I'm not trying to sell you any of my crap, so let's just get that out of the way first.
If you have a few minutes, I'd really like your opinion on my listings.
I used to do eBay successfully in the mid nineties, I sort of feel old now 'cuz so much has changed!!
I sell random vintage crap - you know what they say, one man's trash is another man's treasure... Unfortunately, my sell thru rate is also crap.
I want YOU to let me know if you see any obvious problems, please.
I'm a big girl! I can take it! Let me know what you see!
For those of you who have a few minutes, go ahead and click on that link above....
For those of you who have nothing better to do than keep reading, right on! Stick with me folks, here's the real deal:
I'm using ONLY eBay's free listing days, I mean, I'm flat effing broke ('scuse my language) So I really can't use advice right now that includes purchasing a subscription to terapeak or some such, you know?
Last night I updated all my listings with a free 'Billboard' header and footer - I really really hope that this will up my sales, I seem to get a decent amount of views, so I think it's a matter of 'hooking the customer'.
I personally price things by research from completed sales, except in cases where I know damn well that something is worth more than current market supports - but it's my own fault I'm not getting the inventory timing right, I have so much stuff...
My very supportive family has donated 'stuff/crap' to me to help me get back on my feet, I also have a professional/dry/secure storage packing area. I'm for real about this, I'm not a beginner or a fly by night!
I did this a long time ago! I know darned well if I just keep working hard I can do this again!
I'm burning out guys - I need some pep talk, I need some critiques...
Hello? Are you still with me? Allright folks, check out my listings, and let me have it:
p.p. Thanks in advance for your time and honest comments.
I had a look at a couple of your listings for you.
I am being really picky to try and give you some feedback so please don't take offense. Overall your listings are a lot better than many out there.
I think the one thing that could really help is the item descriptions.
I found them easy to skim over as they didn't stand out. Your top & bottom "border" are a bit busy & drown out the description.
Try putting a bit more space before starting your description, using a larger font & put some space at the bottom of the description as well.
Most of your images were not available to me but with the ones I could see the back drop you are using throws back glare. Try using a plan sheet either in black or a white/cream depending on what you are photographing rather than one with a shine to it.
You have to remember it also depends on where you come up in the search results. But you have said you are getting plenty of lookers.
You are selling unique items as well so you may have to relist them a few times before they sell. On average I think I am relisting most of my things about three times before they sell.
Good luck with your selling.
I was so excited, even before my coffee of the day, I revised the font in all my auctions!
My pictures aren't loading huh? Darn it, I had a couple yesterday no-show on me, but that's an eBay thing.
Back in the day I ftp'd .jpg's to a free hosted site, and then manually included them in my auctions... Kind-of-a round-about and time consuming deal to be sure but I wonder if that still works...
Images are key to selling, as we know, and that they could be missing to buyers is concerning.
The backdrop being shiny: Doh! Thanks for that tip!!
You've definitely given me excellent advice on how to improve, and I greatly appreciate it!!
Have an awesome day!!
fIRST, you are nervy...asking for critique....I would NEVER do that, as one would pick my worst one and pick them to death. (actually I do a great job of picking my own to death) and found a photo other day of old listing...and was astounded at how HORRID it was!! Especially when compared to same item in different colors I photographed other day. NOT that ANY of MINE look professional. I did see need for improvement and this past year have worked hard on quality pictures. Still have a long haul...but getting better.
I had no problem in foxfire loading pictures, but did not try other browsers.
The backdrop will make big difference, I think in items....you can get posterboard that works great for this...pretty cheap usually about dollar a sheet or foamboard is good. OR both! Not expensive. An ironed pillowcase may work if you have a white or black. Also, I have used the back of a bathmat before or back of placemat.
This is a "thing" I have and it is my problem not yours. I HATE hands and fingers in listings. I sure would NOT go back & change ones you have with fingers hands.....as others may not find this a problem...After viewing my own finger and hand photos I started doing my best to leave them out. I still catch myself with them and crop them or cover them up.
i think a little of the blur in at pictures if from the hand..trying to snap picture in with one hand and holding with other...causes movement
Example, i think if your hand is stabilized on something they are not as blurry, but when hand in air and taking you get the shake or pulse which causes blur. Look at the photos of your holding the balls...one is great...don't know if your hand was propped...others....well...
Also, I would put the BEST pictures first!! So in this case would not re-do...just change order or delete especially the super blurry one.
Again, you are brave and these are not what I think of as major...and sure would NOT go back and redo for fingers/hand issues...but would think about it in the future.
Think I got turned off with fingers really when I saw someone selling something white and holding and their hands looked pretty dirty and grease and dirt under nails. (looked like may have been under car hood, but was not selling car parts! (NOT YOURS YOUR NAILS are FINE!!) But I think that is when I started my hand finger issue.
Happy selling...hopefully holidays will be great for us all!
Excellent advice... my steamer is heating up to take the creases out of my snazzy new backdrop as we speak (ie: pillowcases!)
Hand/fingers: I read somewhere that a hand could give a representation of size as well as providing a 'human' touch - and I think I got stuck on that... besides being an extra effort to get my nails all dainty, I have compromised my personal preference for black nail paint!
I'd like to note though that for two months straight ALL my pictures had my nails all freshly 'goth'd out' - I wonder if you have been horrified!! LOL
I did pretty good those two months actually...
I digress... as I have now plastered a rather small photo of my actual self on all my auctions, as well as carefully listing measurements of every item, hands are redundant for the intended purpose.
As I'm embarking on new pictures today, I appreciate your comments, very timely.
Oh and yes I actually do intend to redo all the pictures - I need to move this stuff man! Times are gettin' hard!
Oh and about being nervy? Well, I did first cautiously ask my family to have a look...
They said it was the most fabulous since sliced bread!!
But YOU guys don't know me, so I figured I'd get a very unbiased report! AND some very helpful info!!
And no one's (yet!) made me cry!
Thank you lookandbuyme - I do appreciate your comments!
Yes!! Here's to a great sales year for us all!!
Good point about hand in relation to size and humanization...never thought about that. See what others think on that...that is valid point. I think I have also hit point that I do not want people to think I am a maw and paw business but a real business so have moved more away from that image a little bit. Which for sure dehumanizes the process a bit. I think that vision of grease monkey nails got to me in bad way. Now..for selling auto parts those would have been PERFECT as I would have thought..THIS MAN really KNOWS his wheels!!
I would NEVER cut black polish...or ones hands as mine are horrid...that is another reason I decided to go hands free.
I am not saying lack of hands will improve sales...by any means.
When you are out and about...invest in the poster board they are around $1.00 each color (I have many colors but use black and white 99 percent of time...as you never have to IRON IT!!! You can also curve it so you have no seams in backdrop.
Oh, the family....they will NOT go down that road!!! They will not be honest since later you may be honest with them!! REVENGE HONESTY!!! Now I do have to say one of my kids whose standard answer is "well, you know more about this "stuff" than we do!" (though this is kid who taught me how to turn on the computer & list). One saw me looking at listings other day thinking I was looking at someone elses and said, why don't your pictures look like that. I laughed and said, that is MY picture...my newer ones. So while they never dissed my pictures, they did comment when someone elses or they thought it was.
I do think pictures sell the item most of the time!
I do like the auctiva templates...as I think they add to the listing.
Glad we don't have you crying yet...we will have to work on that!
go ahead, raise your hand if you laughed out loud when you read that I was going to re-take all my pictures!!
(I don't want to make MYSELF cry!!)
I took a look at all my stuff and went.. oh hell no!!
lookandbuyme--always has some pearls of wisdom.
i love the poster board idea. thank you thank you.
Crocks77...I did laugh (but it was more at me than you) ...as I have thought MANY times that I need to go back to old listings and re-do pictures. It would take FOREVER!!! Those items at some point will reduce till they sell.
Do want to mention one thing on the pillowcase photography. Do one or two post them to ebay and then look at them in gallery and enlarge them. I happened to run across one of my pillowcase photos white pillowcase, last night and honestly, I could see wrinkles in back though had ironed it. BUT, I am really working on making photos great (not perfect just a heavy good) and skimping more on listing details. I am trying to think a picture is worth a 1000 words!
Just a thought before you get carried away with pillowcase photography.
The posterboard does not wrinkle unless you bend it....I usually have a couple of backups in case I hit and bend. I think these are like $1.00 at Walmart, target, etc.
ITSJUSTME....occasionally I throw out something worthwhile!! Thanks
BUT AM STILL LEARNING HAVE A LONG WAY TO GO!! Have friends who give me tidbits now and then that help me tremendously!!
My thoughts exactly! I have a couple of new posts up with said pillowcase and in comparison it's way better - though I too have creases.
What ever compelled me to think that silly shiny sage green thing I was using was so awesome, I'll never know..
Also I want to say thanks for the hands tip. I'm saving time photographing. And for kicks and giggles here's another epiphany, you see, I am ridiculously far-sighted. When I hold something to see it clearly it's at arms length! Unbeknownst to me it was transferring into all my photos where I held something. Sheesh!
Super glad I found this board - and the generosity of fellow sellers to help out is a testament to the community spirit.
A big thank you to everyone!!
about listing details, I wouldn't start skimping on them - this is my thought based on what I've read in my marketing research: men are very visual, pictures are the key generally. whereas women, we are very verbal - we like to read, even if is somewhat redundant based on that same information in photographs.
Ckrocks...I think we do what we have handy (in my case I am CHEAP and had not thought outside the box) I have those moments of what the HECK what I thinking to think this was beautiful.
If you saw what all I write in description you would tell me to shut the Heck up!!!
The details, have come back to bit me in the butt lately. i.e a slanted pocket versus angled (to me same) now letting them look at picture for their definition of slanted versus angled. Purse, shopper versus shoulder that is really shoulder shopper or remove strap for just shopper. It became never ending. Empire waist dress versus baby doll or high waisted, under bust? heck I thought they were same. There could be another name for that style now.
I really am testing this little less detail (believe me I was putting in loads). My reason for even testing this is with people buying from mobile devices it gets harder to read all of the information without constant scrolling.
Also, making font smaller in mine. WHen I use my phone to look at some of my listings I get very bored with scrolling. Since we can enlarge and mouse over pictures the photos show more fine detail. Now when they did not show all this detail...WOULD NEVER have considered shorting details.
Just a test lessening a bit...and if it works...will dump little more later...figuring now may end up a happy medium.
On my phone I tend to look at the photos more..scan the info...on computer I usually use both..but if USED I for sure USE BOTH!!!!
thanks and happy photographing.
oh gosh if we went into the nuances of detail words of women's clothing we'd all go bonkers...
yes I see your point. And once again I appreciate your note on phones, I have purchased (on ebay of course) a touchscreen - haven't had a smart phone in two years. when it comes I'll be sure to check my listings. Man, keeping up on the new technology buyers use sure keeps us sellers on our toes.
peace love and light from NorCal - stay dry and warm y'all!
Some people look for worm holes such as 1/2 " off on a measurement (which I ALWAYS put approximate) loose thread, tear in item which when returned is obvious they tore scissoring the package open...even if you PUT IN LETTERS _____DO NOT CUT PACKAGE...they still do it. They are nervy enough to send back the envelope they cut too.
Had one recently raise the roof over a child hat that she did not measure kids head it was for infant, I looked her up on facebook, this kid was like my boys had huge head and she was 9 months old not an infant. She did not want to say I did not measure so griped about the hole that manufacturer used to hang item in store with. Yes, that little plastic tag that they hang prices with in all stores.
Amazing people...USUALLY block them fast! Thankfully MOSt people are reasonable!!This message has been edited. Last edited by: lookandbuyme,
I just looked at your Feedback scores & you might heed warning that your Shipping & Handling Costs are being docked seriously. Try hard not to inflate your shipping charges to the point that customers are not giving you a 5-Star Rating on them in the future.
Good point - Even though I only have a fifty cent handling charge, it's because I only offer Priority Mail. That's something I've felt is hurting sales, & the fact is I need to hunt for boxes and be happy about it..
Thanks for the advice, indulgeyourself, you comments on that point are quite timely...
It looks like the 3 main points brought up are photos, description, and shipping cost. My thoughts:
I think the photos really need work. They're reasonably clear, but very, very dark. More light, and/or use a flash! I would also use an editing program to improve them, along with putting them on a neutral background, as others have suggested. If you can't afford a commercial program, G.I.M.P. is freeware (they ask for a donation), and while it's not exactly intuitive, it's very good and does a lot. I've been using it for about 2 years, and am gradually improving my photos as I learn more about it.
The only reason--in my opinion--to use Priority Mail is for speed, or to get the cheaper flat rate shipping for small but heavy items. The books should definitely go Media Mail, and the rest should go First Class unless they're 13 ounces or heavier. If you need cheap packing materials, try uline.com. They are very reliable, and stuff comes in 1 to 2 days.
I agree that the descriptions are easily overlooked. I like template programs like Auctiva because you can highlight the pertinent information in a color block, and it's faster to list many items in a session when the basics are already filled out. It's been years since I've used an Ebay program, but that was available with Seller's Assistant Basic before it was discontinued. I assume they still have something similar.
One more thing--don't underprice your items. I see this a lot with new sellers. Figure out your cost basis, including sales commissions, Ebay and Paypal fees, shipping and shipping materials, and price accordingly. It may be that some items simply aren't worth the bother. On others, you might be better off selling at a higher price. A quick sale isn't worth a thing if you are losing money at it!
Picasa 3 from Goggle is free and an excellent Photo program that is easy to use. It is extremly easy to crop and add light to your photos
TaylorsDreams - Ed
enjoy the ride
Visit our FaceBook page: http://www.FaceBook.com/taylorsdreams/
My suggestion is DO NOT DOWNLOAD SMILEBOX for photo editing or anything!!! You will NEVER get it off of your computer and it caused me major problems!! Once after hours of searching, I got it off....problems disappeared!
I'm impressed you are getting responses like this. Congrats on getting valuable feedback.
OK, here goes mine. NOTHING PERSONAL as I don't even know you personally nor do I have a reason to be just plain mean. So, please try not to take it as a personal thing. I'm trying to help you as you have asked.
Stop the side scolling text. It's a needless distraction. Do you really want me to be annoyed immediately? I'll move right on if I am too distracted.
I love that you've kept things simple, clean. A non-serif font is a great idea.
I had never thought to put a very very small, personal "about" and NOT call it an "about me" at the top of the listing. Brilliant move.
But, again, dump the scrolling text. Dump the cutesy "Buy with Confidence!" is that an order??
Your font size is pretty good but could be a little bigger by a "tad".
Your pictures are nice and big.
I agree with earlier post. Get rid of your hands. You aren't selling hand-made items. It just isn't professional. Professional = good on all levels.
Your buyers love you. Point out briefly that you do a good job are are rewarded with good feedback.
Your shipping prices are off the charts high. I can't understand how a $6.75 hat can cost me $31 to ship. If there is a lower priced option, put it FIRST in the list.
Find a way to use first class. Not everyone needs Priority Mail and it's the lazy way out in many cases. Yes the supplies are all given to you, but you lose sales to the guy/gal offering $1 shipping when you charge $6.
You've kept the listing compact but with white space. Good job.
OK, well, that's all I can rattle off in a flippant kind of way. Sorry if I've said anything offensive. I haven't tried to be.
I hope you do well as you seem to mean well.
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