Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sellers speak out , site owners are you listening?

Auctionbytes ran an online poll among sellers, asking them to rate 15 popular eCommerce marketplaces,(, , , ,, , , , , ,, ,  ), on five important issues to any seller, ( Profitability, Customer Service, Communication, Ease Of Use, and Recommendation as a selling venue.) Well the results are in and they may surprise you.

I will not reveal who came in number one, nor who is at the bottom, you will have to go to to see that, but I will tell you that for general merchandise marketplaces, Bonanzle came out the winner. For specialized antiques marketplaces, RubyLane is the cream of the crop.
Esty deserves a special round of applause here, for being a niche site of artisan, handcrafted items, they came in .... spoiler alert.... an overall fifth place as a selling venue.
Auctionbytes also has posted the results of each site individually with some of the comments, both positive and negative.
Please go and check out their results, especially if you are looking for a new place to sell on.

And if you are a site owner, you really need to see this....for YOUR customers have spoken.

Full Article on Auctionbytes :

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Are You Talkin' to me? You Talkin' to ME?

The war of  words, fussin', feuding, B##$hing, moaning, grumbling, complaining, slamming, dogging, .......need I go on?

It is not the way to win friends, influence people, or make sales. 

I know, some of you say oh yes it is! My list of fans, followers go up.  I finally get the person to listen to what I have to say. etc.  Really? 
First of all yes, your friends list may go up with the drama lovers that have nothing else better to do than grab a bowl of popcorn  and watch the soap opera unfold.  But the ones that carry value you will lose.
Second, ARE the people you screaming at REALLY listening? Or are they just responding to your rant?

I have seen forum rants, arguements on facebook, and Twitter Wars. I have seen Sellers slamming a site because they don't like a change or the support team can't fix a glitch in 5.2 seconds.  I have seen Musicians and Celebrities scream and cuss out others.  I have witnessed customers slam sellers for not IMMEDIATELY responding to an email.  It ALL amounts to bad business, no matter what business you are in.
If you have a problem with someone, contact them directly,  if you have an issue with a site, contact support. And be a little patient in waiting for a response or a fix of an glitch. 
Remember, once your words are 'out there' for the world to see, they Can grow legs and run.....

MORE at : Are your words running around the internet?? ...And what ARE they telling people about you?

NOTE:  IF a large company like ATT, Verison, etc fail in the real world customer support - sometimes a little twitter rant helps :) - but please - stick the the facts and dont @#$@@!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Are your words running across the internet?

Well it is 2010 and I am hoping everyone is off to a running start this year.  2009 was a tough one, but an exciting one, with many new paths for the Renagade.

My website, Renagades Music took on a life of it's own, moving from just a page to find out where I am at, to a site that is devoted to helping Independent Musicians get heard.  Starting with two great artists, Monk and Damien Cripps, Renagade's Music now has around 12 great musicians and bands from all over the world.

This all came about through these wonderful people trusting in me and my reputation.  Which brings me to my first rant of the year.

What kind of image and brand are you building for yourself?  And HOW are you building it?
I follow several key words in Google Alerts, everything from the sites I sell on to the artists I support on Renagade's Music.  This can keep me on top of who is saying what about what and whom online.  This does give you the good, the bad and sometimes the down right ugly.
One thing way too many people forget is other people DO see and read what you post on the web.  And people will judge you by your words.  Far too often, people think if they post a blog, leave a comment, send a tweet, that only their buddies are going to see it. And they think that that is where the words will stay....right where they put them.  WRONG!
For example:
1.XXXX  SUCKS!! Here's a copy & paste of what a XXXX  user thinks.
Posted by XXXX, Location omitted by Renagade. 1,754 total posts
Posted about 3 hours ago
I came down here so I can SCREAM!!!!!!!!!!. I try to be careful what I post in a public forum but I’m really losing patience with this site issue. I don’t care what the stats say, i.e., less than 1% having problems. No one knows that!! We don’t have a clue how many buyers and sellers are being affected. Some don’t bother to report, others are giving up, and many don’t know yet because this is a holiday weekend. (XXX Added by Renagade) - (Via Yahoo answers )

2. Note to sellers: If you want me to even look at what you're selling, do NOT put "as seen on Oprah" anywhere in the description. (via @Brenner57 - twitter)

3. If you check the bonanzle education series category in my booth, you will find some recordings and such, Also check for how to videos etc. Phaedra (via attheboutique - Bonanzle Forums)

4.  Still here? There are important people out there posting important stuff. Instead of being here, you could be educating yourself on the hot topics of the day: How well endowed is Tiger? Will Octomom have more kids? What did Jon and Kate have for breakfast? And the most burning question of all: Will Woofer get his own reality show? (Via 2woofers- Words of Wit and Wisdom )

5. A stunning vintage Pell signed Amber rhinestone Broach. 2" diameter (via Gypsy Byways - description of item)

6. I have a bunch of items I deleted a while ago at XXX and still showing in Google Products under XXX and I moved them elsewhere. Long story short am double listed and am annoyed since XXX owners won't disable my feeds or delete my storefront after numerous attempts to contact them. ( via  forum - XXX added and posters name removed by me)

This is just what I could do quickly and on the fly. What does that tell you not only about how easily and quickly the words can be redone, but also about the people who posted them?  And about the subject they are posting about?  Now remember - I have XXX out some names and omited some, but fill those blanks in with YOURS and the site you sell on.  Is this what you want your image to be tied to?  Is this what you are building your reputation on?  And do you SEE how easy it is to spread it all over the web even if you personally are not spreading it?

Some people feel that even bad publicity is good publicity.  I disagree. Sure, it may bring you more traffic for a while, but repeated negative posts can and will take its toll, no matter HOW good you are or a site is.
Now the question is....How are YOU building your reputation? How is YOUR Brand?  What kind of crumbs are YOU leaving?  I hope they don't leave a bad tatse in anyones mouth.


PS MY personal 'take' on the above posts:
1.  This poster had no clue that the words would 'travel' off the site.  And the post leaves me wondering....why are they selling on a site they are obviously frustrated with?
2. Brenner is not an Oprah fan and does not like the marketing techniques of some.
3. Phaedra is someone who knows so much about Bonanzle, she has developed educational tools for Bonanzle users.
4. Woofers has a good sense of humor and a unique ability to even poke fun at himself.
5. Gypsy Byways has at least one Vintage jewelry item, possibly more.  She know enough about vintage to look for marks and where to find them ( and she needs to fix the word broach to brooch )
6.  This poster moved off a site that they were not happy with.  And are still not happy with.  Site seems to be lacking support for sellers.

PS - Bonanzle is now know as Bonanza  - 

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Bonanzle Looks back to charge ahead

Bill Harding of Bonanzle has just posted a look back and look forward blog on the progress of this marketplace that has turned many heads since coming onto the eccomerce scene. 2009 showed many Bonanzle is a viable marketplace that is not only easy for sellers to list their items, but easy for buyers to come in, find what they want and purchase without hassles.
In the past year, bonanzle has had many growth spurts, but with the skill of a tech team that is some of the best in the business, the growth has been a joy to experence. So far they have:

  • Overhauled booth page

  • Added item traits for better searching

  • Fully automatic integration with Google Product Search

  • Added API

  • Added affiliate program

  • Bounty of improvements to the shipping calculator

  • Added booth coupons, coupon list

  • Added widgets

  • Added category showcases

  • Added booth panels

  • Added automatic payment via credit card (for seller fees)

  • Added ability to tweet and post items to FB

  • Added Craigslist exporter

  • Added international shipping

  • Numerous server upgrades and stability improvements such that the site has only had about 5 minutes of downtime over the last quarter

  • Completely revised checkout process made more intuitive through user feedback

Bill and his team have made this seem so simple to do as well.

What is up for 2010? Well, alot of things! Take a look at Bills blog post A Look Back at 2009, Forward at 2010 to find out what is up for 2010, and discover why Bonanzle is going to be the place to shop in the years ahead.

Later............. Renagade

PS .... Bill, do you EVER sleep?