From the Editor
By Ina Steiner
Even if you run your ecommerce business as a sideline, it's good to monitor your performance (profit, sell-through rate, etc.) to see how you can improve future sales. Last month, eBay introduced two reports for sellers to organize basic eBay sales data. The basic report is free and includes total sales, total number of listings, average sale price and total eBay and PayPal fees. The Sales Reports Plus report costs $4.99/month and contains more detailed item information, including sales by category, listing format, sales by ending day, ending time, and listing duration, and buyer counts (number of total, unique and repeat buyers).
eBay held workshops last week introducing the reports and how to use them, you can see the transcripts at http://pages.ebay.com/community/workshopcalendar/current.html#2. There is also a discussion board to ask questions: http://forums.ebay.com/db1/forum.jsp?forum=4024
I think it's disappointing eBay is charging $4.99/month for the Plus report when it still lacks the kind of data you can find from a tool like Sellathon (http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/abu/y204/m10/abu0129/s02). After all, the more sellers can improve their performance, the more money eBay will make. But as the U.S. growth rate slows, eBay continues to introduce fee-based features and options.
Meanwhile, feedback continues to be a central issue for buyers and sellers. Almost 2 years ago we conducted a survey on eBay Feedback. I thought it would be a good time to run the survey again and see what has changed, if anything. Please take a few moments to fill it out, and we'll share the results in a future issue of this newsletter: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=3966705731
And just in case you hadn't heard, a new Federal law helps banks minimize the "float" on checking accounts and may cause some account-holders to bounce checks if they are unaware of new banking procedures (http://digbig.com/4ccab). Spread the word to your colleagues and customers!
Thanks for reading.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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