Mar 20, 2018
Just looked over e-bay, not much selling.
Do you mean fewer items are being posted or of items posted, fewer are sold?
I wonder if better options like Trovestar or Trainboard's selling area might be taking a bite our of eBay's dominance?
I missed an auction for 5 N&W coal hoppers equipped with MT trucks/couplers. I think it was listed for seven days but no one bid. I contacted the seller after the auction and he relisted the item as a "buy it now" for the minimum auction bid price. I was able to buy it. The price was very reasonable which appears to be a rarity on Ebay these days.
I am also wondering if this is what the OP is hinting about? Simply slow? Or other venues taking a bite out of...?
Well both Amazon and Etsy may be giving Ebay a run for its money at far less risk to the buyer. And then people may just have finally wised up to some of the price gouging and junk on there. I would like to think that reputable vendors here and on the internet have taken a bit out of them.
Not according to my wallet.
Sorry but I wouldn't put Trovestar in the breaking into dominance category nor taking a bite out of eBay. There are only like 6 or 7 sellers on there and not much changes so as an alternative to eBay I would say it ranks way down on the list.
I guess I am really out of touch as I haven't even heard of Trovestar. Just Googled it and based on that, I wouldn't have even suspected it as a buy/sell site????
Though I'm not on it, many have mentioned Facebook groups for selling and buying.
There are plenty of Buy-It-Now listings selling.
Not so much.
Many people don't have the time or the patience to deal with auction closing times.
Trains N Scale™
I think there are more sellers than buyers these days, and I expect that trend to continue. Changing demographics and interests will continue to erode the market for our treasures. That said, I believe that N scale will survive the longest due to low costs, a global market and minimal space requirements. O scale is a dead man walking.
I agree. It's also cheaper to ship N scale! I was an HO scaler for some 30 years, N looked interesting but I was always turned off by the toy-like quality of the trains. But in the past decade and a half, things have changed dramatically. I'm sure the increase in quality has attracted some more people to the scale.
Not too sure about O scale being "a dead man walking." The TCA meets are well attended and the local Greenberg shows have more O scale venders and layouts than N gauge. O gauge seems to be concentrated in certain areas and that may be true of N scale also.
I agree. or example, the Pacific NW USA is a hotbed for N scale. Including being the home of two N magazines. Outside of there, it is much less N and much more HO, for adjacent States. For example, Montana is heavily HO.
There are currently 1269 item listed on Trovestar from 7 different sellers. I am one of those sellers. Items are listed at a fixed price, but most are at fair prices as the sellers don't have any fees to pay. If there is something in particular you are looking for, I would suggest looking on Trovestar first before looking on ebay. If you see what you want, contact the seller and you may be able to reach a deal for a better price especially if you are buying more than one item.
Do you have a feel for the average age of today's attendees versus, let's say, ten years ago? I'll bet it is about nine years greater (I don't know, I'm just guessing). To my original point, the "man" may still be walking, but the future may be bleak.
It really doesn't matter to me. Kato and Kato Unitrack will be around well past my demise. With regard to Micro-trains, Atlas and IMR products; there are so many millions(?) of those items in people's accumulations that there should be a healthy secondary market forever.
eBay has become very unfriendly to sellers.
The fees, regulations & requirements have become expensive, complicated and annoying especially for anyone who's not a full-time dealer.
This, in turn, makes minimum prices higher and rare or unusual items hard to find.
Many years ago, (before PayPal!) I was able to close out my fairly large HO collection to convert to N on eBay, quickly & inexpensively.
Now, not so much.
I've been in N for awhile and I've pretty much bought all I need. At this point, I'm mostly buying new releases, like Tier 4 Gevos or all these new intermodal offerings. I'm not looking for SD9s or certain boxcars that were released 10 years ago. So for me to pick something up on the secondary market, it has to be cheap and convenient. If I go to a show, I'll look at used stuff, but rarely find anything I consider worthwhile. EBay to me isn't convenient anymore, and I've looked at trovestar, but found it non user friendly.
I quit selling there in Fall of 2008. It has been four or five years since my last purchase. They do not want "garage" sellers nor any auctions. They want businesses and BIN sales only. Of course, what they want, and what we the public want are two different things.
Then another problem aspect- I does not seem to matter the venue, too many buyers want something for nothing these days.... We are all supposed to sell fifty dollar items for five bucks. Don't make me laugh.... A lot of folks I know (not just model RRers) aren't even bothering any more to sell their surpluses. It's not worth our efforts,..... And what we hold back, you all miss out on acquiring.
As I've often said, Ebay started out as a place to buy the uncommon that you'd not otherwise find or the very common at dirt cheap prices. I never did think of Ebay as a place to buy things at a fair price, I thought of it as a place where people unloaded things at rock bottom prices OR, sold very rare things at relatively high prices.
The model of it being a storefront for sellers was one I rejected early on.
Now adays I use Ebay to buy things like min SMD LEDs from China. Stuff Amazon doesn't sell. That's about it.
I'm all for buying at a fair price, but that's not what I wanted or thought ebay was about.
Put another way, ebay was always about the long tail.
You have a thing that you'd never be able to sell at any price in your home market, but in the vastness of the internet, someone, somewhere will want it and pay for it.
And in fact as someone else mentioned, Facebook buy/sell/trade groups have really eaten into Ebay. More informal, more friendly. Also, Now that Amazon and even Walmart and Kmart offer marketplaces for small sellers, Ebays preeminent place is going away.