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eBay Hacks by David A. Karp

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Show a 360-Degree View of Your Item

With a few photos of your item and a little JavaScript code, you can wow your customers with that showroom feel.

One of JavaScript’s greatest strengths is its ability to manipulate images on a web page, allowing you to turn an otherwise static auction page into an interactive selling tool. In addition to being much cooler than eBay’s built-in slide show feature, it’s completely free and limited only by the amount of time you want to spend preparing your images.

Taking the Photos

The most challenging part of creating an interactive 360-degree view of your item is taking the photos, which really isn’t all that difficult. The goal is to take photos of all sides of an item so that when they’re viewed consecutively, like frames in a movie, it looks like the object is spinning. In most cases, you won’t need more than four or five images. Having more frames will produce a smoother effect, but will take longer to load.

There are two basic approaches to taking the photos:

Stationary camera

To produce a “spinning” effect, simply mount your camera on a tripod and point it at your item. Take a photo, rotate the item 90 degrees, take another photo, rotate it again, and so on. For a smoother effect, place your item on a turntable or lazy susan, commonly available at hardware and houseware stores.

Stationary object

If you’re photographing a large item, like a car or piece of furniture, or if you simply want that “walkaround” effect, then you can literally walk around ...

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