What’s a Girl to Do?

eBay every day. Even though I am an Attention-Deficit-Disordered Individual, I have managed to discipline myself to “eBay every day.”

(1) I accept “best offers” on items sold via my eBay store. These offers are good for only 24 hours. It took me a while to catch on to that, because in your eBay Message Box there are “Received” and “Expired” columns, and the “Expired” date is a month after the “Received” date. Apparently, that “Expired” date refers to the e-mail message, not to the offer. In any case, a few “best offers” I would have gladly accepted have slipped through my fingers because I wasn’t checking my eBay Messages regularly.

(2) When I sell an item, naturally I want to ship it right away, so that I can serve my customers well and receive positive feedback and get cute little certificates like this:


I communicate regularly with my customers (that’s one of the feedback criteria) and I always try to put something extra in their packages. Formerly the “something extra” invariably inflated my shipping cost and I was regularly losing money on my sales. Latterly the “something extra” has been a Gift Certificate worth $5 on my Zero Gravity Holiday Store. I’m pretty sure that including a Gift Certificate is permissible under the Media Mail rules (it’s nothing more than a coupon), although if you write a personal note — such as “thanks for your purchase” — even on the packing slip, WHOMP! You lose your Media Mail status and the shipping cost zooms.
Antique charcoal iron -- poor choice for "something extra"

Antique charcoal iron -- poor choice for "something extra" (photo by Vincent de Groot)

Auctiva quirks. Auctiva is just swell. The big advantages are (1) a charmingly formatted listing — more charming than eBay’s slimmer selection of listing enhancements, plus eBay bills you for the graphic extras and Auctiva does not; (2) the ability to post a few dozen photos on a single listing at no charge; (3) the scrolling gallery that automatically rolls along, displaying your other items for sale, at the bottom of your listing.

With Auctiva you automatically get an Auctiva store, but it does not replace your eBay store. It says so, right there in the Auctiva FAQ, which I cannot, at this particular moment, locate. So there you are, anyway, with two stores. eBay automatically inserts a link to your eBay store in your listing. But if people click on items in your scrolling gallery, they (the item-clickers) are transported to your Auctiva store.

When you list an item through Auctiva, you are asked which categories in your eBay store the item belongs in. You would think — wouldn’t you? — that your Auctiva store would emulate your eBay store and stick your listings in the same categories?

Alas, no. You have to organize your Auctiva store separately — something I have not taken the time to do. And Auctiva store categories bear no relationship to any categories you might have set up for photos you have imported. I have, for example, a category called “Women’s Clothing, Accessories” in my eBay store, and I have a category called “Women’s Clothing, Accessories” for my Auctiva photos, but neither of these categories translates to a “Women’s Clothing, Accessories” category in my Auctiva store.

Buy-it-now price -- $6.99 plus S&H

Buy-it-now price -- $6.99 plus S&H

Thus, someone who is whisked to my Auctiva store is looking at 75 items in no particular order — books next to baby booties next to brass candlesticks.

A.D.D. inattentiveness. I have a lot of stuff going on right now. I’m doing a semi-serious study of meditation. I’m working on a book, How to Write Poetry and Live Poetically, which is evolving via one of my three blogs. I’m trying to lure customers to my website, particularly my Holiday Store, and — this is big — I actually signed a contract to underwrite the National Public Radio program Speaking of Faith, which airs here in Omaha on Sunday mornings. The underwriting announcement features my new “Little Book,” Carry Me to This Enchanted Shore: A Morning Prayer and my larger book of prayers, meditations, household hints, and other odds and ends, Unfamiliar Territory. It is a lovely book, in full color throughout, and I suggest that you buy large quantities of all my books, because I could really use the money and everybody can always use a little inspiration. Meanwhile, I have neglected to add new merchandise to my eBay store, which is just plain dumb, because I have piles of stuff to sell — large, teetering piles that could cause me to sustain a Grave Personal Injury.

May Whoever Is On Duty bless you and your endeavors, and protect you from Grave Personal Injury….  —Mary

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Publish your Little Book in an easy little way….


One thought on “Oddities

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