When you’re just starting out selling on eBay it might be unlikely that you’ll generate enough listings to justify forking over the money for an eBay store. One issue, however, is that eBay stores offer something called “Vacation Mode” for when you need to take a few days off. Personal accounts don’t have the same setting, but I figured out a way to mimic the functionality with my personal account.
Now get the overview out of the way, we’re going to set the handling time of all the active listings to something that works for our vacation timeframe. Something like 5 business days when you’re taking a week off. This way if someone buys something while we are on vacation, my eBay account doesn’t get dinged for uploading the tracking information late.
There are two major points when you set this up. One, you want to be sure to set all of them back to something more reasonable when you’re done with vacation or even lower them during your vacation. Second, you want to make sure you have lots of contact with any buyers that do make a purchase during your vacation. For example, I recently did this when I took a weeklong vacation and did have someone submit a “best offer” on an item during that week. To let them know that it might be a while before I could ship the item, I sent them back a counteroffer for the exact same amount of their offer with the message that I was out of town and wouldn’t be able to ship the item until next week and they could reject my counter offer if that was a problem.
Here are the detailed steps to set up a personal eBay vacation mode.
EDIT: I should also mention that this probably only works well with Buy It Now listings (which was all I had at the time). I can’t say for sure how well it might work with auction-style listings. For those, I’d just recommend making sure all your auctions end well before your vacation and be sure to include any time for payments that might come in late and unpaid item disputes to resolve.