Well I hope you were lucky enough to enjoy a 4-day week due to the bank holiday! It was actually a welcome break for me as I’ve been so busy these past few weeks – but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I enjoy being busy but I think most of us will agree that these days, being so busy, we find that life in general does need ‘managing’. Now I don’t mean that in a scary way. I just mean that most of us have lots of commitments on a daily basis – job, children, housework and so on and you do need to manage them all, which most of us do perfectly well. It all comes down to a little bit of good organisation, which I find is the key to most things running nice and smoothly!
It’s the same with business. Good time management definitely makes for a smoother ride. I frequently receive emails from people asking how long it will take to do this, do that or do the other if they work from home.
The simple answer is of course, that it will take as long as it takes you to do it!
Some people work more quickly and efficiently than others, some are more organised than others, some are perfectionists, some feel that ok is good enough. So, actually it’s a bit of a challenging question to answer.
The question I get asked the most though with regard to ‘juggling’ and ‘time management’ actually concerns the setting up of multiple accounts on ebay. Should you just have one account or should you have several for different niches or products?
One ID or two?
Firstly this ties in with organisation, because essentially the more ebay accounts you own, the more organised you will need to be in keeping your own records. As a full time ebay seller in the UK, you are likely be declared as self-employed and will need to file your own tax returns once a year. Having all of the relevant figures in one place, on one account, will certainly make it easier when calculating how much money you earned in a week, month or year. However, on the other hand, you may not make as much money by just having one single account!
Plus, it isn’t just monitoring your sales figures on different accounts that is important for your business; you will also need to keep an eye on all of your listings to be sure that any questions are answered quickly, that items are dispatched speedily and that your products are still competing successfully in their own areas. The more accounts you have, the more organised you will need to be.
So, time-management issues aside, I’m going to take you through some of the advantages of selling from several different ebay accounts so that you can decide which scenario fits your own circumstances.
Before I start though, if you are new to ebay, then you might not even be aware that eBay allows you to create multiple IDs, and there is no limit to the number of different accounts that you can create, aside from the limits of your own imagination in coming up with different names that is! The only rule that ebay has, is that each account must have a different email address, but this is easily sorted by simply setting up a ‘Yahoo’ or similar free email address.
Declare your ‘expertise’
There are definitely advantages to having several ebay accounts and I’ll begin with an obvious one: Every individual ebay ID gets to have its own completely unique name and this name can be linked to the product or niche area of the market in which you are selling.
Personally I have 7 different eBay ID’s which has proved extremely beneficial considering that over the years I have sold within a number of niche markets. Now, I could go on for ever about the benefits of having an ID that is related to the products that you sell, for example AllThingsStationery or OrnamentsRUs. But to simplify things, I just want to point out that these names instantly inform prospective buyers that you are, without a shadow of a doubt, an expert in your field as it appears that the only products that you sell are those within this particular area.
This impression of expertise will be further emphasised when your potential customers follow the links on your listing page to see the other products you have for sale. Everything that they see, including all the feedback, will be linked to the niche market that they are interested in.
What’s more, because all of the feedback is to do with the same market, it will be relevant for all of the listings that you post to this ebay ID, allowing you to quickly snap up some positive testimonials to place within the description of your own listings and therefore promote the fact that you are a genuine, reliable seller – which will ultimately increase your sales.
Buy ‘secretly’ and resell for a profit
Another benefit that can come from having multiple accounts is the ability to buy products to sell on at a profit.
Let’s say you see an auction that finishes at a silly time like 2am when most people are sleeping. Let’s also say that this particular listing also features a misspelt title so no one can easily find it. You know that with a better description, finishing at a normal hour or on a Buy It Now listing, you could make some serious profit from this item. So, you make the purchase with a view to reselling the item.
That’s a great plan and is actually one of the strategies in my Find It, Flip It, Profit )(http://www.on2url.com/app/adtrack.asp?MerchantID=150831&AdID=635741) home study manual, however, if you relist it on the same ebay account that you bought it on, your buyers can easily have a snoop around and discover that you purchased the item from ebay itself and at a cheaper price. More than likely this will put them straight off and there’s a lost sale.
The same applies if you purchase goods from ebay.com or another international ebay site with a view to reselling. So, separating your buying and selling accounts is a sensible move to stop this from happening.
The dreaded ‘red dot’
By concentrating on good customer service and offering a really great, quality product you shouldn’t receive negative feedback, but in my experience even the best ebay sellers occasionally suffer at the hands of a particularly awkward customer. If you do happen to receive a large collection of awful feedback either deserved or undeserved and you feel that it is bad enough to have a detrimental affect on your sales then it’s always useful to have another account you can use in case of emergency!
So, should I or shouldn’t I?
There is certainly no harm in having more than one ebay account and I am definitely ‘for’ the concept of multiple ID’s, but it’s important to remember that you don’t need to create forty-six accounts that you then have to manage right at the outset. You can gradually increase the number of areas in which you are selling, as and when you feel ready to handle the challenge of another account or niche and when you are sure that you can manage them effectively.
Stay organised, stay motivated and stay sensible by creating only the number of accounts that you feel you can manage, and you will see profitable results.