Selling Online 2.0: Migrating from eBay to Amazon, craigslist, and Your Own E-Commerce Website

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9780789739742: Selling Online 2.0: Migrating from eBay to Amazon, craigslist, and Your Own E-Commerce Website

REMEMBER WHEN eBay USED TO BE A GREAT PLACE FOR SMALL SELLERS TO BECOME BIG SELLERS?

Unfortunately, recent changes at eBay have made online auctions less reliable and profitable. So where can you sell when you can’t sell on eBay? Online auctions are the past; fixed-price selling is the future. It’s time to move beyond eBay and first-generation online selling and start Selling Online 2.0. Second generation online selling means migrating from eBay to other online marketplaces, including craigslist, Amazon, and your own e-commerce website. You’ll need to make some new plans, learn some new skills, and change some of the things you do--but you’ll find that there’s more money to be made on your own than relying on traditional eBay online auction sales.

  • Put together a plan to maintain your sales level and profitability--to counteract eBay’s changes
  • Discover how to shift from auction sales to fixed-priced listings on the eBay marketplace
  • Find out if running an eBay Store or selling on Half.com makes sense for your business
  • Learn out how to sell locally on craigslist and other online classifieds sites
  • Discover how to sell fixed-price merchandise on the Amazon marketplace
  • Find out how to launch your own e-commerce website--and promote your online store
  • Learn how to sell products across multiple channels--and manage multichannel conflicts

 

Introduction     1

What’s in This Book     2

Who Can Use This Book     3

How to Use This Book     3

There’s More Online...     4

Making the Move     4

I BEYOND ONLINE AUCTIONS: CREATING A SUCCESSFUL ONLINE BUSINESS     5

1 The Problem with Online Auctions     7

What eBay Used to Be Like...     7

Why Is eBay Abandoning Smaller Sellers?      10

Changes Are Afoot--and You Probably Won’t Like Them     12

Emphasizing Fixed-Price Sales over Auction Sales     12

Changes to the Fee Structure     12

Changes to the Payment System     14

Changes to the Feedback System     15

Changes to Search Results     15

eBay’s Deal with Buy.com     16

How Do eBay’s Changes Affect You?      16

2 Planning for Selling Success     19

Planning for Life Beyond eBay Auctions     19

Asking--and Answering--Key Questions     20

What Type of Merchandise Do You Want to Sell?      20

How Much Money Do You Want to Make?      21

How Do You Intend to Manage Your Business?      23

Where Do You Want to Sell?      25

Conceiving a Business Plan     26

Understanding the Components of a Useful Business Plan     28

Mission     29

Opportunity     30

Strategy     30

Organization and Operations     31

Strengths and Weaknesses     31

Financials     31

Writing Your Business Plan     32

Implementing Your Business Plan     33

II FIXED-PRICE SELLING ON EBAY     35

3 Migrating to Fixed-Price Listings     37

Why Fixed-Priced Sales Are the Way to Go     37

Comparing Fees     38

Comparing Listing Lengths     40

Factoring in Customer Demand     41

Different Ways to Sell at a Fixed Pric     42

Understanding eBay’s Fixed-Price Listings     43

Understanding eBay’s Buy It Now Auctions     44

Understanding eBay Stores     46

Understanding Half.com     47

Creating an eBay Fixed-Price Listing      50

Creating an Auction Listing with a Buy It Now Price     51

Managing Fixed-Price Sales     52

Before the Sale: Setting the Price     53

After the Sale: Payment and Shipping     53

4 Fixed-Price Selling in an eBay Store     57

What Is an eBay Store?      57

Benefits of Opening Your Own eBay Store     59

Challenges of eBay Store Selling     60

Understanding eBay Store Subscription Levels     61

Understanding Insertion Fees and FVFs     63

How to Open an eBay Store     63

Further Customizing Your eBay Store     67

Managing Your eBay Store     68

Listing Merchandise for Sale in Your eBay Store     70

Handling eBay Store Sales     71

Marking Down Your Merchandise     72

Viewing eBay Store Reports     73

5 Fixed-Price Selling on Half.com     77

Getting to Know Half.com     77

Understanding the Half.com Shopping Experience     79

Understanding Half.com Fees     80

Listing on Half.com     81

Pricing Your Half.com Items     83

Calculating Shipping and Handling Charges     84

Managing Half.com Sales     85

6 Promoting Your Fixed-Price eBay Sales     87

Promoting Your Fixed-Price Listings on the eBay Site     87

Optimizing Your Listings for eBay Search     88

Linking from Other Sites to Your eBay Listings     90

Promoting Your eBay Store     90

Seeding Listings into the Traditional eBay Marketplace     91

Enabling Cross-Promotions     91

Creating an Email Mailing List     92

Linking to Your eBay Store     94

Adding a Stores Widget to Your Blog or Website     95

Creating a Listing Feed     95

Exporting Your Listings to Search Engines and Shopping Sites     96

Advertising on the eBay Site with AdCommerce     97

Advertising Across the Web with Google AdWords     99

Promoting Your Store in the Real World     101

Promoting Your Half.com Listings     102

III SELLING VIA CRAIGSLIST ONLINE CLASSIFIEDS     105

7 Online Classifieds: Are They Right for Your Business?      107

Understanding Online Classifieds     107

Examining Major Online Classifieds Sites     110

craigslist     110

Oodle     111

Kijiji     113

backpage.com     114

LiveDea     115

Google Base     116

The Pros and Cons of Selling via Online Classifieds     117

Pros of Online Classifieds Selling     117

Cons of Online Classifieds Selling     118

Do Online Classifieds Make Sense for Your Business?      120

The Best Businesses for Migrating to Online Classifieds     120

The Worst Businesses for Migrating to Online Classifieds     121

8 Doing Business on craigslist     125

Understanding craigslist     125

Navigating craigslist Listings     126

Before You List...     129

Listing an Item for Sale     130

Formatting Your Item Description     133

Using HTML Formatting     133

Inserting Images into Your Listings     134

Managing Your Listings     135

Editing a Listing     135

Deleting a Listing     136

Making a Sale     136

9 Migrating from Online Auctions to Online Classifieds     139

What Items Should You Move to craigslist?      139

Changing Your Business Model     141

Going Local     141

Pickups,No Shipping     142

Cash Is King     143

We Don’t Need No Stinking Tools     143

It’s the Wild West     144

Businesses Aren’t Always Accepted     144

Making the Move     145

10 Promoting Your craigslist Business     147

Choosing the Right Community and Category     147

Optimizing Your Listings for Search     148

Keeping Your Ad at the Top of the List     148

IV SELLING ON THE AMAZON MARKETPLACE     151

11 The Amazon Marketplace: Is It Right for Your Business?      153

Understanding the Amazon Marketplace     153

What the Buyers See     154

The Many Ways to Sell on Amazon     156

Selling Individual Items on the Amazon Marketplace     157

Understanding the Amazon Marketplace     158

Understanding Amazon’s Fees     159

Selling as a Pro Merchant     161

Selling on Amazon via Selling on Amazon     162

Selling in an Amazon WebStore     163

Using Amazon to Fulfill Your Orders     163

How It Works     164

Understanding Fulfillment Pricing     164

The Pros and Cons of Selling on Amazon     166

Selling on Amazon: Pros     166

Selling on Amazon: Cons     167

12 Doing Business in the Amazon Marketplace     169

Listing Individual Items in the Amazon Marketplace     169

Listing Your First Item     69

Managing Your Account and Inventory     173

Selling an Item     175

Setting Up Your Amazon Storefront     176

Moving to the Pro Merchant Program     177

Upgrading to Pro Merchant Status     177

Uploading Multiple Listings     178

Creating a Product Detail Page     180

13 Migrating Your eBay Business to Amazon     185

Does Migrating to Amazon Make Sense?      85

Comparing Fees     185

Comparing Sales and Effort     187

Which Items Should You Migrate?      188

Evolving Your Business Model     189

Making the Move     190

14 Promoting Your Amazon Business     193

Keeping Your Listings Competitive     193

Competing on Feedback     194

Placing Product Ads on the Amazon Site     196

Advertising Your Business with a Display Ad     197

V SELLING ON YOUR OWN WEBSITE     201

15 Establishing Your Own Website: Is It Right for Your Business?      203

Building an Online Store--What’s Involved?      203

The Components of an E-Commerce Website     203

Different Ways to Build a Store     206

How Much Does It Cost?      207

Pros and Cons of Running Your Own Website     208

Pros of Running Your Own Online Store     208

Cons of Running Your Own Online Store     209

Does an Online Store Make Sense for Your Business?      211

16 Planning Your Online Presence     215

Step One: Create Your Plan and Define Your Goals     215

Step Two:Determine What You’re Selling     216

Step Three: Choose a Hosting Service     216

Step Four: Build Your Website     217

Step Five: Choose an Online Payment Service     218

Step Six: Plan Your Promotion     219

Step Seven: Launch Your Site     220

Step Eight: Evaluate Your Performance     221

17 Setting Up an E-Commerce Website     223

Choosing a Hosting Service     223

Features to Look For     224

Comparing Prices     226

Using eBay ProStores     227

ProStores for eBay Sellers     227

Subscription Levels     228

Getting Started with ProStores     229

Building an Amazon WebStore Store     230

Inside an Amazon WebStore Store     230

Creating Your Own WebStore     231

Building a Yahoo! Merchant Website     233

Subscription Levels     233

Unique Features     234

Creating Your Own Yahoo! Store     235

Exploring Other Pre-Designed Storefronts     236

18 Managing Online Sales     241

Managing Your Inventory     241

Managing Your Sales     243

"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

About the Author:

Michael Miller has written more than 90 nonfiction how-to books over the past two decades, including Que’s Absolute Beginner’s Guide to eBay, Making a Living from Your eBay Business, and Tricks of the eBay Business Masters. He also wrote Teach Yourself Business Plans in 24 Hours and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Search Engine Optimization for Alpha Books and Online Marketing Heroes: Interviews with 25 Successful Online Marketing Gurus for Wiley.

 

Mr. Miller has established a reputation for clearly explaining complex topics to the average reader and for offering useful real-world advice. Find more information at his website, www.molehillgroup.com.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Introduction

Introduction

Selling online isn’t quite as simple as it used to be. In the good old days, just about anybody could create an eBay listing and let the online auction site do the bulk of the work. All you had to do was wait for the auction to end to see what the final price was and who to ship to. This model created a lot of successful sellers.

All things change, however, and online selling is in the process of some major changes. The eBay auction site isn’t near as friendly to small sellers as it used to be; sellers are finding that it’s harder and harder to make a decent profit selling exclusively on eBay.

If you made your mark as an eBay seller but find eBay an increasingly unfriendly environment, what do you do next? It’s all about migrating your sales to the next-generation selling model—what I like to call Selling Online 2.0.

Selling Online 2.0 doesn’t completely abandon eBay—at least, it doesn’t have to. But it does embrace alternative marketplaces and channels, opening up the opportunity for you to sell your merchandise on sites such as craigslist and Amazon, as well as on your own e-commerce website.

Here’s the bottom line: If you want to maintain or grow your current level of sales, you have to move beyond eBay auctions. To do this, you have to learn some new skills and fine-tune some old ones; you may even have to spend some money setting things up. But the upside is that your online sales can be even more profitable than before—and you may be able to attract a completely new base of customers.

If all you know is selling on eBay, how do you learn what you need to know to sell in other marketplaces and channels? Well, you’ve come to the right place; that’s what this book is all about. While selling on Amazon or craigslist or your own online store might seem daunting at first, it’s something you can do if you have the motivation and the knowledge. You’ll have to supply your own motivation, of course, but the knowledge you can get from reading this book.

What’s in This Book

As you can probably tell from the title, this book tells you everything you need to know to migrate your current eBay business to other online marketplaces and channels. You’ll learn how sites such as Amazon and craigslist work, how to plan for success on these sites, and how to create listings, manage sales, accept payments, and even migrate your existing eBay sales to the new marketplaces. You’ll also learn how to plan for and launch your own e-commerce website and how to promote and manage that site on a day-to-day basis. Some of the information presented will be familiar to you (both craigslist and Amazon share some similarities with eBay, after all), and some will be completely new. That’s the nature of the beast.

There are 22 chapters in this book, divided into five major parts. Each part deals with a different online selling channel, walking you through everything you need to know to get your business up and running in that channel:

  • Part I, “Beyond Online Auctions: Creating a Successful Online Business,” is the part you want to read before you get into all the details in the rest of the book. Here is where you learn about how eBay is changing and how to plan for online sales success outside eBay.
  • Part II, “Fixed-Price Selling on eBay,” shows that there is life on eBay beyond the auction format. You’ll learn how to migrate your auction listings to fixed-price listings, how to open an eBay Store, how to sell on Half.com, and how to promote your fixed-price sales on the eBay site.
  • Part III, “Selling via craigslist Online Classifieds,” presents the first alternative to eBay: local online classified ads. craigslist is the biggest online classifieds site, and in this section you learn how and what to sell on craigslist, how to migrate your eBay listings to craigslist, and how to promote your online classifieds business.
  • Part IV, “Selling on the Amazon Marketplace,” details how to sell your merchandise on the Amazon.com website. You’ll learn what types of items sell best on Amazon, how to create and price your listings, how to migrate your existing eBay listings to Amazon, and how to promote your new Amazon business.
  • Part V, “Selling on Your Own Website,” is the section for any seller who wants to launch a standalone online store. You’ll learn how to plan your online presence, set up an e-commerce website, manage your store’s sales, promote your online business, migrate your eBay business to your own store, and sell items in multiple channels.

That’s a lot to cover—because there’s a lot you need to know to be successful. While you can skip around a bit, particularly if you have no intention of selling in a specific channel or marketplace, my recommendation is to start with Chapter 1 and read the whole way through the book. There’s a logical process to migrating from eBay to these other channels, and what you learn in one chapter will be applied in following chapters.

Who Can Use This Book

I assume that if you’re interested in Selling Online 2.0, you’re not a newbie to selling online. You have some experience as an eBay seller under your belt, and you have a handle on what you sell and how.

In other words, I’m not going to teach you how and what to sell. If you’re looking for the magic product that will make you rich, look someplace else. This book is for serious and experienced sellers who are ready to move to the next level of online selling.

That said, you don’t have to be a large seller to move beyond eBay. This book is written for all levels of sellers, large and small; all you need is some online selling experience and the willingness to make the next move. It also doesn’t matter what you sell; all types of sellers can be successful selling beyond eBay.

How to Use This Book

This book is easy enough to read that you really don’t need instructions. But there are a few elements that bear explaining.

First, there are several special elements in this book, presented in what we in the publishing business call “margin notes.” There are different types of margin notes for different types of information, as you see here:

Note - This is a note that presents information of interest, even if it isn’t wholly relevant to the discussion in the main text.

Tip - This is a tip that might prove useful for whatever it is you’re in the process of doing.

Caution - This is a caution that something you might accidentally do might have undesirable results.

Because many of the solutions presented in this book involve various websites on the Internet, there are lots of web addresses in the text. When you see one of these addresses (also known as a URL), you can go to that web page by entering the URL into the address box in your web browser. I’ve made every effort to ensure the accuracy of the web addresses presented here, but given the ever-changing nature of the web, don’t be surprised if you run across an address or two that’s changed.

For that matter, some of the products and services (and corresponding prices) presented here are likely to change by the time you read this text. I apologize in advance, but that’s the way the online world works.

There’s More Online...

When you need a break from reading, feel free to go online and check out my personal website, located at http://www.molehillgroup.com. Here you’ll find more information on this book and other books I’ve written. And if you have any questions or comments, feel free to email me directly, at sellingonline@molehillgroup.com. I can’t guarantee that I’ll respond to every email, but I will guarantee that I’ll read them all.

Making the Move

With all these preliminaries out of the way, it’s now time to get started. Put on your reading glasses, put on your best business thinking cap, and get ready to migrate to the next level—Selling Online 2.0!


© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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