eBay Email Marketing: A Strategy for Repeat Business
By Mark O'Neill
It's that time of the year again, when I take stock of my selling activity over Christmas, analyze how it all went and work out how to get my Christmas customers to come back to buy from me again.
Being an eBay Store owner, promotion is a never-ending process, but eBay has helped to make the job a little bit easier with the introduction of promotional email campaigns. Store owners can send emails to past customers to highlight their current offerings and persuade them to buy again.
As with any successful newsletter, you first need subscribers. eBay, for obvious reasons, frowns upon spam. So how do you get people to legitimately sign up for the newsletter?
First you have to tell your customers all about your newsletter. So be sure to mention it in your emails, your "About me" page, your website (if you have one) and anywhere else you can think of. When thanking your customers for their prompt payment, be sure to mention that they could sign up for your newsletter.
So how does the customer sign up? Located on your storefront page, your "About Me" page and your feedback page is a link called "add to favorite sellers/stores." When the customer clicks on that, they are asked on the next page if they want to sign up for your promotional newsletter. Saying yes gets them onto your subscription list.
OK, so you've now got subscribers waiting eagerly to see what you have to offer. All you have to do to satisfy their buying urges is go to http://pages.ebay.com/storefronts/emailmarketing.html and click on "create your own email newsletter." Then just follow the template process. It's easier than you think. A few clicks and a few minutes later, you will have produced a professional looking HTML newsletter.
You need to be an eBay Store-owner to take advantage of the promotional email service. As yet, the service is not available to non-store eBay users.
Basic Store-owners can send up to 100 emails free of charge every month, with featured store owners being able to send 1000, and Anchor Store owners 4000. If you want to send more emails every month, then eBay charges 1 cent per extra email.
The beauty of doing the newsletter yourself, and not eBay, is that you can decide what gets highlighted and what gets omitted. I've often found that eBay's computer-generated newsletters feature the same items over and over again, and other items get neglected as a result. If you have something you want to show off to your customers, make sure it's near the top of the newsletter.
Everything in the newsletter is completely customizable. You have control of the presentation. Each item in the newsletter has a link to the eBay listing, so finding your product on eBay is simple for the customer.
eBay also offers a tracking device so you can see which products are most effective, allowing you to fine-tune your marketing strategy. It includes statistics on how many people clicked through to your listings, the total number of bids the email generated, and how many "Buy It Now" purchases the email generated.
All of a sudden, you will have a legion of dedicated customers, eagerly awaiting your next sales newsletter. When the competition on eBay gets fierce, it's good to have return customers.
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