Topics in this issue:
1. eBay News: 5p listing day
2. eBay 101: Talking auctions
3. Traders’ Tales: Too good to be true
4. Ask Molly: How can I find a stock supplier?
Hello and welcome to this week’s edition of The eBay UK Bulletin.
This is a great time of the year; the kids are almost back at school, holidays are over and thoughts turn towards Christmas. Although still some way off, don’t be left out – if you are thinking of selling, now is the time to get organised. I have spent this week photographing fancy dress costumes ready for Halloween (you should see me in a pink tutu – scary!)
Has somebody ever bid twice as much for your item than you expected? Read the Trader’s Tale below and be wary if something seems too good to be true. Plus, are you looking for stock in the run up to Christmas, but having trouble finding a supplier? This issue’s ‘Ask Molly’ offers a few useful tips – happy hunting!
[For details of this newsletter, please scroll down to the end.]
1. EBAY NEWS: 5p LISTING DAY
Well, it’s finally happened – eBay.co.uk have given enough notice about a reduced fee day, for me to be able to include it in an issue of The eBay UK Bulletin (thanks!) This Thursday 7 September, you will be able to list an item for just 5 pence. In general, these offers are great news and well worth considering; the higher your start price, the greater your savings will be. There are a couple of interesting facts that might be of interest:
- A ten day auction starting on a Thursday will end on a Sunday night, which I believe is the best time for my auctions
- If you schedule your item before Thursday and then revise it and release it on the 7th, the listing fee will reduce to 5p
As you would expect, there are some restrictions. For example, this offer does not apply to multiple item listings, so it will cost you 5p for each item; remember that you can only have 15 identical auctions running at any time. For full details, please follow this link: http://pages.ebay.co.uk/sell/Sep065p/
2. EBAY 101: TALKING AUCTIONS
Have you ever wanted to include sound within your auctions? Maybe a verbal description of your item, or in the case of toys, an idea of the sounds they make. Check out my auction here then click on the small picture of a speaker.
Before you can include sound in your listings, you will need a digital recording of it. For toys, I use a digital dictaphone which plugs straight into my PC. You will also need somewhere to store the recording on the internet – I suggest www.photobucket.com or http://auctionpix.co.uk. Sounds are stored in the same way as pictures. You will also need a little HTML code, which is copied into your listing in the “Titles and Description” section. This is the code used in my “adventure tunnel” auction:
Feel free to overtype with your sound address and experiment with ‘talking auctions’. Remember, if there is some HTML code that you would like to add to your listings, please e-mail me and I will be more than happy to write it for you: email@example.com
3. TRADERS’ TALES: TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE
We have all heard about scams on eBay – in fact, anywhere that money changes hands, there is the possibility of fraud. This week, a true life tale from eBay seller “MidgeholeDave” who experienced such a scam. Here is a lesson to us all:
I was selling a mobile phone (item number 250016391671) and the price reached a comfortable £120 when – with only a couple of minutes to go – two silly bids (well over the retail price of the phone) came in from two bidders; neither of which had any feedback whatsoever (both were new eBay members that day). This ruined the opportunity for the person with the sensible £120 bid. It was just too good to be true; something was not right. The next thing was a notification of payment via PayPal, with the following note:
Thanks for notifying me as the winner bidder of the item. I will be sending you payment via PayPal and pay you £30.00 for the postage and packaging and £10.00 for postage insurance via dhl/fedex/tnt Special Delivery to West Africa, Nigeria. So this is the postal address where the item will be deliver to: PEDRO ABIODUN, 34 Aina Street, Ojota, Lagos, 23401, Nigeria.”
I didn’t think for a moment that the phone would sell for the big bids (£200 & £205), so I notified both PayPal and eBay of my suspicions and made a second chance offer to the third placed bidder. Although I was e-mailed by the winner several times, I decided to ignore them.
Auction Update: The third placed bidder did not take up the offer, so the phone was re-listed and it sold for a more realistic £86.02, to a buyer in the UK. Both the first and second bidder from the original auction have been removed from eBay, but of course they are still out there looking for phones – beware!
4. ASK MOLLY: HOW CAN I FIND A STOCK SUPPLIER?
Finding stock is always a challenge and not something that many sellers will discuss – but when I receive a question that starts like the one below, I just have to help.
I have just purchased your book and read it. I was very impressed with the way in which it was written and all sections were easy to understand – it was extremely helpful, thank you. I wanted to ask one question, which I hope you will be able to help me with. I have tried many, many wholesalers and have not found a decent one. Do you deal with any in the markets you are involved – can you recommend one? I would be most appreciative of your help and fully understand if you do not wish to divulge sensitive information, but it is something I am having difficulty in as I want to deal in ‘new’ stock. Hope you can help and many thanks again, for a great informative book.”
Finding the right wholesaler can be tricky and of course, more and more people are catching on to the eBay way of life (I blame a certain author!)
You can read my full answer to this question on my new ‘Ask Molly’ page on the website (details below!) – but in summary, these are the places that I find my new stock:
1) Wholesaler lists (check out Issue 6 of this bulletin at: http://www.ebaybulletin.co.uk/blog/2006/06/)
3) Local market traders
4) High Street stores
To read more of my advice to this question, please visit ‘Ask Molly’ online:
If you have a question about eBay, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org – I will reply personally to every e-mail I receive.
– END NOTE –
That’s all for this week. Good luck with your auctions over the next seven days and keep your eyes open for the ‘true’ meanings behind some common sales phrases:
“Distinctive”: a different shape and colour than the others
“Re-designed”: previous faults corrected, we hope.
“Hand-crafted”: assembly machines operated without gloves on
“Performance proven”: will operate through the warranty period
Best wishes and happy eBaying!
Author of the bestselling title, ‘The eBay Business Handbook’ – available direct from the publishers at: www.harriman-house.com/ebaybusiness
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