TheBrewsNews Top 10 List for eBay Sellers who are Preparing Now for Holiday Sales

Posted on August 30, 2008. Filed under: Tips - for the eBay Seller | Tags: , , , |


Labor Day is traditionally the time of year when eBay sellers start really getting ready for the upcoming holiday season.  There are many things that eBay sellers can do now, while sales are slower, to get prepared for the busy holidays to take advantage of the “most wonderful time of the year”.  Here is my Top 10 list:

1. Order free priority mail boxes and other postal supplies now.  After September, there is sometimes a significant delay in getting postal supplies and you don’t want to be spending your time running from post office to post office begging for a few boxes from each and/or having to spend money to purchase boxes from a supplier that you could otherwise get for free from the post office.

2. Get rid of “problem” inventory now, when you have more time to handle customer service issues.  If you have a particular product line and/or specific SKU that is known for having issues such as easily damaged in transit or fails to work often then now is the time to liquidate that product.  You don’t want to be spending valuable holiday selling time dealing with customer service issues instead of making money and you don’t want to have disappointed holiday shoppers who may be counting on receiving the item intact and in good working condition quickly.  Holiday shoppers don’t have time to deal with returns and damage and they become much more frustrated during the holiday season than they might otherwise.

3. Print box inserts now in bulk.  If you include an insert in your packages which mentions “5 star service” and/or you include an insert to advertise your other venues like your own website, now is the time to prepare the copies you think you’ll need during the holidays.  It may be significantly cheaper and less time-consuming to print one insert and then have it photocopied at a local Kinko’s. 

4. Get ready now for international sales if you offer your items to international customers.  International buyers will begin purchasing in September and October for the holidays because of the longer transit time.  Make sure you have the proper shipping supplies for international packages and make sure you have plenty of inventory on hand that your international customers typically purchase.

5. Keep stocked up on paper, printer toner, self-adhesive labels (if you use them), bubble wrap, and any other supplies you typically use.  Make sure to inventory supplies once or twice weekly to avoid coming to a standstill because you run out of any one particular item.

6. Spruce up your auction listings.  This is the time of year to make sure your items are in compliance with eBay’s policies.  Having your items removed during the busy holiday season and spending time to revise auctions at that time is definitely not how you want to spend your time during November. 

7. Prepare a calendar to keep yourself on track.  Mark important deadlines, such as manufacturers’ deadlines of when to order product for delivery in time for the holidays and special promotional pricing or free shipping offers to allow you to take advantage of vendors’ specials.  Use your calendar to avoid overcommitting to family and to your customers. 

8. Keep rested and healthy to avoid getting sick.  By not overcommitting yourself (tip #7) and by eating well, you will be better able to handle the stress and busyness of the online shopping season.  Getting run-down and sick during the holidays is not an option for any eBay seller who wants to experience the most success during the last quarter.

9. Do your own holiday shopping now.  This is the time of year to get great bargains on eBay and elsewhere.  Labor Day specials mean great deals on some things at brick and mortar stores as well.  Obviously there are some things that will need to be purchased as the holiday gets nearer but many gifts can be purchased now.  And, for the items you need to purchase closer to Christmas, consider purchasing online to save time running around to the stores.

10. Validate your inventory counts now and establish re-order points so that you don’t run out of the most popular selling items.  At the end of November, consider putting on auction any particular SKU that hasn’t sold as well as you had hoped.  Alternatively, use the eBay markdown manager which is a great tool to reduce pricing instantly, but for a short period of time, and is a perfect way to move a volume of product quickly.

At our company, we are already unboxing the holiday music to play in the office.  Listening to Andy Williams sing, telling us that it is the most wonderful time of the year, helps motivate us and get us prepared for the great sales to come.

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2 Responses to “TheBrewsNews Top 10 List for eBay Sellers who are Preparing Now for Holiday Sales”

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Thanks Brews! Great reminders no matter where you sell!! That Kinko’s idea is brilliant and I’m going to look into that tomorrow- the time saved will be so worth the cost!

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