Ebay Fees Updated – 18.9% For $10 Item Normal Listing

Almost three years ago I wrote a post about how much it costs to sell on ebay – that post happened to be a raging success and has gathered a lot of hits over the years. Seeing as that two year old post was so popular and wanting to do eBay justice for their new pricing structure I would like to go through the process again using the same metrics and let you know how much it costs to sell on eBay again based on selling something in November of 2013.

Books, Music, Movies, DVDs

Assuming you’ve sold more than 50 items on eBay for the month the insertion fee for books is just 5 cents. The final value fee is 10%, capped at a value fee of $250 – doubtful you will sell a book on eBay for more than $2500. So, because of our insertion fee a book sold on eBay for $10 will gather a $1.05 fee, or 10.5%. Now progressing to Paypal, their fees actually have not changed for sellers – still 2.9% plus 30 cents. So you get dinged 59 cents on a $10 payment.

Incoming from Paypal payment: $9.41

Outgoing to Ebay: $1.05

Net: $8.36

Cost to sell a book on Ebay:

16.4%

Miscellaneous Items

The only difference between miscellaneous items and books are the insertion fee – the insertion fee for miscellaneous items is 30 cents. That makes the net from the same example above cents less, so increases the cost to sell on eBay to 18.9%.

Since eBay has streamlined it’s process I would argue it has become much better for sellers who either sell less than 50 items per month or sell very expensive items (to reach the $250 final fee cap).

 

Making a profit with 18.9% costs

So how much will you need to up the price of an item you’ve acquired to turn a quick profit? Hopefully this is useful for those who enjoy going to the garage or estate sell to find cheap items to make some cash online. Don’t make the mistake of simply multiplying your buying price by 1.189, if you buy something for $10 and sell it for $11.89 you will have to pay $2.25 in fees and then you will lose 46 cents total. Instead divide your buying price by 0.81.

But who wants to buy and sell for no profit? No one. I would personally keep thing simple and only buy things that you expect to sell for 50% more than you pay for them. Good luck, and feel free to comment if you have any questions about eBay strategies.

 

Xbox Matches Playstation in Sales

The new XBox has matched Playstation sales at one million units in the first 24 hours in North America. I couldn’t wish for a better scenario – both companies have equal market share and we will have a interesting ride finding out who makes it to the top and learning from their successes and failures. The XBox One is priced at $500 while the Playstation 4 is going for $400, and the Playstation 4.

Based on the product descriptions it seems like the Playstation 4 is a better deal than the XBox, boasting 1080p while Microsoft’s product only displays in 720p. Not to mention Sony’s product will inevitably support more games especially those from Japan than the Xbox. However, if you play Halo or Call of Duty games you better buy an XBox since they are developed exclusively for the XBox. If you were planning on paying for an annual subscription for playing multiplier games you will need to pay $60 per year for XBox Live and $50 per year for Playstation Plus (Sony’s equivalent for XBox Live). XBox apps such as Netflix require an XBox Live subscription while Playstation is allowing you to use the Netflix app on their hardware for free. This all of course requires an active internet connection (I probably didn’t need to mention that).

Personally, I don’t see myself getting either system until more games are released or until a particular game is released that interests me on either console. Also I want to give it some time for the hardware issues from either manufacturer to be resolved before putting myself through the anxiety of getting a new machine that needs to be sent back in for repairs. I had that issue when I got my first XBox 360.

Regardless, having both these new platforms coming out at the same time is sure to create excitement for both developers and gamers in the console gaming industry, and perhaps stem the tide of touch screen games for tablets and smartphones. It’s hard for me comprehend how anyone can get much enjoyment out of a touch screen game, I definitely don’t.

SimCity Glitchy Years After Launch

One would think EA Games would spend more time fixing its issues with Origin and SimCity, but apparently EA Games has not gotten it right YEARS after releasing SimCity.

“You have not activated SimCity on your account. Please activate SimCity in Origin to Play”. That is the error I get when I start SimCity after downloading it from Origin almost a year after installing it, waiting for EA Games to get their servers up after the launch, and playing it a few times. Buying a new computer and installing SimCity again brings me back to the fiasco of a game launch that has tarnished the name of SimCity forever and further makes EA Games and Origin the laughing stock of the gaming community.

No Where To Activate Anymore

No Where To Activate Anymore

SimCity not activated, lies

SimCity not activated, lies

Sim City Unable to Create your City at this Time

**Update** Now I am unable to play the game as it is always showing ‘Checking For Updates’

*Update* I was able to create a city after quitting and rejoining a different server

Tonight I hopped onto my computer to open and play a game I just downloaded during the day after pre-ordering yesterday for $60, the first message I see when trying to create a city – “unable to create your city at this time, please claim a city again”. This is outrageous, and to think it comes from the masterminds of such games as “Sim City 2000″ and “Sim Farm”. Hopefully this gets resolved soon otherwise EA Games and especially Maxis will need to consider their funeral arrangement (in other words which company they should sell their pitiful entities to).

Side note, the ‘Time Played’ info on Origin for Sim City says 11 hours, even though I just installed it and haven’t played 5 minutes yet.

Automated News Delivery System

For the past few days I’ve been working on a program that will go out and grab headline news and links back to the original sources and put them into a list format. The only problem is that I was running that manually each day and yesterday forgot to post one. Today I figured out how to run a background process and automatically grab content and post it via email to my blog from my program. I might not do it this way since I don’t usually like leaving my computer on the whole day but I thought it was fun to figure out how to do.

For anyone interested in doing something similar all they need to do is build a program that will build an html email they would want sent and then use a free copy of visual studio (express edition) from http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/products/2010-editions/visual-basic-express (Visual Basic) and http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/products/2010-editions/visual-csharp-express (C#), and import System.Net.Mail and System.Net.NetworkCredential (since if you presumably want to send emails from your gmail account SSL is required).

If your interested in seeing this website that is comprised of my pulled together links see http://newshighlightsoftheday.blogspot.com

Below is a copy of the function I wrote to send the email for anyone interested:

Private Sub Button2_Click(ByVal sender As System.Object, ByVal e As System.EventArgs) Handles Button2.Click
Dim password As String = “yourpassword”
Dim client As New SmtpClient
client.Credentials = New NetworkCredential(“youremailaddress@gmail.com”, password)
client.Port = 587
client.Host = “smtp.gmail.com”
client.EnableSsl = True

Try
Dim maFrom As New MailAddress(“youremailaddress@gmail.com”,”Adam Lee”, Encoding.UTF8)
Dim maTo As New MailAddress(emailTo, Nothing, Encoding.UTF8)
Dim mmsg As New MailMessage(maFrom, maTo)

mmsg.Body = RichTextBox1.Text
mmsg.BodyEncoding = Encoding.UTF8
mmsg.IsBodyHtml = True
mmsg.Subject = “News Highlights for ” & Date.Today
mmsg.SubjectEncoding = Encoding.UTF8

client.Send(mmsg)
MsgBox(“DONE”)

Catch ex As Exception
MsgBox(ex.Message)
End Try

End Sub

Maximize Mac Battery Life

Macs, like any other computers which use lithium based batteries, should be handled a certain way in order to maximize their battery capacity and lifespan. Certain actions could make the batteries practically useless, while others could reduce the duration the given battery will keep your device operating.

The biggest environmental factor that ruins battery life is temperature. From personal experience, I’ve noticed battery life on my laptops is considerably shorter over time when I’ve lived in a hotter and more humid environment. While you might not be able to do much to mitigate this effect, there are certain actions which you can avoid to ensure the best battery life for your device:

Do not keep your battery stored at maximum capacity, the best level of charge to store lithium-ion batteries is around 40%.

Do not completely discharge your battery, lithium batteries should not be depleted past 20% if possible. Discharging the battery past 20% remaining battery life will damage the battery.

Never keep the device (battery inside) inside a hot car, high temperatures destroy batteries.

Keep the device out of the sun, be careful not to overheat the device through gaming. I suggest if you plan on gaming with a laptop attempt to remove the battery beforehand. This is one of the drawbacks of a Mac, there is no way to remove the battery.

Thanks for reading these tips on how to extend your Mac’s battery life. It is expensive to replace a Mac battery and such actions technically should only be done by Mac technicians, so hopefully you can keep the battery healthy until its time to upgrade laptops.

iTv and Google TV

Apparently both Apple and Google are working on top boxes that will connect to the TV and enable applications to be run. I have yet to read details on what kind of apps will be available or why this would be useful or necessary, or perhaps both companies are blindly pursuing a technology that no one wants or needs. Microsoft has no comment on this technology and seems to be sticking with its bread and butter business of enterprise software, operating system, the office product line,  and the XBox.

Google Image Swirl

Today I happened upon a new product in development in Google labs called ‘Google Image Swirl‘. It is basically a tree based structure of related photos, right now only the common image search terms are available. This is great because it is a non-verbal way of searching for images, the way it probably should be when the discrepancies are hard to form via words. Swirl becomes even more useful when searching for faces of famous people. Below are a few screen-shots:

search for nuclear on google swirl

search for money using google swirl

search for elvis on google swirl

Google Caffeine – faster for less

Google has unleashed Google Caffeine, a snappy new name for a snappy new product that apparently speeds up it’s already infamously fast Google Search. A testbox has been set up at http://www2.sandbox.google.com/

A quick test of the search term “Adam Lee” results in half the search speed, but less than half of the results. Apparently, part of the code includes sacrificing results for speed. This is not something I am worried about though as I am not going to look at number 40,000,000 in the list and 10,000,000 suits me just fine (the numbers represent the amound of entries corresponding to my previously mentioned search term).

I believe the hype and new release are perfectly timed to stem the rise of the Microsoft-Yahoo underdog team. Microsoft obviously has a keen interest in making Bing better, and it has made some improvements that have shown results, including a rise in market share since Bing’s birth. Google is basically saying, “this is my territory, get out!”

Mouse Jiggler

Ok so I made this program in my spare time in VB that will jiggle your mouse pointer violently… I am also uploading the source code if you want to use it.

jiggle

source code

Public Class Form1
Private Declare Sub mouse_event Lib “user32.dll” ( _
ByVal dwFlags As Int32, _
ByVal dx As Int32, _
ByVal dy As Int32, _
ByVal cButtons As Int32, _
ByVal dwExtraInfo As Int32 _
)

Private Declare Function SetCursorPos Lib “user32.dll” ( _
ByVal X As Int32, _
ByVal Y As Int32 _
) As Boolean

Private Sub Form1_Load(ByVal sender As System.Object, ByVal e As System.EventArgs) Handles MyBase.Load
While (True)
mouse_event(1, Rnd() * 10 – 5, Rnd() * 10 – 5, 1, 1)
System.Threading.Thread.Sleep(10)
End While
End Sub
End Class

Why Javascript is So Fun

Javascript is an amazing nifty little tool. Let me show you some examples, if you want to quickly look at someone’s website’s cookies, all you have to do is type the following into the URL bar: “javascript:alert(document.cookie)};. A link is given as an example. There are, of course, more naughty things it can be used for such as form injection and such. My personal favorite is the infinate loop.

The infinate loop can be manually created by typing the following into the URL bar:

javascript:while(1){alert(“hello”);}

Make Money Selling Wi-Fi???

Recently a friend introduced me to a technology where you will make 50% of the profit of someone buying their wi-fi access from you. The website is here and the technology is called “FONERA”. The basic idea is that users can have 10 minutes of free internet as a sample, and then can choose whether or not to buy more time. The idea seems too good to be true, and is it possible to finally share your extra bandwidth without ever having to see whoever is buying it.