Despite the fact that eBay has provided sellers and buyers with a perfect venue to interact, yet there is the need for you to make extra effort in planning and proper coordination to enhance your trading ventures’ profitability. This is the difference between the ordinary seller and the extra ordinary or super-sellers. Before you will earn above the ordinary eBay traders, you must move from the ordinary level to the extra ordinary. I will show you how!
I will now tell you what you should do before, during and after each trading effort at eBay so that you will be classified among the few that are successful on the wealth-creating mega-market forum. Even if you are a newbie, these tips are good for you!
Note the following points when making your plans:
Ensure that your plans are written.
Keep your plans where you can see it daily.
Your plans must be measurable so that you will be able to evaluate your result
You may need to change some of your plans. But, you must be as rigid as possible. Those who change their plans frequently hardly achieve anything in business and even in life.
1. Determine the scope of your eBay operation. Is it full-time or part-time? The number of hours you can devote to this business in a week will impinge on this plan. Are you currently employed full time or part time? Do you want to gradually replace your current job with eBay business?
2. How much are you ready to invest in your business? The scope of your business will be affected significantly by this factor.
3. When you have determined how much you will invest in the business vis-à-vis the scope, you will now plan your costs, revenue and profit margin. Your cost must take care of the following: inventory supplies, equipments and software, administration, marketing, staffing, online payment-processing (credit card, Paypal, Stormpay), eBay fees, etc.
4. Determine which goods you are going to deal in. This decision is also very crucial since it will affect how much you will expect from your customers. The profitability of your venture will also be largely determined by the product you sell.
5. Will your business be carried out on the cyberspace and from your home? Or you will operate from a rented store. This will be affected by the scope as well.
6. Another vital plan is pricing your goods. Once you have determined what to sell, you must determine how much to sell. Your pricing decision will influence your sales volume as well as profitability. In determining the price, the costs itemised above are taken into cognisance.
7. Risk-bearing plan is another area of consideration which is very vital. Your willingness to take risk will determine which pricing policy you will adopt. A low starting price encourages bidding but may lead to selling the item at a price lower than what you really want while or fixed price option and your product will either be sold or not at the fixed price. You can also set a low starting price with a Reserve Price. Buyers are not shown what the Reserve Price is, and if it is not met, you are not obligated to sell the item. However, a Reserve Price may discourage bidding in much the same way as a high starting price. Hence, before you start on eBay at all, sit down and make these plans.
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WHAT TO DO DURING SALES.
When you have taken the pre-sales decisions, there is the need for you to make necessary decisions during selling operations. Some of the decisions are as follows:
1. Time planning and Mental-Scheduling. Determine what to do at what time. As said above, be rigid. Procrastination is dangerous and will make you a failure. Set time to search for and procurement of merchandise, shipping of goods, posting your sales and purchases day books, balancing your accounts and bank statements. You need to give time to attend to customers’ questions.
2. Make use of tools available. Some are provided by eBay free while you buy others. There are some good books which you must buy and read depending on your budget. These tools are dealt with in another article.
3. As your eBay business expands, you may not be able to cope with every aspect of the operation: the procurement, sales, book-keeping, payment-processing, inventory, etc. You may need to hire few hands. Although you may automate your business with the use of various tools mentioned above, yet, you will need some employees sooner or later.
4. Guard against fraud. Although this is not rampant with eBay, yet, you must guard against the following situations:
a. Non-paying bidder. Send a reminder to him to know if he has a legitimate reason for not responding. You will now file unpaid item alert. After 10 days of trying to resolve things with your buyer/bidder, you can request a Final Value Fee Credit. A refund will be credited to your account within 48 hours.
b. Bid-Shielding. This occurs when a bidder/buyer is protecting a low bid by intentionally using a secondary User ID to place an exceptionally high bid that is pulled away at the last second—report it to eBay's investigations department.
c. Ensure that you have received payment and it has cleared before shipping an item.
d. Track your shipment and deliveries. Some might dubiously claim that the item was not received. You must have a proof of delivery.
e. Check and evaluate your bidder’s feedback rating. If a buyer has a bad record, you might call him on the phone to ascertain his seriousness on the current item.
AFTER SALES PROCEDURES
After sales services are known to be crucial for effective feedback mechanism. You must be accessible to your buyers after you have shipped the item and the payments have been cleared. The buyer may want to ask one or two questions concerning the product, may want to make one comment on the other on the item purchased.
Feedback is imperative to the eBay user, according to Joseph Sinclair, author of eBay the Smart Way: Selling, Buying and Profiting on the Web's #1 Auction Site: “If a buyer is purchasing an expensive item, maybe over $100, they'll definitely look at the feedback of the seller first. If it's not good, many people won't bother bidding. "
These are tips for good feedback and good after sales bidders relationship. Avoid cover up. Use the listing description to expose the quality of the item being sold. Take a picture of the item and tell the bidder of any defects on the item.
Make sure you ship the item securely. Use a secure shipping organisation with good track record and reputation.
Check buyers feedback. Respond to them since this can be insurance and testimonials for future dealings.
Withdraw negative feedback. If you bag a negative feedback, you may work it out with the buyer to withdraw it. eBay recently put in place a procedure whereby this could be easily effected.
Refer un-resolvable problem to Square Trade. If a problem does arise, try to contact the buyer directly to resolve the problem. Those who can't work out their disagreements can also turn to Square Trade, a fee-based third-party arbitration system. Square Trade acts as a mediator in situations where negative feedback has been given and will help resolve conflicts, often resulting in negative feedback being removed.
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About the Author.
James Ojo is a prolific and seasoned author of many online articles.
He is the President of Hot Home Business Online.