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New to BHW / Old to eBay - Need Help Increasing Sales to leave my day job

Discussion in 'Ebay' started by delprimero, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. delprimero

    delprimero Newbie

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    Hello everyone,

    I'm a long time eBay UK seller (7 years or so) but am fairly new to the BHW site. I've been looking at the masses of info in this great site, off and on for a year or so and so I'm still trying to get to grips with a lot of it.
    Currently, I source my products from China and sell at a fairly decent markup on eBay and lately, on Amazon, (with some non-impressive numbers, I guess due to having no feedback/review on Amazon). In terms of running things, I take care of sourcing items to sell, create auctions/shop listings, update a very basic wordpress website that uses the eshop plugin to (try to) sell items, I handle customer support, etc and most of everything else. I have a family member who deals with the packaging and shipping of our sales and keeping an eye on any stock emergencies.
    I'm finding that my eBay fees account for a really substantial 50% of my monthly expenses. With the rest of the work that goes into making my items appear more professional than other sellers, I'm not able to make the jump from having a full time job and running this in the background to just running my own business, which I am so desperate to do!
    The reason I'm on here is because although I make some sales, my competition is selling way more than me and I need to be able to compete to get anywhere. To explain, in an average month between the 2 IDs I have on eBay, I will sell around 20 - 30 items but my competition will sell around 70 and they will also have website sales too! I know they have a link from their website to their ebay listing for the product, as they use a Good Til Cancelled shop listing format, whereas I use the 30 day shop listing format with the listings being restarted automatically, as I heard this was a better way to go for improving search standing. One one of my IDs, I'm Top Rated and the sales in the 2 months before my changes, seemed to dry up. I aim for higher priced sales but my prices are about the same as my main competitor who makes three times my sales in an average month.
    So far, I've changed the gallery image I use to push the product and this has helped somewhat and I've added keywords and some SEO on each listing page to help them come up in search results, I've reduced prices as though I'm having a sale, I've added a video to the listings and put slightly different variations in different listings and different listing categories (and in some cases putting the listing in 2 categories) but I'm still not seeing sales of the level I need to really make the progress I need to cover my basics to allow me to leave my day job (roughly £1000 profit per month). I'm not really getting much extra traffic to the listings either.

    I've even employed some Filipino staff to handle social media and blog articles although the quality of their work was poor in terms of content, so I stopped that. I tried adwords on a site I set up but the site was hacked a couple of times and never really made that many sales anyway. I have also set up an Aweber account and am collecting subscribers from eBay sales but this is quite slow and costly (in terms of the money I'm bringing in, to justify the costs of the Aweber account).

    Anyway, to bring this to some kind of point... I know the methods used in here are wide and varied ;-) but has anyone got suggestions as to how I can push this business forward?

    Some of the things I'm interested in are:

    1. Pushing more traffic to the listings (I know everyone want this but more traffic would make a difference, as I'm only getting 80 visits to listings in a good month)
    2. Improving/moving from using the wordpress eshop plugin to a much better shop for selling just these 2 products (with variations) - eshop is ok to start with but even I know it's not really of the standard to give buyers confidence when buying and also allowing me to fulfill orders, as I'm having problems such as if I customer pays, I'm not even receiving a notification as Paypal has changed the way they work with the plugin
    3. Moving to selling much more on my own site, as eBay and their policies cause a lot of problems for me and consume much time in just compliance with them
    4. Scaling up - I want to aim for a basic profit each month, of a min of £1000 - I think this will translate to around 15 items per day
    5. Are there any other tricks I'm missing that will help?
    The methods I want to use mustn't get me banned from eBay as the accounts I have are legitimate and legal but I'm open to any suggestion, as long as I'm aware of the potential pitfalls from taking any path suggested.
    Anyway, apologies for the long explanation, but I hope some of you will be able to help me out here. I'll post updates on success of anything I attemp/get help with if this will help anyone else, in the future, in the spirit of this forum.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. makaminski

    makaminski Newbie

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    hi
    intresting to read how much effort you have put into your business, its good that yu are working hard and you are not lazzy, but what i picked form your explanation seems as if you are trying to break into a market that has established sellers, its hard to do so especially if they sell products that brings them recuring sales, they may get a third of their sales from returning customers, and as you mentioned that they use good till cancelled, the reason for that is their listing keeps acumulating the number of sales per product, where as your listing refreshes every 30 days, and by so doing your listing only shows the number of products sold that month, ebay system rets listings by number os salesper month, the bigger the figure the higher your listing will rank, its all about ranking at the top , so that yu can rake in sales, my suggestion is try put one listing on good tillcancelled and by second month it should rank way higher than it does now, that way you will have many views and more sales,
    if it stays the same, you may need to explre option 2 which is change of product, you may likie a product but wont be ableto break into the ring of masters who are established,
    hope the litle advise will help
    thank you and good luck , keep us updated,