Category Archives: E-Commerce & Online Sales

E-Commerce & Online Sales

Where to Sell Online Estate Dropship Inventory Goods & Services

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Selling on eBay

Setting up your eBay account, than making it a seller account

What types of items to sell on eBay (what is prohibited – include a list)

Setting up a store, making categories and design

Listing with SELL on website, Listing with Turbo Lister

Terms, conditions and policies

eBay Templates

International selling and shipping

Handling e-mails


Negatives to selling on eBay


eBay’s PowerSeller program offers provides many benefits to us as sellers. The program is structured in three different levels.

eBay DSR



Selling on Amazon

Amazon has quickly become sellers haven, it has surpassed in daily traffic. According to which is a top web information company (ironically owned by Amazon) is currently ranked #5 most visited US traffic rank and is ranked #9 as of June, 2011. However globally both eBay and Amazon have their own domain names for each country they provide service too so total traffic still favors eBay when we take into account those international sites. Reguardless, Amazon being the highest ranked E-Commerce site in the United States means big money for United States sellers.

The Amazon seller marketplace has a very different sales model for sellers. Instead of buyers bidding up on items against other buyers sellers bid down to get the lowest price against other sellers of an item.

With Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) you ship your products to Amazon, we store them, and we ship them to customers on your behalf from our network of fulfillment centers.

The basic steps of Fulfillment by Amazon include the following:

  1. You send your new or used products to Amazon’s fulfillment centers.
  2. Amazon stores your products in our ready-to-ship inventory.
  3. Amazon fulfills orders on your behalf, either orders placed directly on or fulfillment requests you submit for sales not on Amazon.
  4. Fulfillment by Amazon picks your products from inventory and packages them.
  5. Amazon ships your products to your customers from our network of fulfillment centers.
  1. When your item sells, Amazon collects the sales price and shipping costs from the buyer, deducts a referral fee of 6 to 25 percent of the product price, a variable closing fee, and a per-item fee of $0.99. The $0.99 per-item fee is waived forPro Merchant Subscribers.
  2. Here’s how it works:
  3. Sale price of the item
    Shipping credit
    –  Referral Fee of 6-25% of the sale price
    –  Variable Closing Fee
    –  $0.99 Fixed Closing Fee (waived for Pro Merchant Subscribers)
    = Total deposited to seller’s account
  4. The tables below list the Referral Fee percentages and Variable Closing Fees for each Marketplace product line. SeeShipping Rates and Services for a table of shipping credits.
  5. Referral Fees Charged to Seller:
Product Type Referral Fee Percentage
Amazon Kindle 15%
Automotive Parts and Accessories 12%
Baby Products (excluding baby apparel) 15%
Books 15%
Camera and Photo 8%
Cell Phone Accessories 15%
Consumer Electronics 8%
Home & Garden (including Pet Supplies)* 15%
Kindle Accessories 25%
Music 15%
Musical Instruments 12%
Office Products 15%
Personal Computers 6%
Software & Computer Games 15%
Sporting Goods 15%
Tires & Wheels 10%
Tools & Home Improvement* 12%
Toys 15%
Video & DVD 15%
Video Games 15%
Video Game Consoles 8%
Watches 15%
Unlocked Cell Phones 8%
Any Other Products 15%
  1. * The Home & Garden store includes seasonal Lawn and Garden products such as Pool Supplies, Landscaping Equipment and Supplies, Snow Removal Equipment, and Generators.
  2. Variable Closing Fees Charged to Seller:
  3. Media products (per item):
Product Type Domestic Standard Domestic Expedited International
Books $1.35 $1.35 $1.35
Music $0.80 $0.80 $0.80
Software & Computer Games $1.35 $1.35 Not available
Video & DVD $0.80 $0.80 $0.80
Video Games $1.35 $1.35 Not available
Video Game Consoles $1.35 $1.35 Not available

Amazon applies some very complex (and apparently top secret) math to maintaining rankings for their top 5,000 books. Sales are measured hourly, daily, and monthly – and rankings are determined by even the amount of time BETWEEN sales. Books in the top 5,000 keep their rankings very consistent – and Amazon enforces some “averaging” of sales to keep your book from jumping up to number one just because you got all your relatives in New Jersey to buy a copy at exactly noon on Tuesday (but, do it if you can…for about 30 minutes you’ll have the most incredible ranking!)

Changes in your Amazon sales rank is a great measure of the success of your marketing efforts – hopefully a nice bump upwards in rank corresponds to a book promotion or event. These are usually temporary, as it is consistent an concerted effort to move the sales rank significantly. A general rule of thumb (first proposed by Morris Leventhal of FonerBooks) is to note your rank twice a week for four weeks, then divide by 8. This will show your “average” Amazon sales rank. Checking any more than that is really meaningless, since these ranks can change on an hourly basis. You’ll find that titles that sit within the top 5,000 do not usually fluctuate by more than 20% (and Amazon is trying to contain even this level of fluctuation). Titles in the 10-20,000 range may jump or drop by as much 50 or 60%. Titles under the 50,000 mark will swing wildly.

Amazon Sales Rank – the “numbers”

So – what does all this mean? How MANY books am I selling?

Well, that’s a tough question, but here’s some very general numbers based on average Amazon sales rank for our Dog Ear Publishing titles listed on March 2008):

Rank           Weekly Sales
1,000            90 copies
10,000           60 copies
100,000           16 copies
300,000           12 copies
500,000           1 copy
1,000,000           1 copy per month

Now, this isn’t going to hold true all year long on a unit basis – sale rates change per season – but it will hold in the RELATIONSHIP between sales ranks.

So, theoretically, sales ranks don’t change without some action having occurred – meaning your rank won’t go up without a sale, and they don’t fall unless some other book has more sales in the past 24 hours (though the numbers get pretty funky in the “under 50,000” range). Your titles rank will drop if you have no sales, but the rate at which it will drop is dependent upon how consistently strong your sales were BEFORE it stopped selling – sort of… It’s a bit of a bell curve that hits the middle ground most severely – books with long term, strong sales drop slowly, moderate sellers (under 50,000 to about 250,000) drop faster, and weak sellers (500,000 and down) drop positions very slowly. As we said, books ranks are calculated every hour of the day.

How can I apply this to my book?

Well, you really can only apply it in hindsight… use Amazon sales rank to check your progress as a marketer. Think about what rankings of competitive titles mean – are you moving up or down in relation? Use it to choose your next publishing objective or marketing program plan.

If you have a brilliant idea for a book – and you just know it will sell – and there is nothing like it, well, you might just be right. But, a little research never helped! True expert marketers understand that a smart bet is to target a book to a successful market, providing a COMPLEMENTARY product to expand the ultimate size of the market.

For perspective, here’s the data from last year and what each of the largest retailers reported for 2006 sales: – $10.71 billion ($7 billion in media sales)
Barnes&Noble – $5.3 billion
( was $0.433 billion of this total)
Borders Book Group – $4.06 billion

Total $20.06 billion



(canceling orders)

(Amazon shipment)

(shipping time)

(account metrics)

(selling items that match DESCRIPTION – buy remotes, etc)





,,, SnapNames/Sedo/TDNAM, FACEBOOK?,, Antique Shops, Auctions, Yard Sales, Personal Website, eBay drop offs,,

E-Commerce & Online Sales

Estate Sale Auction Bidding Terms Howto Whereto Terms and Bidding

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Absentee Bidding/Left Bids

If you are unable to attend an auction, you may leave an absentee bid. This is a confidential, maximum price for the lot or lots in which you are interested. It is executed by the auctioneer, on your behalf, in competition with the auction audience. In the event that your absentee bid is the winning bid for an item, you will be notified within a day of the auction.

Buyer’s Premium

The buyer’s premium is a charge paid by the buyer at auction, usually in the form of a percentage of the winning bid or sold price of the lot.  The buyer’s premium may vary from auction to auction, and may include a discount for cash payment.  The premium is paid at the time of purchase of the items

E-Commerce & Online Sales

What to watch out for when buying E-Commerce eBay Auctions Estate Sales

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What to watch out for

Many times you will be presented with something that seems too good to be true and I hate to write it but yes, it usually is too good to be true. Unfortunately the market is flooded with knock offs and reproductions and the counterfeiters just keep getting better at it. I have been burned several times in my life but it typically happens when I am buying from a category of products I am not very familiar with. Several times I have purchased reproduction antique weapons that someone decided to bury in their backyard for a few years as to add some age and patina to the metal. Spotting fake and reproduction antiques takes a well trained eye and a lot of experience. With antiques some simple things to look for; if it has screws or nails do they appear to be hand forged and not made by a machine?

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