EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 117 - April 18, 2004 - ISSN 1528-6703     2 of 7

Knowing the Value of a Good eBay 'About Me' Page

By Mark O'Neill

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On eBay, your reputation is everything. It can make you a PowerSeller rich beyond your wildest dreams, or it can sink you into poverty and eBay failure. So throughout your eBay selling career, you should always be looking for ways to improve your eBay reputation. One of the best ways to do that is to create an impressive and memorable "About Me" page.

So what is an "About Me" page? Quite simply, it is a Web page eBay gives you to promote yourself and your auctions. It's free of charge, and everyone with a user ID is entitled to one. I think a lot of people underestimate the importance of an "About Me" page and simply don't bother to make one. But many of my best customers have repeatedly told me that when faced with a choice between buying from me or buying from a rival eBayer selling the same product, they chose me because they liked my "About Me" page.

Here are some tips I have picked up over the years. On your page, place a respectable-looking photo of yourself (no bottom flashing please!) at the top along with your address and phone number. Many of my customers appreciate the fact that I was willing to place my photo and contact details on the page. It showed that I was willing to come out, be identified and stand behind my products.

If you are not comfortable with leaving your address and home phone number, then perhaps a cell phone number would be just as good. The point you are trying to make here is that you can be contacted for questions and complaints, and that you are not going to fly off to a non-extradition country if a customer is unhappy with you.

You can receive HTML links from eBay that allow you to place your auctions and feedback into your page. This means that any potential buyers can see right away who you are, what you sell and what others think about you - all on the same page. You can even get an HTML link from eBay that allows others to see what you are currently bidding on.

You can also include a link to your Web site (if you have one) and can use the page to promote your favorite charities and causes. I have links and images to animal charities, which are favorites of mine.

I strongly recommend avoiding political issues and causes on your page. Endorsing a politician may alienate potential customers who may have opposite political views. So it's best to steer clear of these things on your eBay page and stick to safer causes like cuddly animals or campaigns to lower the eBay listing fees!

Of course, how great or how bad your page is can vary, depending on your knowledge of HTML. You can make a good page without HTML knowledge, but to make your page truly stand out, I suggest that you learn some basic HTML. I've included some resources below that can help you create your About Me page.

My "About Me" page http://members.ebay.de/ws2/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewUserPage&userid=camelot-de

eBay's special HTML tags for "About Me" pages http://pages.ebay.com/help/account/html-tags.html

eBay's help page for "About Me" pages (including the link to start a page) http://pages.ebay.com/help/feedback/about_me.html

eBay's policy guidelines for "About Me" pages http://pages.ebay.com/help/policies/listing-aboutme.html


About the author:

Mark O'Neill is Managing Editor of the popular tech blog, MakeUseOf.com. He is a Scotsman, now living the ex-pat life in Wurzburg, Germany. You can also find him on MarkO'Neill.org.


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