will still be in the store that belongs to the seller.
Just like regular stores, the eBay stores sometimes have sales. The items on sale have been in their stores for a while, and they need to sell them. Find great prices this way.
Tip #7 — Be alert
Once you find sellers that have good deals on yarn, sign up for alerts from this seller. This way, any time the seller has a new auction, you’ll get an email letting you know. I’ve caught many a good deal this way.
There you have it! Follow these 7 top tips and you’ll soon be scoring some great deals and buying yarn on eBay like crazy.