Posts Tagged ‘Smart’

What are some good alternatives to selling on eBay?

January 22nd, 2013 4 comments

Ebay’s new policy changes have resulted in a huge drop in sales – the biggest I’ve seen in my 10 years of selling on there. Many sellers speak of selling on other sites, but the few that I can find seem to not be worth the time.
What are these sites? Does anyone else sell online?
I sell antique jewelry…

Sales may be down but it could very well be due, in great part, to the economy. This may be especially true if you are selling high-end jewelry. Regardless, people who have been affected by the economy will forgo jewelry to buy necessities.

However, before you jump ship, consider your potential market. How many members does the new auction site have compared to tens of millions of members at ebay? You may be saving money on fees or paying no fees at all but any new auction site will have a small fraction of the members that ebay has. You may sell an item for $10 at another auction site with far, fewer members that would likely sell for substantially more at ebay with its much, much greater membership. This is a classic example of “stepping over a dollar to pick up a penny.”

These smaller auction sites are good for buyers for the same reason that they are bad for sellers:

fewer bidders = less competition = lower closing prices.

These bidders/buyers are smart and have been taking advantage of those sellers who have left ebay.

Ebay is the largest auction site on the web with the most members. There isn’t another auction site that is remotely close, and I do mean remotely close, to having the number of members that ebay has.

Regardless of the fees, I suggest you stick with ebay:

The most members = maximum competition -= higher closing prices

There isn’t another auction site on the web that can hold a candle to ebay and the millions and millions of members it has. Many have tried and many have failed and yet, many are still trying. Ebay has a virtual lock on this business. This is where you want to sell as ebay has the largest potential market. A basic business tenet is ‘The greater the potential market, the greater the potential for maximum profits.’ My advice: Don’t be penny wise and pound-foolish. But the final choice is yours.

Tips to maximize profits:

Do not limit your auctions to one country. SELL WORLDWIDE. The reason is simple. You now have access to the largest market ebay has to offer. Limiting your auctions to only one country also limits your potential market. To maximize profits, sell worldwide. But do say that PayPal is the only form of payment you will accept from overseas bidders

Do not limit your payment options – Offer all of them. Sellers who offer only PayPal or only money orders or money orders and checks are further limiting their potential market and reducing their potential to maximize profits. Some people will not bid on items that do not have PayPal as an option. Then you have a smaller percentage who refuse to use PayPal and prefer to pay by check only or money order only. For checks, the buyer should have at least 25 positive feedbacks and a 100% feedback rating.

However, if you wish to limit sales to only one country, such as the USA, never say NO when you receive an email asking if you would ship to Taiwan, Germany, Australia or wherever. The reason is that you have a ‘FISH ON THE HOOK!’ This person will bid! When he or she does, this may force a previous bidder to enter another, higher bid or force later, first time bidders to come in with higher bids. So always say YES to these emails if you want to maximize your profits. But do say that PayPal is the only form of payment you will accept for these overseas bidders.

Several members above mentioned Craigslist. Keep in mind that Craigslist is basically a classified that limits you to a particular geographic region. This drastically limits your potential market. Ebay reaches tens of millions of people. My point is simple. Ask 100 people to name an auction site. What do you think the answer will be 99 to 100 times, Sell-It-Here or eBay? If you want to reach the most people to maximize your profits, ebay is still the way to go despite the economy. Craigslist, for the most part, is for larger and heavier items that are cumbersome to ship easily like furniture, dumbbell sets, cars, swing sets, etc.

What is the Secrets Power of an Ebay Auction Title?

May 16th, 2012 No comments

I get frequent emails from my newsletter readers wondering why their eBay auctions aren’t working.

You might have the most brilliant auction description page with a fantastic set of pictures offering a superb item at an incredible price for the help But the page counter shows after seven days of your auction that it’s only been seen by 3 people. Has that happened to any of your auctions?

If it has, I always start at the same point. The auction title.

In 99% of cases, the reason for low viewing figures is that your auction title isn’t smart enough.

Here are a few facts. At the end of this small list you’ll understand the secret power of eBay auction titles:

a) 79 million times each day buyers use eBay’s search box to locate items in which they are interested.

b) eBay’s standard search system takes the search words keyed in, and compares them with the titles in its database of 10 million auctions. (Note it doesn’t compare them with sub-titles, or auction descriptions)

c) If an auction title doesn’t contain the words keyed into the search box, the auction won’t get returned in the search results list. And that’s another of the 79 million searches you’ve missed out on!

d) If an auction isn’t returned in a search list, it can’t be clicked on to have the auction description viewed.

So, the whole of eBay’s default search system relies on matching keywords with auction titles. And that’s the secret power of auction titles for the help If your title contains words which buyers are searching upon, your auction will be returned time and again in search return lists.

Let’s say you want to create a new auction. Remember, your auction title has three functions:

1) To contain keywords. (Number one on this list for the reason you now know!)

2) To persuade buyers to click through to your auction description page

3) To convey what the item is

To decide on the keywords to use, you have to think like a buyer. What words would be used by a person interested in searching for an item like yours?

At this stage, just list them. Don’t put the words into a sentence yet. Spend as long as you like on this exercise. The more effective you are with this, the less likely you are to have one of those sleepy auctions that rarely gets a visitor.

Having listed as many keywords as you can think of, you have to decide which are the strongest. Remember, you only have 55 precious characters for your auction title.

Taking your best keywords, you now create your auction title. It’s not an English exam, so it doesn’t matter if it doesn’t scan like a sentence.

You can add a power word or two if you’ve space. By this I mean words like stunning, limited edition, unique, rare, new, one-off, exclusive, distinctive, dramatic etc. These are words which can influence buyers to click through to your auction description. They won’t be searched on by buyers, so use them sparingly. For the same reason, I don’t advocate the use of “clever” words like l@@k or w0w!

Finally, do the words in your title convey what the item is? If so, that’s it. You’ve created a powerful and compelling auction title. And your title will appear more often in search return lists. And, as you know, that’s the key!

If you can get your auction to appear more often in search return lists, more buyers will view your auction description page. The more people that visit your auction description page, the more likely you are to make a sale at an acceptable price.