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Readers’ Contest – Win £60 in Gift Cards!

January 27, 2014 by Andrew Minalto - 31 Comments
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Today we’re going to have some fun with this year’s first contest for my blog readers – and your chance to win an Amazon gift card, worth £20. In total I’m giving away 3 such cards for a total value of £60.

What do you have to do to enter this contest?

Suggest a question/topic that you want me to cover on my blog this year. As simple as that! Just leave your suggestion as a comment below this post and you’ll be automatically entered in the draw to win a gift card from Amazon.

Here are a few examples to get you going:

  • How can I embed a YouTube video in my eBay listings;
  • How to move my website to a new hosting company;
  • How to print shipping labels directly from eBay;
  • Selling high risk items on eBay;
  • Facebook advertising – is it worth the hassle?
  • And so on!

So what I’m after here is a list of questions you would like me to cover in detailed blog posts, how-to guides and videos.

But if you can’t come up with any specific topics, you can also leave more generic suggestions like:

  • Alibaba scams;
  • Freight forwarding process;
  • Product descriptions;
  • Software reviews;
  • And so on!

If you have more than one suggestion, even better! I’ll collect all of them and trust me when I say this – I will do my absolute best to cover as many of these topics as possible in 2014!

Important! When leaving your comment, make sure you enter your correct email address so I can contact the winners.

The deadline for entry is Friday 31st January and winners will be announced the following week.

How will I pick the winners? I’ll use a random number generator, so it’s a simple draw. No matter how good or bad your suggestions are, as long as you follow the rules and leave a comment, you have a chance to win one of those three £20 Amazon Gift Cards!

Good Luck & I can’t wait to see what kind of topics and questions are suggested.


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  1. […] eCommerce Magnates course but today, I want to answer the question asked by Alistair in my recent Readers’ Contest – what replaces Google’s Keyword […]

  2. […] up on last week’s readers’ contest, today the lucky winners are […]

  3. Bit of brainstorming here so feel free to ignore the strange ones (and sorry if you’ve already covered some of this):
    1) Somebody finds where you’ve been buying a product and sells it (on ebay like you) but undercuts you – and subsequently you lose some or all of your sales on that item. What strategies can you employ? Undercut, pricematch, markdown manager for a week or two? Stop selling the product? Sell at cost in the hope of scaring the competitor away? Maintain price but add value in some way – difficult to do without completely restarting your listing to change the item title to reflect this (so you lose your sales history). Holding auctions with links to your buy it now product – has worked moderately well for me. A complete list of strategies with pros and cons would be interesting. Would be really good to hear your readers stories on this one too.
    2) Importing from China/India – how to work out the shipping and taxation costs – especially the taxation part. Is it as simple as adding on the VAT rate?
    3) Ecommerce website ‘terms & conditions’ section. Where can I get a template for this? I sell to both consumers and trade – does this complicate the ‘terms & conditions’ at all?
    4) I know you did a little article on VAT a while back – but I don’t think it covered the following – firstly how do you adapt to going over the VAT threshold – what adjustments should you make eg. to your pricing. Is there anything to bear in mind as the VAT threshold approaches? Can you do much preparatory work beforehand. At the moment I only trade on ebay so I can see whether I’m approaching the VAT threshold. Concerned that as soon as I open my ecommerce shop/website that it won’t be so obvious how much I’ve got coming in – I guess it will be a matter of tallying up figures from Big Commerce and eBay once a month.

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Adrian,

      Thanks for your comment and many topic suggestions you have sent in.

      I’ll try to cover these ideas in up-coming blog posts.

      Importing is already covered here:



  4. Hi Andrew,

    I’m enjoying reading your site – lots of useful and interesting discussion on here.

    I’d be interested to read your advice relating to the topic of product packaging. What is the most slick process for a new business owner to go about developing a packaging design and production plan, and how can this interface with a fulfillment house or manufacturer.

    My business plan is to import white labelled food products for packaging either in country of origin or here in the UK. Any discussions in this area would also be fantastic.


    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Anna,

      Thanks very much for your suggestions.

      I have an extended knowledge on this topic so will definitely put together a guide or two in near future.

      Thanks again,

      1. Wonderful, thank you Andrew. I’ll keep an eye out!

  5. I wouldn’t mind seeing an article about the different 3rd party credit/debit card payment processors available for websites, what the good and bad are? Your experiences in your many years of online trading, And when is a good time to start using them as alternatives to paypal

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Mark,

      Excellent topic, Thanks!


  6. I really like Nazer’s ideas about sourcing packaging and best shipping practices and general organisation for efficiency optimisation. Perhaps you could split it for the number of parcels/weight per week = what service. I have been wondering about this.

    2 others:

    1. What replaces Google Keyword. This is mentioned twice in the EAB videos but is has now been made redundant or has been absorbed into a paid for subscription service. Is this correct?

    2. We know you don’t advocate VAT registration until necessary but a little article on becoming a sole trader and how to pay the right tax. What is tax deductible etc would be very helpful for us newbies.

    Also, if you could just reply to this question in this thread, you advocate web hosting sites to avoid ebay gallery fees but ebay seem to let me upload 12 pictures in every category with no extra charges. Is that because I am a private seller still or have they changed their mind on picture fees?

    Really enjoying the course Andrew, but two things, it seems quite out of date (even the update is 2011) and your (wonderful) resources seem to be scattered around different websites and tabs making it hard to navigate and these seem to change depending on whether I am logged in or out. If I log in I lose some of the resources. Confusing!


    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Alistair,

      Thanks for your comment and topic suggestions.

      eBay images – eBay now offers 12 free pictures in every listing, to all sellers. But I use self hosted pictures for different reasons:

      1) marketing strategies (free gift announcements);

      2) I can change them whenever I want without touching listings;

      3) I can build listings much faster using my own image urls;

      Thanks for your comments about EAB course. Just so you know, currently course is being totally re-worked to launch V3.0 later on this year, in May. All current EAB owners will get access to new version for free.


      1. Alistair

        Thanks Andrew. After your recent post I am glad I didn’t sign up to HostGator too soon!

        Looking forward to the update.

        Keep up the good work!

      2. Thanks!

  7. Philip Davey

    I have had an Ebay store for a number of years and so have a lot of (one off purchase) customer Email addresses held on Paypal, what’s the easiest way to retrieve them and then what should I do with them to get the best potential from them .

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Thanks Philip, will definitely cover this topic in up-coming posts!


  8. Hi Andrew,

    I would love to see an article about credit card fraud for ecommerce shops.



    1. Andrew Minalto

      Thanks Sammy, good topic!


  9. 1 – how to do accounting on ebay and other marketplaces
    2 – how to make money on amazon

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Thanks Joe!

  10. Hey Andrew,

    I personally would be excited to see a post on any one of the following.

    1) Outsourcing to the Philippines (I presume that you are still doing this) – how to find the good ones, cultural differences, tips, how to find part time staff, resources, etc.

    2) Traffic generation in 2014. As you know the “Hummingbird” update makes it harder than ever to get niche website traffic from search engines. How do you battle this? Is “SEO” still part of your standard operating procedure for new sites? How does this affect market research?

    3) Perhaps a case study? I understand not revealing the niche itself and details that you would only provide on your courses/coaching. I am more interested in the emotional roller coaster and how you tackle problems with starting an eCommerce site.

    4) Something about buying and building upon existing sites? Again this could be made into a case study.

    5) General tips in doing business in China.

    6) Common traits for success and failure that you have seen coaching

    7) Where you see niche eCommerce going with the battles that it faces (Amazon, etc).

    Looking forward to your posts!


    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Danny,

      Many Thanks for the list of ideas, some very good suggestions there.


  11. Paul Dunbabin (Dunotra)

    How about a short a short article being organized.

    A quote from Donald J. Trump:

    ” For entrepreneurs, ignorance is not bliss. It’s fatal. It’s costly. And it’s for losers. You either get organized, or get crushed.”

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Thanks Paul!

  12. Hi Andrew,

    I suggest the following topics that I think are important for ebayers:

    a) Stock management & Packaging materials
    b) Order processing & Automation


    1. Andrew Minalto

      Thanks Nazar for your ideas!


  13. my first suggestion is that you should write everything about liquidations, which kind of products are good to buy, legit websites, etc.

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Joe,

      Thanks for your suggestion.

      I personally don’t deal with liquidation stock BUT have knowledge about it so def. will put together a guide on this!


  14. Hi Andrew.
    I have many suggestion:

    1- compare between http://www.hktdc.com ,alibaba , globalsources.com?

    2- How can I do market for new product on ebay?

    3- The fast and cheap way to shipping small product for Europe to arab country ?

    4-Talk About quality inspection in china and what is the cheap and good company for that

    5- talk about import electronic products from china

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Abdul,

      Many Thanks for your entry and questions. All of them are very good!


  15. I’m interested in buying non brand name tablets from China and selling on eBay. I’m just wondering though how you would go about providing customer service if you don’t have any technical knowledge. For example if someone sends back the tablet after a week saying it’s stopped working what can I do as I can’t fix it myself? Do I have to try and get a refund from my supplier in China?

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Hamida,

      Thanks for stopping by.

      First you’ll want to learn at least some basics on how to restart such tablets, maybe re-install operating system. This way you’ll be able to provide basic level support.

      But anyway, yes, you’ll want to have some sort of agreement in place with your supplier which says exactly the warranty term, who pays for shipping etc. This is especially important for DOA items (dead on arrival) as you don’t want to hold responsibility for these.

      Some suppliers will ask you to send broken items back and then replace them OR issue credit for your next order. Others may cover fixing costs in UK (if you send item for fixing to local technician).

      Either way, you want to cover this in detail with your supplier BEFORE you make any orders.

      Hope this helps!


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