Looking for Free Tatting Patterns?

All free patterns are now on my tatting website:

Tatting Just For You


Click on the free patterns link in the upper right hand corner...and while you're there,
please check out my pattern books. Sale of those books keeps me on the internet ;-)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Ebay Small Sellers - Let's BONANZLE!!!


ACEO Halloween Cat


I know the feeling...you've been on Ebay for years and up till this year you've been doing okay. You're paying your fees and trying to keep up with the latest policy changes and requirements. Even with all that effort your sales are in the toilet and you watch your items roll off with few views and no bids because you find your items smothered under tons of other items from other sellers...what to do? Its time to get proactive (that means get a move on!). One day while reading Auctionbytes.com (which seems to be my morning paper) I saw an item about a place called Bonanzle. Funny name - gotta check it out. I was floored! Its bright and colorful, its clean and uncluttered - a shop there is free - listing is free!.....AND they will import your Ebay feedback and your Ebay items! I suggest everyone get there and set up shop - then go thru your list of past buyers and invite them over! Give them an incentive like free shipping or a free gift - you can do it because you're not weighed down with fees! Bonanzle is growing by leaps and bounds. I am amazed to check the stats there each morning and see that they are, indeed, gaining more sellers. I also love Bonanza Days there. That is a day you schedule with Bonanzle and on that day you offer sales galore and Bonanzle will direct traffic to your shop for a few hours. Its a plus you aren't going to get somewhere else...so give Bonanzle a look and I think you'll like what you see!

My painting for today: The witching hour is on its way...Halloween Cat

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

From an Ebay Seller to Ebay Buyers - Can We Talk DSR's? (Detailed Sellers Ratings)



"Tree of Dreams"


My performance as a seller is being rated by you. You decide if sellers like me stay or go on eBay. Truth is, although Ebay tells you a 4.0 rating is good anything less than a 5.0 rating lowers my standings in search until I can no longer be found. If they dip below 4.3 - I could be suspended from selling.

Ebay has given buyers the power to hand out negatives without the fear of getting one in return...this leaves sellers vulnerable and is one reason why a lot of them simply left the site. As a seller, I would expect that if you the buyer finds anything wrong with your purchase from me that you will have the courtesy of contacting me...I stand ready to rectify the situation. Most honest sellers want to keep their good reputations and remain sellers on eBay. Without the cooperation of buyers - that will soon change and what will be left are big stores with the same merchandise you can find in any Walmart. Most of us try our best to describe an item properly, to package and ship it carefully. My items are shipped upon payment and at no more than a few pennies above actual shipping cost - yet my stars for shipping time and shipping cost have been damaged.

If buyers don’t begin to communicate their displeasure or the reasoning behind rating a seller at less than a 5.0 then soon all unique small sellers such as myself will be gone from the site. This is not a threat, it is a fact that has been happening since this DSR rating system was instituted. Many buyers are already complaining that they can no longer find their favorite small seller. So, I’m asking you to please either contact me with your complaints or rate fairly. Only 5.0 ratings can keep us on Ebay.

On shipping, you must rate me and not the post office. You are rating the time I send out the item - not how long the post office takes to get it to you. You are also rating what I charge you and not what the postal rates happen to be. A seller should be allowed to charge a bit more for the packing and materials needed to send out an item. Its unreasonable to expect it for nothing. I know in my case, when I send out a large painting it costs me over 6.00 in bubblewrap and clean cardboard and foam core board alone. I believe in using new packing material.

There is a lot to consider when rating a seller fairly. I know its an imposition but its not one the sellers are burdening you with. Ebay has lost a lot of good sellers who could no longer cope with this system....but its here and we need to discuss it openly so that buyers are aware of it - and have the correct information. I know if I were a buyer and never sold on Ebay I would think rating a seller 3 on DSR's was average - yet that would quickly suspend a seller! Ebay tells buyers a 4.0 is a good rating - yet will suspend sellers who fall to a 4.3. You can quickly see the problem here. Nobody seems to know why Ebay has done this - some think they are merely "thinning the herd" of sellers. Others don't know what to think.

Hopefully, this will give buyers an idea of what sellers must cope with in order to sell onEbay. I, myself, list very very few items there now and its because I have an unblemished 10 year reputation and I figure I'll keep it at that and also because selling there is no longer fun but is very very stressful.

I hope you will take this as informational. Buyers have been given great power by Ebay and sellers only hope they will use it correctly.

My painting for today is a 16 X 20" original that recently sold and is on its way to Great Britain. "Tree of Dreams"

Monday, September 15, 2008

Ebay - Who knows What Tomorrow Will Bring?



"I Dream of Flying"


Yes, tomorrow starts the 30 day 35 cents fixed price listings that were obviously designed to get items out of Ebay stores and into core. I can't help but wonder why they're doing this? Are they desperate? maybe so.... It seems Meg Whitman put stores in search a couple of years ago and then quickly took them out again, complaining that the site was becoming cluttered with junk! So, what's new this time? What's new? Just about everything. Far as I can see, sellers (who are also buyers) are leaving in great numbers. Their listings are being replaced by the likes of buy.com. Its rumored buy.com gets free insertion - but with only a 3 percent sell-thru rate, who is Ebay kidding? Is THIS really where they want to go?

It is now rumored that 1500 Ebay employees will be laid off shortly. This can mean one of two things. Either they are hurting and have to lay off part of their workforce, OR this was a planned lay off because they could see the droves of small sellers leaving the site. This may yet all be planned in Mr. Donahoe's plan to turn the site retail like Amazon. If I were him with those plans in mind, I'd try to keep most of the sellers for as long as possible...let them pay the fees while Ebay tempts big box retailers with free listings. That would be how I would plan it...and perhaps that's the way Donahoe is planning it too. Whatever, we will know which path Ebay is taking by the end of this year. I suggest that it can't hurt to start listing on other sites - especially those free to list.....AND DON'T FORGET TO TELL YOUR BUYERS WHERE YOU CAN BE FOUND.

As for me? After 10 years, I have just a few (3 right now) small listings on Ebay. I've switched over to Bonanzle and love it there and I'm hoping everyone will come and take a peek and perhaps set up a shop there. Free shop and free listing. Its all good.

http://www.bonanzle.com/booths/misspatricia

Today's painting. Baby Pegasus "I Dream of Flying"

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Auctions and Antiques Examiner: eBay - more changes, rumors

This article lays it on the line! If you really want to know about the crazy changes on Ebay this will tell all clearly and consisely. READ IT!

read more | digg story

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Ebay - Are You Really Better Off Now Than One Year Ago?


ACEO - Jitterbug Mice


This morning I was sitting out on my little patio with my usual morning cup of tea. My thoughts wandering had somehow settled on Ebay and the utter mess its become for us sellers since the big announcement in January of this year. I think back to last year and had just come off a super summer selling season. I believe I probably made over 400 feedbacks last year alone - I'd have to check on that to be sure. It was a banner year for me and I still had the holiday season approaching. It was wonderful and I felt that retirement wasn't so bad afterall - I had plenty of change jingling around in my pocket for little luxuries and my ebay money was paying a lot of bills for me. What happened between now and then can only be described as bedlam! (hope I spelled that right). I now know the true meaning of Mr. Donahoe's "disruptive innovation". Believe me, if anyone in authority utters that to you - run for your life!!!

There's a backlash to all of this and it concerns my one-time pal Ebay. If all of us small sellers lost so much business and so much money....and the sell thru rates are now flat for most - and the sell thru rates for the likes of buy.com are downright dismal....how is Ebay making any profit? Truth be told...they aren't. Their stock is down, downgraded just yesterday to a forecast of 19.00 a share by the likes of Deutsch Bank. All is not rosy in the Ebay camp - top management is leaving...kind of like the rats deserting the sinking ship. One needs to wonder...where will it all end? Will Ebay become Amazon's cheap and cheesy third cousin? Ebay wouldn't or couldn't venture the capital to be anything more than that. In the end, when the present managment is swept out finally and forever, all I can hope for is that they leave enough of Ebay so that small sellers might once again venture in and clean up the mess they made! Then it can join the other small time venues who are trying to become the size Ebay once was!

The painting for today? Well, you might call it...when the cat's away the mice will play :-) Have a Super Sunday everyone!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Forget Ebay Today! Life is Waiting!!!



Blue Doggie Sharpener


I've just been out on my patio enjoying the coolness of a southern california morning and drinking my morning cup of tea. Look around, the birds are flying and singing, my hummingbirds are coming in to feed on their sugar water (and dive bomb me for being in their territory) my roses are blooming and all is right with the world. What more do I need past that glorious moment. It was unmarred by thoughts of how I'm going to make sales on Ebay now that its totally messed up or even about the fact my car insurance bill will be in any day now. No....it was just about the great outdoors and how darned lucky I am to be alive and seeing and feeling and smelling all this beauty. Sometimes we have to rein ourselves in and look at the basics. I'm sure all of you have benefits in your life you never really counted before. The mere fact of living is a great benefit on its own...perhaps the greatest of all!

That's my message for today and I'm sticking to it!

Today's painting...for those artists who say "I ran out of ideas and don't know what to paint" - paint what's in front of you and that scene of my pencil sharpener and pencils happened to be in front of me. :-)