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Charges for marketplace sales
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theartsandlettersofmaggiethecat



Posts: 2097

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Equate eCRATER with a house you have been living in for years rent free. Let's say your parents or a good friend owns the house and is letting you use it. You in turn mow the grass, pay the utilities, keep the place neat and clean and don't bash in the walls or use it for illegal purposes.

Now the house owner needs to paint the exterior and since you are living there rent free they ask you to chip in for part of the paint job.

Now you have multiple choices:
1. You can refuse and continue to live there rent free while the house deteriorates and the house value goes down and your neighbors drop hints at how your house is ruining the neighborhood.

2. You can be so incensed that the owners asked you to pay that you move out and have to pay rent elsewhere.

3. You can realize what a great deal you have had and gladly chip in a portion of the paint job. After all the owner didn't ask you to help pay for the new furnace that kept you warm, or to replace the kitchen appliances. While the new paint won't keep you warm or cook your dinner, it will make the place more attractive to strangers, your friends will enjoy coming to visit more, and you will feel proud you live there.
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FoxAndFish



Posts: 1582

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oakteakstore wrote:
Sites have been forced to pay for exposure on Google Shopping.

No, they have not been forced. eBay, Amazon, eCrater, and every other e-commerce site had the option of telling Google to stuff it. But they did not. If every e-commerce site had refused to play Google's game, there would be no pay-to-play Google Shopping, b/c there would be no content to fill it. Google would then have had to regroup, either fold Google Shopping or let it continue cost-free or whatever. This is the same mindless escalation that lead "Black Friday" Christmas shopping to start on Thursday. Pretty soon Christmas shopping will start in June.

eCrater said in its fee announcement at http://community.ecrater.com/viewtopic.php?t=33039: "We are spending considerable efforts and money to drive buyers to our marketplace."

What are those efforts? Is it solely payment to Google Shopping? Is it advertising elsewhere? If so, where and in what form?

According to the analytics at compete.com (and everyone is free to research how the analytics are compiled and decide whether the information is reliable or bogus), eCrater's monthly traffic has fallen by roughly 40-50% in the past 12 months: from 1.4 million to around 700,000. So how well are the "efforts" working?

Some long-time sellers here have admitted that their sales have tanked and that they have become more successful on other venues. Long-time sellers that used to average about 100 sales per month are now at half that or less. It's telling that the monthly sales thread has only 3 pages this April (8 pages last April) and ever-diminishing enthusiasm than has been evident in the past. I, for one, have had no eCrater sales whatsoever since January. That has never happened since I joined in 2009. I am having monster sales on sites that neither list on Google Shopping nor advertise elsewhere. None here.

It's also interesting that so much emphasis is being placed on Google Shopping, when, in the past, there have been numerous discussions about how ineffective Google Shopping is...with sellers maintaining that their customers do not come from Google Shopping, that sellers didn't even know Google Shopping existed until they got to eCrater, etc etc. So why is eCrater paying for listings to appear in a shopping search engine that is, according to various eCrater sellers, not effective?

I do not mind paying a fee, tho I find it unfortunate that eCrater is now in a position to require income from its sellers. One of the things that made eCrater unique among e-commerce sites was that it maintained its integrity in all things, including the statement that the site was free for sellers. But the fee needs to be spent wisely and effectively. If it's being spent solely to keep eCrater listings in Google Shopping, then perhaps that is not a wise investment. And perhaps eCrater should offer sellers the option of their stores not being fed to Google Shopping, as other venues do. eBay gets roughly 80 million visitors per month...Amazon gets roughly 130 million. The fees that have long been charged in those venues were spent in part making those companies household brand names and shopping destinations. Will eCrater do the same with the fees it will now collect?
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cosmicray



Posts: 7136

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FoxAndFish wrote:
It's also interesting that so much emphasis is being placed on Google Shopping, when, in the past, there have been numerous discussions about how ineffective Google Shopping is...with sellers maintaining that their customers do not come from Google Shopping, that sellers didn't even know Google Shopping existed until they got to eCrater, etc etc. So why is eCrater paying for listings to appear in a shopping search engine that is, according to various eCrater sellers, not effective?

The 5 or 6 sales in my main store, since the tag were added, all say marketplace. My second store (the LEGO parts store) is getting sales from a mixture of sources. I have not figured that one out (other than the main store is not getting GPS sales).
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ktshappystore



Posts: 62

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:34 pm    Post subject: marketplace? Reply with quote

how can i get my store on this marketplace?
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elpereles



Posts: 3399

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
how can i get my store on this marketplace?


You are in eCrater. So you already in the marketplace. Contrary to other selling sites eCrater is running "parallel" versions of the site. For example:

Marketplace Version
http://www.ecrater.com/p/17720952/2005-donruss-team-heroes-126-alex-gonzalez?keywords=2005+Donruss+Team+Heroes+%23126+Alex+Gonzalez

Your USA Store Version
http://ktshappystore.ecrater.com/p/17720952/2005-donruss-team-heroes-126-alex-gonzalez
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thecheapskirt



Posts: 2123

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 10:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FoxAndFish wrote:
oakteakstore wrote:
Sites have been forced to pay for exposure on Google Shopping.

No, they have not been forced. eBay, Amazon, eCrater, and every other e-commerce site had the option of telling Google to stuff it. But they did not.


Actually, Amazon chose not to participate in Google Shopping.

FoxAndFish wrote:
It's telling that the monthly sales thread has only 3 pages this April (8 pages last April) and ever-diminishing enthusiasm than has been evident in the past.


I for one stopped participating in that thread when other sellers would take potshots at the sales volume I reported. Not worth my time. Perhaps other successful sellers felt the same. I can only speak for myself.
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tigercreekgifts



Posts: 6293

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 12:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with what Fox & Fish said. Google shopping is not that affective and so far, since ecrater started showing us where our sales are coming from, mine have only been marketplace and store direct. I have yet to see any real result from google shopping either on ecrater in the "came from" section of our admin or in google analytics. It would be nice if we had the option to opt out of having our items placed in google shopping because I don't think it's fair to charge all sellers a fee for listing their items in shopping if they could care less whether their items appeared there or not.

Maybe we should write to ecrater about that, and see if they could make it an option? I just don't like the idea of paying fees for services that aren't doing me any good anyway!!! I'll just be filling ecrater's pockets for the heck of it.
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dccollectibles



Posts: 2591

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep I'm in the same boat. Pretty much from day 1, Google Shopping has been a succubus of time and effort. Now we maintain attributes mainly for the purposes of eCrater search and whatever value that might have weighing on Google results (it's never been disproven or proven). Yay, we're number one in Google Shopping. Who the frack cares? Seems pretty much no one. I'd pay the fee gladly if it were directed at more productive methods of advertising.

I--as I assume others--would like to know about these "monster sales" sites. If they're not eBay or Amazon, then who? Those two are--unfortunately--in another league altogether at this time. Meager as the sales may be, I'm still getting more traffic here than other websites. Of course, traffic means almost nothing without sales, but it's something.
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antiques-collectibles



Posts: 440

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 3:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suspect "Monster Sales" is a matter of perspective. How much is a "Monster Sale" anyway? $50? $100? $500? Needs to be defined.

I went back to ebay to sell some stuff, they took 10% + 2.9% PP and I had to start "free" shipping because on my first 3 sales I got dinged on shipping costs even though I paid more to ship the stuff than I charged the buyers. Thing is, even with the fees and the idiots I still made a lot more money than I have this year here, and I only listed a very few items.

Bills have to be paid, and if one site is inadequate, you have to try others. Weebly is good, but you have to make your own way there, too.
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FoxAndFish



Posts: 1582

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 5:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

antiques-collectibles wrote:
How much is a "Monster Sale" anyway?

Since I think it's both rude to disclose and nobody's business how much income a seller makes, I chose not to post it. But you're in the antiques/collectibles business, so you'll get the drift...and these products' selling prices are available on the net if anyone cares to track them down. But here are some examples of items sold in the last 3 months that had been posted on eCrater for years with little traffic but sold on other venues that are 100% free, do not advertise, and do not list in Google Shopping: set of 5 19th-century Chinese Export Blue Canton plates...vintage 1970s limited edition (1 of 10) neon sign from a famed transport company...quantity of 20 hardback books on historic preservation. Also a rare vintage auto (Italian sports car) dealer sign that was not listed on eCrater b/c it was too large (5' diameter) to ship easily.

antiques-collectibles wrote:
if one site is inadequate, you have to try others.

I have been sellling on up to 9 sites since 2008. All of them are 100% free. That used to include eCrater. I have never sold on eBay or Amazon...and never will.

As I've posted before, and as has been discussed before, the name of the game is getting into Google organic search...which is currently still free, as Google Shopping had been and which used to pull products from Google Shopping for inclusion. Since Google constantly changes the rules, different venues appear better in the ranking at different times than others. Since 2010, b/c of Google's MayDay and Caffeine changes, eCrater's visibility in Google organic has suffered mightily, which may have to do with the need for eCrater to start advertising (somewhere) and charge sellers for its efforts.

antiques-collectibles wrote:
Weebly is good, but you have to make your own way there, too.

I have a Weebly store, as well. Weebly does not charge users for basic services, advertise, nor list in Google Shopping.

Again, if eCrater is going to use the selling fee to make eCrater a destination for buyers (not for snagging more sellers), more power to 'em. But if the fee is solely for inclusion in Google Shopping, it might be in the sellers' best interest to be able to opt out, which is a feature other venues do offer.
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likesthejewels



Posts: 773

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure what ya'll are talking about when you mention Google Shopping. If I or any of my family wants to find something, that is the first place we go. I do not understand where else you can go to find something you are searching for. I have tried to search for items on Yahoo and I just don't get it.

Could someone clear this up for me? Where else do you go to find what you are looking for?
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dccollectibles



Posts: 2591

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not sure if it's the particular item type or not, but we have an ongoing survey we send to all buyers (or potential buyers). Of those who choose to answer, not one has mentioned Google Shopping. Ever.
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cosmicray



Posts: 7136

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

likesthejewels wrote:
Could someone clear this up for me? Where else do you go to find what you are looking for?
The front end of Google is what is called Google web search (or Google/organic). Once you go there, and click on the sub-tab that says "Shopping" you are searching in a special indexed list of products for sale that is called Google Product Search (or Google Shopping).
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FoxAndFish



Posts: 1582

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

likesthejewels wrote:
I'm not sure what ya'll are talking about when you mention Google Shopping.

I may be missing your question, as there have been countless posts about Google Shopping since you've been here, so I don't know if you're asking something other than what it appears. But...Google has 2 main search engines: Google "organic" or web search and what is now called Google Shopping (formerly Google Product Search, Google Base, and Froogle).

Google Shopping, which had been free in its previous incarnations, started charging for listings in Oct 2012. There are many threads on the topic. Here are a few:

31 May 2012 "Google Products to show only paid listings come fall?": http://community.ecrater.com/viewtopic.php?t=31024

07 Jul 2012 "More about the new Google pay to play": http://community.ecrater.com/viewtopic.php?t=31295

08 Aug 2012 "Google Shopping": http://community.ecrater.com/viewtopic.php?t=31475

When you open google.com, there should be a search bar (or bars) at the top and/or side that say "Shopping" or "More" with "Shopping" as a pulldown.

likesthejewels wrote:
I do not understand where else you can go to find something you are searching for.

There are various other search engines, such as Bing and DuckDuckGo, tho Google has done an excellent job become the category killer over the past 10 yrs.

Understanding that Google Shopping exists and now charges for listings is applicable to this thread b/c eCrater chose to pay for insertion of our stores, which may have something to do with the recent decision to start charging a fee on marketplace sales. Or not. There is no clarification of how the soon-to-be-collected fees will be spent.
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MoonwishesStore
moderator


Posts: 16960

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 7:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm not sure what ya'll are talking about when you mention Google Shopping.
Go to Google to search something. In the small print with other options like maps, etc. you will see the word shopping. Click on that and you are in Google shopping. I had never noticed it was there until I came here.

With 25 sales now since they instituted the where the sales come from; this is what I'm seeing at my store.

Store Google - 4
Store Yahoo - 6
Other - 2
Store Bing - 2
Marketplace - 6
Store Direct - 4
Facebook - 1

So I am getting some sales form Google, whether Google shopping or just Google I don't know, but I'm getting sales form all over which I think has been because of lots of promoting over the years, although I know I could do more if I only had the time and energy.

I do know that my stuff shows up in Google shopping and I think ecrater is aware that they need to do more than just focus on GS as a promotion. I'm sure they have the numbers of where all the sales are coming from and that will give them and idea of where to go and what to focus on. I don't think it is their responsibility to TELL us where and what they are spending the fee on other than what they have said and that is promoting ecrater, not for the owner to buy a yacht. Ebay and Amazon and the other big venues sure don't tell sellers how they are spending their fees, and I'm sure several of them did by yachts! Even the smaller sites with fees don't tell so I'm not really sure why some here seem to think that ecrater is obligated to tell us or spend the fee as we think they should.

Edited to add what had not posted originally.


Last edited by MoonwishesStore on Thu Apr 25, 2013 4:19 pm; edited 3 times in total
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