Tag Archives: Sales

Hooray! Another Milestone

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I can’t help but share that my Ebay store has now reached Top Rated Seller status! I’ve worked really hard all year trying to bring my numbers up to meet the standards.  It’s been hard since they have been so difficult to meet and almost unrealistic.  Two unhappy buyers out of over 1000 was keeping me out of this level. Ebay decided to make the standards a little more realistic and now I’m a Top Rated Seller on Ebay!

Thank you to all our wonderful customers that keep the shop going. It’s been over a year and business is thriving! Thank you to all my friends that brought me consignment to sell! Thank you to everyone that has believed in me! 2012 will be even better than 2011!

Keep your spirits high people – amazing things will happen when you do!

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Taking Good Photos to Increase your Sales Numbers

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It’s a  well-known fact that photos are a key piece when selling an item online.  Photos can sometimes make or break your sale. If your goods can be photographed with good lighting and interesting angles you’ll have a better chance of selling your item at a high price than if the photos are out of focus or poorly angled.

Below are some tips that will help you when taking photographs of items you put in your online stores.

  • Use Natural Lighting – Natural lighting is the absolute best way to show all details of an item.   I find that early morning and late afternoon are the best times to get bright lighting for your items.  Many times you can place them next to a window that gets a lot of sun to take advantage of natural lighting.  It also helps you add interesting shadows to your products.  The second best thing to natural lighting is Halogen which has a bright glow that doesn’t glare too much.
  • Take a million pictures of your item – Ok, maybe not that many! You want to have a good choice of photos to choose from when listing your item. Sometimes they look better on the camera than they do on the display so don’t cut any pictures from your camera memory as you take them. Wait until you can check them all and pick from the best. With sites like Etsy you only get 5 photos to upload for each listing so taking a ton of pictures really increases the chances of getting those excellent shots.
  • Use Photo editing software to make your products more interesting – Photos online tend to be all the same. Dull colors are a common theme among products on both Ebay and Etsy.  By using a photo editing software and adding effects to your pictures, you can increase the chances that people will zero in on your photos out of the million others out there.  I love using Picnik.com which offers a ton of free functions and lots more if you want to pay for the premium version. Some of my favorite effects are lomo, increase brightness, cross process and adding seasonal banners. I have found sales really increase when doing this and all I have to do is add a note stating “first photo was edited and colors may not match actual item.”
  • Use a plain and simple background with nothing but the item in it – People want to see what they are buying and a plain background is usually your best bet for increasing sales volume. It keeps photos uncluttered and keeps confusion down about what’s included in the sale.  A light box is surprisingly cheap when purchased from eBay. They work great for photographing small items.  Using a light-colored wall and a mannequin is best when photographing clothes.

I hope these tips help you increase your sales volume! If you have any other tips please feel free to share them in the comments so others can learn from them.  Below is an example of a photo that I’ve edited with Picnik. Don’t you love the Christmas lights?!

Happy Holidays everyone!

Why you should be on Ebay and Etsy….right now!

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Image representing Etsy as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

With all this recession talk, it’s pretty normal to want to close up your wallets and tighten up finances. All the news talks about is how people aren’t spending.  To me, I think that the best way we can stimulate the economy is to help each other out.  We need to simplify while still fulfilling our desires to have more.

Ebay and Etsy allow us to do that.  They provide venues for people to be their own bosses, removing some of the constraints of not knowing how secure you really are in that job.  Online stores are a lot of work, but they also provide you with the tools to see what you can do well, what you are knowledgeable about and best of all, how you can help other people.

One great thing about my work is that I get to provide a really cool item to someone, usually at a much lower price than retail, and then I get to see how happy it makes them.  Many times buyers will write saying how pleased they are, how they didn’t think they could get such a fabulous item for such a low price.  Sometimes they just write to say thanks for being so nice.  It’s those moments that make online stores worth it.  Yes, you get some crabby people (maybe they are having a bad day/week/life) but even those are too insignificant to take away from the joy the happy people who buy from me receive.

The other great benefit is that once we help each other make money we enable each other to spend that money.  When a seller has a great month, do you think they are tightening up finances?!?  Nope!  We spoil ourselves!  We go shopping, we eat out more and we enjoy our lives because we can do so much more! (let’s face it, fun costs money most of the time).

I worked for 6 years full time and did Ebay part time, opening my Etsy shop this January.  I think if you put the right amount of time into your work, not pushing too much, that you too can feel more freedom by having an online shop.  If you are crafty or know vintage well, check out Etsy where fees are significantly lower than Ebay.  If you have a lot of pricy electronices, jewelry, clothes – go see if Ebay is a good fit for you. Both venues have a very active marketplace.  If you don’t want to deal with the hassle, I bet finding a local ebayer to sell your stuff for you isn’t too hard either (wink, wink).

Online stores are amazing.  They show you every side of business.  You’ll learn a lot and make some mistakes but they are so worth it.  You have no idea the personal and professional growth that online stores help you accomplish….the only thing you have to do is remember your goal.  Not the money! No, no, no.  Helping one another out. It’s ok if you have to appease a mean buyer by issuing a refund or if you get a little frustrated when you can’t communicate your point of view to someone over email.  Those times will be few and far between once you have sold for a small time.   Believe me, I’ve dealt with the worst….buyers do get a little crazy sometimes.

Step out of your box ~ Go on ~ Open that online store!

So far so good….

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Well, it’s been 4 months since I quit my job to do online sales full-time.  I have to say, I’m liking it a lot!  Even with the hard parts this feels so right.   I love the personal freedom and space that I have gained.  It’s also made focusing on school a lot easier.  I will say though, I don’t think it could have been this easy without 6 years of Ebay experience before jumping in.  That experience has meant so much in making my business a success ~ being profitable for the first 4 months of business isn’t bad right!?!?

I think that if you have a dream you want to work on, you should put everything you have into it now!  Don’t wait until you have “the time” to work on it. Find the time, make the time. There are other things in your life that are so much less important than following what your true purpose is.  First, you have to stop flying around this world so much.  You don’t have to do it all, you don’t have to be it all.  What you do need is to know what you want ~ what your purpose is.  Meditation, self growth books and yoga are great ways to quiet the world and focus inside yourself.

One of the most beneficial things I’ve found to help me was to take TV out of my life. We still Netflix but having cable TV gone has made things so much simpler. There is a lot more time in a day!  TV had been such a fixture in my life that I never thought I’d be able to remove it.  Now that I have, it’s amazing the things I can do in a day.  Getting up early is also a great way to find more tim

Camp Happy Face Mascot

Image by emdot via Flickr

e in the day, of course that means going to sleep early too!

Find something that is wasting time in your life today ~ remove it and replace it with what you always wanted to do.  If you want to read more, exercise more, work on a skill or craft….those are the things you need to focus on.  Your mind is incredibly attuned to your life purpose.  Listen to it and take the distractions out of your life.

I wish everyone could feel the enjoyment I have of working at home or just simply doing what they love. We were born to be free creatures loving, sharing the wonders of this amazing world.

Resale Heaven

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There is a place that we all want to visit ~ where prices are cheap and there is no limit

There is a land for us all ~ value is priced fairly and you never have to make a call

Many say eBay, others write etsy and for some the amazon giant if you may

Resale is this magical land that I refer to ~ it’s a place of magic, of wonder and new

You’ll be amazed by the things you find, by the value that items have after they are left behind

Won’t you join me in the crusade to recycle our earth? Can you try, if just once, to wear something that hasn’t just been birthed?

Open your heart to resale, cut out the retail

Ebay ~ What have you sold/bought lately?

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Image representing eBay as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

I absolutely love Ebay!  I’ve been an Ebay seller for the past 6 years and have loved it so much. I started selling stuff around my house, mostly cds.  I then found out that there is a huge market on Ebay with so much potential. So, from there I grew my business. I now focus on clothing and beauty products.  It’s been an amazing journey.

If you haven’t tried selling on Ebay I think  you should. If you don’t have time for it, find an Ebay seller in your area that could do consignment selling for you.  A lot of my business focuses on helping other people sell their stuff too.  Many people don’t have the time, energy or ability to sell for themselves so there is a large opportunity to help these people sell without them having to put much effort into it.  You just have to be careful, expectations are tricky and you want to be experienced as a seller before helping someone else sell their stuff. Ebay is a tricky market, you gotta know how to play the market to get the largest profit.

If you want to try selling for yourself, electronics are a great place to start.  Also anything that worth $50-100 is good to sell so you can set up trust with your buyers. It’s also easier for expectations to be met when the item is of a higher value, a very weird rule that plays out on Ebay.  I guess people looking for bargains are more likely to complain.

When you do try listing, there are things you need to keep in mind:

1 – The buyer is #1 on Ebay, they always are. Ebay wants to keep the buyers happy, and you should strive for that too. If you made a mistake, own up to it. The buyer will understand and you’ll be surprised how nice some will be about a problem.  Always strive for constant and quick communication!

2 – Pictures and item descriptions are everything! More information is better than none.  Provide every bit of information you can, but also try to excite the buyer.  Your words make the sell, the pictures show the item.  Make it so people can imagine what the item will look like in their home or around their neck.  If they can envision the product as part of them, they are more likely to buy.

3 – Ship fast and ship cheap! Buyers know what shipping costs, online buyers are much more savvy than they used to be.  Specify exact or close to exact shipping costs when listing.  Ebay provides incentives if you offer free shipping, but I don’t know how cost-effective it is, that depends on what you’re selling.  Ship within 2 days of receiving payment, if not the next day. Buyers are sure to be excited by your speed and quality of service.

4 – Don’t get discouraged. It took me 6 years to build my Ebay store and I’m still learning.  It’s an ever-changing market with many things you can’t plan for.  Stay on your course and you’ll see awesome results though. Once you have built up your reputation, the sales will increase as will the prices.

I hope that helps!  Please feel free to share your experience and comments about Ebay.  It’s my life and I invite you into it!