Mercari vs eBay// The Ultimate Showdown for Online Sellers

Are you looking for a new app to buy and sell items? If so, you may have come across Mercari and eBay. 

Both are popular platforms for buying and selling a wide variety of items, but there are some critical differences between the two. 

Mercari is known for its easy-to-use interface and low fees, while eBay has a broader selection of items and a more established reputation. 

Whether you want to declutter your home or find a good deal on something, both Mercari and eBay are worth checking out.

In this article, we will compare the two to see which one is a better fit for you. Let’s get to it! 

What is Mercari? 

Snapshot Of The Mercari Webpage.

Mercari is a selling platform based in Japan.

Although it was only introduced in 2013, it has already risen to the top of the platforms buyers and sellers use.

In 2014, its app was made available in the US. It has since paid its sellers more than $1 billion!

One of the reasons so many people use Mercari is that it is one of the most accessible platforms.

Mercari offers some of the most straightforward protocols for both purchasing and selling. 

And you can sell just about anything on Mercari. I’m talking about anything from car parts to collectible cards.

Most items sold on Mercari are USED, earning the website the largest online flea market title. Ultimately, Mercari is a well-liked online shopping site.

You can probably find a customer interested in what you offer, whether you want to sell new or used goods. 

Best of all, the process will be as smooth as butter.

Explore this comprehensive Mercari review. Bookmark it for a coffee break read.

What is eBay? 

Screenshot Of The eBay Webpage.

eBay is practically a household name by now.

Since it’s been around for a while, it has become the go-to platform for online retailing today. 

The website went live in 1995 and has since been accessible worldwide. Buying something for yourself on eBay is hardly unheard of.

Since its inception, eBay has consistently seen an annual gross merchandise volume above $100 billion.

That’s why it’s safe to assume you’ll see visitors here daily.

Buying and reselling products on eBay for a profit has become widespread.

eBay stands apart from the competition because of its auction function.

You can sell your goods for a predetermined price but establish a minimum price and let potential customers bid on it.

Naturally, the item goes to the highest bidder.

eBay may be an industry veteran but hasn’t slowed its momentum.

eBay is still one of the best places to sell new or used products because of the many people who use and trust it.

If eBay has piqued your interest and you’re eager to dive deeper, bookmark eBay Selling 101 for an insightful deep dive!

[Dive into a compelling money chat featuring Jason Butler! Join us in this video as we discuss growing a blog, mastering eBay selling, and the art of T-shirt hustles.

Discover how Jason uses side hustles to tackle debt, openly tracking his progress to inspire others. Get motivated and learn invaluable insights!]

Remember, side hustles can powerfully transform your financial journey. Stay inspired, stay motivated, and keep hustling towards your goals!

Don’t forget to like, subscribe, and share for more valuable content. Until next time, keep hustling!”

Mercari vs eBay: A Comparison in Features 

Now that we know who Mercari and eBay are, let’s take a peek under their hoods and compare. 

Signing Up 

It’s simple to open an account on either Mercari or eBay.

These websites are made with the contemporary user in mind, so all you need is a computer and an internet connection to get started.

Users often praise Mercari for its straightforward signup, yet the reality reveals minimal differences from other marketplace signups.

Mercari’s signup process is stupidly easy, requiring only an email address. Then, you’ll have to verify your account, and it is free to start listing.

Payment is not required, nor is there any more preparation on your part. In addition, there are not many fields to fill out while uploading listings. 

Include some photos, a brief description, and a price; you’re all set.

eBay uses a very similar procedure. You may sign up for an eBay account with your email or Facebook.

Listing Process

A Gentleman Capturing A Photo Of His Unpackaged Converse Shoes With His Phone.

Selling anything on Mercari is easy, but selling on eBay is much more complicated. 

However, eBay has an audience that is around eight times larger than Mercari’s. That’s why filling out all the listing requirements is worth it.

Listing Process on Mercari 

There is a limit of 12 photos per Mercari listing. You can use up to 80 characters for the title of your listing. 

All the text you provide to describe an item on Mercari will be easily found through the site’s search function, making it an integral part of your SEO strategy. 

Then, select the appropriate options for brand, condition, size, and shipping, set your asking price, and hit “list.”

Innovative pricing on Mercari allows you to set a minimum price to sell an item. 

Mercari will gradually lower the price over a few days while advertising the item’s sale at each price drop until it attracts a buyer.

Listing Process on eBay 

Ebay’s listing form is the most time-consuming because of all the required fields and choices. 

You can upload up to 12 photographs and a video to your eBay listing. The title on eBay can have up to 80 characters.

A wide variety of additional information can be included in an eBay listing beyond the mandatory brand, condition, and size specifications. 

However, they are essential if you want your business to get the most attention and generate the most revenue possible.

Text entered into eBay’s description box won’t affect buyer searches. Concentrate your SEO efforts on product details instead.

When posting an item on eBay, you can specify your preferred payment method, shipment method, and return policy. 

These options are all part of eBay’s business policies. You can define your policies in the eBay Seller Hub for quicker listing.

You’ll find options for promotions (highly recommended) and bulk pricing, which essentially function as a bundled discount.

You can pick between a “buy it now” or “auction” format and add a minimum bid or a reserve price. 

While the extensive listing process and numerous options might appear daunting, they’re chances to enhance your offering and boost its visibility to eBay’s vast audience.

Indeed, eBay’s seller tools may seem intricate but unmatched. Additionally, eBay now accommodates listings with multiple quantities and distinct descriptions.

Conversely, Mercari does not have this feature. That’s why sellers who want to provide several quantities or variants of a product must instead create separate listings.

Managing Listings 

Each platform provides tools to enhance your listings’ visibility, but one is more comprehensive. 

Managing Listings on Mercari 

Mercari is a marketplace where sellers typically “list it and leave it.” This saves effort but doesn’t maximize revenue.

On top of Mercari’s innovative pricing, it also provides offers for people who are interested in your products. 

You can promote your listings for free at intervals with minor price cuts to alert everyone who likes your items. 

Honestly, you’re better off “refreshing” your listings by relisting them manually when they get “stale” than relying on these limited tools.

Managing Listings on eBay 

eBay is a behemoth with many functions, including (paid) listing promotions, discount coupons, bulk price changes, special deals for eBay fans, in-store specials, and more. 

Having an eBay store is required for many of these, and I recommend it to everyone who wants to sell on the platform. 

Renewing your monthly eBay listings will help keep your product listings current in the search results.


Seller fees are a significant consideration when determining where to sell online. 

Knowing your budget is essential since high fees can destroy your profit margin or even cause you to lose money.

Mercari Fees 

If you’re looking for a low-cost way to start a side business in reselling, Mercari is an excellent option.

No risk is involved in listing on Mercari because the seller fees are deducted solely from your profits.

Each transaction costs you $0.30 plus 2.9% of the total cost to complete the payment.

If your bank rejects the direct deposit or your withdrawal is less than $10, you will be charged a $2 fee.

You can only have 100 listings first, but that number will increase if you’re regularly selling on Mercari.

More work is involved because the platform recommends that you constantly relist your products to boost their chances of selling.

eBay Fees 

Every eBay user is allowed to post 200 free listings each month. Any further listings will cost you $0.35 each.

Every user of eBay receives 200 free listings per month, and each additional listing costs $0.35.

The website also provides a tier-based menu of Store subscriptions. This is where you pay a monthly fee to gain access to more marketing resources, free listings, and price breaks.

The site takes 10%-12% of each sale you make for most categories, up to $750 per item, regardless of your account type.

Plus, you should be aware that the listing fee is non-refundable if your item doesn’t sell and that you will be charged again if you decide to relist the item.


Packaging Ready For Shipment.

Many delivery options are available to sellers on Mercari and eBay. 

eBay is better since it lets you provide different options on the same item, giving the customer a choice.

Similarly, eBay provides international shipping, while Mercari does not.

Mercari Shipping 

There is a shipping component in each Mercari listing. Mercari will email you a label upon sale if you ship with them. 

The item’s weight and dimensions in the packing must be indicated when listing. 

If you decide to ship independently, you must buy your shipping label and give Mercari the package’s tracking details.

You can charge your customers for shipping or offer free shipping (paying for the shipping costs yourself).

You can also choose the shipping company you’re most familiar with based on your products, region, and business preferences.

eBay Shipping 

On eBay, there are many shipping options and delivery methods for your customers. 

Plus, you can provide various delivery alternatives (for the same item) to draw in and serve many customer types.

Use a shipping company integrated with eBay, such as USPS, FedEx, and UPS.

You can also go for DHL, Lasership, Lonestar, OnTrac, Spee-Dee, and eBay shipping services. 

These services can help you safeguard yourself against “items not received” allegations. 

You may specify in your Seller Hub to exclude delivery addresses from your listings.

On eBay, you can charge for shipping or offer free postage for shipping and returns. 

The most popular option for sellers is calculated shipping, where the customer pays a payment processing fee depending on the following:

  • Their delivery address 
  • The carrier of their choosing 
  • The weight and dimensions of their order 

In this scenario, you would be charged for both the item and the shipping at the time of the transaction. You would then be prompted to print and attach an eBay label to your package.

Seller Protection 

The seller protection policies should also be considered when choosing between selling on Mercari and eBay.

Fraudulent activities, demanding customers, faulty products, and late deliveries pose potential challenges for sellers. That’s why implementing a seller protection policy is crucial!

Seller Protection on Mercari 

Buyers are valued more highly than sellers in a transaction, according to active Mercari users. 

Returns must be requested within three days of the product’s arrival, and I’d say this is reasonable.

The platform defers payment up to three days after delivery when you and the buyer have given each other ratings.

Seeing the money in your account could take time if your buyer forgets to submit your review.

Seller Protection on eBay

If you ship late, cancel an order, or get a bad review on eBay, your account will be marked with “defects,” which will reduce the attractiveness of your listing to potential customers.

Every 1 to 12 months, depending on your sales performance, eBay also gives performance assessments on each account, examining the quality of your transactions and listings.

Customers can request a return within ten days of receiving their purchase, but the seller decides whether to accept it unless the item is damaged or lost in transit.

Due to PayPal’s policy, you must handle the return if you use their services to conduct transactions.

eBay provides a “Money Back Guarantee” to ensure sellers still get paid for the things they’ve shipped. 

This is in the unlikely event that the seller doesn’t receive money for an item and hasn’t done anything wrong.

Pause and bookmark the next epic battle: ThredUP vs Poshmark. Savor it with a cup of hot chocolate!

Local Selling 

Pausing For A Moment In A Dispatch Room.

Online stores like eBay and Mercari are renowned for selling goods to consumers nationwide.

However, you can also sell in person using Mercari and eBay. This is the greatest approach to selling if you want to make quick cash and avoid the trouble of shipping.

Let’s check out how local selling on eBay and Mercari compares.

Local Selling on Mercari 

Mercari has debuted Mercari Local, a new marketplace section for local sellers.

And unlike selling on Facebook Marketplace or OfferUp, where you have to meet (sometimes) rude buyers in person, this doesn’t need that.

Instead, you may benefit from contact-free delivery and never have to meet your buyer, thanks to Mercari Local’s partnership with Uber.

Your package is picked up by an Uber driver, who then delivers it to the buyer’s address. It’s easy and secure because you receive payment using the Mercari app.

But please be informed of Mercari Local’s additional price of $7.99 for each delivery.

Local Selling on eBay 

You can publish eBay classified ads if you wish to sell something locally. Contrary to Mercari Local, you must meet the buyer in person and agree on the payment method.

A classified ad’s insertion charge is $9.95 for a 30-day term. Your listing expires after 30 days when you must repurchase the advertisement.

The benefit is that local customers will pay you in cash, which is advantageous if you prefer cash sales.

However, Mercari fees are cheaper than eBay fees for local selling.

The buyer must also be met in person, a time must be set, and a payment mechanism must be chosen that is convenient for both parties.

Customer Support 

What customer care is like is a crucial consideration in the Mercari vs. eBay selling discussion.

You will unavoidably run into an issue once you begin making sales. Because of this, having access to customer support when you need it most is essential.

Mercari’s Customer Support 

Your questions can most likely be addressed in the Help Center on the Mercari website.

If something more serious comes up, like fraud, you can email their support personnel if you can’t resolve the problem alone. 

eBay’s Customer Support 

Most problems you may encounter will have an obvious answer because eBay has obvious regulations and guidelines for sellers and buyers.

Your issues can be quickly remedied by calling or emailing their customer service department.

Mercari vs eBay: The Pros and Cons 

Her Indecision Is Quite Apparent.

To help you see the differences between each selling platform and make your decision, let’s break down a list of pros and cons for each forum.

Mercari Pros 

  • Easy Listing: Unlike eBay, you only have to provide the essential information for every listing. Then, put up some photos of the item, and you are ready to sell. 
  • Easy shipping: The prepaid labels and flat-rate shipping that Mercari provides make it simple to ship your goods across the country for a reasonable purchase price. Not to mention that you are protected if something goes wrong, thanks to their shipping protection.
  • Privacy Protection: You will communicate with buyers in a safe, separate chat, so you can provide information about the sale without stress.
  • Low Cost: You will keep more of the money from the products you sell with Mercari because there is no listing fee and only a 10% commission on orders.

Mercari Cons 

  • Relisting: In popular categories, listings may get buried quickly within the search results. More people will notice your listings if you relist them frequently, but this takes more time and effort.
  • Buyer Scams: A customer may be allowed to keep a returned item after receiving a refund.
  • Slow Payments: It may take several days before your funds are moved to your account because of Mercari’s rating system.

eBay Pros 

  • Huge International Customer Base: Given that eBay has the most users and the broadest audience, this is unquestionably one of its most compelling selling points. You’re likely to earn more sales and even sell your products for a better price than you would on Mercari. More customers imply there will be more money to go around.
  • Over-the-phone Customer Service: Unlike Mercari, eBay offers phone support from 5 AM to 10 PM every day, making any problem easily remedied.
  • No Relisting Required: You can pretty much list something on eBay, leave it there, and forget about it until it sells. To make the transaction, there’s no need to advertise or relist the products.
  • Brand Building: You could convert one-time visitors into loyal consumers because eBay allows you to offer your products under a Store subscription.

eBay Cons 

  • Oversaturated Market: There are a lot of people on eBay selling nearly identical items with minor differences, so it might be difficult to stand out.
  • Listing Fees: While eBay does provide one free listing each month, any extra listings will incur fees in addition to the standard eBay selling commission. eBay users will need to do some math to see if they’re still in the black after eBay takes their share.
  • Strict Final Value Fee: Any discrepancy in the weight of your items will result in additional eBay shipping fees being billed to you.

The Verdict: Which One is Better? 

As you can see, Mercari and eBay have a lot to offer. This can make it difficult to choose the best online marketplace for your side hustle.

In the end, both of these platforms are excellent for selling, but which one is ideal for you personally will depend on your preferences.

For vendors that value convenience and usability, Mercari is preferable.

It’s a terrific opportunity to earn additional money without much fuss. Mercari only demands a small amount of information and can allow you to sell things just by uploading a few images.

Because of this, Mercari is perfect for people who want to sell their old items but aren’t interested in making a living doing it.

For those who prefer more pricing freedom and seller support, eBay is preferable.

Due to these two advantages, professional sellers who are serious about profiting from online selling should consider using eBay.

That is not to imply that if you want to pursue a career in flipping, you must choose eBay. You can choose Mercari instead, but your options will be limited.

Wrapping up, I highly recommend reading this article: “The Ultimate Guide to Selling Shoes Online.” You’re in for a great read!

Final Thoughts 

Both Mercari and eBay are excellent marketplaces; there’s no doubt about it. 

In the end, both Mercari and eBay are excellent marketplaces.

They’re relatively risk-free to use, super convenient, and provide easy access to foreign buyers and sellers. 

By now, I hope you have a clearer idea of which one is the better fit for you.

Disclosure: This article might contain affiliate links to the resources I refer to. It's at no cost to you, and it's how we pay the bills. Get more info here.

Brooks Conkle Banner Image
Brooks Conkle

Brooks is an entrepreneur, father, husband, & follower of the golden rule. He has over 15 years of experience as an entrepreneur after graduating with a Finance degree from Auburn University. Addicted to starting new business projects, he believes in creating multiple income streams and a life of flexibility. Business should work around your life, not the other way around. He creates content on his website, sharing his projects to help other hustlers in marketing, personal finance, and online business.