Saturday, July 26, 2008

So some hints about making more money on ebay

Ok, this is supposed to be about making money on ebay (I've given up on the hope of FUN on ebay for the moment...)

So, first what are my credentials?

a) Silver level power seller (for the last 3 years straight and at times during the 8 years and 3 mos before that)

b) Been on ebay 11 years - primarily as a seller

c) Been making a living for the last 3 years on eBay - not a great one but paying the bills


SO on to some tips

#1 TIP of all time - List More Sell MORE

On ebay - volume counts - the more auction listings the more traffic I get. The more store listings, the more traffic I get. As part of that, let me remark that I have an ebay store...and every time I "cross" a hundred mark, my sell-through goes up a bit more. My sales increase.

When I got over 100 items in the store it went up.
When I got up to 200 items it went up.
The day I got the 500th item in there it jumped amazingly.

So list more - sell more


#2 Tip of all time:

YOU CAN'T SELL WHAT AIN'T LISTED!

Your mother is going "DUH, I told you that".

Seriously - put the Christmas stuff in the store now. Put the Halloween stuff in the store now.

Put the woolen sweaters in the store now. (You know it is winter in Australia right? So THEY are buying woolen sweaters when WE are just sweating. )

At Halloween you can put the stuff in auction or run a special. The week after Halloween have a "clearance sale" like the real stores do. BUT LIST IT. AND....Leave it listed. It costs a crummy 3 cents to keep it going for a month.

#3 - USE a spell checker and speak English (assuming of course you are listing on the US /UK/CA or AU sites and are reaching an English speaking market. )

Nothing ruins that initial impression as fast as bad spelling, bad grammar and not proofreading your material (and I'm guilty of all three on this blog sometimes so it proves my point. )

#4 - find, make, steal or buy an inventory system. Keep track of where things are so you can ship fast. I swear sometimes that people look at my listings and deliberately buy anything that doesn't have an inventory number. (those are the older listings pre-system and are very hard to find. LOL)

5. Put all your terms in your listing but say it gracefully. This crap with people saying IF YOU DON"T PLAN TO PAY DON"T BID..?? do you think people bid with the intention of not paying or maybe they bid, find out they are over extended and then are embarrassed by your nasty terms?

6. Have a return policy (this will soon be required) even if it says SORRY! No returns on this item

7. Take Paypal (I'd say take googlecheckout too if ebay would let us) because? BECAUSE, Silly, people pay faster, they don't have to give you their credit card info and they don't really trust us so they feel safer with ebay. (I know not everyone does but 80% of the buyers on ebay do)

And as a footnote - in 11 years 4 mos on ebay? I have NEVER had a bounched check. So if someone wants to send you a money order or a check? Say ok, THANKS!

8. Don't ship without insurance - I use a third party insurer for lower value items. it's so easy to report shipments to them. And for breakables, I buy insurance from the PO or the carrier. I do require it on my auctions (all of them...what if the stinkin' thng gets lost in the mail -not broke cause it's not fragile..just LOST - gone disappeared, never existed??)

Use my referral code please! http://www.dsiinsurance.com/transfer.asp?refId=130
and ask for a quote. Try them, you'll like them. VERY easy and pleasant to deal with.

9. List regularly - better to do 10 a day than 90 on one day and nothing for a month.

10. You really make your profit when you buy your item. So buy low, sell a little higher. Do not list an item for 99 cents when you paid $10 for it. And then what? You cross fingers and toes and pray that it goes higher? THAT'S just plain stupid. List for Cost plus Expense (the ebay and paypal fees/FVF fees) plus Profit. I learned this from ROY on AOL's small business forum and it's serving me well. (Roy used to have a blog but there was some family problems and I can't find his blog right now. When I do I'll post HIS 13 tips. They were excellent.

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