From the Editor
By Ina Steiner
As readers increasingly turn to multiple channels on which to sell, we've expanded AuctionBytes coverage to include tips on marketing to help you increase sales. In the last issue, Jeff Gawronski advised readers to jump in and create a Google AdWords campaign. Jeff follows up in this issue with some tips for making your Google Adword search campaigns profitable. Don't be intimidated by terms like PPC, CPC, paid-search, SEM and SEO - you'll be surprised at how mastering a few simple principles can help you take control of your business.
In fact, sellers who began on eBay are already skilled in the principles behind Search Engine Marketing. Did you ever analyze which keywords to include in your listing titles and in your descriptions? Then you already understand "search engine optimization." Did you figure out what time of day to start an auction, what the starting price should be, whether to use a reserve price on auction listings, whether fixed-price would be more effective? If you operate an eBay Store, did you set up Store categories? If so, you're already using principles that are easily applied to search engine marketing.
Need more convincing? I spoke to Marty Weintraub who runs Internet-based ad agency aimClear and is an authority on the topic of search marketing and social media. He's got some great advice, which I've posted as a podcast in our Ecommerce Industry SoundBytes section. The information is fabulous, so if you're thinking about doing a Google AdWords campaign, set aside half an hour to listen to it. You'll also find recent interviews with Auctiva's Kevin Kinell, who talks about selling trends and more changes ahead from eBay, and Monsoon CEO Kanth Gopalpur speaking about his company's recent merger with Alibris.
You can catch Marty Weintraub at Search Engine Strategies in New York on March 22, where he is speaking on Advanced Keyword Research. This is a great conference, you can read my coverage of last year's conference here.
It's that time of year when thoughts turn to Spring, warmer days, and,...taxes. Next year, online sellers in the U.S. who don't report their sales will no longer be able to fly underneath the radar screen. Barbara Weltman explains and shows us the new Form 1099-K from the IRS in today's issue.
I've seen a lot of cases of email hijacking lately. I received one from a friend's Hotmail account that included a link to a website and a message that he had confirmed that "it really is a store allied with NFL offical company. All products are authentic." Another, more convincing email came from a reader's Gmail account stating she had been to London and had her bag stolen, leaving her stranded and penniless. Sure enough, their email accounts had been hacked.
It's especially important for online sellers to create secure passwords for their accounts (here are some tips), but you also must assume that your friends and family's accounts are vulnerable and remember to be skeptical of messages that come from their email address.
We've got some interesting content lined up, including a report from Lissa McGrath on a cool marketing tool for Etsy sellers and more interviews with key industry players. Stay tuned, and be sure and check AuctionBytes.com every day for news that impacts your business. News headlines appear at the top of the home page, and you can receive the news via email 3-times-a week by subscribing on this page. You can also follow AuctionBytes on Twitter.
Thanks for reading.
Note to InkFrog customers: if you are an eBay seller using the InkFrog tool, be aware that the site went down on Saturday due to an apparent malware incident. I reported it on the AuctionBytes Blog and hope to get an official update from the company.
About the author:
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to email@example.com.
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