March 28, 2013 by Andrew Minalto - 2 Comments

My Monthly Round-Up: March 2013

Welcome to my 2nd Monthly round-up post, covering the most important news from AndrewMinalto.com in March 2013!

March was yet another highly productive month for me and I’m very happy that I managed to continue publishing 2 weekly blog posts despite my on-going work on the upcoming eCommerce Magnates video course.

Plus we, the whole family, all got a nasty virus a few weeks ago that led to me being less pro-active than usual, lol, but still – I continued working, just on a slower scale. Thankfully though, everything is now all ok!

I wanted to take this opportunity to say a Big Thanks to everyone who sent me warm wishes on the birth of my son, Oliver. Thank you, your support truly means a lot to me! To give something back, here is a pic that should make you smile for a while:

Like it? I thought so! And here’s another one:

Happy days for my Facebook account too – I finally reached 100 Likes, yahooo! I have to admit that I haven’t done any promotional work on Facebook for this blog, so the number of likes is relatively low. But the good news is that they’re all natural likes and highly valuable readers, plus this number is growing each week at a steady rate. 

Content published on the blog.

The Biggest Tax Mistake an eBay Seller Can Make. Yes, being VAT registered when you don’t have to be! This only proves once again how important quality accounting advice can be so if you’re un-sure about VAT registration or any other tax related information, seek professional advice or at the very least call HMRC! If you don’t and make mistakes (like registering for VAT unnecessarily), it can literally cost you your business.

Image Hosting Explained – A Step by Step Guide. This has been a long time coming and I’m glad to finally have it published – a guide and video on how to register a hosting account and start using it to host your listing pictures by uploading product images via cPanel and an FTP client software. This is a great resource for people who are still struggling with Photobucket and other such free photo sharing websites.

Can you Have Multiple eBay & PayPal Accounts? Yes, you can – and it’s completely within eBay’s rules. On eBay you can have as many accounts as you want, with no restrictions whatsoever. With PayPal, you can have one personal account & an unlimited number of business accounts, as long as you’ve genuinely created a separate legal entity for each business (i.e., an LTD company).

Secrets Behind a £100k-a-Year eBay Business. What was once a special report, I have now decided to share with all of my blog readers, with no opt-in required. In this video you can learn the exact 6 step formula hundreds of my customers have used to create profitable eBay businesses.

How to Import Products from China. Shipping, payment & taxes – these are three things people most worry about when they start looking into importing goods from China. In this blog post I cover all three in great detail to help you make the right decisions and avoid costly mistakes.

My eToro Trading Strategy – Update for 2013. Learn how to start trading or shall I say – investing money in the eToro phenomenon! Now everyone can invest money in currencies, Facebook stocks or Oil without actually being involved directly with the financial markets. eToro’s revolutionary Copy Trader platform allows you to copy the world’s best traders, absolutely free!

Do you have an online Business or an online Job? I hope the former as there’s no point in stressing your life out to earn minimum wage packaging orders all day long! My Top 10 eBay Productivity Tools; free up your time and improve productivity by using these 10 tried and tasted eBay time saving tools.

Thanks for all your comments and feedback! Remember, if you want me to cover a specific topic for you, feel free to leave a comment below any post or simply contact me directly via this contact form. You can also send in your questions for me to answer publicly in our Q&A post series.

On The Wholesale Forums

Starting from this month, I’ll also be covering some of the most interesting (in my opinion) posts on The Wholesale Forums so that you never miss an important discussion:

What % are you happy with? A very interesting thread where forum members are sharing their opinion on what profit margin we should be aiming for, and how to calculate an optimum selling price. For people who are new to this, you’ll also learn the difference between ROI, margins and mark-up.

Starting to sell products with commissioned reps. Another interesting thread covering a commission based business model. I’ll admit that this idea has been on my mind for years but I haven’t really had the time to properly test it or begin to implement it in my business. Let’s follow TD Sales and see how the plan plays out for him.

Babz Media on eBay. We all know Babz on eBay, right? But did you know that they made £1M in sales on eBay UK in the last 30 days alone!? And how much profit do you think they made? Well on this thread, fellow traders try to find this information from behind the closed doors of one of eBay UK’s largest sellers.

Hosted solutions vs your own website/cart. I wanted to stay out of this thread but at the end, couldn’t resist! It’s a never ending fight between these two sides and the best solution I can offer is this: there’s no ONE perfect shopping cart out there! So these discussions can’t be objective as there are advantages and disadvantages to each cart and you can’t say one is better than other one as that is purely subjective and depends on your business’ needs and budget.

So that’s it, a recap of the most interesting & valuable threads on The Wholesale Forums for March 2013.

Latest news from eBay

Yes, everyone is talking about the latest eBay Seller release and up-coming changes! This news is everywhere so I won’t waste internet space rephrasing what’s already been said. But here is a little resource for you, with direct links as well as some additional links to other websites that have covered this in detail:

http://sellersphere.ebay.co.uk/post/491

http://tamebay.com/2013/03/ebay-uk-seller-release-overview.html

http://lastdropofink.co.uk/market-places/ebay/ebay-spring-2013-seller-updates/

My comment on the whole matter will be short:

Good News:

  • 12 FREE pictures per listing (it only affects me partially as I’m using my own hosting account BUT when it comes to mobile shoppers, having your pictures on eBay servers is crucial so all in all – very good news)
  • No more image “embellishments”! I already knew this was coming so haven’t been using any text or images for a while now. Good. This will even out the playing field. I just hope eBay have enough resources to effectively monitor the use of this new policy (how, I wonder?).
  • To get & maintain a TRS account, you will now only need £1000 in sales over the last 12 months instead of the current level which is £2500. This means getting that TRS badge will be easier BUT maintaining it – harder (continue reading).

Bad News:

  • More emphasis on free listings. TRSs will only get reductions in FVFs, improved search visibility & their TRS badge displayed IF their listings meet the new criteria (which includes offering at least one free shipping method. Will be very interesting to see how this develops and what sellers will do to combat the change, and most importantly how this will affect the 1st page of search results which is currently dominated by TRS sellers.
  • An increased fee for basic shop owners (from 15 quid to 20 quid) BUT it comes with 20 free listings (insertion fees) so in essence the price of a shop subscription will only increase by a pound (the other £4 you’ll get back through savings in insertion fees).

Overall I don’t think these changes are that bad at all. The change in image formatting is long awaited and should level out the playing field as well as make eBay look more like a shop rather than the Turkish market it currently resembles. The free shipping requirement is obviously the biggest problem, especially when we take a look at the latest news of price changes from Royal Mail

In essence, there’ll be a price increase in most situations (isn’t that always the case?). But there is some good news too; like lowered requirements to become a Business Customer and a reduction in fees for some specific shipping weights, so it’s not all bad at the end of the day.

And there’s another important piece of shipping news coming from eBay – their brand new shipping service for international destinations. The initial pricing looks very good – but let’s wait for the program to roll out fully before opening the champagne! But it looks promising and should allow us to expand more easily into Europe with products that weigh more than 500-1000 grams which are generally very expensive to send via Airmail.

What’s Coming Up in the next month?

April Fool’s day of course!

After that, we’ll get back to normal operation and the first post should go live on 4th April. Next month I’ll be sharing a list of my best business tools, the ones I use on a daily basis PLUS I’ll show you a way to drive traffic to your BIN listings with 10 completely FREE banners to use in your eBay auctions! And there will of course be much more worthwhile content as well.

I’ll be continuing the hard work on my eCommerce Magnates video course and should hopefully be able to announce a precise launch date! I’m almost 100% certain that my new course will be released at the end of May, or the beginning of June at the absolute latest! So if you haven’t done so already, get on the waiting list HERE to be the first to receive news and updates.

So thanks for reading my blog! To stay up to date with the latest posts, you can always subscribe to my RSS feed!

Have a wonderful Easter break everyone & enjoy this long weekend with your friends & family, I know I will.

Thanks,
Andrew

2 Comments
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  1. Lovely pictures 🙂

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Thanks Stephanie! 🙂

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