Wednesday

I've started my holiday regifting

It’s getting crazy out there! Yesterday I was nearly killed (OK, perhaps almost maimed) by a couple of guys fighting over the last Wii. Duh, you’d think they’d know where to find one … eBay of course. Come to think of it, perhaps they were a couple of eBay sellers trying to stock their eBay store!

I’ve yet to see such a year where everyone’s going mad trying to find just the right gift. We’re all so tired of the many gifts we get that, frankly, just aren’t right. So we are faced with the traditional holiday “Seinfeld” dilemma. Do we become re-gifters?

If you decide to re-gift (or better yet, resell on eBay), here are a few suggestions.
1. Thank the gift-giver. No matter how horrified you are when you open the box that houses the chartreuse-and-lime-green wool scarf, work up a smile. The gift-giver is looking at you with expectant eyes, just waiting for you to squeal with delight. On the chance that you can’t work up a squeal, give them a warm-hearted “thank you” and a big smile. A hug can also punctuate your sincerity.

2. When you get home, thoroughly open the gift. Rip through all the tissue, and be sure there’s nothing else in the box. This is a very basic but sometimes ignored rule of re-gifting. Gifts that are going to be re-gifted or resold must be checked thoroughly for anything that is personalized, including checks or gift cards that may have been placed inside the misfit present.

3. Don’t be in a rush to get rid of the gift. Getting the stuff out of the house may be your first instinct, but patience is key. Items that you may not need can be perfect presents for someone else in your life. If you’re planning to resell the gift on eBay, be sure to do a Completed Items search to see if a thousand other people got the same thing and put it up on eBay at the same time. (After all, how many people really want that bizarre scarf?)

4. Remember who the gift was from. Keep the original gift in its box, and mark the gift with a Post-it note so you remember who gave it to you. Store it in a clean, dust-free place, so when you are ready to re-gift or resell, the item is as good as it was on the day you received it.

These tips should be enough to get you going for now. I’ll have more in next week’s blog. Feel free to comment with any other ideas you have. Enjoy the season!

It's the Holiday Re-Gifting Season 2007

During this holiday season I’m eBay’s shopping and re-gifting expert. And though I pride myself on being a great gift-giver, honestly there are times that I’ve been stymied. If the recipient doesn’t look up at you with a big smile after tearing away the scads of carefully taped and beribboned paper, then you know there’s a chance your misfit gift will end up in that nether land of unwanted gifts stuffed in a closet, never to see the light of day.

There’s always a chance that the recipient will re-gift your present or — if she's a smart eBay seller — sell the item on the site quickly. As the old saying goes, there’s a hand for every glove (or something to that effect).

Since I’ll be blogging and answering your comments every week, I’d love to begin this season with gift suggestions from all you shopping gurus in the eBay community. What gifts do you think will be most appreciated this season?

For my first pick, I’ll go with the Nintendo Wii — I think everyone should have one in their home. It’s the first gaming console that appeals to all ages, you don’t have to be a hardcore gamer to enjoy playing it, and it has a wide variety of games. The Wii is still in short supply at retailers (an opportunity for savvy sellers out there?). So if you want to give one, snatch it up as soon as you find it. eBay has a number of these listed too!

Please post your comments here, including some of your own picks for the hottest holiday gifts for 2007. I’ll be posting every week through the holidays, and I’ll offer some of my own dos and don’ts when it comes to gift-giving, re-gifting, and reselling gifts on eBay!