Friday, January 30, 2009

Ebay? Bonanzle? Why Not Both???

"The Unicorn and the Butterfly"
2 1/2 X 3 1/2 inch miniature

Its funny because when John Donahoe announced Ebay's decline in the 4th quarter last year, he blamed it on our faltering economy. Well, yes...perhaps some of it was to blame but certainly not ALL of it. Yesterday both Amazon and even Overstock reported gains in online sales in the 4th quarter of last year. Amazon going so far as to say "our best holiday season ever". What does all that mean and what has it to do with Bonanzle? might say the writing is on the wall. Small sellers can't make use of Amazon...Ebay is less than worthless to us these days and I never was able to sell much on Overstock. Small sellers definitely need a place to go and I kind of like the homey feeling of Bonanzle. Yes, it needs traffic and yes it needs more buyers. SO! I suggest all you small sellers get off your duff and get proactive...which means go thru your list of buyers in the past years and invite them to your shop at Bonanzle. Give them an gifts...something to get them there. Its up to us to build our place in online sales and I think Bonanzle is one of those places that shows a great deal of promise AND management is people-oriented too (isn't that a novel idea?).

Free Shop, Free Listings, Small Fee Only When You Sell!

We can do it, we can do it, we can do it, we can do it!!!!! In this year of change we MUST do it!!

My painting for today is a miniature that's in my own collection. I loved it so much I simply kept it. "The Unicorn and The Butterfly"

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Ebay - Going Doooooowwwwnnnnn!

Sunny Garden Path

I digress from Bonanzle to give my 2 cents on Ebay's 4th Quarter 2008 report.

Well, Ebay's 4th quarter 2008 report is out. It is dismal indeed in spite of John Donahoe's spin. This is exactly what veteran sellers have been expecting since Mr. Donahoe began his "disruptive innovation" a year ago. I predict by the end of the first quarter this year there will be NO denying Ebay has taken the wrong path - Mr. Donahoe will NOT be able to spin the decline of Ebay's business or blame 100 percent of it on the economy.

Over 11 years ago the Ebay phenomenon was born and took flight. During these years the company grew to massive proportions. It seemed everything they touched turned to gold and the sellers who flocked to them brought them even more riches then Pierre and Meg could fathom. On the other hand, Ebay became a haven for the elderly, the disabled, the stay at home moms and the out of work dads who needed income. Both sides were very very happy. Then Ebay's success became "expected" and Ebay became more and more arrogant. "If you want to sell here you'll do this and that and pay this and nauseum". Then they became SO big they felt they were invincible and they had John Donahoe step in to take the company apart and rebuild it into a cheap and cheesey Amazon clone so they could get even bigger and more wealthy. No...don't invest the sweat equity - Ebay is so big they don't have to do that...they can simply have "diamond sellers" do all the work and then Ebay can sit back on its throne and scoop in all the money! give the diamond sellers free or low listing fees and raise fees on the small sellers...heck they have to either take it or leave it! Unfortunately, it reached a point where a LOT of those small sellers had to leave it...they simply couldn't make profits. Well, John, Pierre, Meg...what do you think of your big invincible company now? You never believed in the sellers who built Ebay - you called them "noise" and beat them into complying with your outrageous draconian policies - pay your outrageous fees! Gave buyers the power to scam and cheat your sellers. What do you think of your company NOW! This is just the start of Ebay's long and painful death!

Even I think this post is depressing even though I believe it to be true. Let's have something happy for today's painting. How about a watercolor - "Sunny Garden Path"

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Let's Bonanzle! More on Bonanzle - Its a New Star in the Sky!!

2 1/4 X 1 1/2"
Cardinal in the Garden

Okay - still nosing around Bonanzle to see what there is to see. I'm racking up other seller's by tagging and favoring their booths. This gets a little back and forth action going. I'm a firm believer that it is the sellers buying from each other who sustain a new site until new traffic starts coming in. That is what is happening on Bonanzle right now. They are growing with amazing speed...oh yes...still very small potatoes when measured against Ebay BUT they are becoming the new haven for small sellers. Those very sellers who MADE Ebay what it is.

Back to tagging. In my previous article I forgot to mention that the TAG line is right after the description in each listing. Also, I discovered that if you forgot to log in you won't see the TAG line or the Favorite on anything. So sign up and login before you do anything else. Since booths are free there is absolutely no excuse...except get you off your duff and opening a booth. They even go so far as to give you a booth logo if you can't make one for yourself. They also now automatically upload all of your listings to Google Base on a regular schedule. You only need to follow the simple instructions to start it rolling.

Now, another really neat feature on Bonanzle is that each booth owner has direct contact with whoever goes into his booth. Its called Real Time Chat and there is a rather large slot near the top of the booth where buyer and seller can converse in real time....or leave a message. Its all so handy and so unique! These are some of the things that make Bonanzle stand out.

Another is their customer service. Kind of reminds me of Ebay in the old days when you could actually write them and get an answer back from a bonafide human being! I recently had a hard time finding out how I could contact another seller thru his ID. Looked all over and couldn't find it. So, I wrote customer service. Had an answer back in a couple of hours AND they thanked me for bringing it to their attention and will soon make finding ID's easier! Nothing like the interest a small company has and you just can't beat their drive and ambition. I hope they keep at least some of it as they grow because they really are growing.

So....get there...take a look and join in!!

My booth again - ahem - the ad here:

Misspatricia's Booth

My painting for today is a tiny miniature. 2 1/4 X 1 1/2"

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Feeling My Way Around Bonanzle And Feeling Good!

"Cherry Cake"
2 1/2 X 3 1/2" original acrylic painting

I have a very good feeling about Bonanzle. Its taken me awhile to tear myself away from Ebay and really move on to new things. Sitting there in Ebay was kind of like lingering over the body long after the person died and hoping they're really not dead. Morbid, but I don't feel I'm alone in this. Many small sellers are sitting and hoping that their Ebay will return from the dead.

Actually, I set up my free Bonanzle shop months ago, stocked it and it mostly just sat there.

Misspatricia's Booth

Finally I'm getting around to getting serious about this site and so I learned to tag and favor other booths and I've invited several of my past customers to check out my new Bonanzle shop.

Now, tagging means going to various shops and if you see something you really like you can "tag" it as to its beauty, coolness, price, etc. I discovered that many people don't know what tagging is or how to do it. You'll find "Tag" and a line of subjects you can choose such as "bizarre" "beautiful" "cool" etc. Just click on one or more of those and you've tagged that item. I understand that tagging an item brings it up higher in search.

Also you can Favorite a booth. To "fav" a booth just look on the right side of the person's booth and you'll see "Favorite" just click on it. You'll get updated on the booths you favorited. Every time they list or have a "Bonanza" you will see it listed.

I'll be adding more as I learn. All you small sellers, who haven't opened a shop on Bonanzle, get there and open your shop. The shop is free, listing is free and you pay only a small fee on what you sell. I think Bonanzle will be a serious contender for small seller's business. Please go and take a look and I think you'll agree.

My painting for today is an ACEO called "Cherry Cake".

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Ebay's 4 Percent Drop in Site Visits - What Does it Indicate?

2 1/2 X 3 1/2" painting of Hamburger and Fries
Perhaps we can call it "Where's the Beef?"

I'm very surprised that only a 4 percent drop in site visits has been reported for Ebay! This does not, however, tell the story of their sell-thru rate during the same period and I've seen nothing on that. For the past year sellers have been complaining that they cannot sell in the present environment on Ebay. Many of them packed up and left because they were hidden by the faulty best match search and they were up to their necks in outrageous policies and fees. So, it continues as Ebay management plods along on the maniacle path to remaking Ebay over into a cheap and cheesy Amazon clone! Ebay feels that's where the money is and where their future lies. Ebay management does not see the years and years of hard and honest labor Amazon put into its business...they sees only Amazon's profit and they want it! How dreadful for a once loved company like Ebay to come to this point. How tragic to put thousands of small business owners - the elderly, the disabled, the stay at home moms the out of work dads who all depended on Ebay - out of business! A year ago Ebay only needed tweaking to bring some of the original excitement back - now it is faced with doom and still their CEO and his "team" plod on towards the edge of that cliff!

The very heart of Ebay has been destroyed. The small sellers of the vintage, unique and rare items that drove buyers to the site are leaving in droves. It has now reached a point where buyers complain they cannot find their favorite sellers...yet Ebay management plods on...far better to make Ebay into yet another black and white catalog store like so many others online who do the job far far better! If the present management team isn't changed soon there will be no turning back for Ebay there will be a very small future for the company as opposed to their very big and hearty past! I believe we're watching the destruction of a once healthy and wealthy company!

My painting for today is an ACEO of Hamburger & Fries. Perhaps we should call it "Where's the Beef?"

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year - Especially to Small Online Sellers!

"Lavender Sea"

Its a brand new year with a brand new president coming in exactly 19 more days. Frankly, I'm excited. Oh...I don't think things will change overnight, but I see a light at the end of a long tunnel. We'll have to fight to get there but at least there is hope in getting this country on the right path once again.

Wish I could see that for online sales, but it will be a rocky year until this economy recovers. I can add it will be even rockier if Ebay continues on its mindless course of destroying the site we all once loved. Amazon is hoping for that but small sellers are hoping Ebay comes to its senses.

Its within our power to help our battered economy....continue to buy...continue to buy and keep the economy moving! If you're in a position to continue purchases as it! Nothing will help our damaged economy more then to keep pumping new blood into it.

For small sellers - why not make a new year resolution to finally get your own website up and running. Continue selling on those sites with free listings, BUT also use them as advertising for your website. Work on gathering link exchanges with other websites of the same interest as yours. Learn to upload your items to Google Base (I see Bonanzle already does that). Get PROACTIVE - which means "move the tush". You are the focus point in your own online selling get moving!


My painting for today is called "Lavender Sea".