|In This Issue:
These truths apply to every product, every marketplace.
by Lisa Suttora
Product profit margin… one of the most critical yet widely misunderstood components of running a successful online business. Master the skill of generating a healthy profit margin and you'll build a thriving, profitable e-commerce business. Get it wrong and you can end up under water or, even worse, out of business. Read story.
Avoid these 10 common mistakes when shooting listing photos.
by Dennis L. Prince
How to Build Profitable Newsletters
It starts with understanding the basics about how readers respond.
by Janelle Elms
How to Grow an eBay Business, Part 2
Kids' clothing seller shares tips and tricks learned by trial and error.
by Brad and Debra Schepp
Write Marketing E-mails For Results
Learn the elements of an effective marketing message, and how to use them.
Don't Get 'Phished' In
Look closer: Is that e-mail for real, or a clever scam?
New mobile app, expanded buyer protection introduced in time for holidays.
As the holidays approach, PayPal is making its services easier to use with the introduction of two new features. Read story.
Auctiva Commerce Unveils Store Designer
Feature allows merchants to customize most aspects of their online shops.
No USPS Rate Increase in 2011
Proposed First Class fee hike denied by postal commission.
Google to Show Full-Text Seller Reviews
Partnership with Bizrate aims to give buyers a more complete picture.
Holidays: Sellers Cautiously Optimistic
Online merchants are 'prepared to meet the challenges.'
House Votes on eBay-Backed Bill
H.R. 5932 would establish new unit to combat organized retail crime.
We recently wrote an Auctiva EDU story about the second annual Bling My Bra campaign. The auction event aims to raise awareness about breast cancer, a disease that affects one in eight women. Breast cancer is actually the second-deadliest cancer for women behind only lung cancer. Read more.
Weird and Wacky Listings
eBay Motors is offering a unique marketing opportunity during the NASCAR Tums Fast Relief 500 on Oct. 24. Enter the eBay Motors sweepstakes on Facebook and your eBay ID will be printed on the No. 5 Chevrolet, driven by racing legend Mark Martin. Then watch as it zooms by at a bazillion miles an hour. Everyone gets their nanosecond of fame!
How much bacon would you fork over for a life-size bust of Kevin Bacon made of—what else—bacon? Well, get it while it's hot: Bids are already in the thousands for this unique piece of pop art—which, according to the artist, "will automatically make you the coolest person you will ever know." You certainly will be to childhood cancer patients and their families, who will receive 100 percent of the auction's proceeds.
While we're on the subject of pop art for charity, check out these one-of-a-kind bras with lots of bling. In this second annual benefit for breast cancer awareness and research, design themes run the gamut from bowling to NASCAR, pirates to UFOs, cigars to coffee—not to mention Auctiva's own entry, which celebrates two of our favorite things: software and beer!
What kind of person do you think eBay should name to replace Lorrie Norrington as head of Marketplaces?
Director of Engineering Tom Urbanowicz answers this and other questions from Auctiva users. Read more.
Got a burning question about Auctiva, eBay or e-commerce in general? Send an e-mail to "AskAuctiva" at the Auctiva dot com domain. Selected questions will be answered by Auctiva managers and published in an article on the Auctiva Education tab. Read some recent Auctiva Q&A articles here.
Please do not submit inquiries requiring an immediate response. Instead, please file a support request for technical or account-related issues.
View all Ask Auctiva Articles.
Auctiva User Profile
Sandie Parker loves cooking good meals anywhere she goes. But she knows this can be difficult, especially if you're on a boat or RV.
While a small kitchen can be a challenge for boating enthusiasts, it should not be a deterrent from cooking the gourmet meals people crave, says Sandie, who together with her husband, Jim Parker, operates Sandie's Galley and More on Auctiva Commerce. Read story.
Get Featured Here
Got a success story you want to share? What amazing garage sale finds have you turned into monster profits online? How has using Auctiva's templates and auction management tools improved your eBay business? Drop a line and tell us in 50 words or less about an outstanding e-sale experience, and perhaps we'll feature your story in an upcoming issue of The Online Seller newsletter. Submit your story.
Auctiva Commerce Store Spotlight
Teresa Robinson knew the items she offers would make great gifts, so when it came time to give her online store a name, she went with the obvious choice: "Special Occasions."
"Special Occasions was chosen to let potential customers know that we offer products for 'Special Occasions,'" she notes.
The inspirational and Christian jewelry, home décor items, literature, toys and other products in Robinson's shop have proven popular. However, her hottest items right now are purity jewelry and Christian rings. But she expects that to change with the holidays approaching.
"We expect wassail and other Christmas-themed items to take the lead," she adds.
Robinson started selling online in 2002 through eBay. Back then it was a hobby, but it has since evolved into a business. Hoping to take her business to the next level, Robinson moved her store off eBay and over to Auctiva Commerce earlier this year, after being impressed by the e-commerce software during a 30-day free trial.
"We previously offered products on eBay, and have a small number of listings there currently as a means to get the word out for our main store," she says. "However, we have since decided to discontinue selling on eBay due to the increased fees, other restrictions and policies that we feel impact profit and success."
Robinson was especially happy about the variety of store themes on Auctiva Commerce, as well as the feeds to Google Merchant Center and the "best sellers" display within each Auctiva Commerce Store.
And to keep shoppers enticed, she continuously adds new items, ships packages the same business day as she receives orders and offers up-front store policies. And she also throws in free shipping on orders of $70 or more.
"We feel our store offers a variety of products that are of interest to shoppers," she says.
Visit Special Occasions.
Set up your own Auctiva Commerce Store and get complete freedom over your shop.
In response to "Prompt Shipping Gets 5-Star Treatment," one reader writes: "As so often, eBay once again makes a half-hearted attempt to fix a problem that is entirely of their own creation. Yes, it is wonderful that finally buyers can no longer give negative star ratings for issues that have nothing to do with seller performance… Now, having made this positive change, they stuff it up by making unrealistic side-conditions… For once, eBay, show some positive leadership and make a change to policy properly, not two steps forward and one step back (or is it the other way around?)" Read the entire thread, and post your response.
If you'd like to comment on this newsletter, any article contained within, or on topics you'd like to see us cover in the future, Auctiva editors would love to hear from you. Send us your feedback.
Sent by Auctiva Corp.