BEFORE YOU BEGIN
138 About Digital Pictures and eBay
139 Set Up and Take a Picture
134 Add Pictures to Your Auction
If you don't have a digital camera, the Web is a great place to get photos for use in your auctions. Not only can you find thousands of photos, but the ones you find will already be web friendly, so you'll have less work to do before you post them on your auction. The Web is the ideal place to find photos of manufacturers' goods, such as computers, digital cameras , and so on. If you're selling a vintage item, a one-of-a-kind item, or something you can't find on a manufacturer's website, you'll have to photograph the item yourself (see 139 Set Up and Take a Picture ).
If you're grabbing a photo from the Web, make sure that the item you're selling is in as good shape as the photo you're using. If the item is worn or damaged in any way, using a photo of a perfect item is misleading. The buyer would have the right to return the item because you misrepresented it. If your item is in good shape, you can use the picture and add a disclaimer such as "manufacturer's photo of new item," and then describe how your item differs from the picture.
Do a Basic Google Image Search
The single best place on the Internet for finding photos is the Images section of the Google search site. Go to www.google.com and click the Images tab.
In the search box, type the name of the item you're looking for. Be as descriptive as possible; if you have a model number for the item, include it. Then press Enter or click the Google Search button.
Use the Advanced Google Image Search
If you want to fine-tune your search and get a better, more focused selection of images, click the Advanced Image Search link. The Find Results section of the page lets you determine how Google searches for your search terms. You can choose to have it find pictures related to the exact phrase you type (select related to the exact phrase ), find pictures related to any term (select related to any of the words ), search for pictures related to all the terms (select related to all of the words ), and even exclude pictures that contain certain words (select not related to the words and type the words you don't want the pictures related to).
140. Use the Web to Get a Digital Picture
At the bottom of the screen, you can fine-tune the search by filtering by the size of the images; the file types; whether the images should be in color , black and white, or both; and even from a specific domain.
The Web contains many pornographic images; no matter how innocuous your search terms, you might come across pornographic images when doing a Google search for images. If you want to ensure that no such images appear, select Use strict filtering or Use moderate filtering in the Safe Search section of the screen. Strict filtering filters out more pictures but might also filter out some non-pornographic pictures you'll want to see. With moderate filtering , a pornographic picture is slightly more likely to slip through, but you'll more likely get a wide range of legitimate pictures as well.
Browse the Results
Google searches for images based on your criteria and shows you the results. Each picture it finds has a small thumbnail as well as the URL where the image is located. Google also tells you the size of the picture, in pixels and in bytes (such as 8K, or 8 kilobytes). As a general rule, you don't want pictures to be large, more than about 50K, and preferably much smaller, especially if you're going to use several on your auction page. The larger the picture is in kilobytes, the longer the auction page will take to load and the more likely people are to leave your auction before the images loadwhich means fewer bidders.
Browse through the pictures until you find one you want, and click to select it.
Enlarge the Picture
Click the See full-size image link directly under the picture to enlarge it. When you do, the image, full-size, appears alone in your browser window.
You should not use a copyrighted image from the Web without first asking permission to use the picture. It can be very difficult to determine whether a picture is copyrighted, however. At a minimum, send a note to the person in charge of the website, telling him that you plan to use the image in an eBay auction and asking whether the image is copyrighted . The best way to find contact information is through the Contact Us link or section found on most websites .
Save the Picture to Your Hard Disk
When you find a picture you are considering using in your auction, save it to your hard disk. Do this by first enlarging the picture, as detailed in step 4. Then right-click the picture and select Save Picture As from the context menu. The Save Picture dialog box appears. Browse to the folder where you want the picture saved and click Save . Consider creating separate picture folders for each of your auctions as a way to keep them organized.
When saving your picture, give it a descriptive name by typing the name into the File Name box in the Save Picture dialog box. Typically, the names of files on websites are incomprehensiblefilenames such as 153580-elec_lg-resized200.jpg and you'll want a more descriptive filename than that.
Go to the Manufacturer's Website
If you know the manufacturer of the goods you're selling, consider going straight to its website instead of using Google to find pictures. Many manufacturers post marketing photographs and photos from online manuals. When you find a picture you want to use, save it as outlined in step 5.