The secret to improving the success of your eBay business

Here’s a question for you: Do you listen to what your eBay customers are saying about you and your products?

“How can I listen to them?” you are probably thinking, “I don’t talk to them and they don’t talk to me, everything is done online, so how can I listen?”

Well actually, your buyers do talk to you and you should be listening because what your buyers are telling you about your products and service is very valuable to you and can be used to your advantage.

You have in fact probably got buyers talking to you right now, even as you read this.

How? Through the feedback comments that your buyers leave for you after every completed transaction on eBay. What’s more, you can access this information at any time and then use it to improve your eBay sales and your customer service in the future.

Ok, so feedback comments aren’t really that big a secret are they, after all, you already know about the feedback system and how it works, but here’s another question for you: How often do you actually look at your own feedback comments page? Or should I ask, have you ever looked at your own feedback comments page?

By this I mean when was the last time you really and truly had a good long look at the comments you’ve received? Not just had a quick peek, not just a glance to check that they all have the little green positive cross next to them and then you’ve closed the page.

I’m talking about a proper look to see exactly what people are telling you. Because that’s what people do – they tell you things within the feedback they leave and some of those things will help you run a better eBay business and improve your sales. 

Not everyone leaves useful comments as you know. There’s always one who simply writes: ‘Received Item’ as their feedback but often you can find some really good little gems within your comments. 

The sort of comments you are looking for are unique, one-off comments that are not automated. What you want are the comments that are actual, honest observations from individuals who have taken the time to leave personal feedback. Here are some examples of the types of remarks I’m talking about:

“Fantastic. Just as good as the more expensive versions. Thanks.”

“Excellent product. Have been looking for one for ages.”

“Easy to use, just as described. Perfect for new mums!”

“Thank you for fast delivery. We can’t get these over here!” 

These buyers are ‘talking’ to you through their feedback and giving you little snippets that can help you.

You can add these feedback comments like these in to your listing descriptions for other potential purchasers to read – this will give extra confidence to buyers as they can see that you have a great product on offer which is backed up by genuinely honest feedback from previous purchasers. Your sales will increase with buyer confidence.

If you get a feedback comment that tells you that your product is hard to find in a particular area (overseas for example), then you know that you’ve potentially got a best-seller on your hands because others in that area may also be finding it hard to source too. So why not list it on the eBay site that covers that particular area.

This actually happened to me a couple of years ago. I’d found a great product that I had researched and knew would sell well in the UK. I listed 100 of this particular item on eBay UK but set my shipping terms to dispatch worldwide as I always do.

It was a 10 day listing and within 3 days I had sold the lot!

The amazing thing was that about 80% of the buyers were from France and I got a lot of feedback in French telling me how amazing this product was!

It became obvious to me from the feedback comments and the amount of French sales, that French people couldn’t buy this product in their own country (it wasn’t illegal by the way – it was a kitchen gadget just in case you are wondering) and so I ordered more stock and listed it specifically on the French eBay site (www.ebay.fr) and I made sure that the description was written in French – there are cheap online translating services you can use to do this very easily.

Now, because I had listed it in France, and in French, I pulled in even more sales than the first time round, simply because my listing was written in their own language and on their own site.

Although many buyers from around the world look on eBay UK, some won’t because they can’t speak English and don’t understand the descriptions or they just prefer to buy from their own country’s site. So, by listing this way, I had targeted the exact people that wanted my product. They wanted, they bought!

All that’s very good, but of course, you should also pay attention to any unfortunate negative feedback comments. For example, if you get comments such as:

‘Instructions hard to follow, otherwise ok.’

‘Box was damaged when delivered.’

Took ages to arrive, but the item was as described.’

This tells you that you really need to improve in these areas. You can add extra instructions to your product yourself, you can improve your packaging and you can speed up your dispatch process.

So you see, your customers are constantly talking to you and giving you loads of really helpful information that you can put to good use to improve your listings, improve your products or improve your service generally. And they are giving you all this information for free.

It’s all available with just one click of your mouse and if you quickly check your feedback every day it’s not even time-consuming.

So, remember this: If you don’t know what you are doing wrong you can’t improve on it and if you don’t know what you are doing right then you can’t capitalise on it.

This article first appeared on Blog | eTail Hub. Read more and comment here