eBay Simple Flow Makes Upgrading to Next-Gen Consoles a Cinch

This blog post was written as part of GeekMom’s collaboration with eBay.

The next-gen consoles are out, which means video game stores are accepting trade-ins on old systems. It’s tempting to go in on these deals, because a quick trade at the GameStop means less cash up front for your new Xbox One or Playstation 4. But resist the temptation! You can get a lot more for your console if you sell it online.

Our son really wants an Xbox One, so we’re looking to make some extra cash by offloading our Xbox 360. In the past, selling electronics on sites like eBay was pretty darn easy. Just snap some photos, grab some specs about your device from the web, and type up a description. But it’s even easier now, with the eBay Simple Flow interface. You just pick what device you’re selling and everything is pre-filled for you, including a stock photograph of your console.

It’s super easy, at this point, to just go through and add custom photographs and descriptions to your eBay listing. With all of the heavy lifting done for you, it’s just window dressing. I’d suggest taking a better lit photo of the device you’re selling than my husband did (see the video above), but honestly, you’ll probably sell your console regardless.

Some other tips for good listings?

  • Lighting is important for the photos, but a clean device and clean environment does a lot to show potential buyers that you take care of your belongings. Take five minutes to wipe the smudges from the screen and tidy up your set.
  • Identify the value of the device in the title or description. How much does it cost new? How much did you pay for it? The inherent savings can be very attractive for buyers.
  • Check current and completed listings to make sure that your Buy It Now price is competitive. And always consider starting your bid at $0.99. If the market is willing, the price will increase to where it should be.
  • Pack your item for shipping before you list it so you can list the package dimensions and weight in the listing. This way, you can advertise the absolute lowest shipping price. Or consider adding a bit to the Buy It Now and listing Free Shipping. Some people prefer this.
  • Don’t forget to ship early! As soon as the auction is over, get that package to the post office post-haste! Good feedback is invaluable, especially when you decide you’re ready to upgrade your other devices with the eBay Simple Flow interface.

Check out the video above where my husband goes through the process of listing our Xbox 360 in—no joke—five minutes, tops. And compared to the $50 or so we’d get trading it in at GameStop, eBay thinks we’ll fetch around $130. Not a bad down payment toward that new console, is it?

So if you’re hoping to snag a new console this holiday season, go sell your old devices now to get the best price using eBay’s Simple Flow.

Buying Used Educational Products Can Be a Great Thing

Image: eBay Listing by bksfoursail
Image: eBay Listing by bksfoursail

My eBay Collections were curated as part of my collaboration with eBay. #followitfindit

Homeschooling, or just teaching your kids things at home, can get really expensive when you’re trying to give them authentic experiences. Some of the best products are quite pricey, but sometimes inexpensive options aren’t available. What’s an autodidactic family to do?

Fortunately, people selling their often-gently used things abound on the internet. So if you can’t (or won’t) afford full price for math text books, science kits, or primary source history document sets, for example, your patience and perseverance while searching for what you need will eventually pay off.

Image: eBay listing from user costumehub.
Image: eBay Listing by costumehub.

My first (and usually last) stop for things like this is eBay. Since homeschooling can be expensive, most parents sell their materials when they are done with them, to raise money for the next set of purchases. Of course, they sell them cheaper than the products would be new, so you can benefit from these discounts. Sometimes the materials are in new or almost-new condition as well. Another advantage of buying previously used materials is that you get a much wider variety of materials from which to choose. Some things are out of print, and aren’t available brand new.

One of my favorite discoveries for homeschooling history is Jackdaw publications. The Jackdaw company takes a topic, such as the Great Depression, Westward Expansion, the Lewis and Clark Expedition, or the War of 1812, and accumulates primary sources from that time. Letters, photos, court documents, maps, timelines, and advertisements are rounded up, printed on high quality paper, and put together in a portfolio. They are obviously aimed at educational settings, which is great for homeschooling, or if your family wants to delve deeply into a topic.

eBay is a great secondary market for items such as these, which I’ve highlighted in the History Education Kits collection, and I’ve done the same for science topics in the Science Kits! collection. Like the best garage sale in the world, you can find just about anything on eBay. Sometimes you have to wait, but eventually what you’re looking for will be sold by someone. It helps to plan ahead.


Window Shopping Leads to Gift Ideas

river song's journal
River Song’s journal, part of the GeekMom geeky journal collection on eBay. Photo via eBay.

My eBay Collections were curated as part of a sponsored collaboration with eBay.

I’ve spent some time during recent months putting together groups of items for eBay to help launch their new Collections. I expected a lot of searching before I found just the right items, and that turned out to be exactly right, though it was also fun. But the hardest part happened when I was done. After looking over the GeekMom collections, I wanted to buy everything. One reason for that is because I filled collections with stuff I wished I could have in my own house.

For example, the S.H.I.E.L.D. collection has items featuring the current show, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., including shirts with the S.H.I.E.L.D. logo, a keychain, custom collectibles featuring Nick Fury and Black Widow, and sunglasses to complete your Agent Coulson look.

If you’re a fan of Joss Whedon’s work beyond his current show, like me, well, I couldn’t resist a Joss Whedon is My Master Now collection. This includes t-shirts, DVDs, and other items from his previous shows, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dollhouse, and Firefly. Though my favorite is the mash-up t-shirt with the logo: “And Buffy Staked Edward. The End.”

Some of the collections. Image: eBay
Some of the collections. Image: eBay

I moved over to my other interests for the remaining collections. I admit, I got lost on eBay for a while looking at all the amazing teapots available. I pulled a few for the I’m a Little Teapot collection, from the black cat teapot perfect for Halloween to the one that looks like a house to the Lenox pumpkin teapot. I also grabbed some infusers—yes, they come in robot-style—and loose tea. There were more sellers of great loose tea than I expected. Score.

With Must Have Coffee, I exchanged the pots for coffee makers, mugs, and several types of coffee. My skewed sense of humor immediately settled on a coffee mug that resembled a grenade entitled “complaint department.” But I also found mugs featuring Grumpy Cat, one featuring the actual Grumpy of the Seven Dwarves, and some beautifully made pottery-style mugs. There are also several coffee makers, including a Keurig machine, and Keurig coffee K-cups. And if you’re a purist (like my husband), whole bean coffee too.

steampunk, watch gears, men's watches
STEAMPUNK New Mens Swiss Design Men’s Silver Skeleton Man’s Mechanical Watch

The other collections are somewhat unrelated but I like to think Sherlock Holmes (the Elementary My Dear Watson collection) would love the Watches That Reflect the Steampunk Style. Sherlock Holmes—be he from the original Doyle stories, Jeremy Brett, or Benedict Cumberbatch—doesn’t feel right without the proper pocket watch.

Finally, you’ll need proper boots from my Coolest Retro Boots collection to run from zombies, though there are other ways to survive in the Zombies and How to Survive Them collection. Certainly, using the pirate boots from the boot collection to take over a ship and sail away from zombies would completely work as an escape. (I need to research whether zombies can swim. They can’t run, so surely they can’t swim?)

If not, the Zombie Survival Kit, gas mask, zombie slayer knives (pretend), or some movies in the Zombie collection might help even the survival odds. And what is more important to survival than keeping the proper notes to pass on knowledge?

The Geeky Journals collection can help with that. Besides the River Song journal, pictured above, there are journals with the Bat-signal, with illustrations from The Hobbit, pocket notebooks, a weather journal, and one with a Hunger Games-theme. (Katniss really knew something about survival.)

I loved every second of putting these collections together, except it was torture to not be able to buy everything I was adding to them. But it helped me create a wish list for myself for the future! Though I hope I won’t ever have reason for the Zombie Survival Kit. Hmm..perhaps my next collection should include boats.

My eBay Collections were curated as part of a sponsored collaboration with eBay. #FOLLOWITFINDIT

Gotta Share ‘Em All: The Fun of eBay Collections, Comic Book Style

A snapshot of some of our eBay Collection!
A snapshot of some of our eBay Collection! Image: eBay

My eBay Collections were curated as part of a sponsored collaboration with eBay.

Batgirl, Wonder Woman, Supergirl
Girl Hero Purse Adjustable Strap Bag, part of the Accessorize With Wonder Woman collection. Image: eBay

You might have noticed eBay’s Collections feature popping up recently. Here at GeekMom, we were able to start our collections a little early, and we’re really excited to share some of our favorites with you. It’s a great way to organize your all the things you love on eBay and share it with your friends and family. Best yet, all our picks have a geeky slant. Y’know, with our readers in mind, too.

Wonder Woman was a natural first choice, as I’ve already cosplayed as Wonder Woman, and I have a Wonder Woman hoodie that draws compliments everywhere I go. This collection includes purses, earrings, that Wonder Woman hoodie, other jewelry, your very own tiara, bracelet and lasso set, a Wonder Woman throw, and even a poster. Basically, if I’d been let free with my purse, my house would look a little bit like an ode to Wonder Woman.

I took a different strategy with All Things Batman. Because with Batman, there’s so very much. First, I made sure to include a few Batman shirts, including the one in this post, and my favorite Batman story, Batman: Year One. I also wanted to recognize the other members of the Bat-Family: Batgirl, Robin, and Nightwing. You’ll find Nightwing and Robin t-shirts along with a classic Batman hoodie, as well as something for the toddler-size Robin, and even a necklace.

Always Be Batman t-shirt from
The Always Be Batman t-shirt from the All Things Batman collection. Image: eBay

But if Wonder Woman and Batman aren’t among your favorites, there’s also the Wear Your Favorite Superhero Collection, where I picked out shirts featuring other heroes. Of course, Superman and Supergirl are included, and a few joint Girl Power-style shirts, but also some Justice League with logos about dating superheroes, and even Dream from Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series.

You get the idea. You can check out all our collections here, and stay tuned for some thoughts from Jenny.

My eBay Collections were curated as part of a sponsored collaboration with eBay.

Bid in a Charity Animation Art Auction, This Weekend!

Images used with permission.

The lovely wife of our friend, GeekLife‘s Bob Boyle, has put together a charity art auction including names that will be familiar to many of you. Art from My Little Pony, PowerPuff Girls, Spongebob, Yogi Bear, The Flintstones, Ren and Stimpy, Dilbert, even Phineas and Ferb. And… Mo Willems!

Images used with permission.

The auction opens in Los Angeles, California, tonight, Thursday, but there will also be an online auction on eBay starting on Friday night for those of us who aren’t close enough to attend in person. Check out the preview for the auction on the website!

A charity art auction needs a good cause, and this is a very good cause. Storyboard artist Joey Adams and his family are in need of help. To quote the website:

To be brief, he nearly lost his twin boys over the Christmas holidays, due to a possible genetic illness. Two years ago, he and his wife Ginger, lost their daughter, under similar circumstances. The boys survived, but baby Ian is currently undergoing grueling chemo, while undergoing extensive genetic testing. He will need a bone marrow transplant, and his brother Henry may need one as well.

You can get more information on their more personal website. Please bid generously! If you have the winning bid for any of the pieces of art, come back and tell us in the comments what you bought.

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