eBay General Announcement: ***Royal Mail price changes 2013 – Notice to UK sellers***

Permalink: http://www2.ebay.com/aw/uk/201303040959032.html

Hello,

On 1 March 2013 the Royal Mail announced  it’s new prices for 2013 along with changes to the way some services are priced and new names forbusiness services.

What these changes mean to you.

Private Sellers

Letter Stamp Prices are unchanged from their 2012 prices. Therefore if the item that you are listing, or wish to list, will fit into a package measuring less than 2.5cm thick then you are unaffected by the changes.

For items thicker than 2.5cm the new “Parcel” format applies which will result in a price increase for sellers.  Sellers posting items that are  more than 8cm thick will now be charged Medium Parcel” format Royal Mail prices.  NB – There some exclusions to this rule.  Check Royal Mail’s guidance on this.

The full details of Royal Mail’s new consumer prices can be found here .

We encourage sellers to continue to shop around for the best service for them and their customers, particularly for larger/heavier items and we’ll be playing our part by offering services from a range of couriers, some offering large discounts, in our Label Printing service..

Business Sellers

Royal Mail has simplified its service names and lowered the threshold for eligibility to receive discounts as a business seller. Many Business sellers should now find themselves eligible for a Royal Mail contract and therefore be able to mitigate any impact on their postage costs. Full details can be found here . eBay will be updating the service names on eBay.co.uk’s flows to reflect these changes and we would encourage sellers to use the new names.

Postage Caps

As a result of these changes eBay will be reviewing the maximum postage caps that we have applied.  Further details will follow.

Regards,

The eBay.co.uk team

Advice for New Sellers on eBay

I’m often asked to give advice to new sellers or people considering selling on line. This was a recent reply to one such email. I hope it is of use.

OK my advice for starting out:

Starting with some household items on eBay is a good idea – make sure you describe them carefully/have good images – you need to get as much positive feedback as possible.

Use eBay – it has massive reach/audience. I would avoid international at first as it is fraught with potential delivery and feedback issues.

Choose products that you understand, can source easily and reliably – nothing worse than taking an hour to list something and then finding you can only get hold of them for a short time. I would avoid the most popular categories as margins are always low.

Have a good look at the costs – selling fees, final value fees, product costs, postage costs (including a cost of returns and fraud), packaging, etc.

Don’t try to be the cheapest – you can’t, other sellers with buying power for stock and services such as postage will always beat you. Having said that one strategy for getting sales and Best Match scores is to sell products at a loss initially. (if you don’t know what Best Match is Google ‘eBay Best Match’.

Instead focus on great service, fast delivery, easy returns etc.

Use Google Keywords tools to help generate titles – http://www.googlekeywordtool.com/

Keep your costs to an absolute minimum – work from home for as long as you can (although some suppliers won’t supply to you unless you have retail premises).

Read all the blogs – Tamebay, Last drop of Ink, eBay boards etc.

Terapeak is no substitute for research (in my view).

Give images some focus (excuse the pun) – clean background, lots of views, details.

Make sure your descriptions are full of details such as condition, sizes, applications.

Read the DTI info on Distance Selling Regulations.

Be professional – a good CSS based listing template will help.

Communicate with your buyers.

Who cares about eBay feedback?

It’s one of those perennial concerns of any on-line seller. How to deal with feedback.

I’m no psychologist but I do know this is a complicated area.

One thing you can do which buyers like (and gets you off on the right foot) is to leave feedback on payment. eBays Selling Manager Pro can do this for you automatically.

Whats more you can leave pre-written comments which gives you the opportunity to praise your buyer – they have, after all just agreed to buy from you and give you their hard earned cash.

What feedback do you leave? Do you praise your buyers?


Speeding up Ordering in eSellerPro

inventory

Ever wished you could sort inventory by only those products which need re-ordering? eSellerPro has a great Purchase Order system but it is awkward to adjust re-order thresholds and quantities. So to manage these you have to move back and forth to the inventory screen and search for and amend each SKU. To make matters worse the column showing those lovely red exclamation marks isn’t sortable.

One way of ordering the inventory to show these is simple and a useful tip to save time.

Simply select each SKU and then sort the ‘tick’ column.

sorted

Now you can simply step through these items adjusting the re-order thresholds and levels. In this view you can also see which of these SKU’s have items awaiting dispatch further highlighting products needing re-ordering.

Until eSellerPro adds the facility to sort by products below re-order level we hope this saves you some time.

Bamford Trading – 0.00128% Market Share

Spending on DIY Falls to its Lowest Level in 15 Years

It seems that we are spending a lot less on home improvements than we were at the height of the housing price boom in 2004 according to new figures from Lloyds TSB.

Experts put this down to lower household budgets and a fall in confidence as house prices stagnate.

We are spending half what we were on home improvement, decorating, building materials and tools compared to 2004. This is the equivalent of just £300 per household per year or £7.8bn in total.

This gives Bamford Trading a massive 0.00128% market share if my maths is correct.

So there plenty to go for!

The other good news for us is that the proportion of spend going to ‘Doing It Ourselves’ as opposed to using tradesmen has increased by 10% over the last decade. We now spend more on DIY than we do on employing tradesmen.

Spare a thought for the poor old tradesmen and women though we are now spending a massive 40% less on them than we were in 2001.

John

Marketplace Watch 23rd June

Update 10th August.

Overall market share continues to drop at both Amazon and eBay (UK sites). As they are both growing GMV its clear that the overall eCommerce landscape must be growing fast. Perhaps helped by the poor weather.

It’s also interesting that in this week the Olympic tickets site came in from nowhere to take 2.5% of the overall shopping visits – a huge volume.

Another 6 of the top 10 sites had a lower share than the previous week.

What’s going on?

John.

Things continue to look shaky for Amazon and eBay as they lose overall market share.

As you can see I have added a trendline which clearly shows a steady fall in market share.

Of course the market overall is growing and so it doesn’t mean their GMV is actually falling.

John

Dropbox – Make your Life a Little Easier

I’ve mentioned Dropbox to anyone who will listen in the past but it’s worth another mention.

If you work on more than one computer or tablet the Dropbox will simplify your life.

https://www.dropbox.com/

This application allows you to simply drop files into a folder which is then shared across all your systems. You can also make sub folders public so you can send a link to anyone so they can share your file, picture anything.

And it’s free!

Enjoy.

John

Google Alerts – Keep track of your interests

Google Alerts are an incredibly useful tool from Google.

Want to keep track of what others are saying about you or your website or even new web articles about your favourite celeb?

Use a Google Alert.

You don’t even need a Google Account.

Just go to http://www.google.com/alerts and fill in the topic and your email address.

Hey presto as it happens, weekly or daily emails showing you what’s new on the web for your chosen subject(s).

John

 

 

Outside Light Project – ‘Free’ Solar Lighting for ‘Just’ £195.77…

…and none of it sold by us 🙁

OK it’s expensive and at 13p a kW/h I could run a standard 60W light for about 2.8 years for the same cost but – well – that’s not really the point is it?

I’ve long thought of having a roof full of solar panels and a large inverter in the loft powering our hot water but sadly that’s not going to happen soon so I thought I’d try my own mini project.

So here it is – my ‘free’ garden lighting project:

Solar Panel from Amazon.co.uk Here
Leisure Battery from Amazon.co.uk Here
12V Low Energy Lamp from eBay.co.uk Here
Lamp from Homebase

John

Battle of the Marketplaces

There is a definite change this week with both eBay and Amazon losing market share.

You can also detect a trend of the two giants moving down to just over 26% of the total shopping visits this week from 29% in April. That is a massive drop in cash terms.

Who is gaining there share? From the data it looks as though Next and Amazon.com are the winners with both achieving around 1% of the market. (Next have a huge 7% of the share in the apparel category in the UK).

John