EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 175 - September 17, 2006 - ISSN 1528-6703     1 of 6

From the Editor

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The AuctionBytes reader survey results are in. Over 1200 people completed our survey, and we'll get into the analysis in our first article. One thing is certain - online auction sites and services should look at these results closely, because it could be a harbinger of some major changes ahead for the industry.

First though, here's another instance where readers have impressed us with suggestions for articles. Altogether, there were 39 pages of comments in response to the last two questions soliciting feedback on what readers would like to see more of in AuctionBytes newsletters in the future, as well as additional comments.

Here are the most frequently mentioned suggestions for articles:

  • Reviews of alternative selling venues
  • Success stories from those who sell on sites other than eBay
  • Reviews of auction management and ecommerce-related services
  • Search Engine Optimization, marketing, and tips for running your own online store
  • Articles to help protect yourself from fraud and the latest online scams
  • Articles of interest to International sellers. (you make up nearly 13% of our subscribership, btw!)
  • Product sourcing - finding merchandise to sell online
  • Selling tips from top sellers
  • More surveys and survey results

Believe me, there were more. Nearly half of all the survey respondents left comments about topics they'd like to see covered in AuctionBytes. Many respondents took the opportunity to rant a little about problems they see in the industry, such as phishing emails and fraud, and suggested we write more about these issues. Basically, you've given us a "to-do" list that will last well into 2012! (It was also very rewarding to hear all the nice things you had to say about the current coverage - thanks.)

We'd like to see readers submit article on your experiences using different sites and services. Do you have your own online store? What software are you using to run it, what web host did you choose, how are you driving traffic to it? Or, if you think you might be a good candidate to be interviewed by one of our freelance writers, let me know.

We're also considering a feature where people submit their ecommerce sites for critique, and open it up to our readers to give suggestions for site design and enhancing search engine placement.

I'm keeping those 39 pages of comments on my desk and will re-read them over the coming weeks. Thanks again for taking the time to fill out the survey and share your thoughts and advice.

Before I close, I'd like to mention a letter I received from an eBay seller. He said he has been suspended for violating eBay's excessive shipping & handling policy while the top 2 sellers in the category are allowed to charge more than he was charging for S&H with no consequences. This is not the first seller who has made this claim that eBay is treating its top 1-2 sellers in a category differently than other sellers (even large powersellers). I noticed this phenomenon when eBay first began enforcing its Safe Payments policy.

Breaking news: eBay has just figured out how to further antagonize its US sellers at a time when they are already feeling misunderstood and abused. Sellers on eBay India will be able to list items on at a special discount tomorrow.

eBay India is holding a 20-cent listing day for its sellers to sell on the US site on September 18. To say that I don't think it will be well received by US buyers and sellers is an understatement.

This promotion shows that eBay management is either way out of touch with its members, or just doesn't care. It will likely be interpreted by US sellers as a way to boost listings on at the end of the quarter for the benefit of Wall Street analysts.

Note to sellers: only users who were registered with India as their country of residence (as per the address registered with eBay) as of September 11 are eligible for the promotion.

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

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