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From the author of What Shipping Service Should You Choose?

What Shipping Service Should You Choose?

There’s no single best answer to the question of which shipping service to use. It all depends on the size of the item, where it’s going, how fast it needs to get there, and how much you (or your buyer) is willing to pay.

For simplicity’s sake, many sellers like USPS’ Priority Mail. When you use a flat-rate box or envelope, you not only get a free shipping container, you know the shipping costs upfront—because they’re the same no matter where you ship to. This lets you easily state your shipping fee to buyers, without fear of going over if you calculate wrong.

That said, Priority Mail sometimes costs more than competing services. If price is a factor, you may be better off with the less-expensive (but also slower) Parcel Post or Media Mail.

For larger or heavier items, UPS Ground or FedEx Ground may be better solutions. Compare the pricing of these two services against comparable USPS services for a sampling of ZIP codes; you may find that UPS or FedEx provide a little more bang for the buck.

Whichever of these services you choose, since they’re integrated into eBay, they’re going to be relatively easy to use. Just select the service(s) you want when creating your item listing, and eBay helps calculate the shipping fees. You also get to print pre-paid shipping labels at the end of the auction for any of these services—a real time-saver.

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