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Tuesday, Sep. 30, 2014

Free Introduction to eBay session looking for a place to meet.

Posted Wednesday, September 29, 2010, at 6:40 PM

Many of you know that I am an eBay Education Specialist trained by eBay. Before you get concerned that I am using this as an unapproved advertising space, please know that I have already contacted the T-G and they have given their permission for me to offer this free class.

Next let me emphasize that this is a FREE introduction to what eBay is all about. It will last about 1 to 1.5 hours and will cover as much as we can cram into the time frame to help you be comfortable with using the platform.

This will be based on a program designed by eBay, but they stopped supporting changes years ago and there have been many since that time, so much of this information will be updated by me.

I can post more about what will be covered and exactly when it will occur in another post, but right now, I am looking for a location to host the session. I have used the Chamber, and restaurants in the past, but it is open to any location that can accommodate us with space, seating and tables. The audiovisual tools I bring with me.

I wanted to open this up for anyone who might want to get more exposure for their business, charity, new building, etc. and it does not have to be a one time event. We could move to other locations in the future.

If you are interested in hosting or attending, contact me at Steve@bedfordtradingpost.com You might as well let me know you preference for time of day and day of week as well so I can adapt to as many as possible.


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I have interested people, but I do not know where we are going yet. Stay tuned.

-- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Sep 30, 2010, at 4:21 PM

Session Outline:

What eBay is and what it isn't.

What is a seller and how does one relate to eBay?

Safety and security, communicating with eBay & PayPal

The benefit of being a registered user

Create your eBay identity, what NOT to do

How to use the eBay platform to evaluate:

prices, sellers shipping, return policies, general policies

How to do a detailed search, browsing, refining your search, advanced search (extra benefits)

What are TSRs, Feedback, DSRs

Why leave feedback, how, value

How do your want to buy:

Auctions

Buy It Now

Fixed Price

Reserve pricing

Best Offer

Ask Seller a question (FAQ)

Asking more questions directly from seller

Keeping tabs on your order

What should you expect from a seller

What if I have a problem?

Communicate with seller through eBay, not through feedback and not private e-mails

Contact eBay, PayPal

Opening a dispute

How do you sign up for eBay, PayPal?

What is a safe password?

How much information do I have to give?

How do I get more information?

What is the eBay Community, Discussion boards, Forums

-- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Sep 30, 2010, at 4:45 PM

I know you really dont have any way to know, but do you know roughly how many people may show. I wouldnt mind having this at my place of business, but its small, and I cant fit alot of people.

-- Posted by greasemonkey on Sun, Oct 3, 2010, at 10:19 AM

I have about 10 people who have written with expressed interest, but some will make their decision based on the time, day and maybe the town. (Merchants in Shelbyville, Wartrace, & Bell Buckle have asked questions)

Of course, there will be some who won't make the decision until the last moment. I would guess no more than twenty but since I will have the class as often as there is interest of 10, we could have it at more cozy venues.

Contact me off the blog and we can chat. One issue I had with Bell Buckle is good cell phone reception. My mobile internet is Verizon and it does not do well there, I am going to check it out though.

-- Posted by stevemills on Sun, Oct 3, 2010, at 5:30 PM

eBay's new "buyer protection" policies are forcing long-time sellers to look elsewhere for trading. Anyone know of some good ebay alternatives...Amazon, ebid, etsy and ioffer seem to do well, not much luck with Bonanzle yet. Know of any others out there?

-- Posted by shawna.jones on Wed, Oct 6, 2010, at 12:41 PM

We have been on Bonanzle (now Bonanza) for over 2 years and have yet to have had a single sale.

The only non-eBay business we have had is atomicmall, but that never got above single digits in the past two years. We have signed up for about 6 other selling sites, but there is not enough time in the day and juggling inventory is touchy.

I know some folks who are happy with an Amazon/eBay combination. We tend to sell one of a kind things and Amazon does not feel comfortable to us.

eBay is selling 20-30 items a week and we have yet to have had an issue with eBay's Buyer protectionism, even when they claimed to have not received an item. We crossed out T's and dotted our i's and both eBay and PayPal supported us. Of course, now that I have said it.....

There are some product lines that have more trouble than others. Designer items, clothes in general and electronics come to mind. I advise people to start out with their own things and they will gradually develop a niche that suits them.

I have one student who is developing a line of Christian jewelry and adding a Spanish line. I am following her closely to see how this works out. It seems to be a growing marketplace.

-- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Oct 6, 2010, at 9:49 PM

Here is an eBay success story from Canada http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/life/ho...

I have no doubt they have frustrations with eBay, but the bottom line is that it is still one of the best venues for an individual to start their business. Even these folks have a bump or two on their feedbacks

Hand crafted jewelry can be a tough market with most of their neutrals sounding like positives so buyers did not know how to use the system. He seemed to have no issues with the musical instrument side of things.

The other seller had an excellent feedback rating with her one negative sounding like the buyer did not read the listing and wanted to complain about something, for some reason. When you deal with thousands of people, you will run into a few that are "difficult".

Here is the eBay link http://www2.ebay.com/aw/ca/2010100516503...

-- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 7:36 AM

Another thought about the new Buyer Protection Plan. I really do not see a big change in the way eBay has tried to protect buyers. I think it is more clearly defined and the system is a necessary evil because eBay is comprised of millions of sellers who do not share the same values for customer service and doing the right thing.

The policies aggravate and may even insult some of us who do follow the "golden rule" but let's face it, the philosophy does not seem to be on the upswing. You also have many "new" merchants who have little concept of dealing with the sales process from the other side. Those may need guidance and nudges to think "service".

The occasional seller just wants to get rid of the item and make some money. They sure do not want to take it back! I see many comments on discussion boards that say "the buyer needs to understand that we are not a store, we don't take refunds".

Well, in many cases the buyers DON'T understand that and when I compare successful sellers in the same product category to those less successful, I see comments in the listings of slow sellers like "We do not take returns", "when you make a purchase, it is a legal contract to pay and if you don't, we will file an unpaid strike against you" "If you don't ask question before the sale, we are not responsible".

From surveying buyers eBay decided that regardless of what the seller states, there are some aspects that they must step in and guarantee. eBay's weakness is the same as their strength, they have millions of transactions a day to oversee and the administering of their policies needs to be improved by either human intervention or MUCH better software programs.

I would normally say human intervention, but communication seems to be an issue, so I can not be sure which direction is best. Probably it is a combination of both.

From what I see, it is a huge challenge and a huge responsibility.

-- Posted by stevemills on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 8:02 AM


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Steve Mills and his wife have one daughter and live on a farm outside of Bell Buckle. They previously owned two coffee/ice cream shops, currently operate an internet sales company and teach classes, but his primary job involves the paper industry worldwide. Hobbies and interests lie in gardening, photography, recorded music and of course, their pets.