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How to sell on Overstock

Reach global buyers through a trusted retail marketplace.

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With more than 15 years in the business, and 30 million unique visitors monthly, Overstock offers approved sellers the possibility of high sales volume. But traffic is small compared to other markets like Amazon and eBay, which might limit your profits, depending on what you’re selling.

What can I sell on Overstock?

Overstock supports sellers through a range of categories that include the following:

  • Home
  • Bed and bath
  • Jewelry and watches
  • Electronics and media
  • Health and beauty
  • Liquidations
  • Sports, hobbies and toys

Items that don’t fit neatly into established categories may require a chat with an Overstock representative.

How much does it cost to sell on Overstock?

Several sellers online say that Overstock charges about 10 cents for each listing and a commission fee equal to 3% of the sale of items priced up to $25. But it’s unclear how much you’ll pay for items more than $25, and you won’t find this or details about any other fees on its site – Overstock doesn’t disclose its fees until after you’ve signed up as a seller.

The best way to find out exactly what fees you’ll face while selling on Overstock is to contact it directly to discuss the specifics of your business.

Let’s crunch the numbers

Mark sells midcentury modern lamps, and he’s hoping to get his stock moving with listings on Overstock. He sold a lamp for $23 to a buyer in Spain, and included shipping in the price.

Here’s what Mark ends up paying in fees:

Overstock rate or feeTotal fee based on purchase price
3% commission rate$0.69
Item listing fee$0.10

In total, Mark only loses .79 cents on his $23 sale.

Is selling on Overstock worth it?

If you specialize in name-brand, top-of-the-line designer home goods, Overstock could be a solid addition to your business.

Selling products to more than 46 million customers, it considers itself a springboard to boost an online business. The company boasts many accolades, including award-winning customer service and a mention in Forbes Magazine’s 100 Most Trustworthy Companies in America.

Still, Overstock’s traffic is considerably less than giants like eBay and Amazon. Maximize your chance of a successful sale with a few key tips:

  • Think high quality. If your item doesn’t have the name recognition of similar items on Overstock, other bargain-focused marketplaces may be a better route.
  • Keep it simple. Overstock may upcharge you for bolding, highlighting or otherwise promoting your items amid competition. These strategies can be useful, but you’ll want to set a budget ahead of time for these types of promotions.
  • Get help. Overstock offers partnership options and access to initiatives that can link your product to noble causes. You can also tap into an extensive data-driven backend to investigate why your product is – or isn’t – selling well.

How to start selling on Overstock

Sign up as a seller in three steps and then wait for Overstock’s approval:

1. Visit Overstock’s Partner website and click Get Started.

2. Answer questions about your business’s capabilities, sales details and product types then click Submit.
Overstock user info image

3. Overstock assesses the business details you’ve provided against its own research, learning more about how you’ve handled past customer complaints, for instance. It can take up to a week for a response.

If you’re accepted as an Overstock seller, you’ll log in to complete your seller profile, upload item details and advertise in appropriate categories.

How to price your items

Consider three main factors when pricing your items:

  • Your overhead. Whether you are drop shipping, selling your own creations or reselling items, work your way backward. Figure out the lowest possible costs you can support and still stay in business. Keep in mind Overstock’s shifting fee schedule.
  • The market. Chances are high that the item you’re selling – or an item like it – is already listed on Overstock. Use existing item prices to help find starting price points and shift them accordingly. Consider running deals around the holidays, a popular time for buyers.
  • Your buyers. Overstock’s main competitors are Bed Bath & Beyond, Wayfair and Target, according to Alexa.com. Use this information to inform how you design your sales and strategies specifically for Overstock buyers.

What types of payment does Overstock accept?

Overstock accepts payments that range from credit cards to store cards and even to crypto:

  • Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express
  • Overstock Store Credit Card
  • Overstock Gift Cards
  • PayPal
  • Progressive Leasing
  • Bitcoin

Customers are charged one they place an order, but sellers don’t receive compensation until after you’ve shipped the item. When Overstock verifies the order’s complete, they transfer your profits through bank transfer.

How to get paid by international buyers

Overstock routes all international transactions through the e-commerce system FedEx Cross Border, which comes with an additional fee for buyers.

This is an upside for sellers for the following reasons:

  • You don’t have to worry about international exchange rates.
  • Overstock handles all payments.
  • Payments are guaranteed after you ship the item.

If you find yourself still needing to deal with foreign currencies, compare digital money specialists offering online seller accounts:

How to ship items on Overstock

Overstock offers two shipping options for sellers on its website:

  • Shipping items yourself. From the moment a buyer confirms the sale, you have a specific amount of time to get the package in the mail. Overstock requires that you meet packaging standards its customers have come to expect.
  • Shipment through Supplier Oasis. Depending on where you’re sending the product, this may be an easier option. This fulfillment company sends your items within 24 hours of purchase to anywhere in the world. You either send it your inventory or use your own storage space, saving money by routing large-scale shipping operations through the service.

How can I market my Overstock products?

Overstock offers a few listing boosters for a fee. Bolding and highlighting your item can help your product stand out.

More robust marketing tools for sellers include advisers that can help you realize potential brand growth and a suite of business reports, analytics, SKU building tools and photo services.

What to watch out for when selling with Overstock

The following are a few key potential drawbacks to keep in mind when selling on Overstock:

  • Mainly US buyers. Despite supporting buyers from other countries, Overstock’s main base is the US. This means steep international fees and taxes for buyers abroad.
  • Fees not transparent. You may not know exactly how much you’ll lose to commissions and fees on your specific items or specialty until you sign up.
  • New items only. Overstock only sells new product, unlike eBay.
  • Restricted bidding. Sellers don’t appear to have as much power as buyers do. For instance, you can’t reject bids or close an auction ahead of time.

Compare e-commerce platforms

If you want to be able to sell on more than just Overstock, an e-commerce platform can help you build your own store and sell through multiple channels.

Updated April 9th, 2020
Name Product Products Prices start at Hosting
BigCommerce
Payment processing
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Inventory tracking
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$29.95/mo
Hosted
BigCommerce is an all-in-one e-commerce platform created to help you sell more.
Square E-commerce
Payment processing
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Inventory tracking
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$0/mo + processing fees of 2.9% + 30¢
Hosted
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Helcim
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POS software
POS hardware
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0.10% + $0.10 per transaction
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Conveniently packaged into three service tiers for in-person and online sales.
Shopify
Payment processing
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Inventory tracking
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$29/mo
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Shopify offers both e-commerce and in-person POS systems designed to help you build a new online store from the ground up.
3dcart
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Inventory tracking
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$19/mo
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Helps businesses build online storefronts while offering a variety of service tiers bundled for businesses large or small
Shopify Plus
Payment processing
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Inventory tracking
Shopping cart software
Shipping software
Varies
Hosted
A customizable solution for enterprise-level e-commerce stores.
X-cart
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Shopping cart software
Shipping software
$0
Self-hosted
X-Cart is an e-commerce platform that can handle your store as it grows to an enterprise-level business.
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