Friday, November 16, 2007

Cyber Monday

Are you ready for Cyber Monday?

Ok! I guess you need to know what Cyber Monday is in order to be ready for it!

Cyber Monday is the online equivalent of Black Friday - the annual start of the holiday shopping season. Black Friday applies to brick and mortar stores and is the Friday after Thanksgiving. Cyber Monday applies to online businesses and is the Monday after Thanksgiving.

According to a recently published MasterCard report (Nov 19), 3 out of 4 people plan to shop online this holiday season. They expect to spend an average of $700 with $300 of that for online purchases.

This is great news to all us eBayers out there! But you have to know how to take advantage of it.

Here are some tips:

* Make life easier for your holiday buyers. Offer to gift wrap the item and/or send it directly to the recipient. This added extra will set you apart from most other sellers.

* Use BIN (Buy It Now) in your listings. When holiday shoppers find that special item, they want to purchase right away so they can take it off their 'to do' list. A word to the wise - buyers who purchase a BIN item expect the item to ship as soon as they pay for it, so don't offer a BIN if you only ship once or twice a week. Another word to the wise - many antique and collectible items are not suited for a BIN format.

*Offer multiple shipping options. Buyers like choices and they may want the option to pay for expedited shipping to be sure the item arrives in time.

*Give the buyer something special. Offer free or combined shipping discounts in your listing. This will make your item(s) more attractive to a buyer and set you apart from the rest. Offer to gift wrap the item to save the buyer time. Include a bonus gift and the buyer will perceive added value.

*Promote your excellent customer service. When making a purchase online, buyers want to feel confident and secure about the seller. Your feedback may be wonderful, but your buyer wants to know how that will benefit them. Assure them that you pay special attention to details, package their items carefully and securely and respond quickly to their questions. Most of all, let them know they'll receive their package on time! That's the holiday shopper's biggest concern when purchasing gifts online.

This is your opportunity to make make new, happy customers! The benefits will last beyond the holiday season, too. Holiday buyers who are pleased with their purchase and the service you provided are bound to come back to shop with you during the year. Remember, it's easier make a sale to an existing customer than it is to find a new one.

Join me in success ...

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