Each Tuesday I share a list of 10 somethings.
Ideas. Improvements. People. Problems. Objects. Observations.
Inspired by James Altucher in "Skip The Line", The Tuesday Ten has one simple goal - to build my 'idea muscle'.
If you write 3,650 ideas a year, maybe a hundred are useful in some way. Maybe a few are good enough to make money. Maybe one is great.
- James Altucher
1. Take offers
- Look over any new offers made by buyers and accept reasonable deals.
- My SKU system is date-based so it helps to see how long an item has been listed on eBay before accepting offers.
2. Send offers
- Send offers to people watching items.
- Another benefit of having a date-based system is batching offers and sending different %'s based on the time listed (eg. 15-25% off on more recent listings, 50-75% on older listings).
3. Send invoices
- Create and send invoices on newly accepted offers (Step 1), bundle deals (with discounted postage rate), and cancel any unpaid orders longer than 5 days.
4. Clear messages
- Reply to eBay buyer messages, and attend to any problems or queries.
- Clear out any redundant messages about offers (goal of inbox zero).
5. Check feedback
- Put out fires if any negative or neutral feedback has been left (customer service 101)
- Thank buyers that have taken the effort to leave positive feedback.
6. Send coupons
- Send current coupons to all 6 buyer groups (when available).
- 'Newest Buyers' - made a purchase within the last 31 days.
- 'New Buyers' - made a purchase more than 31 days ago.
- 'Old Buyers' - made a purchase more than 3 months ago.
- 'Oldest Buyers' - made a purchase more than 6 months ago.
- 'All Followers' - follows the store (may or may not have purchased before).
- 'New Followers' - same as above but followed within the last 15 days.
7. Clear out-of-stock
- The majority of my items are one-off and rarely do I have multiples of the same thing.
- I had the out-of-stock (OOS) option turned on to hide my sales history from local competitors (when item quantity reaches 0).
- It turns out eBay have changed how this function operates which I only just realised so essentially I will be skipping this step in the future.
8. Enter sales (in Google Sheets)
- This is where I enter sales data from my 'Awaiting Postage' page into my spreadsheet.
- The sheet is entirely automated and the 4 pieces of information (shown in blue) I need to add are the: listing title, order total, SKU and postage cost (next step).
- Fees and profit are calculated with simple formulas
- Whereas extra data like "Cost Of Goods ($)" and "Listing Date" are pulled from a master inventory list (which contains just a SKU number, COG and listing date) using specific formulas (see below).
9. Australia Post import
- The first step here is to import eBay orders into the Australia Post MyPost Business portal.
- Now, I want to add the SKU to the 'Additional information' box in Aus Post so that each label that I print has the SKU.
- This speeds up the picking and packing process tremendously (once the label is printed it takes ~30 seconds per item to pick and pack).
- To make this all seamless and eliminate errors (i.e. people getting wrong orders) I need to ensure that the correct SKU is attached to each order.
- To do that I copy the listing title (Command-C) from the spreadsheet and use the find tool (Command-F, then Command-V to paste) to highlight the order on the Aus Post page.
- Then to edit, all I do is add the corresponding SKU in the reference field, scroll down and select packaging type (which is 'Small' 90% of the time) and save the order.
- Then I just add the postage price of that order to the spreadsheet.
10. Final once-over of Google Sheet
- After these steps, and before I do the printing and packing, I have a glance at the monthly sales data and current stats to get a bird's eye view of the business.
- This is usually just a quick 1-minute thing to see how things are trending (the sales data that I track can be seen below and is all generated automatically from the 4 pieces of info added earlier).
- This entire SOP takes on average 10-15 minutes to complete and is done twice daily.
- To make this workflow easier, I save all the bookmarks in 1 folder that can be right-clicked which opens all 10 tabs simultaneously and then I just move through them from left to right until completion.