I hope you had a great holiday selling season online, and with the new year right around the corner, what follows are some tips for increasing your eBay presence even more in 2008.
- Use research tools like Terapeak.com, Hammertap.com and EverySeller Research (Everyseller.com) to fine tune strategies and make decisions that will help grow sales and profitability.
- Your name matters so make it easy to spell, memorable and consistent. If your user ID is dlevitt12345678, your eBay store is Puppy Loves Mommy, and you thank people for shopping from Debbie’s House of Stuff, you’ve just greatly increased the chances that your buyer will tell friends he/she got it from “some guy on eBay.” Nobody’s going to remember your name. If they do remember “Puppy Loves Mommy,” and then they do eBay’s “search by seller” for that term, they won’t find you: “Search by seller” looks for user IDs, and in this example, your store name isn’t your user ID. Pick one name, don’t put in any special characters or numbers, make it spelled the way it sounds, and make it all match. Use the same user ID as your store name and as your matching dot com. That way, you have one consistent brand name that you can work towards promoting.
- Before you design or redesign your eBay store, have your eBay-listing template designed or redesigned. This is where sale are made. Shoppers can choose to buy or choose to reject your item without ever seeing your store. Therefore, the best investment is the one made in how the listing itself will present your item and your company image.
- If it doesn’t enhance the shopping experience and drive people towards buying, get rid of it! This goes for your store and your listings. Consider removing things like Flash animations that may just be for show, side columns of links that may take people away from item(s) and galleries. Remember that on eBay, your shopper probably knew what they wanted. The shopper searched, and found you among your competitors. That person chose to look at your individual item. What’s the No.1 thing you want that person to do on your individual item page? Click on a category and leave? Click on another item and leave? Watch a Flash animation of your logo? We suggest doing everything you can to convert that shopper to a buyer, especially a buyer of the item he or she was driven to find in the first place!
- First impressions count. Company image counts! How your listing is designed and laid out can make a real difference. Make sure that your eBay listings are designed for your target audience. Your shopper will decide within a couple of seconds if he/she wants to stay on your listing or check out your competitor.
Try some of these tips for 2008, and look for my monthly column on eBay and online selling here in Practical eCommerce.