Thursday, May 12, 2005

eBay vs. Real World

Selling on eBay is a lot like selling in the physical world, except you're confined to this little browser window. It doesn't have depth like a real window display. Your salesperson can't emote with her arms or kick the tires to show the customer durability. The right marketing and presentation approach, however, can help you achieve the same persuasive and emotional results.

Lots of photos coupled with an ironclad guarantee is as good as kicking the tires, for example. By writing clear, strong benefit statements you can connect directly with customer desires. That's a form of emoting. If you describe your product and make the effort to close throughout the description, that's better than most retail sales staff efforts. Think about it. You have to train sales staff and then keep on them to make sure they're presenting merchandise properly. With an eBay description, you write it once and then the same presentation is viewed by multitudes (hopefully). You can even tweak it and improve upon it and measure the performance of your changes in terms of bids and purchases.

There are a lot of upsides to selling on eBay. You can build relationships via the Web and eBay that you might not otherwise been able to develop. You can easily cross-promote, getting varied merchandise in front of the customer immediately. That's not something that always possible in the physical world. As Martha Stewart would say, it's a good thing (as she curses her probation tracking bracelet).

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