Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Creating an Interesting Title for Your Ebay Auctions

ebay keyword title
Keywords. Those are what matter when creating your keyword title, but have you ever given much thought to the sequence of those words? I recently listed a couple of bottles of cologne on Ebay and noticed my own title read a little funny. It was like I plopped a bunch of keywords randomly into the title. If I were reading the title, it would have made no sense whatsoever. For search engines, and the Ebay search, it may not matter, but to the human being, it matters.

Here's the mistake I made. I had a bottle of used Chrome Legend by cologne spray by Azzarro. I listed the title as "CHROME LEGEND Azzaro Cologne Mens Spray 4.2 oz Bottle." An awful sequence, and it reads poorly. What I should have done was put the words in an order that's easy to read, like "Chrome Legend by Azzarro Mens 4.2 oz Cologne Spray." That's more like it. And how about the capitlization of the "CHROME LEGEND," is that annoying, or effective? While it may stand out, it really depends on what everyone else is doing, which is why it's always a good idea to check the current and completed listings to see what you're up against. If everyone else is using lowercase, uppercase might grab their attention. All uppercase, well, you use lowercase.

Some other words I could have used were "Eau De Toilette," but I thought customers might not be searching using those words. When I search for cologne, I never search for "Eau De Toilette," I search for "cologne," and the brand name. To me, "mens" and "spray" were better words that were searched more often. Then again, "Eau De Toilette" might just be more targeted than "mens spray." In other words, the people looking for "Eau De Toilette" know exactly what they're looking for.

Remember, too, that your keyword title will not only show up on Ebay, but off of Ebay as well. That's why it's important to try to limit the amount of acronyms that you use like "NWT" and "NIB." Buyers outside of Ebay will have no idea what those are. Assume all buyers are first time buyers.

More Information you might find useful:
* The Ebay Education Group
* How to Price your Ebay Items
* 10 Reasons to Open an Ebay Store

Thursday, June 11, 2009

One Hundred Tips for Selling on Ebay

No longer will you have the excuse of "I don't know how to make more money on Ebay!" Instead, the answer to your question, "how can I make more money on Ebay" will be answered. I've come up with not one, but one hundred ways that you can start selling more and making more money on Ebay on this Squidoo lens. It includes ways to start making a bigger profit, to divert more traffic to your store, and how you can cut costs on fees, as well as source new inventory and grab hold of your previous buyers (and make them want to return). Sound like a lot to read? It's broken up into sections that are easily scannable, so you can start reading it today and come back tomorrow or the next day.

Here's a bonus for you: A few resources I rooted around for that are excellent for increasing your sales and traffic on Ebay right now.

* Increasing Ebay Store Traffic
* Make Money on Ebay and Craigslist
* 10 Tips For Better Auctions

Monday, June 8, 2009

Finding Inventory for Ebay

ebay inventory
It's one of the biggest aspects of your Ebay business: where do you find your inventory? Finding inventory for Ebay is actually not too hard, once you've had some experience in looking for it.

First, you'll need to figure out what you want to sell. Searching for inventory just based on how much of a profit you will make can be a big mistake. If there's an item out there, it's most likely that Ebay sellers have tried to sell it, and if it's very profitable, you'll have lots of competition. The key is to provide them with items that only you can get. Sure, you can sprinkle in some items that people might be able to find elsewhere, but it's those unique items that will really pull in lots of visitors and establish your reputation.

Here are a few places that you can find very unique items that Ebay sellers use:

  • Yard sales

  • Consignment shops

  • Thrift stores

  • Craigslist

  • Etsy

  • Ebay itself

  • International websites

  • Local artists

Sourcing your products over time will become easier as you learn where to find it and how exactly to deal with the people that you're purchasing from. If I had to give any one single tip for buying inventory though, it's this:

Keep an eye on competitors and their pricing and your profit margin. Profits can slip in an instant if you don't keep a watchful eye!

Competitors can sneak in at a moments notice, so it's absolutely necessary to stay on top of this. To avoid this, keep your inventory fresh and move your products as quick as possible. Avoid relisting again and again, and aim to have your item sell on the first or second try on auction.

Recommended Reading:
Where to Find Inventory for Ebay

Top photo:
By JoeM500 on flickr, licensed under Creative Commons 2.0.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

How to Make More Money on Ebay with the Buy it Now Format

The buy it now format on Ebay is now a staple and standby for the auction format, giving a great supplement to the bidding that's going on. It's instant gratification for those buyers that don't want to wait around for a deal. And who can blame them? We all have things to do and can't wait around for the auction to end.

Used correctly, the buy it now format will yield excellent results in increasing sales for your Ebay store. The entire Ebay store format is completely buy it now, and that's where your potential for big earnings can be.

Couple Walking with Shopping Bags on Konigsallee, Dusseldorf, North Rhine Westphalia, Germany

Think of the auction format as an advertisement for your buy it now store inventory items. Placing some of your best items up front on auction can attract traffic, if priced correctly, and lead to some instant purchases and click throughs to your store.

Ways to start utilizing buy it now:

1. Offer an item that compliments the item that you are selling in the auction, and link to it from the auction item. Linking to items with multiple quantities can save time.

2. Offer the same item that's on auction with free shipping in your store. Link directly to that item.

3. Use buy it now as a way to give a perceived value of the item. Place the starting bid well below the buy it now price.

4. List multiple quantity items at the same time using the fixed price format.

5. Play off the immediate needs of the buyer and let them know that they can purchase the same item right now without waiting.

You'll want to experiment with the format until you see the best results. Change the price, start fixed price format listings at different times of the day, use different durations, and most of all, be persistent!

Recommended reading:
Make more money on Ebay with the buy it now format

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Search Engine Optimization for Ebay Store and Auctions

ebay seo
If you're familiar at all with search engine optimization, you'll probably know that it takes a great deal of work, but can be highly worth the effort for your Ebay business. You'll also need to highly focus your search marketing to make it effective, and you might even need to base some of your inventory around how you're ranking.

So why should you care about search engine optimization for your Ebay store? The Ebay search engine is only one small fragment of the possible business you could be receiving. This outside traffic can give you greater exposure, and can grow your business over time.

You can also not only optimize your store and custom pages, but your auctions as well for search engines. Repeating keywords throughout the text (at around 1-3 out of 100 words keyword density) throughout the body of the auction will help with indexing. Here's a good guide to optimizing your auctions to learn some other tips. You can also calculate your keyword density using this free tool.

How Shoppers Use Search Engines

Many online shoppers rely on Yahoo and Google searches to find those rare items. As a customers searches for that odd item, there's a good chance, with the right search marketing, that your store or optimized page could pop up on the first page (the best page to be on) of Google results.

So how do you got about optimizing your store for search engines? It will require a few things:

1. Keyword research for the best words to use (the most searched with the least competition).
2. Customized landing pages optimized for certain items.
3. Linking outside of Ebay via blogs, forums, websites, and anywhere else you can gain a relevant link without spamming.

There's a lot more to search engine optimization than just these three rules, but this is the core of what you would be doing. The best strategy is to slowly increase links over time naturally. Map out your long term and short term plans, and start building!

With the ever increasing changes to Ebay stores, it's important that you utilize outside searches more and more and rely less on Ebay's advertising. The decreasing prominence of Ebay store items in searches is one huge reason you should consider this. It's also free to start your SEO campaign, unless you hire a professional (which can also yield excellent results.)