Wow! Those eBay announcements sure threw us for a loop. But no worries, it is all good!
- Lynn Recommends: Dinnerware Success Story–a new 3-volume eBook. Preorder ends tonight!
- Special Announcement: Updates to last article about enemies
- Feature Article: How to Deal with the Latest eBay Changes
- The Queen’s Update: Requesting More Stories from You
This ezine is published every two weeks.
January 28, 2010 Volume VI, Issue 2
Another busy two weeks. I have been so focused on writing my new Dinnerware Success eBook that I haven’t had much time to do anything else! Well, I did fit in watching a few exciting football games.
It has been really strange, but ever since I started working on the Dinnerware Success eBook, dinnerware has been flying off of my shelves. Check out this Portmeirion piece that I was just about to put into the eBook and say, “this pattern doesn’t sell,” when it sold! You just never know.
Visit the eBay page here.
Please read the Lynn Recommends section to learn more about the Dinnerware Success eBook. It is turning out really well and I am really excited to get Volume I sent out to everyone who has pre-ordered in the next few days. Remember, the price goes up to $20 tonight at midnight.
The Queen’s Court plush Christmas present has been a fun experiment to watch. Here is another quick update from Elizabeth, BookLoverToo.
I listed my plush on January 8th. It is a stuffed bunny with a straw hat and ribbon embroidery on the pants. I have to admit I was a little jealous of those Queen’s Court members who received Steiff and Dakin, etc. I thought my little bunny would never sell. It even states on the tag that it is not a toy, for decorative purposes only. On top of that, it is missing a button.
But lo and behold, it sold at live auction! Just when I forget your theory of “just get it up there,” I am reminded by selling something I never thought would sell.
Lesson well (re)learned.
Thank you so much,
See Elizabeth’s auction here.
If you click on Elizabeth’s auction you won’t believe it, but in the recommendations for your section is one of my stuffed animals!!! A Bugs Bunny is also wearing a straw hat. I recognized my photo table and was like “NO WAY” That is my listing!
Still, on the plush subject, I can’t believe that I sold this Pink Princess Teddy Bear for full price. You won’t believe what I got for it. Thank you, Debbie Ybarra! Here are links to learn more about Debbie Ybarra’s Plush Teleseminars. These are audio mp3 files available for instant download: Teleseminar 1 and Teleseminar 2.
See the Pink Princess here.
In the Special Announcement section, I am including some great emails that I got after sending out the last ezine talking about turning enemies into friends. These suggestions from ezine readers were fantastic and some great points to consider when dealing with troublesome customers!
Every year about this time, I get a little nervous about what the new eBay changes are going to be. I have to admit that I am thrilled about what was announced this past Tuesday. This week’s feature article talks about those changes so don’t miss reading “How to Deal with the eBay changes.
Get informed on the latest eBay changes
with Lynn and Lisa Suttora
In case you missed my fun radio interview with Lisa Suttora on Wednesday, January 27th at 11 am, you can listen to Lisa’s archived radio programs here. Lisa and I discussed how the new eBay store changes and announcements will be affecting different types of sellers. A more in-depth teleseminar will take place on Tuesday night, February 9th at 5 pm PST, 8 pm EST. If you are a Queen’s Court member this is your gift for February. Please get your questions posted now. Lisa, as many of you know, is a business and marketing expert, so please ask her anything! I can’t wait to talk to Lisa and hear all your great questions on 2/9/10. If you aren’t a Queen’s Court member, the teleseminar can be ordered here.
We have now sold thirteen seats for Live Boot Camp 2010. If you are considering joining us, we recommend that you reserve your spot early. This one is going to sell out quickly. Here is a link.
Finally, we are looking for more of your stories. Read below to find out how to submit your stories for consideration.
Lynn Dralle, ‘The Queen of Auctions,’ Creator of the best-selling eBay Boot Camp in a Box.
Dinnerware, China, whatever you want to call it, these items are the cornerstone of my business on eBay. You might even call them the bread and butter (plate)! Ha Ha.
Anyway, I talk a lot about dinnerware, teach about it, and feature it in my Live Boot Camps, but I know that an in-depth eBook is a necessity for you to be successful. One of my new year’s resolutions was to write this eBook, and I can’t think of a better way to start this year off than to offer it to you at a special preorder price.
Because there is soooo much amazing information, this dinnerware eBook will be published electronically in three separate volumes. Volume #1 will be available this week. Don’t miss out on the special preorder pricing that ends tonight. This is an awesome bunch of information! (Queen’s Court members, don’t forget to use your discount.
I have started writing this 3-volume eBook and it will cover the MAJORITY of these topics–I am still fleshing it out.
- Types of Dinnerware
- Manufacturers to ALWAYS buy
- Manufacturers to NEVER buy
- Tricky Manufacturers
- Patterns to Buy
- Best Selling Patterns of All Times
- Designer/Artists to Buy
- Good Color Combos
- Good Themes
- Different Countries
- Identifying the Different Pieces
- Terms and Definitions
- Where to Buy?
- Research in the Field to Make Quick Purchase Decisions
- How much should you pay?
- Single pieces to purchase vs. Entire Sets
- Research at Home
- Pricing and How to Sell
- Condition and Seconds
- Let’s put it to the test–a Case Study with me
This eBook is a no-brainer money-maker for YOU! Don’t miss out on the special intro price. Click here to order now. Volume #1 will be made available for download by Monday. Volumes #2 and #3 will be available downloads by February and March, respectively. Your purchase price buys all three volumes.
Check out this salad plate that I paid $2.99 for. You won’t believe what it sold for. One sale like this will pay for more than half of this amazing 3-part eBook at the intro price. Just one salad plate!
See the salad plate auction here.
Here are two great emails I received about how to deal with tough customers. Thank you to Monty and Glenn for sharing their experiences with us!
I have found the shipping back and forth on broken items to be ridiculous. The customer is not happy and what are we going to do with the broken item except probably trash it.
As part of my standard return policy I ask for a photo of damaged goods for a refund to be issued. Legitimate photos do come through but this happens rarely as breaks are rare. If I get a legitimate one I refund the money promptly. As a result I get positive feedback from those customers even though they did not get what they wanted. This works and none the worse for wear.
Glenn’s idea of asking for a photo of damaged goods is awesome! I wish I had thought of including it in the original ezine article!
Here is another great idea.
I found your latest ezine to be very interesting. Having bought and sold on eBay since 1996 I agree that most buyers are honest. But I remember when I first started I was selling Walt Disney Classic Collection figurines and I had a problem with people saying their item was broken during shipping and wanted a refund.
So, I would put a pencil mark on the bottom of the figurine in an inconspicuous area and when I took a picture of the makers mark on the bottom to put in the listing the pencil mark would be there but go unnoticed by the buyer. They would then get the item and tell me that it was broken during shipping. I would have them ship it back.
When I would check the bottom and my pencil mark wasn’t there I knew that they were lying and were just trying to get a cheap replacement for the piece they broke. It would always give me such pleasure to email them and tell them that the piece they returned wasn’t the one I shipped and for them to check the picture on the listing and they would see the pencil mark on the bottom and if they wanted me to ship their broken piece back to them to send me a money order to cover the cost of shipping. Of course, I would never hear back from them.
Another great tip from Monty for selling higher-end items. Thanks guys!
‘How to Deal with the Latest eBay Changes’
by Lynn Dralle, The Queen of Auctions
I was at eBay Live in 2008 in Chicago when I started hearing the “rumors” that eBay stores were going to go away. It put me into a panic. I was at a cocktail party with all the top eBay executives (since I am an eBay Certified Provider) and I cornered as many as I could to ask my questions!
I talked to both Dinesh Lathi and Rajiv Dutta.
Here I am at that party talking with Rajiv Dutta, former president, eBay Marketplaces. Rajiv was replaced by Lorrie Norrington in July of 2008. I expressed many of the concerns we had about eBay stores going away. And Rajiv was very receptive and helpful. He assured me that eBay would always support sellers of unique one-of-a-kind items like you and me because that is the basis of eBay’s Foundation.
Rajiv and me at eBay Live!
I think eBay’s announcements on Tuesday back up what I was told almost two years ago at eBay Live in Chicago. eBay is still supporting sellers of unique, one-of-a-kind items like you and me.
Here is a link to the announcements if you have not seen them yet.
I love the first line from those announcements.
“It’s you–entrepreneurial sellers–who make eBay the world’s #1 online marketplace. In 2010, we’re taking steps to increase your profitability and bring you even more buyers.”
It really makes it clear to me that eBay does recognize that their livelihood is dependent upon smaller- to middle-sized sellers like us.
The bottom line is this. If you are listing less than 50 items per month, you may want to opt for NO Store. If you are listing more than 50 items per month, an eBay store is probably the way to go. Here is more information that I have taken from the eBay announcements.
Choose the package that’s right for you. Sign up now, before February 16, and pay no additional monthly fee until April!
- BASIC: 20¢ Fixed Price Insertion Fees, $15.95/month
Consider a Basic Store if you list more than 50 Fixed Price or Auction-style items a month. It’s a great starter package if you plan to start an eBay business or ramp up your selling.
- PREMIUM: 5¢ Fixed Price Insertion Fees, $49.95/month
Great choice for higher volume sellers (more than 250 items per month) and sellers listing in both Auction-style and Fixed Price formats.
- ANCHOR: 3¢ Fixed Price Insertion Fees, $299.95/month
Get the same great deal as the old Store Inventory format-now with full exposure in search results! With an Anchor Store subscription, higher volume sellers get top savings and the lowest package rates on eBay.
See fee charts for details.
Use the Fee Illustrator to help you decide.
NOTE: Starting in March, meeting the new minimum performance standard for all sellers will be a requirement for Premium and Anchor subscribers.
The Fee Illustrator is awesome. You can plug in your numbers and it will tell you which store level is best for you. Keep in mind that it is just calculating auction insertion prices at 10 cents each (it should ask you what your starting auction price is instead of just assuming 99 cents). That was the only glitch that I found while using it.
I did a little analysis of my own business and I will include that for you here also. I have always had a premium store and for a few months, I even tried the anchor store. The anchor store at $299.95 per month did not make sense for me back then, and it still doesn’t today. I would need to have about 10,000 items in my eBay store to make it pay for itself.
Here is the analysis of my business. I have 6272 items listed. 100 are auctions. I will continue to list 100 new auction items each week.
Here are my current monthly costs:
400 auctions at 35 cents insertion = $140.00
6172 items in my eBay store
10 at 10 cents per month = $1.00
448 at 5 cents per month = $22.40
5714 at 3 cents per month = $171.42
Premium Store subscription = $49.95
Total Insertion fees per month = $384.77
Under the new fee structure:
400 auctions at 25 cents insertion = $100.00
6172 items in my eBay store
6172 items at 5 cents per month = $308.60
Premium Store subscription = $49.95
Total Insertion fees per month = $458.55
DIFFERENCE = $ 73.78
Final Value Fees (NO CHANGE because of my average price points being below $25.00)
85 auction items sold for an average of $12.44 at 8.75% = $92.52
422 store items sold for an average of $16.87 at 12.0% = $854.30
The good that I see coming from this:
1. $73.78 is not a big change in my eBay fees for the extended exposure of my items showing up in a core search.
The slight final value fee increase on sales prices over $25.00 will affect me very slightly.
When eBay store items came up in core searches for a few months back in 2007 (I may not be remembering the year correctly), my business went through the roof. It was amazing the increase it had on my sales. We were all so bummed when eBay changed it back to store items just showing up in the store searches. This is going to be awesome!!! I wish it were happening sooner than the end of March.
I think that the $73.78 extra I pay per month will be made up quickly with me just having to sell four more items per month out of my fixed price inventory.
This has already been proven in the UK and Germany where the change in searches and store format has increased sales.
2. Smaller sellers who are not serious will leave the marketplace
Once again, there will always be complainers who won’t want to modify their business strategy to fit with this new model. I say, fine, let them leave eBay. It will just leave more business for those of us who can adapt and make it profitable.
3. eBay will soon flag listings that have not had any movement, sales, lookers, etc. and this will help us to clean up our inventory.
Here I am in front of some of my inventory storage shelves.
If I want to make back that $73.78 increase, I could use eBay’s new flagging tool and take about 1475 (1475 times 5 cents is about $73) slow-moving items out of my eBay store. However, I am going to continue with my two-year rotation of merchandise and see how great business is in April and May before I start purging slow-moving inventory.
I hope you are all as excited about these changes as I am. I know that our eBay store businesses will continue to improve with these changes. Since I do about 80% of my eBay business from my eBay store, I am thrilled that these items are going to get the exposure they deserve!
Visit my eBay Store.
Visit my eBay auctions.
For more great eBay tips and stories, visit my website at:
WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR EZINE OR ON YOUR WEBSITE? Yes, you may – just as long as you include all links as they are and append this complete blurb with it: The Queen of Auctions and eBay Power Seller, Lynn Dralle, publishes ‘eBay Tips & Tricks’ a weekly ezine with 10,000+ subscribers. If you’re ready to jump-start your eBay business, make more money, and have more time, get your FREE tips now at www.thequeenofauctions.com
We are looking for your eBay success stories to share with our ezine readers and possibly make it into a book of our reader’s best eBay stories.
A big thanks to everyone who has already submitted a story! We are looking for more great stories of your eBay adventures. We know there are many great tales out there, so please submit your story along the lines of the stories from the 100 Best Books and a great side story with photos will help. If we use your story, you will receive a $35 merchandise credit on my website and you will have your story featured–along with your user ID–in my ezine! It may also eventually end up in a published book!
By the way, when I mention my ezine readers’ user IDs with links to their auctions–it actually helps their sales! Amazing how that works. Click here for the guidelines for submitting your stories.
eBay PowerSeller and third-generation antique dealer, Lynn Dralle, is the creator of Boot Camp in a Box, the home-study course where you can learn to implement the Dralle Method to maximize your eBay profits.
If you liked today’s issue, you’ll love this step-by-step course that is guaranteed to be the most complete and enjoyable guide to selling on eBay that MAKES YOU MONEY.
Read all about it here.
The Queen of Auctions also offers articles, teleseminars, how-to books, tracking guides, DVDs, eBay Boot Camp training, and other resources to help entrepreneurs make their eBay business a six-figure sales machine.
The Queen of Auctions/All Aboard Inc.
PO Box 14103
Palm Desert, CA 92255
Lynn is an experienced eBay Power Seller, author, and teacher. If you want to know the eBay tips, tricks, and tools that Lynn uses for buying and selling at an online auction click here.