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  #1  
Old 08-01-2015
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Default Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Hello, this is my first post here, I have a lot of experience with eBay but have never really had any completely stealth accounts before so I was wondering whether anyone could answer what is probably my biggest question about stealth eBay & PayPal accounts. Are they scale-able or just a temporary solution for smaller sellers?

Can stealth accounts be used to run a real business? I don't just mean generate 6 figures, I mean can I open a physical brick and mortar eBay drop off store that relies on multiple stealth accounts instead of a single legitimately verified account? I sell a lot of antiques, could I have a warehouse where the antiques are processed and then put into storage after being listed onto stealth accounts? Could this be done with just a single stealth account for each physical location or should I have 1 account for every 1000 items that I list or something like that?
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Old 08-01-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

What you're talking about is bigger than what I do, there are many members here that can help you better than I but a in a short answer, yes. You can do it. Having multiple accounts is the way to "stay under the radar". I believe the biggest downside is that the accounts will have to start small & build reputation over time.
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Old 08-02-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emporium View Post

Can stealth accounts be used to run a real business? I don't just mean generate 6 figures, I mean can I open a physical brick and mortar eBay drop off store that relies on multiple stealth accounts instead of a single legitimately verified account? I sell a lot of antiques, could I have a warehouse where the antiques are processed and then put into storage after being listed onto stealth accounts? Could this be done with just a single stealth account for each physical location or should I have 1 account for every 1000 items that I list or something like that?
Jeff Weico can give you a very lengthy and detailed response, and he's MUCH more knowledgeable than I, but I'll answer what I can.

In short, YES, it can be used to run a "legitimate business". BUT, it won't be easy. The best way to do what you're talking about is to get an LLC, that way you can be legitimate without eBay knowing it's YOU. To them, it's just Joe Blows LLC, not Joe Blow, banned eBay member.

Also, there ARE some theoretical limits as to what eBay considers "high risk". One of our members who has been doing stealth successfully for MANY years believes that 5k per month is the amount when eBay starts really looking into the accounts. It's advisable to stay UNDER this amount on each account. Still, 60k per year per account isn't bad!

Anyways, hopefully that helps some. Like I said, hopefully Jeff comes by and gives you a much more detailed answer. He's the go-to guy for these types of questions. He has a LOT more experience than most of us here, especially on matters like this.
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Old 08-02-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GhostOfAmazon View Post
Jeff Weico can give you a very lengthy and detailed response, and he's MUCH more knowledgeable than I, but I'll answer what I can.

In short, YES, it can be used to run a "legitimate business". BUT, it won't be easy. The best way to do what you're talking about is to get an LLC, that way you can be legitimate without eBay knowing it's YOU. To them, it's just Joe Blows LLC, not Joe Blow, banned eBay member.

Also, there ARE some theoretical limits as to what eBay considers "high risk". One of our members who has been doing stealth successfully for MANY years believes that 5k per month is the amount when eBay starts really looking into the accounts. It's advisable to stay UNDER this amount on each account. Still, 60k per year per account isn't bad!

Anyways, hopefully that helps some. Like I said, hopefully Jeff comes by and gives you a much more detailed answer. He's the go-to guy for these types of questions. He has a LOT more experience than most of us here, especially on matters like this.
very well put imho GOA!
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Old 08-02-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Yes, you can. But you shouldn't be thinking of one account. You should be thinking of 10-20 accounts. Relying on eBay (or Amazon) for your income is a very dicey proposition. eBay and Amazon ban sellers at the drop of a hat, sometimes just because they BELIEVE one seller might be connected with another seller who has actually done something wrong.

We can complain about that all day long, but the fact is that eBay and Amazon are VERY UNSTABLE PLATFORMS to build a business on. But, YES, it CAN be done through stealth.

If you have ONE eBay account and eBay decides to ban you, you are out of business. But if you have TEN accounts, and eBay bans one, then you are only losing 10% of your business. It is called "Risk Management" and major corporations have been practicing it for years. Now us little guys need it too.

I recommend using several accounts at a time and building them up. Assess each account for its strength. The strongest accounts you can turn into business accounts by attaching an LLC and EIN to. I recommend having no more than $5,000 per month in sales on any given account. $5,000 is when payment processors start to dig deeper into your business, because they are managing THEIR risk. That is when they start running credit reports, requesting supplier invoices and identity documents. Yes, it happens on smaller accounts too, but that is usually because they are suspicious of the account.

I think your scenario with the antiques could be EASILY justified if they ever called you out on it. Why 10 LLC's? Because each LLC is owned by a different group of investors. That happens all the time in the business world. Probably the most visible example is with movie studios - have you ever seen the beginning of a move where it says "Paramount Presents a Stage 6 Film, in association with Happy Madison Productions, High Noon Films and Lionsgate Entertainment"? Each of these are separate companies that own pieces of the movie. Yours would be the same thing, except with antiques and also the fact that you are not advertising each other's participation.

Yes, there are hoops to jump through, but if you want a STABLE business on eBay or Amazon, it is the only way that I know of. I run over 20 stealth accounts. When I discovered stealth after being banned by eBay, I decided to NEVER AGAIN give eBay the power to turn me into a welfare recipient.

Last edited by jeffweico; 08-02-2015 at 11:42 PM.
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Old 08-03-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Welcome to the forums - all the best as you master stealth
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Old 08-03-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emporium View Post
Can stealth accounts be used to run a real business?
Can real accounts be used to run a real business? Answer to that question is answer to your question.

Anything that you can do with real account, you can do with stealth, if you get the basics right, know how it works and have enough confidence and a bit of brainpower behind your operation, then running a stealth personal/business account is no different from running a real account.

There are few people here that you should pay attention to, few that are just repeating what other have said and then whole lot of trolls who are up and running and think they are next big thing after sliced bread.
The reality is, you need to read a bit... a lot. Get comfortable with how it works and then start your own operations.

Once up and running, you'll soon get used to it and you'll never look back.

Good luck to you and may the force be with you. Don't give when you hit the first wall, it happens to all of us. Just keep going.
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Old 08-03-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Haidukken View Post

There are few people here that you should pay attention to, few that are just repeating what other have said and then whole lot of trolls who are up and running and think they are next big thing after sliced bread.
The reality is, you need to read a bit... a lot. Get comfortable with how it works and then start your own operations.
I'm guessing you're the repeater? Or are you a troll?

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Old 08-05-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GhostOfAmazon View Post
In short, YES, it can be used to run a "legitimate business". BUT, it won't be easy. The best way to do what you're talking about is to get an LLC, that way you can be legitimate without eBay knowing it's YOU.

Also, there ARE some theoretical limits as to what eBay considers "high risk". One of our members who has been doing stealth successfully for MANY years believes that 5k per month is the amount when eBay starts really looking into the accounts. It's advisable to stay UNDER this amount on each account. Still, 60k per year per account isn't bad!
$60,000 per year per LLC/Account is okay but is there a reason that you would keep it under $60,000? Is this just because it's a stealth account or would you keep a normal account under $60,000 too? I don't plan on having any problems or relying on a single account either way.

Also, I am a little concerned about training my employees to be safe about not getting accounts linked but I guess if they use auctivia or another 3rd party lister/messager/shipper for everything then nobody would ever need to log into eBay, right?
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Old 08-05-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Go with ShipStation. The automation is FANTASTIC and you can have multiple eBay accounts under different warehouses and not get linked.

$5k per month is when payment processors want to know more about your business. So, it would be tough to pass any test as a stealth account. On a real account, assuming you are a legitimate business with legitimate products and you have a decent credit score, you can pass this inspection.

I got the information from someone at First Data Corporation. He told me that just about anybody can be approved to accept credit cards these days, but if your sales go over $5,000 per month, then they want more information because you represent a larger risk to them. Most people get approved, but they might want rolling reserves, etc. Or they may give you a sales limit like eBay does. It would not be a limit on the number of items, but a limit on your monthly sales.
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Old 08-06-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Is the $5k/month limit in regards to Amazon FBA, if that is the case what is the point? The time it takes to setup an LLC for 10 "credible" accounts, would equate to $50K/month. I was doing this and know how to do this right off the bat but I am worried my account will get banned for selling similar (not the same) products. Very worried to start with a ghost account to get it all compromised.
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Old 08-07-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

unfortunately jeff weico is right,

amazon and ebay have universal rules a one size fits all type of seller rule. i know some big sellers right now that dont really sell on amazon and ebay anymore....its definitely risky business to be on ebay and amazon. ever since i had multiple stealth accounts its put my mind more at ease.

also running an online business sometimes is hard because you have to adapt......meaning new products from the company come out therefore the products you sell will end up depreciating in value

Last edited by H4ck; 08-07-2015 at 01:58 PM.
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Old 08-07-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Honestly, it makes perfect sense for a ebay account that makes 5+ gross sales monthly too get extra security checks on it.

I don't know why it wouldnt??

If you make that much on a single account their assumption is your in this for the long term, so why wouldn't they ask for I.D ect ect.. Of course it sucks for stealth users but the majority of people don't blink a eye when it comes to supplying this information IF they truly are a business grossing 5K monthly.

To some thats nothing but in reality 5K monthly is alot to alot of people. At least we got that...It could be worse.

And I second what jeff said, shipstation is AMAZING.
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Old 08-07-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by woofwoof View Post
Is the $5k/month limit in regards to Amazon FBA, if that is the case what is the point? The time it takes to setup an LLC for 10 "credible" accounts, would equate to $50K/month. I was doing this and know how to do this right off the bat but I am worried my account will get banned for selling similar (not the same) products. Very worried to start with a ghost account to get it all compromised.
Amazon FBA is a little different. Since the merchandise is AT AMAZON and UNDER THEIR CONTROL, they are not as likely as payment processors to give your account more scrutiny.

Since they have the merchandise on hand and control the shipping, there is not as much of a "trust issue" here.

Still, I would urge you to spread your sales over a few accounts.
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Old 08-08-2015
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Default

Hi,
This thread is so informative; thank you everyone.
I'm in the UK and am fairly new to all this. Ship station sounds perfect for me but it does not cover the UK. Does anyone know of a system like this that services multiple accounts in one place for UK sellers?
Many thanks in advance. 😘
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffweico View Post
Go with ShipStation. The automation is FANTASTIC and you can have multiple eBay accounts under different warehouses and not get linked.

$5k per month is when payment processors want to know more about your business. So, it would be tough to pass any test as a stealth account. On a real account, assuming you are a legitimate business with legitimate products and you have a decent credit score, you can pass this inspection.

I got the information from someone at First Data Corporation. He told me that just about anybody can be approved to accept credit cards these days, but if your sales go over $5,000 per month, then they want more information because you represent a larger risk to them. Most people get approved, but they might want rolling reserves, etc. Or they may give you a sales limit like eBay does. It would not be a limit on the number of items, but a limit on your monthly sales.
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Old 08-17-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CherryBex View Post
Hi,
This thread is so informative; thank you everyone.
I'm in the UK and am fairly new to all this. Ship station sounds perfect for me but it does not cover the UK. Does anyone know of a system like this that services multiple accounts in one place for UK sellers?
Many thanks in advance. 😘
Google is your friend.
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Old 08-17-2015
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Default Re: Can Stealth Accounts be a Real Business?

You can build a six-figure stealth business. But you need to be very decent businessman. When it will rocket, you can always open a real LLC and make is a brand new and legit account owner, so your stealth will basically turn into a non-stealth. Or just have tons of stealth accounts (20-30) and run everything in a stealth mode. Combined profit from 30 accs will be huge.
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