There are countless selling sites where you can add and sell your products. Some charge a fee, such as Amazon – and some are free to use but may charge listing fees, Gumtree for example. Then, of course, you have your own e-commerce website, pristine and bristling with your very latest products, but simply not selling enough. Is there a way to combine these platforms to assist your own website sales?
Firstly eBay. It is an absolute no no to add your website domain name or phone number to any eBay listings, and for obvious reasons. eBay want the sale and the commission, which will not happen if the buyer goes directly to your website. Ebay charge a hefty fee which may well erode most of the margin that you are working for, so it stands to reason to try to make the sale directly from your own website if possible.
But there are subtle things that you can do to persuade eBay visitors to come and take a look at your website. A more brazen approach may be to suggest that they search ‘xyz widgets Winchester’ and find your website directly – purely to look at your client feedback or location details. There are graphics that can be listed with your products that hint at your domain name. Indeed many buyers like to look at the sellers’ website to check everything looks ok.
Once you have made sales from eBay you can store the e-mail addresses of buyers to use for future e-mail marketing campaigns. The sheer reach of eBay allows you to expose your products to a vast marketplace very quickly but the fees are commensurate with this reach.
Gumtree is a little less regulated and allows personal items to be offered along with your website address at a small charge. Again, suggesting that potential buyers search your company online gives you a sales opportunity. Gumtree also has a vast reach – certainly at a localised level. Results are geo-targeted so the nearest ads to a searchers location will be presented first.
Facebook offers a huge number of ‘stuff for sale’ sites which are again geo-targeted. These groups often contain many thousand members and they offer a quick easy way to expose your product or service to high volumes of potentially interested customers.
Some of these techniques carry a risk when used in this way and should be used carefully. Also, weigh up the cost of being suspended from these sites against the extra revenue that your pure web sales can generate. But in terms of reach, they can help you significantly to get to a marketplace that may otherwise struggle to find you.