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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 8:05 am    Post subject: Returning seller, hello to all! Reply with quote

Hi, after a long absence, I have finally left "that site that shall not be mentioned", for good. Whew, what a mess that place has turned into, I got out just ahead of the major screw-ups.

Anyway, I remember some of you, like Moonwishes, Maggie and others. Good to see you all!

I've spent a lot of time re-vamping the store and getting up to speed on the changes, more to come. Please feel free to offer critiques, the good, the bad and the ugly, lol. I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to tech. Confused Since this is now my online selling home, I don't want to mess up.

My main nemesis is the dreaded shipping matrix (of course). I'll try to address it in a thread other than this one. I've been reading through some of the old threads on the topic and it is still clear as mud for me. Sad I do have my shipping settings at calculated, free, or flat rate. But for those rare instances where USPS doesn't connect and I need a fall back, gotta fill out that matrix, but it's kind of tough to do when you can only put in a single digit. If anyone can provide a link to what they think is the BEST explanation of the matrix monster, I'd be most grateful.

On this positive side, I did finally catch on to the google attributes and that seems to be going well. At least I'm getting hits! I had some nice sales in the past and hope I can do it again.
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thelivesandlovesofmaggiethecat



Posts: 9949

PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome back. I took a look at your shop. I noticed you accept several forms of mailed payment. I wouldn't if i were you. Buyers tend to change their minds or forget to mail the payment and now that USPS is being trashed by the postmaster general you never know if or when it will arrive.

Let me know if you sell small lots of jewelry. I have suitcases full of the stuff all marked down to give-away prices. I'm thinking of raising them again.

Good luck.
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thelivesandlovesofmaggiethecat wrote:
Welcome back. I took a look at your shop. I noticed you accept several forms of mailed payment. I wouldn't if i were you. Buyers tend to change their minds or forget to mail the payment and now that USPS is being trashed by the postmaster general you never know if or when it will arrive.

Let me know if you sell small lots of jewelry. I have suitcases full of the stuff all marked down to give-away prices. I'm thinking of raising them again.

Good luck.


Hi, Maggie, great to see you again. I will take your advice on the mailed payment. At first I just had paypal, but then added the mailed payment option, but now that you mention it, you are right.

Sometimes I do sell jewelry, but it was never much of a seller for me here in the past. I may add one of the specialty sites for clothing, jewelry, accessories, etc. to my selling efforts in the future, if I do, I will let you know. Probably you should raise your prices. I have noticed that if the price of something is too inexpensive, sometimes people wonder what is wrong with it.
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MoonwishesStore
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Posts: 17075

PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome back. You can say eBay without getting slapped or detention! Very Happy

I LOVE that Walnut Library table. My mom has one very much like that. If I had any money burning a hole in my pocket and a place to put it, I would grab it. However, I am sure it will not fit in a Medium or large flat rate PM box! These are two options showing. I can understand your problems with the Matrix though. I only use the matrix except for a very few things that I think are mostly sold at this point.

I noticed that you had an obsidian necklace and then a set of black jewelry also with a black obsidian necklace. The photos in both listing looks the same and the description seems to be the same. Do you have two different necklaces that are basically the same or have you mistakenly listed the necklace twice? The 4 piece jewelry set has been listed with the necklace separately and then the three pieces also have their own listing. I don't think you are allowed to sell the same item listed in two different ways unless you have two complete sets of these items. Especially the way the prices seem to bounce around. I didn't really look at the other jewelry as that caught my eye as I saw them on the same page rather close together. I think if a seller tried to buy both the 4 piece set and then the necklace on its own you will have a bit of trouble fulfilling them unless you do have two identical sets of these pieces. Sorry if that sounded like I was rambling.

I'm thinking that you can use the matrix as a weight in the categories that you need, like anything up to 8oz you would have the postage and handling in the matrix under the #1 column, the next column would be a weight up to 15.9 ounces which is still first class shipping so you can have that postage and handling amount in the second column. Now you will be into the Priority Mail area, so anything that will fit and ship in a PM flat rate envelope, have that postage and shipping amount in the third column. Then the fourth column and on, you would need the weight for say 2# of regular PM, in the next column, and then about 5# in the next, etc. until you get to the point of the weight of that library table. By your last few columns I would probably be jumping up 5# in each column. The last column in the matrix 16+ you put in say $5 which ads $5.00 to whatever price you had in column 16 and they will be added together. When you are listing your items, you will see the line called weight matrix. You enter whatever column of price you need to ship that item to CA . If you list something that weighs weigh past the amount you have in column 16 you calculate how many additional $5 you need to ship this item.

Just to make the math easy and this more understandable, if you have $40.00 in column 16 and in 16+ you have $5.00 but it will cost you around $60 to ship it and buy insurance as well you will calculate $40+$5+$5+$5+$5=$60 so in your weight matrix in your listing you will put 20 as the weight so it know that it has to use the $40 plus 4 more $5 to get to what you need for shipping. You might want to double check that the first time to be sure that the number is 19 or 20 as I don't know if it will add 16+ as one of the weights so it would be 16+ 16 plus+ three more $5 and so the number may need to be 19. But anything with that sort of shipping, I would think that you want to double check your weight amount to be sure you are in the correct ballpark. Some think that they have to charge actual postage and that is all, but you need to add in insurance for expensive things to save your wallet, packaging supplies, trip to the PO, etc. all that, IMHO, gets added into the postage.

Perhaps clear as mud. I remember when I was jumping ship from eBay to here for two whole days I struggled to figure out in my head how to use the matrix. I was laying in bed and suddenly it went off like a lightbulb and I knew exactly what I had to do. I have been doing it now since 2008! No problems, unless I list a pattern that weighs more than 4 ounces and I forget to bump my weight to 2. That is my fault and not the matrix's. If you have questions, I will try to help. Oh and by the way, if you buyer, buys multiple items, the matric will count all the different weights and should give you the grand total of how much the postage should be.
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moonwishes! Great to see you again! Thank you so much for your reply, I'm going to address it at greater length tomorrow, because I've just recently had some minor surgery and need to get some zzzs.

BUT, that is really weird about the shipping on the library table. I'll have to check my shipping settings, because I THOUGHT I set it to calculated shipping, which is supposed to override everything else. At least I'm under that impression. I checked the listing, and I've entered a weight of 18 pounds, checked the weight matrix as a back up to calculated shipping, so I have no clue why it's showing a flat rate!!!! Sigh. And here I was so proud of myself.

You're right about that obsidian necklace thing, I'll delete the single listing for the necklace only, I appreciate your input. Lol on the ebay thing. When I was here a while back, I seem to recall that we were advised not to mention it by name, out of courtesy to e-crater. But maybe that was just in my head, lol, it has been a while.

Will answer more tomorrow. Bless you and Maggie for replying.
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MoonwishesStore
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Posts: 17075

PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hope you feel better soon! I just got back from a haircut and a few drive-thru errands and then a trip into CVS and I am exhausted as if I had been digging ditches all day! On the 1st we had 3-4" of snow. Downtown today the sign was saying 81 degrees which is taking my last bit of starch. I've slowed down some by cutting out a lot of Amazon activity as I just can't keep up anymore. Too tired, too old, and too much physical problems. I'm glad several of the errands meant I got to sit in the car as I am really wobbly today.

But I did my 'work' for the day, taking a nap soon and hubby put my new sewing table into my sewing room last night so maybe tonight I can start setting the room back up! I am hoping if my husband will help on the technical end of things to perhaps make some videos for YouTube as a new money source, even if only a little bit.

But I have found that you have to take time to take care of yourself. Whenever I feel like I am maybe coming down with a cold or the flu, I do something I never could do when working as a nurse. I now drop everything and rest. Neither of us have had a cold or the flu in over 19 years! But as I was working as an RN before, I rarely called off sick as it was too hard to cover and that is the problem in nursing, never enough staff so you come in sick or not. No vaccine for all these last 19 years either although I had them as a nurse and got sick throughout the year. I really think that is one of the things that helps people stay healthier, is taking the time to nip things in the bud.

Just an encouragement to take your time recovering.. Very Happy
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 2:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Moonwishes! Sounds as if you have had a busy day and definitely you should get your rest. I appreciated the story about your nursing career, it seems to me that you are one of those who just naturally cares for and supports others. You even do it here! You have helped so many over time.

Anyway, I corrected the listings that you pointed out, now I have just one lot of the black and gray stone jewelry.

As far as the matrix goes, I am going to have to write e-crater directly and find out why mine will only accept single digit numbers in the slots. There's no way I can use it for heavier items if that's the way it is going to be. It seems like I am the only one with this problem, at least from what I've been reading. If I can get that cleared up, then I think I can set it up just fine.

I checked on the shipping for the library table in my admin tool. There's no earthly reason that it should be showing flat rate, I don't have flat rate checked off or entered. I have USPS calculated shipping checked, so it should be activated. And once I find out why I can only use single digits in the matrix, I can activate that as a back up. I guess I'll have to email and wait until they get around to me, sigh.

I appreciate your good wishes. Two weeks, and the stitches come out, I can hardly wait!!!

Best, K
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MoonwishesStore
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Posts: 17075

PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The team is usually very good an pointing things out and might see where you clicked something and didn't notice it. Because of the VAT and all the EU stuff that we don't really know or want to know about, and the way that postage skyrocketed, I stopped selling internationally, but I still remember getting a sale where the price was $4 more than what I had it. Turns out that when listing the item, my title was over 100 characters so that they shot it back to me. I had to reinsert the photo but since I do copy/paste listing, I never noticed that the listing also reverted to the price of the item I was copying most of the listing from. That is how I found out about double checking everything when they tell you that you have too many characters (and this was when I was doing US,UK, and AUS pricing so I just didn't notice it). But the good news was it showed me that just because a pattern brand sells cheap here doesn't mean that someone might not pay more for it elsewhere. Since then I have sold quite a few of that brand for more than I had originally priced them, by several dollars and I never mind throwing a few more dollars in the bank account! But the long-winded point here, is that I had been selling here for maybe 5-6 years at that point and I never realized that would happen! Now it is much easier to see where a price might have changed as I only have the US one. I miss doing international as it was 20% of my business. Those from OZ were especially happy to be able to get patterns when they live 100 miles from the nearest store. But you always need to be on the look out for something that you didn't realize might happen. I wonder if I'm the only one that had that problem as no one else has mentioned it! That is the kind of thing that if I hadn't figured it out I would be asking the team what had happened. Just me not being careful . Embarassed Not saying you aren't being careful, but somethings just slide by our radar.

Just about everything was easier about selling online in the first ten years or so and they the scammers came out in droves, the venues, except for eCRATER seemed to think that they could take advantage of us and grab all the money they could from us. Before I quit most of Amazon I had noticed that without any reason for it they started charging me a 17% FVF instead of 15% on some of my patterns. There was absolutely nothing different about the listing other than Amazon taking a bigger cut.

We need the extra money if we make any, but I am trying to get my store in ship shape here as I have found that Google is restricting more listing than just the ones with the red mark to them. I think that currently, I am guessing that almost a half of my listings they aren't showing! I need to fix that, and that will be a lot of work for sure.
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Fri Apr 09, 2021 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Moonwishes, sorry it took so long to get back to you. That's really interesting about the change in price, I can't imagine how that could happen without making the change myself. But then again, I don't understand how the library table is showing flat rate shipping either. I checked it over again and can't see why that would happen. It's driving me crazy and I don't need that. I just want to sell some stuff, not play guessing games. Sheesh.

I will contact e-crater and try to find out what's up. I really appreciate the advice. And, how are you doing today? Everything OK?
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MoonwishesStore
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Posts: 17075

PostPosted: Fri Apr 09, 2021 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent as long as I don't think about my body, LOL Very Happy . It has been rather muggy and looking all day like it is going to rain, however when I got up from my nap I found two ecrater orders, one being a book for $150!!! Never give up! Slowly but surely I have been setting up my sewing room now that my new sewing table is in place, but I got wobbly and almost fell so decided to take a break for awhile.

I think we all have to work together. One of the reasons that I try to help out when I can. The more good sellers we can have here, the more sales and the more people hear about us. When you have time unless you have seen ecommercebytes seller survey each year. eCRATER has made the top ten every year. They mad a big deal that Amazon did better this year than eCRATER, when in truth, when you add the results of all the categories together I think Amazon had 1 point more than us. I'm happy just to see us in the top ten, while Amazon for its size should be up near the top rather than in 6 out of 10.

If we all work together we grow successful together. Too many people forget about that as they try to claw their way to the top on their own and think no one knows anything better than them how to do that. It is crazy sometimes. On the Amazon forum one day, I offered a suggestion which another poster took offense at and in the back and forth about why I said what I did, he told me that I needed to start EVERYONE of my posts saying that I am a small seller so people can bypass my 'pearls of wisdom', as how can a small seller know anything??? Laughing A few years before that one of the most admired and respected sellers and posters on the forum sent me a PM and told me to get an avatar so he could find my posts in all the other 'clutter'! Now that was a very nice compliment and told me that small or not, I did have something to say. I waited years to be able to work from home other than doing home daycare. I wish I could have done this back when I had stamina and energy, I might have ended up one of those sellers that start off every post with how they sell $100,000+/month. Since I don't have the stamina, I get to stay humble instead.
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Fri Apr 09, 2021 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am glad you are pacing yourself, Moonwishes. And that is FANTASTIC about those orders. I am looking forward to something like that and you really helped me with your comment about when you started selling here and how it took a little while to start getting orders. Since I am a returning seller, it's as if I am starting over again, and patience is the key.

Yes, the comments about e-crater on Ecommercebytes are pretty good, it's great to see how the site has hung in there all this time. People are realistic about it and that is always a plus. I know what you mean about snotty commenters on Amazon, that's unfortunately a part of some public forums, sigh. LOL, you should check out the comments on some of the political forums, now THAT is some rough stuff. (On second thought, don't check them out, lol, too depressing)

Anyway, I did write the team about the shipping, BUT, I think I might have figured it out and wanted to run it by you before I filled it out. Here goes:

So along the top of the matrix, from left to right, I have a weight scale row that looks like this:

1 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 16+

For my purposes, those represent pounds. Underneath those numbers, I've got blank boxes that only allow a single digit number. So let's say, underneath the number 1 (representing one pound), I enter the number 8, representing $8.00. So far, so good, that's about right for shipping in the US. OK, now beneath the 2, which represents two pounds, I would put (just as an example) the number 5, representing $5.00, as an INCREMENTAL amount, meaning 8 + 5 = $13.00 for two pounds. Then, under 4 pounds, I would put in the box another 5, representing $5.00, meaning $13.00 for two pounds PLUS another $5.00, totaling $18.00 for 4 pounds, and so on up to 16.

Is that how it works? If that's how it works, then I can do this with the boxes only allowing single digits (meaning dollar amounts). Geez, I hope so, that's the only way I could figure it would work.
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MoonwishesStore
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Posts: 17075

PostPosted: Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you asked as you have it wrong. The first $8 is okay. Then the 2# you put the total amount you need to collet like $10 which with two digits won't work currently. Only on 16+ do you add in only the incremental amount for each additional pound. So is for 16 you have $32 and then 16+ you will put $4 which would make 17# 32+4=$36 or say the weight is 20# so you would have 32+4+4+4+4=$48

If you only have the matrix for you shipping, you can put whatever you want in the weight boxes and then when you list something in that needs that amount of postage that is the weight you would enter. I can mail anything I have listed at this point, just by checking what the postage should be and then making sure you give it that weight or if you don't have a weight that is 'perfect' just bump it up to the next highest amount. Some sellers insist on only charging exact postage and the only ones that do that at this point in time in mail order as far as I can tell are small online sellers that insist on charging exact postage. Postage includes so much more than the price you pay for the postage which is why it is usually called postage and handling. The handling needs to account for the packaging, transport to the PO if needed. I might not take my mail to the PO everyday, but sometimes I have to drop mail off. If you don't keep track of that sort of thing are only cheating their own business.

Although, I once saw a guy on eBay that he charged the postage and he told buyers right up front that he also charged $8/item to pay the person that packages it. One of those, I think I will fall off my chair now. I think he sold books, but I think this was long before first class mail hit $3+ so media mail wouldn't have been too bad either. I can't imagine paying $10 for a book and then the media mail price plus another $8 to package. I think I would certainly expect perfect packaging for that price.
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Sat Apr 10, 2021 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sigh. And here I thought I had figured out a way around the glitch. Well, I've emailed my question to the team, I'll see what happens. I have one other option I can explore on my end that might be creating the glitch, will let you know how it goes.

You are right about the handling, by the way. People do have to account for their labor, but sometimes they don't because they've been made to feel guilty about it, unfortunately.
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MoonwishesStore
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Posts: 17075

PostPosted: Sat Apr 10, 2021 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I still remember a lady in France that complained in my feedback on eBay O think that I had charged her something like 25 cents too much for postage. I checked up on her feedback that she left others and a good 1/3 of them had the same comment but with different small amounts. At that point, I paid extra for stealth postage and have used it ever since. Try getting exact postage on Amazon, LL Bean, Sears, etc. ever! It doesn't/didn't happen. The book I sold for so much yesterday took me a chunk of time to package it safely, I consider that too a charge, the cost of time.
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ThePastLane



Posts: 93

PostPosted: Sat Apr 10, 2021 9:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

EUREKA! I found the problem, Moonwishes, and yes, it appears to be on my end. I have a laptop with a peripheral monitor plugged in, and sometimes that monitor creates a conflict, which is what happened here. I turned it off and reverted to the laptop monitor (which is tiny, so I don't use it much) and PRESTO! I can now enter up to four digits in those boxes for the small weight scale.

Shoot, I'll have to contact e-crater immediately and let them know, I don't want to drive them crazy.

Thanks for talking me through this. Going forward, if there's any problem at all, I'll check this situation FIRST! I really apologize for taking up your time with this, but you did help me to get to this point, so THANK YOU!
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