Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Marketing on eBay
Most people are aware of the premier auction website, eBay. Founded in 1995 as AuctionWeb, eBay has become more than the Internets yard sale throughout the years. From it's humble beginnings with founder Pierre Omidyar, eBay has boomed with auctions for all sorts of products like cars, rare antiques, and even a decommissioned soviet submarine (juliette class submarine k-77, though it failed twice to be sold). It has become an avenue for people all over the world to be able to sell not only the junk in the attic, but also finely wrought wares that showcase their talents. There's even those people who make a living off of eBay, creating eBay stores where the auctioneer has a physical location that is either a storefront for the exact wares they are auctioning, or providing a service to those who wish to get rid of stuff collecting dust(provided the store gets a commission). Marketing on such a site may be difficult, though, with it's nature as an auction site, but luckily there are many, many resources to help increase one views, and invariably, sales.
On ebay itself, there is a tool that will help you create a storefront in the site (http://pages.ebay.com/storefronts/Building.html). Here, you can place your logo, store description, a store search function, navigation and even a promotion function, and that's only the basic layout. EBay also offers a variety of features(some at a fee) to help expose your listings. Functions such as the Featured Plus listings are reported to be twenty-eight percent more likely to sell than other listings, or using eBay Keywords in conjunction with your advertisement banners to have said banner pop up when a customer types in a specific keyword, as stated in a very helpful article from allbusiness.com ( http://www.allbusiness.com/sales/internet-ebay-selling-marketing/3243-1.html). Bold listings and photos have a greater impact on sales, and one can also use the groups and discussion boards to further their potential clientele and sales. EBay will even reimburse you for printing costs if you participate in their Co-op Advertising program and eBay also produces many reports to help store owners to hone their selling. Skip McGrath akins eBay selling as a form of niche' market, and one should market accordingly (http://www.skipmcgrath.com/articles/niche_marketing_article.shtml). When one enters a niche market, McGrath explains that one should become an expert of that niche, and with that expertise, integrity, and focus on such a small market, one would be able to command better and better revenues, as long as gross merchandise sales can be maintained at a high level.
There are also things one should not do when marketing on eBay. According to internetbasedmoms.com (http://www.internetbasedmoms.com/online-auctions/ebay-selling-strategy.html) there are four of said mistakes that can be costly while delving into being an eBay mercantile. First on the "no-no" list is not considering when your auction is ending. If it ends on a Sunday evening, when it has been purported that people are most likely to spend money on auctions, you may be costing yourself a large chunk of coin. Next is ensuring you have good quality photos at multiple angles of the product you wish to sell, and ensuring that all the photos function. When people have a good visual reference to an item, they will be more likely to purchase it as they will be satisfied with the condition of the artifact. The third thing that should not occur is using a "Las Vegas" style page, one with all sorts of shifting colors and other annoying .gif junk that tends to clutter and distract from the description rather than the intended effect. Lastly on the list is using a reserve in order to guarantee that a certain dollar amount will be reached. In the article, it was said that when this happens, people who know they can get more in an auction will grab that product cheap from the reserve and sell it for a massive profit.
This is only the surface layer of marketing and selling on eBay, and as one delves more deeply on the subject, more tips, tools, and tricks are sure to be found.