12 Jul
Understanding the eBay buyer
Post by Joe - Cindercube
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Lets identify certain characteristics of eBay buyers and how the product configurator can influence your sales.

Understanding your target market is extremely important for any type of business activity. Even more so, its important to understand which groups of people within that market provide the greatest potential and ROI (return on investment). Regardless to what anyone else may say, I believe firmly that on eBay (just like anywhere else), we encounter only a few different types of people. Generally speaking there are three types of buyers who will browse your listings. I refer to them as the following;

  1. Golden Buyers
  2. Indecisive Buyers
  3. Toxic Buyers


Golden buyers

Golden buyers are the best group out there. These people buy your products without much work on your part. You list the item, and they buy it. No questions really needing to be answered or the anticipation of negative feedback to keep you awake at night. Golden buyers are usually people who either;

  • Know what they want
  • Don't care too much about the product
  • Aren't over hyped but have rather realistic expectations of the product
  • Aren't pinching every penny
  • Able to intelligently read and understand your listing and terms of the sale

There are probably some more reasons why these types of buyers exist but we'll leave it at that. Although these are the people we all want to buy our products, this is actually not our target group. It's a very thin slice of the market pie and like I said previously, these people are going to buy and there really isn't much you need to do to make that happen.

Toxic Buyers

I know I'm going out of order from the 3 buyer types listed above but I wanted to get this one out of the way so that you can focus on whats next. Toxic buyers are just that, Toxic. These are buyers who require an immense amount of work on our part as sellers who, in the end, never end up buying. They continually drag their feet and relentlessly bombard you with questions regarding your products or business no matter how hard you try. They are the polar opposites of Golden Buyers.

Sometimes through true patience and dedication you can coerce some to make a purchase but in the end many of these types of people will still find something to complain about, return the product, and leave you very unfair feedback. These types of people are not good for business. They siphon away our time and energy from the more valuable buyers and cause a loss of revenue. Yes, I am aware that in some cases you may have made a sale, but I say loss of revenue because the time spent on them could have provided a much better ROI somewhere else.

I'm sure there will be some who disagree with me but those sellers are usually in very small niche markets who have no choice but put in the time to convert these buyers to sales. For those of you in larger niche markets, you'll see that value in this. One of the first things you learn as a fisherman are which fish are edible and which to throw back.

Indecisive Buyers

This group controls the largest share of your market. Your ability to succeed within this group of people depends entirely on your ability to market your products and services. Your ability to market to these people will be directly correlated with the level of success you obtain. If you haven't figured it out yet, this is the group to focus on. Indecisive buyers are people who need to be guided on which purchasing path they should take. Its your job to get them on the path that leads to you. That's not all, once you've started them on that path, you'll want to guide them along the way to ensure they don't wander off and lose their way.

When indecisive buyers come to your listing they are taking the first step onto the pathway that leads to you. The next step they take depends entirely on you at this point. Do they take another step forward or do they take a step back to find a different path? In order to get your buyers to take additional steps toward you, you'll need to present them with the product they are looking for as quickly as possible.

Now, chances are that with custom products or products with multiple variations, your listing is not going to be exactly what the buyer wants. If they visit your listing its most likely because you have something that could potentially be what they're looking for and they hope that upon reading your description, they'll have been right. So if this is the case, you'll need to quickly show them that although this particular listing isn't exactly what they were looking for, you have what they need right there.

Through use of the product configurator your buyers will immediately see their ability to customize and select the options that they had been looking for all along. Not only does this interactive approach seriously motivate the buyer to purchase what they were looking for, it opens up a door for them to purchase things that they didn't know they wanted. Have you ever thumbed through a SkyMall magazine while on a flight? I come away wanting things I never knew existed up until that point. When a buyer has a full book on what you offer for sale that compliments the primary product he was looking for, you open up a fantastic way to up-sell your products.

Empower the buyer

One last thought to end this write up with. When you use the product configurator, you empower the buyer. Many times buyers are put off from buying if they have to ask questions and write emails in order to get what they want. People appreciate being able to help themselves and that's exactly what the product configurator offers them. Many perspective eBay buyers want to buy something immediately and not be forced to wait for delayed responses from sellers.

Any serious eBay seller knows that the longer a question goes unanswered the more likely they are to lose the sale. The configurator acts as an interactive way for a buyer to experience the type of product you can offer him. It will answer a very large amount of questions related to customized products and virtually eliminate the back and forth emailing that too often infects that buying process.


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