Thursday, August 30, 2007
Question About Shipping
I've gotten this question several times in the last couple of days, so thought I'd post it on my blog.
Question From The Buyer: "Love the item but $39.05 shipping costs to CA 94062? Outrageous!."
Question From The Seller (to me): "Help me please. I see the shipping is $15. What am I missing here. Thank you."
My Response:Shipping is calculated via how many zones it crosses. eBay automatically calculates postage based on the buyers zip code when a seller uses the calculated shipping feature.
So, while you see $15.00 the buyer who is several zones away will see a different price.
If you go to the listing page and scroll down to the area with the shipping calculator and put in the zip code for that buyer you will see the shipping cost of $39.00 Double check your measurements and weight of the item.
If all is correct, perhaps you could offer a less expensive alternative such as parcel post or UPS. Or, add more to your starting price to cover the extra shipping and lower the shipping costs - so buyers think they are getting a better deal.
Hope that helps.
Any tricks or techniques you'd like to share about shipping?
Please post a coment.
There's no doubt about it!
It doesn't matter if your store is on main street or on eBay - finding the right supplier, selling goods at the right price to compete is difficult.
Throw in the competition from the big box retailers like Costco, Walmart, etc and it seems like the small mom & pop doesn't stand a chance.
When I owned my garden store we had many people come into our store, look around - see our slightly higher prices and tell us "I can get this cheaper at Ernst, just down the street." Ernst was a local chain garden & hardware store. They'd been in the Puget Sound region for over fifty years. And, guess what? They closed their doors. (Not that we drove them out of business - they drove themselves out with low prices and high overhead). My partner and I went to the the auction and picked up inventory cheap and store shelving and continued operating for many years after they were gone.
So there! LOL
But, back to my point - being an eBay retailer can be done. Dany and I picked our target audience (or niche) market and had clear idea of who we wanted as our customer. We sold organic garden supplies and quality tools. The Garden Shed became the funky little store that was THE PLACE to buy your garden supplies if you cared about the environment or wanted the best quality organic fertilizer.
You can do the same thing on eBay, instead of trying to sell this and that - choose your target audience and buy for them. You'll focus your capital, marketing energies and start building a loyal customer base.
My target or niche on eBay is you, the eBay seller who wants to improve their listings and build a strong business. I also carry supplies for product photographers - which fits in nicely, because that's what eBayer's do when they photograph their items.
You can visit my store at: clovercity_sells
I believe you must create a niche or target market to survive - even if you go to garage sales to purchase your product. If you're a garage saler - look for a specific type of item that would appeal to a specific group. Maybe you're a stay at home mom with children. You probably know infant clothes. Well, then that could be what you sourced when you are out garage sale -ing.
What's your target market? Please take a second and tell me - I love to read them!
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
I started in retail over 25 years ago. It was a dream of mine to own my own business. I spent many nights trying to figure out how and what would work for me. I really didn't want be an employee my whole career.
To make a long story short, the stars (really the capital) all lined up and my partner and I decided to start a garden store. I've always loved plants and it was something I knew a little about.
Our first stop for us was a consult with the Small Business Administration, where they recommended we set up a one on one with a Score volunteer. I thought it was a grand idea, I really wanted to hear what someone who had been in business their whole career would tell us.
The day came for our appointment and the old guy ushered us into his office. In a polite manner he sat us down. He sat behind a big desk and put us in the little visitor chairs and asked:
"What can I help you young ladies with?" (I should have known right away I was in trouble).
Undaunted, I said "We're going to open a garden store and....."
"Hold it right there" he interrupted and grabbed my hand before continuing
"I don't see any dirt under your fingers, how can you open a garden store if you have such soft hands?"
"Come back when you've had some experience mowing lawns and pulling weeds."
Then he proceeded to shoo us out the door.
I don't know what he expected to accomplish with that, but it sure made me mad as hell!
When we opened the store, vendors for the most part took a 'let's wait and see' attitude. As long as we had enough money for an opening order they delivered. Some of these vendors later found us such good customers they would call on us regularly showing us new inventory, or even ask us what we thought might sell well.
However, one vendor, a popular seed company thought that they needed to protect their brand name and refused to sell to us. Not only that, when we asked the owner of the company why, he said "I drove by your store when it was closed and decided your store didn't look good enough for my product."
Well, our customers kept requesting the seeds, and we kept begging, but no. That is until another vendor who had been happily working with us for a couple of years told the seed company that they were missing their target customers by ignoring us.
The seed company finally relented and 'allowed' us to carry their seeds. And as it turned out we became one of their biggest Washington state retailers. However, we never really got over the treatment. Whenever recommending a seed company to our customers we would recommend the company who was there for us from the start. And as soon as we could, we would return any overstock and count every dime due us from the bad seed company. Not necessarily the best for them - we could have sold double the amount we did of their product.
Why am I telling you this? Well, for one thing I hear a lot of vendors treat eBayers that way and the backlash is growing.
I even had a sales person turn their back on me at a trade show a couple of years ago... it was their loss.
And because - it happened to me again just recently. I was written off as someone 'who didn't look good enough.' in an email.
I wrote an email to a person I had been considering recommending to my clients. I actually wanted to spend money and support this persons venture by purchasing a booth at an upcoming venue they are sponsoring.
Well they looked at my signature line and sent me an email within minutes telling me "there was nothing I could offer them."
Wow, I hate that when that happens, I want to spend money and they won't take it....
Guess it's there loss. I'll be sending my business to another vendor.
Please post your thoughts.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Add Video To eBay Auctions
How To Increase Traffic To Your Listings In Under Two Minutes!
Click Here To Reserve Your Copy Today:
To Add Video To eBay Auctions
Using short, two minute or less videos build your traffic. On average Internet Marketers have found a 72% increase in their sales when they add audio or video to their listings. I have every reason to believe you will do just as well!
I was thrilled when eBay announced we could add video right into our auction and store listings!
Video used to be expensive and technologically challenging to use. The good news is now anyone who can cut and paste can add them to their listings.
As this trend takes off you'll be able to stay ahead of the competition by producing the best looking videos.
In this DVD you'll learn the tweaks and tricks necessary to produce great looking videos for use anywhere on the web.
Video Editing Software
The best settings for viewing on the web
How to upload your video to: You Tube, Google, AOL & MySpace
We'll look in detail at how to add video to your auction and store listings and you'll be surprised by some of the other creative ways you can use videos in your store.
We'll even take a look at how to increase traffic to your store by adding video to your Blogs and Squidoo.
This informative video will be released Sept 1st 2007
Reserve your copy now and receive FREE shipping plus, 20% off the retail price!
Click Here To Order:
To Add Video To eBay Auctions
This is a pre-release special offer. If you order now for shipping on September 1st you'll save. Order before Friday August 31st to receive this special pricing.
And if you have a video you've taken and used these techniques, email them to me. I'll post them on my blog and help drive traffic to your store!
Order Your Copy Today!
How To Add Video To eBay Auctions
Monday, August 20, 2007
Fall Boot Camp In WashingtonTime To Sign Up ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I am pleased to announce that registration is now open for my eBay Boot Camp that will be held on September 28-29 in Anacortes, WA.
If you would like to read about the boot camp, please visit this page.
Skip McGrath's Boot Camp
I'm join Skip McGrath, Lynn Dralle & Jen Cano for this jam packed weekend! You don't want to miss this event, the space is limited. We want to provide you with as much individual training as possible.
In case you missed it, I sent out the August issue of the eBay Sellers News a few days ago. You can read the current issue at:
Sunday, August 12, 2007
- How to receive 75% back from eBay
- eBay Boot Camp OSI Webinar August 16th
- Videos In Your Auction Listings Using Video Four Part Series
- Book Review: How & Where To Locate Merchandise To Sell
I Hope to see you there!
eBay Certified Business Consultant
& Education Specialist
Saturday, August 11, 2007
Here is a quick (3 minutes)video for you. I
recently discovered this new way to find keywords. My partner Dany
and I thought we'd share it.
Please take a look and feel free to pass it
Use The Link Below (or cut and paste it into your browser)
Note, it may take a minute to load, before automatically starting.