Archive for August, 2007

Next update in the Selling on eBay series: Write a Solid Listing

  1. If you find a good eBay listing for the same or similar item you are selling, use the ‘sell similar’ option. Add details pertinent to your item and your information. There is nothing wrong with copying a good idea!
  2. Use all letters available in the title – tell as many pertinent details as you can.
  3. Skip the subtitle unless you are selling something available from many other sellers and you can highlight a special feature of your item.
  4. Clearly describe the item in as much detail as possible. Include measurements, sizes, and description of wear. Visit this page for an extensive list of acronyms common on eBay.
  5. Repeat your contact information and payment, shipping, and return preferences in the listing. These will be listed elsewhere by eBay, but buyers sometimes need to see the details twice.
  6. Include at least one picture, or more than one to show details.
  7. Choose the Gallery option. Buyers want to see a picture in your listing.
  8. Skip the bold/border/upgraded and other listing features. If you write a detailed listing, there is no need for this extra cost.
  9. Schedule longer length listings (5 – 7 days) if you have the time to attract more bids.
  10. Schedule auctions to end at a time when you can be available for the previous two hours for last minute questions.
  11. eBay buyers seem to be less active on Fridays and Saturdays, so avoid these for auction end times.
  12. If your item has international appeal, offer international shipping. The learning curve for getting international shipments sent is a bit steep, but there are many international users on ebay and you do not want to lose their bids. (We always include a few lines obligating the buyer to know and follow import restrictions in their country.)
  13. Rather than setting a reserve price, which costs extra and is not attractive to buyers, set your starting price at the lowest price you are willing to accept.
  14. Look at fees and set your price just below the fee change if you can. (i.e. If fees are raised at $10, set your price at $9.99)

Here is one of our most detailed store listings to give you ideas.

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Our initial business model was to use eBay to sell our wares. Advantages: Ebay takes care of all the marketing, it is really easy to use, and the audience is worldwide. Disadvantages: eBay has lots of rules about content you can include, negative feedback from jerks is inevitable but still disappointing, and the fees take about 8% of our profit.

On the first day of our second year we opened a Yahoo store as another venue to sell our wares. Yahoo store Advantages: Includes some marketing, is relatively easy to use, fees less than eBay, and the content is virtually unmonitored. Yahoo store Disadvantages: Still has fees, not all that easy to customize.

Traffic to our yahoo store has been steady but most people still purchase through ebay. To entice our customers to the yahoo store, we recently reduced all prices by 5% on the yahoo store only. The next step will be to use advertising to directly pull traffic into the yahoo store.

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Want to sell on eBay? We are Powersellers with our own ebay store. We have learned plenty of lessons about how to make the most profit with least headache. We will publish tips and tricks once a week. Here is the first small but important set:

Research your Item(s) for Sale

  1. Use ebay to watch items similar to yours. Look for selling price as a guideline for what you can expect to earn.
  2. Use collector’s guides or retail stores to determine details about the item specifics.
  3. Measure all applicable parts including dimensions and weight.

Stay tuned for next week’s tips to Write a Solid Listing

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News since last May:
Our virtual location has changed to http://www.bayinghound.com
Our real life location has changed to zip code 43202.
We ended last year (2006) with sales over $50,000. We proudly donated 2% of our profits to animal rescue organizations at the end of the year.
We are making contacts to expand into the outdoor equipment arena.

It has been a long time since we updated the blog, but we are growing and starting to write again, more frequently this time. We hope to use the blog to get feedback from our customers and reach new audiences. What would you like to see on Baying Hound next?

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