Did you know that most sellers who open an eBay store experience a 25% increase in their sales within just 3 months?* Amazing, right?
For a lot of sellers, opening an eBay store is a natural progression in building their business. For that reason, this week I put together this quick guide to helping you decide whether it's time for you to open an eBay store.
5 benefits offered by an eBay store
As if a 25% increase in sales wasn't enough!
1. Cross promotional tools. These help store owners by showing buyers other similar items you are selling when they view your listings. This gives all your items in your store maximum exposure. For more information on cross promoting in an eBay store, check out this eBay tutorial.
2. When you open a store you also save money on eBay listing fees, with each product costing as little as $0.03 per month.
3. Having a store increases trust among buyers
4. Your items show up in a regular product search
5. Great marketing features like email marketing, web analytics, Markdown Manager
What are the requirements of owning an eBay store?
Thankfully, the requirements to have an eBay store are pretty straight forward. You must:
Although these requirements are simple to meet, keep in mind that a store is mainly only beneficial for serious sellers who consistently sell on a part-time or full-time basis (or are at least working towards doing so). Casual sellers who sell in lower volumes may not get the full benefits from using an eBay store.
Store fees and subscriptions:
eBay stores have three different tiers which you can choose from:
Basic Store: Perfect for sellers who are just getting started. A Basic store will help you start out slow and work your way up as you learn new selling skills.
Monthly Fee: US$15.95
Premium Store: For small to medium-sized businesses who will benefit from all the added extras like 24/7 dedicated customer support and free traffic reports
Monthly Fee: US$ 49.95
Anchor Store: A complete solution for the seasoned and ambitious seller! Anchor subscribers will benefit from a free Selling Manager Pro account, up to 10,000 e-newsletters to send out to customers every month and making frequent appearances in the "Shop eBay Stores" area of matching search results.
Monthly Fee: US$299.95
For a full list of everything you get when you subscribe to any tier of eBay stores, check out this guide.
What is 'store inventory format'?
As an eBay Store owner, you can take advantage of the Store inventory format. This is great for sellers who sell large numbers of multiple items. By using this format you can list your items at a set price, so buyers can purchase items immediately (no bidding is required; it's just like a regular store). Inventory format listings have a longer duration and lower insertion fees compared to the auction-style and fixed price formats.
All sold items also incur a final value fee. These are a little higher than final value fees for regular listings. Final value fees differ depending on how much the item sold for but here is a quick example to show you the difference in pricing:
If I sold a pair of jeans in a regular auction for US$29, I would pay 8.75% on the first US$25, then 3.5% on anything above US$25 (up to US$1000).
So all up, I would pay US$2.32 in fees using a regular listing.
If I was to sell that same pair of jeans in an eBay store, I would pay 12% on the initial $US25then 8% on the remaining value up to US$100.
So therefore to sell that same pair of jeans in an eBay store, I would pay US$3.32. Keep in mind however that your listing fees will be reduced when you list items in your store using the store inventory format.
To run these equations on your own items and check out the difference in fees, visit http://pages.ebay.com/help/sell/storefees.html
How to set up an eBay store
Click here and log in to your eBay account
Choose a subscription level. Click 'Continue'
Name your store. Try to keep it as relevant as possible to the products you are selling. Click 'Continue'
Select the free add ons you are eligible for. Click 'Continue'
Read and accept the User Agreement. Click 'Subscribe'.
Building your Brand: Customize your store
Once you are inside your store, you can go crazy with different design templates to create an attractive and easy to navigate store front. You can add a logo, minimize the eBay logo to give yours greater visibility, write a slogan or store description, include promotion boxes, and choose attractive colors to complement your branding. Some of these options for customizing your store are only available to Anchor subscribers.
Phew! Hopefully that gives you some direction as to whether an eBay store is right for you. Either way, there is still plenty more to learn about opening and managing an eBay store. If this post has got you curious, I recommend checking out some eBay stores for yourself and seeing how other sellers are doing it. Also take a look at some of eBay's great information on running a store, starting here: http://pages.ebay.com/storefronts/start.html
Do you have an eBay store? What have your experiences been in terms of growth compared to your regular eBay listings? I am really keen to hear if you too, had a 25% increase in sales!
*Schepp and Kaiser, 2004, eBay PowerSeller Secrets