Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A Beginer eBay Selling Guide From Start to Finish.

The eBay Seller's Guide From Start to Finish by Rebecca Smart at Smartbabyboutique is written to help new sellers to start selling on eBay without investing a large amount of money in ebooks up front. This free guide will take you from writing your auction to shipping your item off to the buyer.
  1. Write A Clear and Concise Title.
  2. Your title should tell the buyer exactly what you are selling add additional descriptive words: old, new, vintage, shirt, top, pants, lot, brands. Words that someone would use if they were searching for something using a search engine. I sell Gymboree kids clothing so I would add Gymboree to the title. NWT or New and what it is. I avoid unnecessary words such as size or months as people don’t search using these words its too broad. Try not to use symbols. Buyers are not searching for items by typing a symbol in the search engine. You only have so much room and you need to be concise about it. Using the right words in your title will get you better results than paying for bold or featured listing. "CHECK YOUR SPELLING" there are web sites and programs out there that purposely look for common misspelled words in both the titles and descriptions so that the buyer can swipe them at low cost and then resell them on eBay.
  3. List in the Right Category.
  4. You want to list your items were the buyers are and in order to do this you should list in the right category. If you are not sure were to list your item, look for your item or similar item that you are selling up on eBay and find out which category that these items are listed in. One way to do this is to search for your item using the search engine and eBay will tell you in the left hand column which category and how many are listed in that category. Do your research. You will notice this in the final bidding price. Some people look for items listed in the wrong category so that they can buy them for a low price and then will relist them in the right category and make huge profits off those items.
  5. Write a Clear and Concise Description.
  6. Many Sellers skip this section and rely on the pictures. Write clear descriptions: color, size, brand, type, how old, new, used, and what it is. You want to be concise so that you catch the bidder’s using the search engines. EBay’s search engine check titles first and then if there is not enough items listed then they will check the descriptions. This will help get your item noticed.
  7. Be Pleasant
  8. Try not to clutter up your auctions with who can and can not bid on your items. I’ve seen many rude and uncalled for phrases to potential buyers. I don’t believe that people should be treated like criminals because of a few bad apples. I’ve seen in bold such phrases as this one "DEADBEAT BUYERS that do not pay will be dealt with harshly." Yes, it is true that sometimes people don’t pay. You can be reassured that eBay does have a policy for non-paying bidders and as long as you do not ship an item without confirming a payment then you won’t be out any money or product just some added effort on your part to file for a non-paying bidder. Ebay will refund you the final value fee if the buyer does not pay and they will get an unpaid buyer strike against them. You can set your preferences to block buyers with a history of unpaid item strikes against them. At this point you can then either relist the item or offer a second chance offer. Be pleasant when bidders send questions. Answer politely. Use their name in your reply. People will bid on your item if they feel a connection with you. Most questioners do not end up buying the item they are asking about, but by bidding they do increase the selling price.
  9. List the shipping cost in the auction description.
  10. Make it as clear and easy as possible to let buyers know what the shipping and handling cost are. I once purchased a book that the shipping fee’s section said "See Description". I looked over the very busy ad as carefully as I could and found the shipping cost for my country and destination but when I got to Paypal the final cost was $2.00 more than what I expected. I re-checked before paying and finally found that insurance was required on the book and this was the reason for the increased shipping cost. Make simple statements in the description to let your buyer know what the shipping and handling cost are going to be. Buy a scale and weight everything. I recommend charging as close as you can to the actual weight of your items plus packing supplies. This will keep the buyer’s shipping cost down and it makes for very happy buyers. I often will use a flat rate shipping box for most of my bulk items as this typically save the buyer anywhere between $2.00 to $5.00 per package. Use PayPal. I can’t stress this enough. You can print your shipping label right from PayPal whether it is First Class or Priority. Whatever your need is. You can buy USPS and UPS from PayPal with this in mind. Your packages will be tractable with delivery confirmation. This will help you qualify for seller’s protection if needed. One time I couldn’t print a label from PayPal because my printer was broken at the time so I went to the post office. If this happens to you, on the very bottom of the buyer’s invoice page that you can see from your account. You can add the shipping tracking information and always notify the buyer with the shipping and tracking information.
  11. Use a low Opening Bid.
  12. This is a simple way to get better prices for your item. If you wrote a good title and description added great pictures to your auction, then you will get what your item is worth. Use a reserve if you are not comfortable with this. A word of caution about reserves this can sometimes-scare people off. Buyers do not have a sense that they won your item. Buyers come to eBay because they want a great price and they want the experience.
  13. Pay attention to the eBay listing fees.
  14. Watch your starting price. Ebay charges fee’s for you to list your item with them. For example listing fee’s for auctions starting at .01 to .99 cents eBay charges a listing fee of .20 cents and then they will charge you extra for addition items such as a gallery, bold, highlighted, featured items, etc. The next tear is 1.00 to 9.99 and the listing fee is .40 cents and so on. I’ve seen many auctions that start out at 1.00 rather than .99 cents. Why pay the extra .20 cents to make .01 cent. I recommend looking up the current rate chart so that you have the research for your starting price. Ebay will give you this information if you can not find it using the site map. This is an example only and was used for demonstration purposes. I highly recommend that you look up the fees, as this guide may not be updated on the current fees when you read this but the point is the same. Watch when the pricing tear changes so that you are not paying extra for that .01 cent starting reserve price.
  15. Don’t use Counters.
  16. I only use a hidden counter in my auctions so that I can use the information about when to list and yearly selling buying cycles. Customers who see high numbers of lookers and low bids will think that maybe there’s a reason that no one is bidding on this and will move on to the next seller.
  17. Use 5 to 7 day auctions.
  18. A 3-day auction is not enough to get the higher priced bids and a 10-day auction doesn’t give buyers a sense of urgency. Ebay search results will give you search results by end time, newly listed, high to low, or low to high. End auctions on a weekday. I’ve had my best ending prices on a weekday Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. Have your auction go through a weekend so that you can get the weekend shopper that will bookmark your item with "watch this item" and then go back later in the week to bid on it.
  19. After the Auction Ends.
  20. Communicate quickly. If you haven’t signed up for Paypal yet, do so now. It’s easy and quick. Buyer and sellers are protected through Paypal. Using Paypal will increase a buyer’s confidence in purchasing from you. Pack well. I can not stress this enough. Show the buyer that their purchase has value. The supplies you will need to buy are Styrofoam peanuts, packing paper, tissue paper and ribbon for gift wrapping, poly bags and boxes. When shipping USPS Priority Mail the post office has free mailing envelopes, boxes, and flat rate shipping boxes. I use these to help keep the cost down. Invoices. Add a packing invoice to your package. This can be printed free from Paypal if you have an account. Add a short thank you note to the package. Keep everything clean, free of smoke and pet hair. Don’t use perfumes or other deodorizers, as some people may be allergic. Feedback. Feedback is important to the eBay community. Do your best to work with your buyer to resolve any complaints by doing this you are ensuring good customer service and preserving your feedback rating. Does this mean that you go against your moral’s or ethics to please the customer by no means the answer to that is no. As a seller you need to protect your reputation. I recommend leaving feedback to others that have been left for you so this way you know that they have looked everything over and are satisfied. You should never be bullied into leaving feedback first. Just politely say that is not the way you run your business. My concern would be why do they care about the feedback so much that you must leave one first. Again protect your reputation.
  21. Summery: Don’t give buyers a list to complain about. Use quick communication, after the auction ends, send an invoice so they will know how much to pay and WOW! them with a greatly packed package. Leave feedback once feedback has been left for you.
I hope this guide has helped you in some way. Please feel free to let me know if you have any question or have any ideas that can make this guide better and I will try to incorporate them into the guide.

No comments:

Post a Comment