Monday, February 19

The Top 5 Secrets To Selling On eBay

Lots of folks tell me they want to become an online seller. Too many try to tell you how easy it is and others don't want to put forth the effort to make a few dollars. In my experience, every dollar in helps out towards extras at home and with family.

Bottom line? It isn’t simple – especially the part where you actually try to make a profit. You have to keep up with changes in the marketplace — like shifts in consumer buying behaviors — study from tried and true experts, and practice!

The best place to get a feel for any online sales is to begin on eBay. I’ve written many bestselling books on the subject, and I’m a Top Rated Seller on the site. Remember that you can’t make a dime if you don’t actually list anything, and you probably won’t be successful without making a few mistakes.  My newest book, eBay Business All-in-One For Dummies 4th edition, answers just about any question you may have from sourcing products to staying in line with the tax man.

But, you can also learn from the successes and mistakes of others. So in this post, I want to offer some advice on how to create listings that sell – and how to earn the most profits from those sales!

Listing title

Nothing is more important than your title. You’ve no doubt heard about SEO (search engine optimization). Well, you can apply these same practices on eBay to increase sales. It’s all about “keywords” – the terms people will use to search for your item. Note that rarely would anyone search for a “beautiful” sweater. More than likely, someone would search for a sweater in a certain size, color, fabric, brand name, sleeve length – get it? Do not waste your 80 characters (total allowed on eBay for your item title) on fluffy adjectives or adverbs. The item title does not have to be a proper sentence; instead, be sure to make the verbiage descriptive with practical details. Since eBay buyers see less than the full title listing when browsing (mobile only shows 25 characters), keep the less important words at the end. Search will find the matching words anywhere in your title when someone searches for them.

Tip: Use tools like Google’s Keyword Tool (used by advertisers who place ads with Google) or Title Builder, an eBay-centric search tool to identify top keywords people search for.

Pictures

You may post up to 12 pictures at no charge, but most new items can be illustrated completely in just three or four clear, well-lit photos. Be sure the photos you upload are at least 500 pixels wide or you run the risk of eBay rejecting them. Use multiple photos if you are selling a collectible or rare piece so that you cover every possible angle. Be sure to photograph any flaws so the customer can effectively evaluate an item’s condition before bidding on or buying vintage items. If you would also like to show images within your description, go to the HTML description builder and use the code . When shooting images of jewelry, coins or anything detailed, use your camera’s macro setting. Do not use any fancy backgrounds that may distract from your item.

Tip: To accurately portray colors of metals, use a Cloud Dome (or Cloud Dome Nimbus for smartphone cameras). It holds your camera steady and uses an algorithim to reflect light at exact angles for the best images possible.

Price it right

Check eBay’s completed listings search to see if your item actually sells well on the site and how much similar ones have sold for in recent auctions. Prices and trends may change by the minute and there is no point in listing when an item isn’t selling well. Check current listings too: How many sellers are selling your item? And at what price? As with any market, eBay items sell based on supply and demand. Choose your items carefully, price strategically and put slow selling items in your store. If you have a bit of wiggle room in your pricing, consider using eBay’s “Make Offer” option when listing. This way you can determine the sale price based on a customer’s offer. You can make up to 3 counter-offers to a buyer. Free shipping is also a good strategy for attracting customers and can make your listing seem more appealing than another seller with the same or a similar item – buyers feel like their money is going further, and there’s no guessing as to what cost the final invoice may reflect.

Tip: Double check your profit margin before you list. Although eBay has fee calculators, one of the better ones I have found is at http://finalfeecalc.com/ – this tool takes fees, expenses and discounts into account and gives you a picture of how much you will make on your item if you sell it at a certain price point.

The Value of Customer Service 

Good customer service will set you apart (and give you a leg-up on the competition from big brands) by letting the customer know you care. Communicate with your customer, even within your description. Let the customer know you are invested in their happiness with the purchase. Sell to international customers; American goods are very popular overseas. Putting the customer first through stellar customer service promotes repeat business and helps you reach the goal of Top Seller Status (where you receive a discount on final value fees and are advantaged by eBay’s Best Match search algorithm).

Tip: Print out “thank you” notes and include them in your orders. Include information about you, your website or other merchandise you carry. Consider also offering customers a discount on their next order.

Ship the item out FAST!

Know when your auction listings are scheduled to end, and be prepared to immediately pack and ship any items that have sold. For “Buy It Now” listings, set aside a few minutes each day to take care of shipping needs. Once the customer has sent you money, the item belongs to him or her – it no longer has a place in your inventory area. Print your shipping label within 24 hours and post it to eBay and they will notify the buyer.

Keep a stock of shipping supplies (padded envelopes and free Priority Mail® packaging here) that match the items you sell. Use First Class mail whenever possible for items less than 13 (15.9 if you're using online postage) ounces and send them in a bubble wrap envelope to save on weight.

Tip: When it comes to shipping costs, box weight can make a big difference, so you might consider Priority Mail® Flat Rate Boxes, depending on the size and shape of the item. Priority Mail® Regional Rate Boxes can also be an economical option, depending on your shipping destination. Use the postal zone charts at this link to calculate shipping rates from your ZIP Code.

Remember, Top Rated Seller Status, which can increase your profit margin, is impacted by how buyers rate your customer service, shipping time and shipping costs.

Monday, January 15

5 Features Entrepreneurs Need on a Smartphone - found them on the Huawei Mate 10

Today’s smartphones are so full of features that its hard to distinguish one from another. They’re all great. But what I’m looking for is innovation. Features that will actually make a difference and add value to this tiny computer we all carry everywhere.

I received the Huawei Mate 10 Pro at the launch event in Munich last year. I didn’t review the phone then (since so many people did). I wanted to live with the phone and give it a real, hands-on, daily driver report. (As an aside, the Huawei Mate 10 Pro was named as the best Android phone of 2017 by Android Authority.)

While I appreciate a sexy phone and a great screen, innovation is my primary reason for selecting a smartphone. The Pro model I tested adds features of an OLED screen, 128 GB storage (no Micro SD card slot) and 6 GB of ram.

Without giving full specs (read on the Huawei website), you should know the basic firepower behind these phones is powered by amazing engine, where all parts work as a SoC (system on a chip) :

Tuesday, August 15

How to Use Video Active Content in Your eBay eCommerce Sales


We all know that video sells! Whether you show a product demonstration, or just have a video (cat videos?) that make people smile.

eBay made changes in how you can use active content in your listings, and here's the workaround. I put this fun video in a listing. Below is the code for the video that I used:

<!-- BEGIN LINKED VIDEO -->
<div class="ytvideo">
<a target="_blank" href="http://www.youtube.com/embed/QtvTE3m5jpM?rel=0">
<img src="https://img.youtube.com/vi/QtvTE3m5jpM/0.jpg"></a>
<p class="yt_hd">"The Beverly Hillbillies" Opening and Closing Theme Song - YouTube</p>
<p class="yt_ft">Video will open in a new window</p>
<span class="yt_tag" style="display:none">[isdntekvideo]</span></div>
<style> .ytvideo { margin:.5em auto; max-width:480px; font-family:arial; text-align:center; position:relative; min-height:120px; overflow:hidden; background-color:#555; } .ytvideo p { position:absolute; margin:0; color:white; background-color:rgba(0,0,0,.5); } .ytvideo .yt_hd { font-size:16px; width:100%; height:28px; line-height:28px; text-align:left; top:0; left:0; padding-left:10px; overflow:hidden; } .ytvideo .yt_ft { font-size:11px; width:100%; bottom:0; left:0; } .ytvideo img { display:block; max-width:100%; border:0; } .ytvideo a:after { content:"\A0\25BA"; position:absolute; width:60px; height:50px; left:0; top:0; right:0; bottom:0; margin:auto; border:0; border-radius:10px; color:white; background:rgba(0,0,0,.6); font-size:24px; line-height:50px; cursor:pointer; } .ytvideo a:hover:after { background:#CC181E; }</style>
<!-- END LINKED VIDEO -->

If you'd like to customize your own video for your listing, head on over to this page from eBay user shipscript, and make your own!
http://www.isdntek.com/tagbot/YouTubeConverter.htm

Visit my coolebaytools.com website for more tips!

Saturday, April 22

Valuable Proven Business Strategies to Make You Succeed


If you’ve had a business for any length of time, it’s easy to muse about looking towards the future. Even when you’re successful, you wonder “I can be bigger, I can be better.” There’s a lot of soul searching for every startup and business founder.

Thursday, March 2

Review: Huawei P10 Rocked Mobile World Congress - now available in Canada











I don’t normally write reviews. Not because I’m lazy, but because I am an extremely picky consumer of technology. Very few products I receive to review for my #techradio podcast send me over the moon and I don’t like to waste time on negative reviews.

I have to admit also, that I have a relationship with my phones. The phone I use every day needs to seamlessly fit my needs. I am also a loyal customer. I stuck with the same brand of Android phone for several iterations. They suited me just fine. But last year I was given a Huawei P9 phone to try out. I fell in love with the phone. It’s sleek, fast and sexy. The Huawei P series reflects a special style and elegance for those with discriminating taste.. It's a piece of technology that was easy to fall in love with.