Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
Imagine walking into a store with more than 15 million items for sale, ranging from consumer electronics to designer shoes to sporting goods and more. You mark which items you would like, then proceed to one checkout stand, where you easily pay for everything with your credit card or PayPal account. Then the store manager lets you know that all your products are covered with 100 percent buyer protection. Well, now your dream store can become a reality: eBay recently launched its newest shopping site, eBay Express, and users are raving about how convenient and easy to use it is.
PowerSeller Donna Bond (http://stores.ebay.com/Donnas-Fashion-Diva-Boutique) was quickly won over as a buyer on the new site. "I love the way eBay Express is so organized in the category searches," she says. "This makes for such ease in finding exactly what I'm looking for." She also realizes there's another advantage: A site that makes shopping fast and easy for buyers will help bring "quick sales for us sellers."
eBay Express is ideal for today's busy buyers who are looking for convenience, ease of use and security in their online shopping experiences. eBay Express allows them to pick from millions of Fixed-Price items that are all covered in full by purchase protection. After shopping from a variety of experienced eBay merchants, buyers can pay for all the items in their shopping carts at once with a credit card or through PayPal. Plus, eBay Express offers an additional level of security for buyers by only allowing sellers with an excellent feedback rating on the site. A huge bonus for eBay sellers is that eBay Express virtually eliminates the problem of Unpaid Items.
PowerSeller Jon Stein (www.jakesdoghouse.com) believes eBay Express holds plenty of potential for sellers to make strides by giving them yet another chance to provide "awesome customer service and fast shipping." He sees eBay Express as "a perfect channel for us to sell our products" and is looking forward to the site bringing new buyers to Jake's Dog House.
Get on the express
As a seller on eBay, your qualified listings will automatically show up on eBay Express if your preferences are set to allow it--there's no additional work required on your part. However, there are certain requirements you must meet as a seller for your listings to be allowed on the eBay Express site.
You must be registered as a seller in the United States or Canada. Currently, eBay Express will only support listings on www.eBay.com or in eBay Stores, and your inventory also needs to be located in the United States.
No matter what you're selling, buyers are attracted to two things: security and confidence. Because of this, eBay requires you to have a public feedback score of at least 100 with 98 percent of it positive.
You must have either a Premier or Business PayPal account. Check to make sure your settings include shipping to an unconfirmed address. To do this, go to www.paypal.com and sign in. Click on the "Profile" tab at the top of the page, then click the "Payment Receiving Preferences" link under Selling Preferences. To have your listings submitted to eBay Express, you need to check either "No" or "Ask me" when you choose whether to "Block payments from U.S. users who do not provide a Confirmed Address." Buyers who shop on the eBay Express site want the ease of having items sent to their home, their work or a gift recipient's address.
Make a listing, check it twice
For your listings to be considered for eBay Express, they must:
Be in a fixed-price or eBay Store Inventory format so all items can be purchased immediately.
Have the "item condition" field filled out if you're using Item Specifics in your listing. Possible conditions include New, New Without Tags, Used and so on. You can easily update your listings to be in line with the requirements of eBay Express by using the editing tool in My eBay to add the required Item Conditions. Listings can be edited in bulk within My eBay. For Stores sellers, eBay has updated the bulk edit functionality so that you can edit up to 25 listings at one time. For detailed instructions, go to http://pages.express.eBay.com/service/about/listing.html.
Include a picture or gallery image.
State shipping costs using a flat or calculated rate, or offer free shipping.
Use eBay checkout or a third-party checkout system. (Check with your listing management company--for example, www.channeladvisor.com, www.mpire.com and others--to make sure it is compliant with the new checkout integration API.)
Although many categories on eBay are represented on eBay Express, certain categories are not included. These categories may not have the "Item Conditions" field or are not covered by PayPal's Buyer Protection. You can read the list of these eBay-only categories at http://pages.ebay.com/sell/itemcondition/list. There are some exceptions to these category exclusions, which you can find at http://pages.ebay.com/sell/itemcondition/exceptions.
For buyers and sellers alike, eBay Express is an exciting new marketplace offering endless shopping and selling opportunities with just a click of the mouse.
"eBay Express is a great shopping destination for consumers who are looking for a simplified and streamlined shopping experience for certain types of merchandise," says Lara Bridges, director of eBay Express. "The site is a new way to shop all the great new inventory from the eBay Marketplace and offers more than 15 million items from thousands of qualified merchants. A great feature is the shopping cart functionality, which allows buyers to conveniently and quickly purchase items from multiple merchants in one easy click using a credit card or PayPal."
Stein echoes the sentiment of many eBay sellers who have been looking for additional exposure: "eBay Express could be the single biggest factor that enhances our business on eBay in 2006. Bring it on!"
eBay is interested in hearing what you think of its new e-commerce business channel (as a buyer or a seller). Send your feedback to eBayExpressFeedback@ eBay.com.
Janelle Elms, eBay University instructor and online business consultant, specializes in coaching individuals and companies how to build successful businesses on eBay and maximize their profits. Learn more about being successful on eBay at www. janelleelms.com/ebay.