Every now and then I need to make a cardboard box that’ll just fit the items I want to put in it for shipping. To simplify the process, I created an online cardboard box calculator. If you need to make a cardboard box, this could save you some time.
Here are some tips I picked up while experimenting with selling physical goods online and on eBay.
- Include value-added items for free
For example, if you’re selling something that requires batteries and your competitors say “batteries not included”, sell yours with batteries INCLUDED. You can buy batteries two AAA Duracell batteries in bulk online for $0.28 each including shipping. That’s practically free and will save your customers the hassle of having to look for or buy batteries.
Example 2, if you’re selling kites, write a tips and tricks guide and save it in PDF format to email to your customers as a free digital download. This way you don’t have to waste paper and ink printing it and extra shipping costs due to a heavier weight. Then, promote it as a free value-added item.
- Offer a variety of combinations
For example, if your’re selling batteries, don’t just sell one. Sell packs of 2, 4, 6, 10, 20, etc. Of course, the bigger the set, the cheaper you sell for. And that’s OK. It never hurts to offer a wide variety of packages. Just don’t go crazy like they do in Asia where you they offer you so many options you can’t never make up your mind. [..]
Yesterday I got a call from eBay’s Seller Outreach department. They gave me some useful tips on improving my sales. Here they are:
- Optimized Title
Put keywords closer to the beginning of your listing titles than at the end. e.g.
BAD: 8GB RAM Quad Core Processor T420 Thinkpad Laptop by Lenovo
GOOD: Lenovo T420 Thinkpad Laptop Quad Processor, 8GB RAM, other selling points
- Offer FREE Shipping
You can price an item $5.00 and charge $2.50 for shipping or you can price the item $7.50 with FREE shipping. By offering FREE shipping, eBay will automatically give you 5 stars for your shipping and handling rating category. Plus, people like “free”. Of course, free could just be for the cheapest shipping. You can charge extra for priority or overnight shipping.
- Custom Fields
When creating a listing you can add many custom fields like Condition: New, Material: Wood. Adding custom fields will help you get found.
- Put Links To Your Website From Your “About Me” Page
eBay doesn’t allow external links in product listings. But, you can put external links in your “About Me” page.
- Offer Discounts
Create a Facebook Fan page and link to it from your “About Me” page. In your product listings, tell customers they can get 10% off by going to your “About Me” page and “fanning” you. Then, they can notify you when that’s done so you can apply the discount before they pay.
- Use 30-Day Good Till Canceled and Don’t Let Listings Expire
Each listing shows the number sold. The larger this number, the higher the listing gets in search results. Don’t let listings expire so that this number continues to grow.
- eBays Apps
Browse eBay Apps and use some apps like the “Analytics” app to help you manage.
- eBay Advanced Seller Guide
If you sell at least $3000 worth of items in a 12 month period and have an overall rating of no lower than 4.6, you will automatically get “Top Rated Seller” status which pushes your listings to the top of search results. This will obviously lead to increase visibility and potentially more sales.
When shipping an item, there typically are 2 pieces of information you need:
- Return Address (usually your address)
- Recipient Address (your customer’s address)
If you’re selling on eBay, you can print an invoice including shipping labels for the return and recipient address. You could then cut the printout on the dotted line, insert the invoice into your package, and tape the return and recipient address on our package. I did this at first but the result was unprofessional and time-consuming. I could never cut my shipping labels into perfect rectangles and I could never apply transparent tape on the labels perfectly. In addition, some times the tape would not stick to certain types of plastic bags. This method also required that you wait in line at a post office which can be very time-consuming. I have since discovered a better, faster, and cheaper way to print and apply shipping labels. [..]