How do I know how much to pay my Selling Assistant client?

calculator photoSaying that you’ll pay your client the actual value their items sold for is really an oversimplification because, depending on how you decided to handle your SA fees and/or commission, shipping and selling fees or other expenses, there are several deductions you’ll need to make from that number before you actually send a payment. Of all the elements of your business, this is the one you want to be the most careful with. Mistakes can lead anywhere from a lawsuit from a client you shortchanged to you overpaying, and those extra dollars will not be easy to get back, if ever.

While your equation will vary slightly depending on how you’re allocating everything, here’s the basic breakdown:


Let’s do a quick example. Let’s say I’m your SA and your item sold on eBay for $1,000. The eBay and PayPal fees I’m holding you responsible for total $130.59, and I charge a 35% commission on the final sale price, which comes to $350. I didn’t bill you for anything else, so it’s a simple matter of punching our values into the equation above.

$1000 – $130.59 – $350 = $519.41

I owe you $519.41.

Did you look at that number and think, dang, I didn’t get much of that fictional $1,000? Now you’ve got a sense of what it’s like to be a Selling Assistance client and why it’s important to make sure your client is informed ahead of time about the various costs and deductions. But remember, presentation is everything. How you present the payment to your client and report all the expenses will be a big factor in how they react to the bottom line. Deductions look much more drastic when looking at an individual transaction than when applied to the total of the whole contract.