February 18, 2013 by Andrew Minalto - 213 Comments

eBay Negative Feedback Removal Explained

No, don’t worry – that’s not your eBay account. And I hope yours will never look like this.

But let’s be honest – maintaining 100% positive feedback on eBay is hard, very hard, especially when you start dealing with hundreds and even thousands of transactions per month. We all make mistakes from time to time and on eBay OUR mistakes can cost us a lot – negative feedback and low DSRs which in the end can result in a lost Top Rated Seller status or even a suspended account in the worst case scenario.

So what to do to avoid bad feedback?

First of all – do whatever it takes to minimize the chances of buyers even starting to think about leaving negative or neutral feedback for you. This means:

1) Offer high quality products.

2) Create detailed and accurate product descriptions.

3) If dealing with used goods, always describe the item’s condition as it is. If there are scratches on an item highlight them with a photo, don’t hide them! (This actually increases your credibility in a buyer’s eyes).

4) Offer fast, preferably next day delivery whenever possible.

5) Pack items in suitable packaging materials (Jiffy envelopes, boxes, mail bags) so that you keep the chances of items being damaged during the shipping process to a minimum.

6) Communicate with buyers – answer all e-mails and messages within 24 hours, Monday to Friday.

7) Leave positive feedback once the buyer pays you (Selling Manager Pro does this for you automatically).

8) Always honour your returns policy; go the extra mile if people are a day or two late and still accept returns after 16 days, if your returns policy says, for example, 14 days.

9) Replace damaged, faulty items at no cost to the buyer (it’s your fault at the end of the day, not the buyer’s, so you have no right to ask him to pay even the shipping fees).

10) Whatever disaster strikes at your end, keep your buyer informed! Say you run out of stock and this creates a 3 day delay in order processing. Email buyers and let them know about this problem AND ask what they want to do – wait a few extra days OR receive an instant refund. Never assume that the buyer will be ok with delays in order processing – always, always ask first.

11) Lastly, and most importantly – your customer is always right, even if he’s not! This classic cliché is even truer on eBay than anywhere else as buyers can hurt your business instantly by leaving negative feedback. Don’t let that happen! Even if you feel the buyer is trying it on with you, if you CAN’T do anything about it just apologize for the trouble caused and issue a refund. In the long term, your loss will be minimal but your business will be protected.

If you follow all these guidelines, your chances of getting negative feedback are minimal. But it will still happen of course as it’s a numbers game – the more you sell, the more your chances of getting a dissatisfied customer.

So what to do when you do actually receive negative or neutral feedback? (more…)

February 11, 2013 by Andrew Minalto - 16 Comments

Why Leave Positive Feedback for Your Buyers?

“Hi Andrew,

What’s your take on leaving feedback for buyers? Some people recommend doing it after feedback from the buyer has been received, while others do it straight away after payment is received? I’m not sure which method is best and would like to hear your opinion.

Thanks,
Nathan”

Hi Nathan,

Thanks for your question.

It has been several years now since eBay changed the rules so that we (the sellers) can leave nothing but positive feedback for buyers. Since that change I have used just one, single approach – I leave positive feedback for a buyer once payment is received.

Why? There are several reasons:

1) As I said, we can’t leave negative or neutral feedback anyway, so what’s the point in holding off?

2) Once payment is received, the buyer has completed the transaction from his end: he has paid you for the item you sell. Everything else is in your hands.

3) By leaving positive feedback for a buyer you’re giving the impulse to the buyer to do the same in return, thus increasing your chances of getting any feedback at all (it’s no secret that only roughly 50% of buyers leave feedback for sellers).

The last one is the most important in my opinion. When you leave positive feedback you can mention it in the Thank You letter or invoice you send out. This will act as a friendly reminder that the customer should leave you feedback, too.

Opponents of this method will say that when you do this you move all the power to the buyer to play you around if something is wrong with the item etc. But in reality they have the same power if you leave the feedback first, as remember – you can leave nothing but positive feedback for buyers in the first place.

There are idiots on eBay who will leave you negative feedback no matter what – and the fact that you don’t leave feedback first won’t change this. If you receive unfair feedback you can always go through the Feedback Removal process.

So yes – to sum it up, leave positive feedback for buyers once payment has been received and then forget about it.

You don’t have to do this manually: if you’re using Auctiva.com, for example, they have a built-in system that leaves automated feedback for your buyers based on your criteria. The same task can be carried out by Selling Manager Pro and other selling tools.

Thanks,
Andrew

February 7, 2013 by Andrew Minalto - 113 Comments

Anatomy of a Perfect eBay Listing!

I’m amazed! It’s now 2013, but the majority of eBay sellers still can’t get this right – create a listing that really SELLS! And I’m not talking about fancy templates here – no, basic, common sense guidelines that everyone should be following. But they’re not!

If you have done any research on eBay you’ll find loads of unprofessional listings. Listings without product pictures in them. Listings with crazy font styles and sizes. Listings with no product descriptions. And so on.

I can understand that an individual who just wants to sell off his used iPhone doesn’t have a clue about how to create a good looking listing, BUT when business sellers who have hundreds of listings can’t put together a half decent listing, that’s beyond my imagination. Why? Because they’re leavings tons of money on the table by doing this! Or should I say – by NOT doing this!

So here’s the deal – in this blog post I have put together basic guidelines which ANYONE can follow to create good listings. You don’t need any designer skills – that’s not the idea here (anyone can hire a designer for a custom made template and formatting, that’s a whole other story) – in this post I want to show you how you can make good looking listings using basic, free tools. Without further ado, let’s get started!

(more…)

February 4, 2013 by Andrew Minalto - 26 Comments

How to Sell an eBook on eBay THE RIGHT WAY!

These are questions my readers often ask me: How can I sell eBooks on eBay? What’s the right way to sell eBooks on eBay? Is it still allowed? Is selling eBooks on eBay a profitable business idea? In this post I’ll try to answer all these questions in detail.

So, to begin with – Can you still sell eBooks on eBay? Yes, you can, if you follow eBay guidelines.

And with eBooks, there are different rules for eBay.com and eBay.co.uk websites:

On eBay.com (USA website), you can sell eBooks AND deliver them digitally as long as you follow these rules:

  • List your eBooks in the Everything Else > Information Products category using the Classified Ad format.

As you may know, a classified ads format on eBay.com won’t get you as many views as normal listings, the sale won’t actually happen on eBay and you won’t earn any feedback.

If you want to list your item in a more suitable category and use auctions or Buy It Now listings, you can’t deliver your eBook in digital format – you have to burn it onto a CD or DVD or USB stick and post it out.

On eBay.co.uk (UK site), there is no Classified Ads format at all, but you can still sell eBooks there IF you burn your eBook onto a CD or DVD or USB stick and post it out . (more…)

November 29, 2012 by Andrew Minalto - 160 Comments

Become a Top Rated Seller on eBay in 30 Days!

One of the first steps to eBay success that we discuss in my personal coaching program, 60 Day Blueprint, is getting TRS status — that coveted Top Rated Seller status that gets sellers so many benefits you can’t get any other way.

It’s no secret that to make your eBay business a success, you have to play by Best Match rules, and TRS status plays huge role in that.

If you work in any competitive niche, you absolutely must try to reach and maintain TRS status. Otherwise, your listings will get lost in dozens of search results pages.

How many people, do you think, really browse past the first few pages? Not that many I’m afraid. Some might look at the first five. In fact, though, most people will check only listings on page one!

So what exactly is the TRS program all about? Let me first explain a bit about the Power Seller program.

Qualifying For The First Step Toward TRS Status

Basically, TRS status is the next level up from the Power Seller program. Looking at the TRS requirements carefully, you’ll see that it’s basically the Bronze Power Seller level by sales volume PLUS an exceptional customer service history.

Here’s what you need to become a Bronze Power Seller on eBay UK:

To meet basic requirements, you must:

  • be registered as a BUSINESS seller on eBay.co.uk or eBay.ie
  • have 100 feedbacks, 98 percent or more positive (from global transactions)
  • have been an active member for 90 days
  • have an account is in good financial standing
  • have no policy breaches in the preceding 90 days

If you meet all of these requirements, you also have to fulfill these additional requirements:

  • have a minimum of 100 transactions to UK and IE buyers per 12 month period
  • have minimum sales of £1000 per 12 months (to UK and IE buyers)
  • have an average DSR (Detailed Ratings Score) of 4.60 or greater

We’ll get into the exact steps you need to take to achieve these numbers later in the post. (more…)

September 11, 2012 by Andrew Minalto - 6 Comments

eBay Business Model #2 – Accessories

You can still make tons of money selling accessories on eBay if you focus on less commonly targeted items instead just iPhones and iPads. There are plenty of mad people — including me — who will purchase every available accessory for their prized gadgets, and the market for some accessories is far from saturated.

I’m continuing my series on eBay business models today with a look at less-than-obvious niches in the accessories category. I want to encourage you to think outside the box and look for undiscovered product categories that others aren’t bothering to explore.

Beyond The Obvious

There are already plenty of people selling iPhone cases, chargers and USB cables on eBay, don’t you think?

For most entrepreneurs, the biggest problem is learning to think outside the box so they can look for undiscovered niches. Many people try to sell mainstream items and then wonder why they can’t make any money on eBay. Competition is too high and the established players have already gobbled up a big share of the market for those super-hot and ultra-popular items. It’s almost impossible for a newbie to make any profit in those categories.

Take, for example, jewellery. Did you know that the jewellery niche on eBay has just a 10 percent sell-through rate? That means only one of 10 listings is successful. If you have watched my Easy Auction Business video course, you know that I recommend working with items that have at least a 50 percent sell-through rate.

On eBay, the jewellery category as well as listings for iPhone cases, USB cables and all the other small bits and pieces related to iPhones are already oversaturated. Competition is extreme, plus loads of sellers sell below cost to get new customers, build their feedback scores and clear out old stock. Why on earth you would want to work in a niche like this?

I’m sure there are some profitable iPhone accessories out there that people are making a killing selling, but chances are good that you haven’t found one if you’re reading this post rather than fulfilling orders.

Accessories can still be very profitable, however, if you think outside the box and look for more profitable niches than iPhone or iPad users.

For example, I recently bought a keyboard case for my brand new Yamaha PSR 910:

Yamaha PSR 910 flight case – £170

The case is made in the UK and cost me £170. The keyboard itself was priced at £1600, but I also spent about the same amount on all kinds of accessories like a stand, a case, mics, speakers, a mic case, a case for the cables and several other things. Don’t you wish you had a customer like me? Don’t you wish you were serving a niche like that one? (more…)

September 4, 2012 by Andrew Minalto - 0 Comments

And the Winner is…

Hello Everyone,

Just following up on my previous post on how to build a profitable eBay business selling replacement parts. As promised, the most interesting comment author will receive a special gift from me. That gift will be a book called “The Millionaire Fastlane” – an excellent read for any online entrepreneur. In a nutshell, it’s about building an online business FAST, then selling it off to live from passive income streams. Unlike many other business books, this one is full of real life examples and inspirational stories:

I’m giving away only one book but Many Thanks for all your comments!

The winner is Jim Bannerman wit his hilarious version:

I think this one is pretty obvious.

Whilst training for the Olympics, Andrew was attempting his famous back-somersault-double-twist-with-pike routine. Whilst in mid-flow and upsidedown, the pike slipped out of his hands, fell onto the trampoline with Andrew trailing slightly after. His slim but muscular body then landed on top of the pike, which being a fish was somewhat slippery. Andrew skidded on the pike and there was no going back. All hell broke loose with Andrew and the pike fighting for stability on the trampoline jump mat. The pikes dorsal fin is a sharp, razor like weapon and as the fish was bouncing around on the mat, its fin was doing its job with the resultant damage.

However, being the sort of person to never give up, Andrew practiced on a neighbours trampoline and ultimately won a medal at the Olympics for this very same jump. He decided to flog his medal on ebay for £30 and used this to purchase a new replacement trampoline mat.

Simples.

Congrats Jim! Please contact me here so we can arrange how you’ll receive your gift (physical book/Kindle version available).

Just to clear the air here’s what actually happened to my trampoline mat:

Yep, it’s an old outdoor fire place which accidentally was built too close to my trampoline, lol. As I’m doing some heavy house renovation projects at the moment, at first it seemed like a good idea to get rid of some old floors, materials etc. using this antique Fireplace…but it turned out in a total disaster! Well, luckily no one was hurt and damage was relatively small. Lesson learned! 🙂

Thanks again for all your comments!

Best Regards,
Andrew

August 21, 2012 by Andrew Minalto - 24 Comments

eBay Business Model #1 – Replacement Parts

Hello & Welcome!

In these blog post series I will cover different business models you can run on eBay. Some of these models can be incorporated into your existing eBay business, as well as operated as standalone businesses. In addition, most of these concepts will be perfect for building small, simple online shops.

Today, I’ll cover a very profitable, unexploited opportunity of selling all kinds of replacement parts for healthy profits! By replacement parts I mean items that can be used to fix a broken product or to replace a used part of the item. Covers, cables, plugs, shoe heels and thousands of other, highly demanded products are being sold on eBay every day.

What made me look more into this business model on eBay was a recent disaster in my backyard:

Yep, it’s pretty much dead trampoline jump mat! You can write your guess on what happened there in comments block below this post! Most interesting comment author will get a special, reader’s prize from me! (more…)

August 13, 2012 by Andrew Minalto - 0 Comments

Mondays – Perfect Days to Motivate Yourself!

I LOVE Mondays! And you should too!

Yep, for most people Mondays are worst days of the week, especially for those who have a boring  9-5 job. But not for me – I really like and enjoy Mondays as each Monday is a beginning of a new week – an opportunity to re-focus and be more productive than ever before!

I have read countless books on motivation, goal setting etc. but nothing works for me better than a good, inspiring video. Ideally, a video created by a successful entrepreneur. Today, I want you to introduce such a person – multimillionaire, owner of several successful online businesses and simply nice guy – Eben Pagan.

I have been following Eben’s success for years now, bought several products and have always been amazed on quality of information he provides. You can go on YouTube and simply search for “Eben Pagan” to find dozens of FREE videos where he shares business ideas, motivational tricks and many more.

These videos are really AMAZING and they do wonders with your productivity! Just try it for yourself and watch this short video:

  

August 1, 2012 by Andrew Minalto - 6 Comments

9 Ways to Come up with a Great Domain Name!

When you start a brand new online business, one of the first tasks you face is coming up with a name for your company. Be it an online shop, eBay account or Amazon shop – you need a name for your business. This also means that you want to register a domain name to create e-mail accounts and set-up a website.

Back in 1995 it was an easy task as there were only 71 000 domains registered! Fast forward to year 2012 and you’re facing a real battle as most common names are already registered, especially if we talk about .com domains. With more than 200 million domain names already registered, you really have to be creative to come up with something unique and suitable for your business.

Even if you start selling only on eBay ALWAYS register a domain name for your eBay business! First of all, this will give you opportunity to use a professional e-mail address (e.g. info@yourcompany.com), secondly – you want to secure your future business plans, launching an online shop, or at least a blog to stay connected with your customers.

Here are my TOP 9 ways to come up with a perfect domain name for your new business: (more…)