Shopping on Ebay

Clip courtesy of the The Today Show

Spoke with Leila McKinnon and Tim Gilbert about Ebay, and how you can get good bargains at the biggest online shopping outlet in Australia.

I see Ebay as like an online market, as opposed to the a shop, where you can bid for bargains, or even shop with one of its power sellers.

There are a couple of things to watch out for when shopping on Ebay, or most other online sites. With Ebay, they have a rating system of sellers and buyers. No matter which one you are doing - selling or buying - always check out the feebback of the person you are dealing with. The higher the positive feedback, the better. Also be aware that even those with high feedback, can have the odd negative feedback, too, so just check out comments made by posters.

Also be aware of parallel, or grey, importing, which is where somebody imports directly from an overseas seller instead of going through a local distributor. There are a couple of things to be aware of. First, make sure they have a warranty. Some products that are imported this way do not come with guarantees, or warrantees. Also, some do not meet Australian standards that are set by the Federal Government. For example, mobile phones have a radiation output guideline that they have to adhere to in Australia. A mobile phone that is parallel imported might not meet these standards, so it's worth checking it out.

I'd also mention that Ebay is not the only online auction site, there is also Gumtree and Oztion, which are truly localised. They might have as much product on the sites, but there are some bargains to be had by visiting them.