Friday, March 20, 2015



Search Results

noun: reciprocity
  1. the practice of exchanging things with others for mutual benefit, especially privileges granted by one country or organization to another.
So do you have reciprocity in your life? I do you a favor and then you do me one?   I thought I did. I spent years encouraging and promoting friends as they "grew" and expanded their businesses.  I put contacts and opportunities I saw in their path and pushed them to use them. 

Now I have a new venture of my own and asked two people I most trusted to endorse it.  One did. (Thanks Kat Simpson of ) and one didn't (nameless, you notice?) 

Don't be that dork person - the Lame Person ala Rob Lowe in his new tv commercials.  If someone endorses you or promotes your business, return that favor somehow.   Don't say "oh I can't" and then promote someone else offering a lower quality service. 

And I've said this before - Be Careful who you follow and/or endorse.  Watch their public behavior and how they treat people that can't do them favors.   It's the best indicator of a genuine person

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

What's In a Name? The Shops of Online Business Success

We are a group of eCommerce sellers - eBay, Etsy, Amazon, eCrater, Bonanza, and more.  We have been friends for years now, and enjoy sharing advice, friendly conversation, and writing this blog together as well.

One of our group members, Carol of Abby's Attic, recently noticed that many of our store names involve a location:

"Trish's are in a Birdhouse
Deb's are in a corner cafe
Carol's are in an attic

~Trish's~ Upstairs
Kat's are in a Kloset
Sharon's are in a General Store
Videotown's are in a Town.
Beth's are in a Warehouse
Arrrans are in a corner
Suz's are in her Mom's Attic "

I thought this was very clever, and wanted to share a little post about our store names with you.

Elaine shares the story of her her store name, PhoenixRising2000:  "Named after the Phoenix, a mythical birdlike creature. 'a mythical bird of great beauty fabled to live 500 or 600 years in the Arabian wilderness, to burn itself on a funeral pyre, and to rise from its ashes in the freshness of youth and live through another cycle of years: often an emblem of immortality or of reborn idealism or hope.' I adopted the Phoenix as my symbol after surprisingly surviving a bout with Cancer."

Pat shares the story of her store name, Nicalucks:  "When Scott was in a coma/paralyzed/intensive care a college friend of his handed me a small stuffed reindeer and said he had brought her tons of good luck with her exams. She said another girl, whom she didn't know, had given it to her when she was in the bathroom crying over her upcoming exams. She aced her exam(s) and passed the little stuffed animal to me for luck for Scott.  It was the week before Christmas and a group of Scott's friends and I wanted to give him a name so we came up with nicaluck.....nic--short for St. Nick and luck because Scott needed so much of it. It worked. I should have passed it on to yet another person but I didn't--he has been sitting on my desk with me ever since."

Marion shares the story of her store name, This N That Freeland Enterprises  :  "My "This N That" store goes back to many years ago when I did loads and loads of crafting when I was a kid. When my children were young and I wasn't able to go out for a full time job I still did the crafts and carried the name thru. I was fortunate to be able to stay home with our children but I just needed to keep busy doing something so I did many kinds of crafting, hence the "this n that"....(This N That Handmade Craft Gifts). I still like doing my crafting, but rarely find free time to do it.  Now-a-days, I sell a little of this and a little of that which is why I kept the same name.....:-)"

My store, Birdhouse Books, was inspired by my favorite song, "Birdhouse in Your Soul" by They Might Be Giants.

You will find more great Online Business Success (OBS) shops to visit:

Katarina - Very Desperate Housewife 
Meryl - Elisia at eCrater 
Stacey - StaceyK's Collection
Cheryl - Electric Avenue

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Have you tried selling on Facebook Groups?

Online sellers have long known that selling on multiple venues helps keep a steady income coming in. We sell on eBay, Amazon, Bonanza and many Facebook groups. Each venue has it's pros and cons so you need to look at and weigh your options to see what is best for your business.

There are 2 kinds of Facebook groups local ones and then special interest groups. We are lucky in our area there are 18 local groups that we list and sell on. It is just like having a yard sale online instead of your yard. List the item and once someone wants it make arrangements for pick up.

The other type of online selling groups are special interest groups to join and sell on. There are groups for many vintage items like Christmas, Pyrex, Toys and many more. We also have sold many items on these group. We list the item with a price plus shipping. So then someone wants the item we would get their zip code and give them a shipping price and then send an invoice.

Selling on Facebook has helped improve our sales you should try it.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Nancy Drew and The Case of the Missing Listings

It was a dark and stormy night.   Thunder lit up the room as I peered at the computer.  While pricing items on eBay, I discovered two of my items were not appearing in search.   They were in Turbolister, and I could pull them up with "View Listing" from that program, but no assortment of keywords pulled them up on eBay.  Both the missing listings were children's books, listed as fixed price (Good Till Cancelled), with nice big photos and item specifics.  They were listed on the same date, September 17.

I called eBay and a customer service representative told me I should just end and relist the items.   I still wanted answers, and was puzzled by the mystery, so I did what any good eBayer would do ... I called Nancy Drew.

Before I knew it, Nancy was pulling into the driveway in her jaunty blue roadster.  She came in for a cup of tea, and I told her about my dilemma.  "I'll be right on it," she promised.  "I'm sure there is a solution."

One day went by, and then another.  Before I knew it, a week had passed.  Then, just when I thought the case had gone cold, the doorbell rang and when I answered, I found that Nancy Drew had come to call.

She pulled a stack of photos out of her satchel.  As she spoke, she showed me the photos she had taken.  "I'm so sorry it's taken a while.  I've looked everywhere for your missing listings.  They weren't in the old clock.  They weren't on the steamboat.  They weren't in the crumbling manor.   Finally I paid a visit to eBay headquarters.  I searched high and low ... but your missing listings weren't anywhere to be found.   I am so sorry this happened.  I never have been stumped by a case like this before.  It's like they just vanished!   I'll continue looking, in case I find them in a treasure chest, or tucked inside an old book.  But -- in the meantime, I guess you should end the items and relist them."   And with those words, Nancy walked out of my house and into the night.  I went back to work, still puzzling over the strange and mysterious disappearance.  

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sourcing for eBay Year Round -

This subject comes up all the time. Where do I find more stuff to sell on ebay??

This is my segment on ebay radio on November 4th discussing where to get more merchandise.

Come see some of the stuff I am selling -


Thursday, November 6, 2014

Kathy Simpson Interviews Greg Jameson and Karen Locker

I don't normally do this or haven't lately but I thought this interview which my friend Kathy Simpson, one of the founders of this blog just did, with Greg Jameson is full of so many good ideas that we have to get it out there and have all of us be more successful.


And then she interviewed Karen Locker of who helps folks get approved for gated categories on Amazon (Karen's another one of our founding bloggers)

She has a business helping other businesses get set up right on Amazon.

Ok I'm off to do some work.  Carry on!!!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Another Wrinkle in the Ebay Selling Experience

I am not normally considered an ebay cheerleader so it will probably come as no surprise that I'm already fed up with their most recent round of unannounced changes.

Remember back in August when they announced that, indeed, Buyers would now be able to cancel a transaction without asking the seller to do it, as long as they changed their mind in the first hour?? Yeah well not so much actually.  If a buyer makes a best offer?? well that buyer is not allowed to change their mind.  So here's the backstory.

Buyer makes 2 offers on Sunday morning, my husband's items so I wait for him to wake up and decide.  He takes both offers.  Buyer pays for one almost immediately but...sends a note saying he looked at the pictures again and doesn't want the 2nd one. It's more than an hour later so I send him a message saying, Ok, this is what's gonna happen. I'm going to send you a cancellation request, you agree and we're both off the hook and because you didn't even pay for this yet, No harm No foul.  Yeah well again Not SO MUCH.

Buyer must have left immediately after paying so I didn't hear from him til the next day. Then he tells me he followed my directions but the system won't let him agree to cancel. He's being told to pay. 

What happened next is 5 days of dealing with the bureaucracy from hell.  Multiple calls to ebay with hold times in excess of 60 minutes. (I did finally figure out what to click to get them to call me back about it but that took 4 days too).   OH and ebay itself opened an unpaid item case again the buyer, who was actually, seeminly cooperating with me and actually apologized to me for causing so much trouble. Knock me over with a feather.

Finally yesterday - day 5, I got an reasonably intelligent and certainly above-standard, English-speaking, CSR, a miracle in itself, who took control of the issue, sent the buyer exact instructions, called the buyer multiple times and was able, finally overnight to get the cancellation request to go thru.  HURRAY for Jonathon!!  I'd personally authorize a raise for him if I could.  Why?

Well one, he explained what was happening, clearly, he attempted to call the buyer while I was on the phone. He did call the buyer several times and he called me back to update me on not being able to reach the buyer.

HALLELUJAH, just what I expect for my $500 a month in fees.   But here's the lesson, DO NOT LET BUYERS cancel if they make a Best Offer and you accept. Tell them it's much easier if  you pay, we wait an hour and I cancel this and refund because you "changed your mind".  Saves us both 5 days of bureaucratic red tape.

Now you and I know buyers use Best Offer a lot and a certain percentage never pay. I assume they changed their mind and don't bother to tell us.  BUT the ones who do change their mind? well that's not allowed any more. Probably a "buyer-side defect" in ebay's score book.  Talk about a bad buying experience, just in this one transaction of mine, ebay has created 2 new dissatisfed users.  BONUS Points for the ebay.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Are You Ready For The Fall Holiday Selling Season?

After reading the Fall Post from My Moms Books I realized how right she is and fall is here. That means that Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas is right around the corner and are you ready? In fact are you ever truly ready for the holiday season?

Are you going to be like Snoopy this year looking at all you need to organize and list? I am hoping to be more like this Snoopy. 

He has the tree decorated and is all ready for Christmas. So what do you think? Now is the time to put your holiday plan in action. 

A few months ago I wrote a blog post on my blog about scheduling my day. Now it is crunch time and I know I need to really focus. How about you? What is your plan for the holiday selling season?

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Fall is Here!

Morning OBS, chilly start here 43 when I let the girls out.
I've decided fall is here.  Time to fall clean and change house decor up a bit to reflect the season.  

Fall cooking is in the air too! Yesterday I made roast chicken, stuffing, potatoes, peas and homemade chicky gravy. (love wondra flour) Talk about comfort food.
So I've decide since no cooking needed today with tons of leftovers...
List, new stuff with auction special on attic id

Clean & decorate as I go to make fall house
Throw in some laundry since hubby said hamper is full, heavens knows we still have many clothes.
Nothing to ship today although week has been steady after summer dry spell.
Hopefully all will be in shopping Fall change mood.
Here's my Saturday link, thanks to all that play the link game!


Friday, August 29, 2014

What Do You Think of When You Hear Labor Day Weekend?

It's hard to believe that this weekend is Labor Day weekend. That spells the end of summer and back to school routine for many families. Even when the kids are grown and out of the house this weekend still means the end of summer fun and hot sunny weather. Around here many schools start before Labor Day but when I was growing up this was our last fun weekend before school started.

I also think of fall with those cool crisp days and nights getting darker earlier. There are many people that don't like the fall and nights that get dark so early are you one of those people? I love all the seasons and enjoy the changes that each one brings. When the nights get dark early it forces us inside as a family to enjoy an early dinner and a relaxing evening together.

It won't be long and we will be seeing the leaves turning colors and what a beautiful time of year this is in PA. I call this sweater weather when they days are still warm and the nights you need a sweater. This time of year also has people thinking about the upcoming holidays since Christmas is not far off.

Speaking of  Christmas we sell a variety of collectible items that make great unique gifts for that special someone on your list. So if you want to get a jump on your holiday shopping stop by The Book Corner Cafe at eBay and check out items.