Insider Tips for Auctiva Users, Part 2

A look at some cool features even advanced users may be missing

by Brad and Debra Schepp
- Jul 30, 2010

Our last article addressed some of the best ways newcomers to Auctiva's tools can get up and running quickly to create more attractive and effective eBay listings. To research that article, we spoke with two Auctiva employees, Rebecca Miller, an Auctiva product analyst and eBay PowerSeller/Top-rated seller, and Mike Davies, Auctiva's customer service manager.

Both Miller and Davies offered a wealth of advice for beginners. But, happily, Miller has also been very generous in providing some great suggestions for those of you who are more advanced in your use of Auctiva's tools. She was very clear about how much even a long-time Auctiva user may be missing! Sure, you know how to make your listings look great, but we're here to offer you some advice about better managing your files and controlling both your inventory and your listings. With as many years of experience as Miller has, both as a successful eBay seller and with Auctiva, you're bound to learn some new tricks.

Think of how much time gets wasted shifting back and forth between tasks

Organize your images

Mom was right. Having a system in place and making it work will save you hours of time and loads of money. Miller's first suggestion is to "learn to be organized." Here's a prime example of how she puts her experience into practice.

"I always upload images in advance for things I'm going to be selling over the next couple of weeks. I spend one day taking and loading pictures," she says.

It sounds like simple advice, but just think of how much time gets wasted shifting back and forth between tasks. With Auctiva's image hosting, you can easily set aside a specific time to create and load all your images. Then, as you're ready to list, you already have everything the way you like it and ready to go.

Next, Miller suggests using your image hosting space wisely. Both the Unlimited and Premium subscriptions come with 1 GB of image storage, while the Basic plan provides up to 500 MB. Now, that may seem like a lot, but it can add up over time. Remember, you are charged extra if you exceed the storage included with your plan.

No need to let the continued storage of images you no longer need cost your money, especially when it's so simple to automatically prevent the overruns.

To avoid image hosting overage fees, Miller recommends using Auctiva's Image Auto-Delete feature. Auctiva introduced this tool only last year, so it's possible that even experienced Auctiva users may not know how to utilize it.

"Since your image space is so important," she reminds us, "you want to set this feature to automatically delete your images after a bit."

Miller also offers some valuable advice for organizing images within your listings.

"As a buyer, I'd rather not have to scroll down through a lot of images to get to the description," she says. "With Auctiva, you can customize how your images are laid out. For example, you can create a nice slideshow at the top or use thumbnails that can be enlarged. That space at the top of your eBay listing is so important!"

You can have one listing instead of hundreds. This makes you look much more professional

Favorite tools

Most beginners are not ready to make use of Auctiva's Multi-Variation Tool, but more experienced users can thrive using this tool, which Miller has declared to be "awesome!"

"Of course, you can list multiple variations of your items on eBay through separate listings, for example, different colors and sizes of the same style T-shirt," she explains. "You could create images manually for all these variations, or you could have Auctiva's Variation Generator do it for you."

Miller is especially proud of this tool since she was integral in developing it. (Auctiva wanted the invaluable input of an experienced user to help developers design this tool). You can use the Multi-Variation Tool to create up to 120 variations on a theme. Punch in the data, and the rest is automatic. If you have a large quantity of the same product in the same color, you can also use the tool to manage the inventory.

"You can have one listing instead of hundreds," Miller says. "This makes you look much more professional." She recommends that if you do plan to use the Multi-Variation Tool you take the online tutorial, which will quickly get you up and running.

Another valuable suggestion is to import all your existing eBay listings into Auctiva to gain better control of your operation.

"You can then organize them in folders for all the previous listings," Miller explains. "Creating folders will help you sort through your listings. Maybe you used another service or listed on eBay directly. You can have separate folders for 'Need to Be Relisted' or 'Good 'Til Cancelled.'"

Then take the next step to assign colors to each of these specific folders, so they are easy to find, identify and access. It's a simple step, but it can really keep your listings moving.

You can click a button in 'Saved Listings,' and it will create a duplicate of that listing

You may be missing something

One of Miller's tasks at Auctiva is to manage the features area where Auctiva users can suggest and recommend new products and tools.

"I see lots of suggestions for things we've had for a long time," she says. "But that's OK." Every time this happens, Miller has the opportunity to educate customers and help users very quickly become more effective.

Here's one good example of this phenomenon: She often gets requests for Auctiva to create a "similar listing" tool. Happily, there is a simple solution already in place.

"You can click a button in 'Saved Listings,' and it will create a duplicate of that listing," she explains. "This feature is a great time saver. Just click that little icon, swap out what's new for the new listing, and you're done."

This same scenario has also happened when users request that Auctiva support eBay Motors. "We have done this for a long time," Miller says.

In addition to the main eBay site, you can use Auctiva's tools to list on eBay U.K., Australia, Canada, Motors and Motors-Parts & Accessories through the drop-down menu at the top of the listing form page. The heading for this drop-down menu says "eBay Site."

Now you're ready to take your Auctiva tools to the next level. Whether you're just starting out and need to focus on the beginner's approach or you're already happily listing and working with your Auctiva tools to create and manage great listings there's a little bit of something for every Auctiva user.

Plus, if you come across a great idea for an additional tool that you think would be helpful, don't hesitate to reach out to Miller. You can reach her via Auctiva's Feature Center, or on Auctiva's Community Forums. She's waiting to either help Auctiva develop another new tool or explain to you just exactly how you can accomplish your goals with tools already in place.

About the Author

Brad and Debra Schepp are the authors of 20 books, including eBay PowerSeller Secrets and The Official Success Guide: Insider Tips and Strategies for Sourcing Products from the World's Largest B2B Marketplace. Their most recent book, which Deb co-authored with John Lawson, Kick Ass Social Commerce for E-preneurs: It's Not About Likes—It's About Sales, was recently named the 2015 Small Business Book of the Year in the social media category.

For further information, visit Brad and Deb's website,

Opinions expressed here may not be shared by Auctiva Corp. and/or its principals.

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