I've been watching a new seller who sells everything with free shipping. She gets most of her items from the GW by the pound outlet. She has only been selling full time for about 5-6 months.
I started watching her sales and her store when a fellow blogger recommended her approach to sales. She sells some great items, great brand names and she finds good stuff. She has a great style, photos look really good (better than mine) and she stages really well. From her shipping info I think that she could use some refinement. If you ship something poorely it reflect on how you perceive the item and therefore how the buyer will perceive the item when received. Wrap a piece of crap in tissue with a bow and it is still a piece of crap, but it looks nice!!
(Opinions are like a** holes....everyone has one and this is mine. No names and no store names please.)
This seller is selling good name brand items for what I think are way too low prices. But the kicker is free shipping. I agree with a lot of her prices but the free shipping is what I am having trouble with. If a skirt sells for $8.99 with free shipping that is not leaving much of a profit margin. I know, I know, ebay wants us to all do free shipping. Build the shipping into the sales price. I just can't bring myself to do it. As a seller, I just don't like free shipping. I do offer free shipping on occasion just because the number of similar items listed all have free shipping. That's about the only time.
And the mark downs. If you list an item, a skirt for example, at $10.99 and it doesn't sell, then lower the price each week by $1 until it does sell then you end up selling very cheap. Look at the numbers for a hypothetical skirt that eventually sold for $8.99. I estimated that it was purchased at the GW outlet for $.99 lb and weighed 8 oz. shipped. Shipping for 1-8oz would be the same so I assume it fell in there somewhere.
Sale price 8.99
Paypal fee .56
Ebay fee, 9% .81
Cost of skirt .50
Poly mailer, label .15
Total cost 4.63
I don't know about you but that is a lot of work for $4.36 profit. I know its almost half of the selling price.This isn't taking into account vehicle expenses, time, storage or any other fees. Just the actual cost of this one small item.
I think my time is worth more than this. The only way to make any money doing ebay this way is very large volume. Frankly, I don't think I could do business this way. My daily goal is $100. Most days I do this amount or pretty close. Some days I go over, most days not. But I would have to sell 25 items like the example above each and every day to make it worthwhile. Yesterday I sold one item at $19.99, purchased for $1. and shipping charged. I made a profit of $16.58 after fees. Imagine if I had sold one item for $4 profit. I would be devastated. I would soon go under or burn out.
I don't mean to berate this ebay seller. I wish her all the luck.But my fear is that she will burn out fast and never know what hit her.She is working very hard with lots of sales but low dollar sales. I don't see the point of lowering listings every week when they don't sell. Customers who watch the store see what is happening and decide to wait until the price gets lowered before buying. Does lowering prices each week draw more buyers?
I want customers who buy now at the price I am asking. I set fair prices and I don't like to take less unless something has been sitting for 2 years, not 2 weeks.
Just my humble opinion. I hope the seller slows down and raises her prices and makes more money. Flame outs are never good.