The Five-Minute Research Recipe

By Steve Nye, eBay Certified Consultant

If you’re like me, you’re always pressed for time. In fact, you may be skimming over this article because you don’t have much time to read it.

But, if you are looking for ways to save some time—and make some more money for that matter—then take a few minutes here and I’ll show you how to get a profitable edge on eBay in five minutes or less.


Getting the HammerTap Research Edge

In the past, you could sell almost anything on eBay and make a profit. Now things have changed. With more sellers and more product offerings out there, eBay has quickly become one of the most competitive online marketplace.

In order to be successful, you need to gain a competitive edge. But how do you do that? Lower your prices? Offer free shipping? Double your listings? While these may work, they also cut into your bottom line.

How can you be competitive and successful at the same time? The answer lies in knowing your market and how your product sells in that market. In other words, you get the competitive edge with HammerTap market research.

But like I mentioned earlier, who has time for research? After you learn this five-minute research recipe, all you will need is five minutes, and trust me, you have five minutes laying around somewhere!


The Key to a Good Recipe

Now, the key to a really good recipe is having a good mixture of tasty ingredients. When it comes to your listings, these ingredients are all the things (listing features and options) that will affect the outcome of the final product and that will give you the competitive edge.

Getting this edge ultimately makes your listings more successful and more profitable. It’s done by selecting the key listing features (all the "ingredients" found in your research) that bring you both the highest success rate and highest selling price.

Let’s say that I had a few pair of Nike running shoes that I wanted to sell, but don’t want to put a lot of time into researching them to find the best day to end, best listing type, etc. that will give me the biggest profit. I can simply use the Findings Window in HammerTap to give me a quick glance of how to list my auction.

With just a quick glance, I know that I have a 62% chance of selling at an average sales price of $48.49. But, we don’t want to settle for the average—we want the competitive edge. So, we want to find out how we can make our auction more successful than 62% and more profitable than $48.49.


A Tasteful and Profitable Mixture

Now we don’t have much time, so we need visuals!

In HammerTap, you can expand the windows as you see above by clicking on the green arrows to the left of the options. For this example, I have expanded Listing Type and Duration (that’s how long the listing lasts).

Now, to increase our Listing Success Rate (LSR) we want to use a Dutch Auction. But, take a closer look at the chart. Only one auction was a Dutch auction, which sold, making the LSR 100%. But, one auction isn’t really that good of a sample, so a regular auction may be more successful.

Now how about profit? We can see that a Fixed-Price auction sells on average for $59.35, more than $10 more than the average. Glancing back over to the LSR column I can see that Fixed-Price also has a high LSR, so I will probably want to go with a Fixed-Price listing.

Now look at Duration and find which duration brings you the highest LSR and ASP (average selling price).

What did you find? How long did it take you?

Do you see how quick and easy this is? Already with just these two examples we have increased our chances of selling and increased our sales price by more than $10 in a couple of minutes. $10 in five minutes adds up to $120 an hour. And don’t forget, this is an EXTRA $120!


Five Minute Research Recipe

Now, you can see that in five minutes, I could look through the Findings window and cook up answers to the following questions:

  • What are my chances of selling? (LSR)
  • How much can I expect to make? (ASP)
  • Which Listing Type will increase my ASP and LSR?
  • Which Start Day and End Day will increase my ASP and LSR?
  • Which End Hour will increase my ASP and LSR?
  • Which Listing Duration will increase my ASP and LSR?
  • What Start Price will increase my ASP and LSR?
  • What key Title Words will increase my ASP and LSR?
  • What Listing Features will increase my ASP and LSR?

Now the recipe is this—create a smooth combination of these options and your success will be higher than the average and your sales price will also be higher than average. That’s the reason you got HammerTap, right? To sell more, make more, and to get that competitive edge! And this is exactly how you do it!


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