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Ten Tips to boost your eBay Sales

by Lily O'Halloran

The World’s Online Marketplace, also known as eBay, provides sellers with the perfect stomping ground. Listing and commission fees are relatively inexpensive, especially when you consider the number of potential customers that your listings will reach. With so many customers out there, competition amongst sellers can be pretty fierce. You need to make your listings stand out in the crowd, and become a trusted eBay seller to boost your sales. Our top ten tips will help you rise to the top.

1. Use Descriptive, Easy-to-Understand Titles.

The title of your auction is one of the most important aspects of your listing. A potential customer will either be drawn to click on your title, or they will pass over it. Therefore, you must create a title that entices the customer to see what you have to offer. The best titles are descriptive and easy-to-understand. The title should include the brand and name of the product, as well as the condition of the product. Only use commonly known abbreviations, such as NIP (new in package) or NWT (new with tag). If customers do not know what you are offering, they will likely navigate away from your listing.

2. Tell Customers Why They Need Your Product.

Although it is important to list the features of a product, features alone do not entice a customer to buy your product. The customer may already know the product’s features, or worse yet, maybe they used your listing to get that information before buying the product from another seller. Why would a customer do that you ask? Perhaps your listing was boring – too plain, too simple, not interesting. Spice up your listing by telling the customer why they need your product. How will they benefit from the product? To answer that question, you need to determine what the customer is looking to gain from the product. Product review web sites can offer a glimpse into the value of the product from a customer’s view point. You can use product reviews (in your own words, of course) to create fun listings that make customers want your product. Statistics show that customers buy from sellers that have interesting listings. Customers enjoy listings that are compelling and engaging.

3. Use a Writing Style that Resonates with Your Target Audience.

Determine who the target audience for your product is, and use a writing style in your listing that resonates with that specific audience. Think of an individual that would be interested in purchasing your product. Keep that person in mind while writing your listing. If your product appeals to a stay at home mom, then your customer would enjoy reading how this product will save her time and money. She would enjoy reading a listing that offered a funny example of how this product helped you get through some ordeal with your children. She would appreciate a humorous and enlightening view of why the product is perfect for her.

4. A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words. (true cliché)

This is perhaps one of the oldest clichés. However, it still rings true today. Customers want pictures; they want to see the product. The reason is two-fold. One: the customer wants to see what the product looks like to make sure it fits their needs. Two: the customer wants to know that you have the product. However, with drop shipping you do not have the product on hand. In this case, you should use a picture from the manufacturer of the product. Pictures allow the customer to see an example of the product. Most customers find the picture to be of such importance, that they will not buy the product from a seller that does not use a picture.

5. Choose an Ending Time Based on Your Target Demographic.

Determine who your target demographic is, and use that information to benefit your listing. You should end your listing at a time that will allow your potential customer to be at their computer when the auction ends. If a customer watches the end of the auction, they are much more likely to place another bid when outbid. Once again, if your target customer is a stay at home mom, then you should make sure that your listing does not end in the middle if the night while she is sleeping.

6. Do Not Over-Inflate Shipping Charges.

You can add a small fee for handling the product, but never charge a huge, over-inflated shipping fee for your product. Most consumers will laugh as they pass over your listing. The only time that you can get away with a steep shipping price is when the product is a hot product that is hard to find. Consumers are willing to pay inflated costs to get their hands on really hot products that are sold out everywhere. If you charge outrageously expensive shipping and handling charges for your product, then you are helping other sellers sell their products. Customers shop around for the best deal. If your listing is not the best deal around, then it better be very enticing in another way.

7. Do Not Use a Reserve Price.

This is a scary tip for new users, but is important nonetheless. Customers do not like reserve prices, and often pass over listing with a set reserve price. Customers want to feel like they got a good deal. Reserve prices make customers feel that they are paying too much, even though they often pay much more than a reserve price. If your item is a hot product, it will sell as such without a reserve price. Listings that do not have a reserve price set yield higher winning bids.

8. Become a Power Seller.

Power sellers gain customer trust and loyalty which leads to more sales and higher profits. Many customers choose to purchase products solely from Power Sellers. The large number of transactions that Power Sellers have helps customers feel secure when purchasing on eBay.

9. Accept as Many Forms of Payment as Possible.

You want your auctions to be accessible to as many customers as possible, which means that you need to accept as many forms of payment as you can. The most common form of payment, and the payment least likely to be fraudulent, is PayPal. PayPal offers buyers a free way to securely pay sellers. PayPal is great for sellers as well, because payments are transferred immediately to the seller’s account. PayPal provides instant access to funds, and offers sellers protection against fraud when specific criteria are met. Other common forms of payment include: personal check, money order, and credit card.

10. Offer Your Customers More.

The more relevant information your listing has, the more interesting it becomes. Offer product reviews, customer testimonials, insights into the benefit of the product, and tips on effectively using or maintaining the product. If applicable, you could add a link to the product’s online owner manual or installation guide. Share your techniques for getting the most out of the product, and inform customers why your product is better than a competitor’s product. Your product knowledge builds customer trust. Customers become loyal to sellers that they trust. Loyal customers boost your sales.

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