Saturday, March 31, 2007

eBay Extends Schedule of Weekly Technical Maintenance

Hi from Karen. Have a good productive weekend working on your eBay listings and your websites!

Beginning March 29, eBay is extending its maintenance period in order to make
necessary adjustments to its platform, the company announced. eBay will now take 4 hours instead of 2 hours to conduct maintenance, which it does each Thursday night.
I got the information from a newsletter from . You might want to consider signing up for their newsletter. It often has important information. Check out the partial list below to see some of the great information that auctionbytes offers us.

Related Stories
My friend from NY, Cindy, has signed up to be an eBay Educational Specialist. We can now attend a whole day of classes together put on by the ES Group and go to their dinner that night in Boston the day before eBay Live! I am really excited about gathering more information on how to better teach the eBay Business. Don't forget to tell anyone you know that I will continue teaching at SWOC along with offering private lessons. I can't help but get better with all the information that I have at my fingertips....through my keyboard!
Check out My World page on eBay. You might not realize that eBay is offering us yet another way to honk our horns. Use every way you can to advertise your e-commerce business and to show your customers that you are safe and reliable person to do business with. Show off your own brand and your special personality. Try to get a picture of yourself posted. People like to see who they are dealing with.
Check out my eBay Store

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Be Careful of Your eBay Linking

I took this from a newsletter that I get on my email
and thought it was worth passing along!

I went about my normal eBaying life until I got another email on March 22nd that another one of my eBay items had been shut down for illegal links. Now, I was getting worried. I had visions of my 5,000 auction and store items all being shut down overnight. What a nightmare!
If you have never had an eBay auction shut down, just know that everything will disappear. Your item number will pull up nothing--nada. You will have lost all your hard work--unless of course you use my I Sell system or another system that will store your data. It is not a good thing.

I immediately called the eBay Gold Power Seller's hotline and was redirected to the Trust and Safety department. They reviewed my account and some of my auctions and phoned me back.
I was told that even though it is not posted on the eBay site, they do have an internal policy now that states you can NOT mention anyone else's user id. How would I possibly know about that? How would anyone? They explained to me that if it is not clearly stated as an allowable link--then I must (and everyone else must) assume that it is not allowed. Yikes!

I explained to Trust and Safety that it would take at least 80 man-hours to take that sentence out of all of my 5,000 listings. Figuring 1 minute per auction multiplied by 5,000 auctions would be 83.3 hours. I didn't understand why it was against policy because I was driving traffic to other eBay sellers. I also asked for at least 60 days to accomplish this and to please not shut down any more of my auctions.

Trust and Safety said that their hands were tied and there was nothing they could do. I asked to speak to a supervisor and that was not an option either. I was freaking out. Please finish reading this article to find out what happened to me!

In the meantime, Here is a link to eBay's published Links policy.

I highly recommend that you check out the above link. But, here is a quick list of what IS allowed:

  • One link to a page that further describes the item being sold in that listing

  • One link to your email address that opens an email client for potential buyers to ask questions about the item in that listing

  • Links to photos of the item for sale

  • Links to your eBay Store or listings

  • Links to your Store newsletter and mailing list names are permitted, provided that your inclusion of the mailing list names does not constitute keyword spamming or violate any other eBay policy

  • Links to your "Add to My Favorite Sellers and Stores" page

  • Links to your About Me page (in addition to the About Me icon already provided by eBay)

  • Links to an eBay Wiki article(s)

  • Links to your eBay Blog page

  • Links to your eBay My World page

  • Links that provide credits to third parties

  • One link to your listing terms and conditions (providing that the most relevant information is within the listing itself and that this page does not include any links off of the eBay Web site)

  • The short list of what IS NOT allowed:

  • Links to websites or pages that offer to trade, sell or purchase goods or services outside of eBay. This applies whether it is a static URL or an active link.

  • Links to sites that solicit eBay User IDs, passwords or email addresses from buyers

  • Links that encourage buyers to place their eBay bids through a site other than eBay

  • Links or other connections to live chat systems

  • Links to subscribe to newsletters or mailing lists hosted outside-of-eBay

  • So, it was never clearly stated why I couldn't recommend my family's auctions. I was really worried. I was finally able to get a supervisor on the phone. George was awesome! He explained to me that although I was referring people to my family's auctions, some people would use that same option to refer their customers to competitor's auction with malicious intent. Now, that made sense.

Unscrupulous eBayers could say, "Check out these eBay stores to see what a great deal my item is." And eBay would not be able to police every auction fairly because how would they know who was referring to good stores vs. bad stores.

Now I understood! I told George I had no problem taking out that sentence, but I would need time. They gave me some extra time and I am so relieved! Thank you, eBay. We have already taken it out of about 200 auctions/store items and will be diligently working on this in the next while.

Be very careful about what you say or link to in your eBay auctions. Your business depends upon it.

WANT TO SEE MORE ARTICLES LIKE THIS ONE?See Lynn's past ezines here.
WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR EZINE OR ON YOUR WEBSITE? Yes, you may - just as long as you include this complete blurb with it: The Queen of Auctions and eBay Power Seller, Lynn Dralle, publishes 'eBay Tips & Tricks' a weekly ezine with 9000+ subscribers. If you're ready to jump start your eBay business, make more money and have more free time, get your FRE E tips now at

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Plan of Attack Going to Estate/Charity Sales

'Charity Sale--Plan of Attack' by Lynn A. Dralle, 'The Queen of Auctions'

A charity sale plan of attack must be different than a garage sale plan. There are several reasons. First of all, charity sales can be huge. Second, they can have many employees/volunteers. Third, there can be long lines waiting to get in and finally, they can be overpriced. The sale at our local church was huge this past Saturday. Most charity sales will never open the doors early. Out of 100+ charity sales that I have attended, only six have opened the doors early.

So, here goes:

#1--Just in case, be in line at least 15 minutes if not 1/2 hour prior to the published opening time. You must be one of the first ones in. We were in line at 7:30 am for ours that started at 8:00am.

#2--Have an empty box or bag in your hand. You will want to immediately start picking up items. You can always edit later, so have an empty box or two ready to use. If you have to waste time finding a box once you are inside you could miss valuable merchandise. My mom and I each had an empty box when they opened the doors at 8 am sharp this past Saturday.

#3--Take a deep breath and do not get overwhelmed. My adrenaline gets going the second they open the doors and sometimes, even I (yes it is true) get a little overwhelmed. Remember to take a deep breath and continue breathing. There is usually sooo much merchandise that there is plenty for everyone. AND most important of all--Have fun! It is a treasure hunt and you cannot make a mistake. The prices are usually so low at these events that no matter what you buy--you will come out 'smelling like a rose' as my grandmother would say. This was certainly the case this past weekend. I started putting things in my box in the regular area and didn't see much of value. I decided to check out the boutique area first.

#4--If the regular area does not look promising--head to the boutique. Typically, the boutique areas are overpriced but you may find the best merchandise here. Remember story # 90 from MMM? That was from the boutique area of this same sale two years ago! So, always take a spin through the boutique area early just to gauge the caliber of merchandise and the pricing. Last Saturday, the boutique area did not let me down. It was quite overpriced but there were some interesting items. I made a note to come back after I had exhausted the main area.

#5--Find an employee immediately that will set aside an area for you to stage your items. If you are going to be buying full boxes--which is what I typically do--find someone who looks like they are in charge and ask them where you can stage your items. Tell them that you are a dealer and will be buying a ton of merchandise. I did this at the sale last weekend and a nice gentleman named Bruce had me start staging by the grand piano. This charity sale actually had a classical pianist and music was being played. Wow! We had to branch out from the piano area and stage my items underneath the bake sale tables. By the time I was finished I had boxes under six tables and the ladies running the bake sale said, 'Honey, you should really have on a name tag so that we know you are a volunteer'. I had fun telling them that I was actually shopping and was going to buy everything under the tables! They even got a special person to add me up and those 18 full boxes only came to $280! What a score.

#6--Look under every table. I am not kidding! This is where I find some of my best items.
Remember the Baccarat chandelier from MMM # 57? I found that under a table at a charity sale. At the church sale last Saturday, I found a ton of stuff under tables.

#7--Do NOT pass over As Is items. If they are cheap enough, please buy them. My mom cleaned out my kitchen for me a few weeks ago. She made a pile of things to throw away. In that pile was a Quimper Faience salt and pepper shaker set that was very As Is. There was a huge chunk missing from the base and my mom said, 'Throw it away.' I said, 'No way! Please write it up for me to list on eBay.' My mom said, 'I won't do it.' I begged her and she relented. You won't believe what it sold for. Click here to find out. My As Is salt and pepper shakers

#8--Find the person in charge of the boutique and chat with them. After you are all done shopping and paying for your items in the regular area, go back into the boutique and chat with the volunteers. I did this last Saturday and the ladies were so nice! It never hurts to make friends. There was a chocolate pot set that I loved. It was priced at $170.00 for the pot and the 5 cups and saucers. I said, 'Do you think they would take any less? I just spent a lot of money next door.' The ladies said, 'Yes, we saw you. Let's get Harriet over here and I am sure she will make you a special price.' Well, Harriet and the ladies gave me deals on everything I wanted. the picture above is the chocolate pot set that I ended up paying $100 for. I am just showing you the pot, but I have five more auctions with the c/s sets being sold individually. I have already got my money back and maybe even more by the time this newsletter gets to you! The hot chocolate pot - mmmm! Click Here to see the current bid (or finished auction.)

Be prepared for Charity Sale season! Want to know what to be buying?--Check out my Boot Camp in a Box. Good luck to you!

The Queen of Auctions and eBay Power Seller, Lynn Dralle, publishes 'eBay Tips & Tricks' a weekly ezine with 8000+ subscribers. If you're ready to jump start your eBay business, make more money and have more free time, get your FRE E tips now at

Friday, March 16, 2007

TieHook Self-tightening Rope Cleat

Mike Ostrowski, a San Francisco Bay Area professional contractor, designed this incredible product after he almost lost an eye when a bungee cord recoiled into his face.

  • The TieHook is the world's first sliding self-tightening rope cleat that enables you to quickly and safely secure any type of cargo.

  • The TieHook comes with 2 tie hooks each providing two fixed cleats and one adjustable self locking cleat.

  • The TieHook mounts on utility racks, flat surfaces and truck bed rails, either vertically or horizontally.

  • The product is available with adapters for square and round utility racks as well as truck bed rails and the latest integrated systems from Toyota and Nissan.

TieHook can be purchased from our eBay location at:


or by calling our toll-free number:


For professionals the TieHook represents a step forward for safety and efficiency, especially for those in construction, gardening/landscaping, moving and other businesses in which people need to load and unload quickly with confidence they are hauling a safe and secure load.

According to research released in 2004, by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, vehicle parts, cargo or other material that has been unintentionally discharged from vehicles onto the roadway is estimated to cause over 25,000 crashes per year in North America resulting in approximately 80-90 fatalities.

Road debris injuries are more common and serious than people might think. Examples are:

  • In August 2006, a 43 year old Lake Forest Park, Washington man was killed dodging a piece of furniture that flew out of a pickup truck

  • In 2004, a Florida woman was fatally struck by a 34 pound metal plate on Interstate 95.

  • A few weeks later a man was killed when he rolled his SUV trying to avoid a clothes dryer on Interstate 75 in Atlanta, GA.

There is more than convenience in deciding to purchase the TieHook that Mike invented. You can see that it also eliminates the fear of causing an accident while hauling your cargo.


We Welcome You to Our Blog!

We blog about our rural area in the Pacific Northwest . This blog is all about my life and the places where my mind wonders from day to day. Have fun reading and looking at pictures. We welcome comments.

Be sure to watch, just above this blurb, my husband, Jim, using his 10 foot hands-free electric fishing kayak


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Electric Powered Hands-Free Fishing Kayak

Be sure to check out the separate blog to find out about our electric kayak, Kingfisher 10! You can find the blog at . You can also read the features list on this kayak and purchase building plans and building kits at .

About Me

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We moved to our current home on the Wild River Coast of Southern Oregon from San Jose, CA. Our family consist of Jim and Karen, two dogs and two cats. Karen's passion is gardening. Jim's obsession is building electric powered fishing kayaks and fishing.