What To Do If eBay Sales Are Down

Thursday, 6 May 2010 at 5:00 am Pacific USA Time.

A client called today saying his April eBay sales were down. I said how we fix this depends on the answer to this question: Are your items getting lots of hits? The answer changes my advice.

If your items are not getting a decent amount of hits, then one (or both) of two things are going on:

  • Demand may be down. Maybe your item is seasonal. Maybe the newest hottest one just came out, and people really want that. What to do about this: Not much. You can't make people want an item they don't want. I hear this all the time from people who buy liquidation stock, and find out that people kinda don't want what they happened to buy. That's not a blanket statement; plenty of liquidation stock is VERY successful on eBay. My point is that you can't make people want an item they do not want.
  • Something is wrong with your listing strategy that is keeping people who want your item from finding yours. This can range from strategy mistakes you might be making to issues with how eBay sorts you in search results. What to do about this: Check your Seller Dashboard. Check what may be holding you back, and fix that. We'll cover more of that in another post. But these should be things you CAN change.

If your items are getting a decent amount of hits, but not really getting sales, that tends to mean that people want your item but for some reason don't want YOURS from you. Reasons might include:

  • Something about your item is not what people expected. For example, I've been searching laptop batteries lately. Most of the items in search results are not clear about the mAh rating for the batteries. So I am hitting a LOT of items, but I am leaving when I realise that they are half the power of my existing "standard" battery. I'd like something the same power or a more extended life. What to do about this: Build more info into your title. You can also build into into item specifics and the subtitle. In my case, if someone had shown the mAh in the title or subtitle, I wouldn't have bothered looking at low-powered batteries.
  • Something about your listing is turning them off. Not enough pictures, not good/focused pictures. Unclear policies or too many policies that people don't want to read. Fear of what's hidden in the fine print. What to do about this: You can fix this. Clean up your listings. Take better pictures. Make sure your pics tell the story of what this is and the condition it's in. Revise your policies to be more organised, clearer, and in an order that makes sense to eBay shoppers (shipping first). Not everybody who has a question will ask it. Some will just hit their back button. And even if they ask a question, while they wait for your answer, they might hit the back button, and shop your competitors.
  • Your listing design and organisation could be turning people off. Some listings look very unprofessional… clip art, lots of wacky font colours, everything centred, and Comic Sans can make people think you're a small nobody. What to do about this: Revise your listing. Create a template that is organised. Don't try to design your text. Let your info be info. Let your design be design. If you have no design, still let your info be info, and don't try to design it. Make info easy to read and professional-looking.

And as always, hire a pro if you could use more help! :)

This is where we start when looking at why people are having issues with eBay sales. It starts by knowing if you're getting hits, so make sure you are using a (hidden) counter.

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Categories: That's Good Marketing

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