05/08/2017 at 2:13 pm #17603
I know there are differences and opinions so wanted to know how you list and what are your thoughts: For your listings:
1) Do you list as GTC, 30 days or sellsimilar?
2) Do you include Best Offer? if yes, on all listings? if not, whats your logic?
3) if not using GTC, how you relist? do you do any updates?
4) Do you offer free shipping?
- This topic was modified 4 years, 5 months ago by ssmantua.
05/08/2017 at 3:28 pm #17614soniaParticipant
- Location: Northeast US
GTC, with Best Offer only on the items I have priced high and am not sure what the right price should be.
Can’t be bothered re-listing/sell similar every month. That time is better spent listing, IMHO. This reflects what I have learned from J&R here on SL, and also just based on my own experience.
# of items in store: 250
05/08/2017 at 3:41 pm #17615
I’m a 30 day’er, for multiple reasons, but primarily it avoids dead stock and assures building of equity in the business. The short of it, is that I have some soft rules that I follow. A 50% turnover, moderate STR and min 5x ROI. Makes for more quality sourcing of items. That being said, the time spent to list an item that is $100 dollars is the same that is $10, so I prefer higher dollar or bundled items with greater value. When things are running smoothly, listing growth should be consistent with sales growth.
I’m not a believer of list and forget unless you have the STR and turn-over to justify it. The math just is not there. Having too much inventory will just sink you.
Equally, I use BO for various situations. But generally I use it when I don’t have a firm idea as to the items value. To avoid head games, I set the a minimum of what I would consider a BO. This is also what I’m willing to take. It’s avoids all the garbage low offers by immediately rejecting them and since I’ve set a minimum price, it also assures my ROI. Unless I have multiple offers, I will always accept a BO without a counter offer, near or close to the 48 hr mark.
Relating to the first question above… Taking a clue from eBay that will relist your item automatically for 3x is a clear signal that if it hasn’t sold or has low views it’s time to revisit the listing. Also I believe it has been documented that ebay depreciates your items within search that are 18 months or older. Personally, I never let an item relist more than 90 days without adjusting it and listing it as a new item (sell similar?). Likewise, I would never consider keeping something for 2 years. Even to break-even. The charitable deduction makes it a better investment rather than selling it.
05/08/2017 at 4:37 pm #17618JayKeymaster
- Location: Virginia
If your inventory costs are high, then I can understand why you are nervous about holding onto items. It’s like the Amazon sellers who pay thousands for inventory and are always sweating about unloading it before the bottom falls out.
Our situation is different. Inventory costs are minimal. Many items cost $1 or less. We can purchase entire car loads of stuff for $100. So we don’t have any pressure to sell quickly. It’s great to sell quickly, but it’s not always possible if it’s a weird, uncommon item no matter how low you’re willing to price it.
Also you can only take the charitable deduction for the price you paid for the item. So if you only paid $1, that’s all you can deduct. I see lots of wacky posts online about people buying a $10 bag of clothes from Goodwill and then try to re-donate at the retail price of the items. Good luck explaining that to the IRS!
Anyway, all that matter is if we are each making the money we need each month to live. Our method has worked for us for eight years and continues to work. Other sellers here have really successful businesses commodity selling items quickly.
05/09/2017 at 11:03 am #17663
so would you say List and Forget GTC approach is good for unique vintage items but for normal high supply commodity items, perhaps more proactive approach with aggressive pricing would be better?
perhaps we need more than one strategy for general store? I know it could be challenging with large inventory store.
calling other sellers to chime in as well 😉
05/09/2017 at 1:08 pm #17669
Besides the technical issues discussed earlier, being proactive with your listing and avoiding GTC will allow you to employ ecommerce selling strategies to your advantage. Like (specifically related to ebay),
Not listing or having a listing end on a Friday. This is well documented for eBay as well
as ecommerce that Friday’s are the least favored selling days.
Also time of day is a factor. Avoid having listings that start after 10p or 11p EST.
Likewise, taking into consideration as well, that eBay’s Best Match search (default) favors items ending shortly. Potential buyers that are watching your item will receive a reminder 4-6 hours before the item ends.
Also if you practice SEO, listing as new or similar will knock all of the watchers off your listing and your views can start anew.
The nerd that I am, the above bears it out in my own situation. Consistently, mid to high 60% of all my sales on eBay that have been listed for at least week occur during the same 3 days of the week – Tue-Thurs.
05/09/2017 at 3:36 pm #17677
We come down on the side of eCommerce411 on the 30-Day vs GTC debate. We do 30-Day listing, with Best Offer, with a “floor” (what we call the auto reject below $x) to avoid lowball offers. When we did free shipping on clothing items, we also did a “ceiling” (what we call the auto-accept above $x). We are actually thinking of setting that back up on clothing items that would ship First Class or Padded Flat Rate. Having the pricing on “auto-pilot” speeds up sales and gets the buyers increasing pricing and then auto-accepting while they are on the item, speeds up the transaction, and speeds up the payment. They don’t have to wait for us to accept an offer and then go back in a second time to pay.
Yes, there is some time invested by relisting, no question, but we feel that it is time well spent to get an item sold. For us, refreshing a listing is 2 minutes at the most per listing, and we feel it is worth it to increase sales. We like having a larger sized inventory, but not at the expense of lower sell thru rate (STR). We do analyze how much to “freshen up” the listing. The lower the views on the item, the more we will work to rearrange photos, change title, look at pricing, look at item specifics, etc. We would rather freshen these items and get them sold, than have bad listings that stay out there for a long time and not sell. We know that eBay considers your listing “stale” after 60 days, so we try to keep ours fresh at all times. I can tell you that I see this a lot when relisting, that the first month an item is on it has more views than the second month, and if I don’t freshen it up, it has very low views the third time around.
We went from 30-Day to GTC a few years ago, and we saw our STR plunge for a few months, we manually ended our items and went back to 30-Day, and our STR came back up.
Sure, you can GTC if you have a process to analyze old listings, but to me, that is what the 30-Day does for us regularly. When we want to implement a change (like when I went from Free Shipping to Flat Rate shipping), within 30 days, little by little as things fell off, I implemented the change. This also helped us clear out the “active content” that we had in our listings, and when I made some changes to the Item Description for Mobile, I just had to go through the Unsold for 30 days, and the change was implemented.
eCommerce411: Are you saying to avoid listing on Wednesdays, as those would end on Fridays if using 30-Day listing? Also, on the Days of the week, historically, our best three days for sales are Thurs, Sat, & Sun, and our worst are Tues & Wed. For some reason in 2017, our best are like yours – Tues-Thurs.
05/09/2017 at 4:04 pm #17678
Yes. If I’m going to run a batch of relist, I generally find that I will not process those if they will end on a Friday. Just out of a habit and scheduling. New items, it’s not so much of an issue since I’m betting on my pricing to give me a STR of 50%. And those generally come within the first couple weeks of listing them. Friday is the only day I don’t list on eBay.
05/09/2017 at 4:24 pm #17679
Thanks. That is good to consider. We usually hit the relisting when we can and make sure it doesn’t stack up on us. When you relist, do you freshen the listings one by one? Or Mass Relist? We stopped the Mass Relist because we would see our items have 0-5 views during the next month. Not sure if that was due to lack of changing things or something Cassini did. Like Cassini said “you really didn’t work hard at these items, so I’m not going to show them to anyone! 🙂
50% STR! That is great! Are these more commodity type items that you sell?
We average 20%-25% STR, with clothing being the higher STR to bring up the lower collectible STR.
05/09/2017 at 4:51 pm #17681
To be honest, I have not listed directly through eBay is probably 5-6 years. My primary selling channel is through dedicated online stores and my eCommerce software that I run allows me to list on multi-channels such as eBay without having to duplicate the listing. I do it once and that’s it. I can do a bulk relist in a click of a button or as a new listing in clicks of a button. Focusing and understanding SEO has really helped so I have been doing almost all relist as new listings to weed out the watchers.
Before relisting old items, I look at # of views and the date of the initial listing date. In that order. Anything with 10 or under views I flag to revisit. Anything older than 90 day I will change. Even it’s changing the order of the photo.
05/09/2017 at 5:35 pm #17683
That is awesome, and something we have been looking into…software that will relist as new to eBay without lots of time to “freshen” the listings. We are just about at the place where the time saved to manually relist the items one at a time would be worth the monthly fee for listing software. Plus the ability to multichannel, so less time listing, more time selling.
What software are you using and what is your monthly cost? What would you say are the biggest gains / losses from the software you are using?
05/09/2017 at 7:09 pm #17685
When I spoke of 50% STR, that was my goal. My actual is much like yours. When I source, those are the items that I like to focus on.
In a nutshell, the software that I run on my ecommerce stores is WooCommerce which runs on the WordPress framework. The plugin that allows me to cross list onto eBay and Amazon (haven’t used) is $149/year per site. What I like about this piece of software is that it allows me to manage all 11 of my ebay accounts from one dashboard. And that it synchronizes automatically. When an items sell on the website, it ends the listing on ebay and visa-versa.
Another plugin I use, onetime cost of $80, imports product information from Excel. And Excel is where I run all of my inventory from.
Word of caution though. Running an ecommerce store is not for the passive seller. There are different challenges unlike selling on eBay. But in one word… Full Control. Oops! that’s two words. That is why I prefer to sell directly than through eBay.
05/10/2017 at 7:32 am #17693MDC Galleries & Fine ArtParticipant
- Location: Atlanta
Check into WonderLister. We have used it for years. It is a total listing, inventory, financial reports, taxes, type program [with some limitations]. There has been several long discussions here about WonderLister as well as SixBit. They have plans that start at $5 per month and allows up to 1,000 listings. Not bad at all. Then goes up from there. My subscription is $25 per month on WonderLister, allows up to 5,000 listings, I also have the Consignment module because we have 4 consignersa we list for, and we are allowed to create custom fields to hold any type of data we want to enter. We have where we bought, what we paid, where listed [Etsy, Ebay, Bonanza, etc.].
This program just takes almost anything you want to do with an online store and puts it all into one program. It has a free trial period. Sign up, and it will down load all of your current listings from your Ebay store. [same as what TurboLister used to do]. It is fast and a pretty slick solution to an all in one program. Of course one program can’t do everything but it’s pretty good. Look over the list of what it can do on their website.
It has a full editor, scheduler, many financial reports, imports and exports. It does everything that Easy Auction Tracker does combined with what Ebay’s Lister does.
With regards to the ending listing and relisting. I just did a end listing and do a relisting on 17 listings and it took 32 seconds. You can go to “grid view” then sort by end date, high light those and “bulk end listing”. Then WL puts those in a special view for you and here you can then edit those listings one at a time or do a “Bulk Edit” by adding a line to the description or anything in any area you want. Change prices up a dollar or down a dollar in bulk, basically anything you want, then I hit “Bulk Relist” and back up they went. You also have the option right at the re-list mark to have WL spread the re-listings out at intervals, separated by minutes or hours.
Go to WonderListers web site and look at everything it can do, as well as use the SL search boxes here at SL and search for WonderLister and read over previous discussions about it. We used to use Turbo Lister and Easy Auction Tracker but left that years ago when we wanted something faster, and all in one. We too haven’t used Ebay Listing tool in a very long time.
In WonderLister as we buy new inventory, we log it in, assign a SKU number and fill in the blanks in the Simple Editor. From there it is pretty automatic. We can pull reports of sold items, but also reports for all of our UNSOLD INVENTORY Not even listed on Ebay yet. Everything in our death piles are accounted for. We also have a folder in it for donated items and we can get a report of what we paid for items we pulled off ebay or never listed and have donated. It is a relational database and can basically search, filter and order the data you have filled in into almost any type of view or report you can think of.
WonderLister will also post a Tweet of any item you list on Ebay for you automaticaly. Click on the tweet box of say 10 or 12 items at a time and out it goes automatically.
And BTW, WonderLister is for PC’s only. It runs on MS SQL Database Manager which is part of the install and does not work on an Apple product.
But by all means if on a PC, go to
Mike at MDC Galleries in Atlanta.
05/10/2017 at 9:25 am #17699
Thanks a lot Mike. This sounds like something worth looking into, and the cost is not prohibitive.
One last question. When you end and relist your times through WonderLister, do you know if eBay sees those as “new” listings? Or does eBay see those as relisted items? I would guess that they would be seen as new, since they are coming from a third party site.
Thanks again, I’m going to look into WonderLister!
05/10/2017 at 9:55 am #17704MDC Galleries & Fine ArtParticipant
- Location: Atlanta
Absolutely brand new. It kills the listing and when it re-lists a brand new item ID number is assigned and your store listing gets the “Newly Listed” flag – sign on it. Many people are using filters to search for newly listed items. Also Ebay gives some “juice” in searchs and placement for newly created listings and that’s why we do it.
We use the GTC setting just in case we decide not to end this month, or if we are away or tied up then the listing will automatically roll over and stay in the store. If you only use the 30 day and forget about it sometimes items drop off.
In WonderLister if an item does end either by you manually killing it or if it ends after the 30 day cycle [if that’s what you use], then all of ithose ended listings automatically go into an “Unsold” folder. There you can review and relist them and do so in “bulk”. Highlight them all at once, click relist, click if you want any time / space between the listings and hit enter. Then go about your business and WL handles everything for you in the background, along with a new ID number.
WonderLister is also just about ready for a new version going from 1.00??? to the newest 2.0?? ver. I have been in their BETA Testing program for many months now and have been able to suggest improvements that fit right into how we here at SL do our listings for unique and vintage items. Those they have incorporated and it is wonderful. This program when released as ver 2.??? is going to be very strong as one of the best out there for doing what we do.
Jay wants to go to a numbered SKU system. Well that is going to leave him with having to create a Spread sheet for tracking. Not with WonderLister, new inventory can be handled in it as it comes in. If Jay buys 150 items on a weekend, just create a rough title, enter a SKU number, where bought, date bought and cost paid and that will start the beginnings of an inventory system. Then you can create folders as to where you want those “new” entries to be placed and show up in, such as New Raw Inventory, or Unlisted Inventory, etc. I named my folder Warehouse Inventory. Everything we have bought but not photographed or listed is contained there. When we did our taxes this year, all we did was print out a report of all of our unlisted items and then a second report of all our listed items, added the two together and there was our total Cost of Goods we owned.
Also WL has a small field for location Bin. When we put inventory away [last thing we do after listing], I take my laptop into the storage area, type in the first 4 digits of the longer sku number, up pops the item and I enter the bin I am placing it in and click save or enter. Now everything that is stored in our garage has a location to it. Well guess what, If I want a hard copy to put in a binder for some reason, I now sort my inventory by BIN NUMBER and just print out or export out a report and print out. The report will have all of the storage bins in numerical order and all items in that bin are shown.
I am going to be working with the WL tech team on being able to convert the SKU Numbers into Bar Codes and printing out item labels with SKU numbers on them in the coming future. But that is down the road.
There is just so much stuff you can do with when your items are logged into and one is using a relational database. It is just like any system that insurance companies, hospital, etc., etc. use. Once you have data in defined “fields” you can filter and sort tons of different ways and then generate reports from the final way that data gets sorted. The beauty of a database system over a spread sheet system.
I will leave it there for now. Just so much to cover.. also search SL for past discussions.
mike at MDC Galleries in Atlanta
05/10/2017 at 10:35 am #17710
Mike, this is HUGE for us. Solves our issues for inventory management and relisting in one package, and if the pricing is that low, it is totally worth it. The time saved in relisting (and knowing that the relisted items are shown as new listings to eBay to get that boost) will pay for the monthly fee.
Thanks a ton. This is a big help!
05/09/2017 at 8:57 pm #17688
I agree, and thanks for the info. That is some we have thought of as well…more control…but much more work as well.
05/09/2017 at 9:16 pm #17689
thanks for your posts!
T-Satt, like your idea about auto accept with ceiling. do you think it may work with non-free-shipping items. are you concerned with buyer submitting an offer with asking for free shipping in message field of the offer? does ebay offer system disregard auto offer with message in offer field?
05/09/2017 at 10:12 pm #17691
It is very infrequent that we get an offer asking for Free Shipping. If it happens, it would accept, but the payment amount would still include the shipping. Ebay does not auto reject based on terms, but you could contact the buyer and explain to them that the Free Shipping in terms was not seen. eBay would back you on this.
05/10/2017 at 9:43 am #17703almastyParticipant
I used to do 30 days, but recently changed it back to gtc. I am too busy to constantly end and relist listings, even with the bulk edit option. I find that the bulk editor glitches a lot these days, so I try not to use it if I don’t have to. That being said, when I do have time, I end and sell similar items when they are within a day of their ending time.
Maybe 5% of my listings have BO. I have a niche store and know the price limits for most items overall that people are willing to spend, so I price initially based on research/past knowledge of sales and gut. The ones with BO are higher priced items that I would be happy to take less for because I’d rather have money than stock just sitting there.
Most of my items have “free shipping” built into the price, but I have started to add shipping to a few hundred new listings recently and not seen a decline in sales. It’s overall a wash, though. Shipping is built in no matter what.
7200 item anchor store.
05/10/2017 at 11:58 am #17721Retro Treasures WVParticipant
I am strictly GTC. Occasionally I will review older inventory and bulk cancel then individually review and relist each item with sell similar. I’ll change the price, fix any errors, add and/or rearrange keywords, etc.
Occasionally old listings need a refresh. In the end a lot of my items are one of a kind. In shoes there may be a few other colors or size like mine, but very rarely are the multiples listed the same color AND size as my item. In this case no amount of tweaking or monthly relisting is going to make that one special destined buyer come along any sooner.
05/10/2017 at 12:06 pm #17722
thanks for good input, very helpful.
05/15/2017 at 11:11 am #18018Anonymous
BULK SELL SIMILAR – Then DELETE your unsolds. Super easy, just bulk sell similar, then bulk delete those unsolds to keep up with your items.
Why relist when ebay itself recommends SELL similar? Your not doing yourself a favor doing GTC. I only do GTC on multi-copy items.
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