Here are some suggestions/hints after seeing a few terribly disorganised and hard to navigate trade threads around, both here and elsewhere...
Plus some general info from more experienced traders, any input is welcome as are questions.
So in no particular order: Marketplace tips, tricks and suggestions
A good trade is where all parties are happy
Honesty is not the best policy, it's the only
the goods is vital, use a known standard if you can instead of making up your own, Discogs has a good one: http://www.discogs.com/help/marketplace/mp-grading
so long as it's accurate people should be happy, not everyone needs a pristine item, they may be replacing a rear cover or a torn booklet or if it's clothing and has a rip or hole be sure to describe it as well as you are able, not disclosing damage or misrepresenting the goods is a good way to get negative feedback...Alphabetise your list:
it's so much easier to read if it's in alphabetical order, there are online tools that can do this and lots of common text editing software can do this too if you don't want to do it manually eg http://www.alphabetize.org/ Not all caps:
PLEASE DON'T DO THIS OR THIS AND ESPECIALLY NOT THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Multiple colours:
unless there's some sort of point to it e.g red - sold
, blue - on hold
, yellow - new
use colours [and formatting] sparingly or you'll create a monster...Updating your list:
it's a good idea to update the first post of your thread as you add and remove items, making people scour your entire 50+ page trade thread will quite possibly put them offSubscribe to your trade thread:
[or bookmark it]
Then you will get an email if anyone posts in your thread with an offer or question, both options are at the bottom left of posts in this forum.ucp.php?i=main&mode=subscribeducp.php?i=main&mode=bookmarksSeparate formats, separate styles:
separate formats/sections to make it easy to scan your list, also styles, doom, death, thrash and so on [within reason] eg
Location:update your profile
or include it in your post, people like to know where you are and can be a deciding factor especially where postage/shipping is concerned, be aware that if you update your MA forum profile all your posts will show your location, some people don't have the goods with them if they travel for work or perhaps are in a band touring etc and get someone at home or back at the shop to send on behalf, in theory this is fine but caution should be taken when doing thisBoard presence
There is an option in the UCP [user control panel] to hide your online status
, if you have this enabled nobody will know when you were last here and may not think you're active [perhaps you're not...] if you don't update your threads, it might be a good idea to have this option set to NO if you want people to see you are in fact active here.Selling on behalf:
this is a terrible idea, also people who buy from someone and sell it to another and provide their buyer's shipping info instead are to be avoided, some people do this and have success but it's a really bad idea, things can go very wrong very quickly.Forum signature links:
Putting a link to your trade thread is handy, how else will people find it, probably not useful if you never use the forum outside of the marketplace but it's something to consider, your signature is a sandwich board NOT a billboard [not too big or flashy please].Feedback:
This is important, make it easy to find, offer it, don't make people look for it, especially important for new traders.
See our dedicated feedback forum: viewforum.php?f=22Feedback in signatures:
Those of you who have masses
of feedback may want to just list them all somewhere and link to it instead [see the note above]
This is good formatting
fatmac111, usertwo, thedudeman, ebaybro
This is not
good formatting and looks hideous also it will break the forum because it thinks it's one word and won't truncate the text properly.
If you have 10 different usernames all over the place it can get a bit confusing and can be off-putting to anyone wanting to deal with you. Selling to yourself is a bad idea as is selling stuff to a bunch of mates just to boost feedback, be aware that multiple accounts here at MA is against the rules, you will get banned.Multiple email addresses:
Try to stick to one
email address site-wide if you can, having one for emails about trades and one for sales and 4 different ones for split Paypal payments is overly complicated, unnecessary and looks dodgy...Trying to find someone:
Ebay advanced search can be used to find a memberhttp://www.ebay.com/sch/ebayadvsearch
Metal Archives member searchmemberlist.php?mode=searchuser
Discogs member searchhttp://www.discogs.com/user/USERNAME
replace USERNAME with the username
Facebook etc just paste in their email address or name and hit the go buttonHow to link to Ebay in a tidy way:
Yes there is a nice way to link to your Ebay page, actually there are several but not every way works for every account, this is the best one:
Ebay selling pagehttp://search.ebay.com/?sass=USERNAME
replace USERNAME with the username
replace NUMBER with the Ebay item number
replace NUMBER with the Amazon item numberValue of your items:
Search for sold items at Ebay, Discogs, heavymetalcd, GEMM, Amazon etc also searching the marketplace here can turn up info as can messaging the sellers, be aware though not everyone will divulge that info, be aware also of 'nostalgia inflation', this is where the seller values the item at a higher price because they have some story attached to it, maybe if the thing was autographed or has some super special attribute like coming directly from the band it would be worth it otherwise market rates apply really, what you are buying may only be for the autograph, this gets a bit tricky so common sense prevails, proving authenticity of autographs can be difficult too.Offers:
Do your research before making an offer, some traders don't like to put prices out in the open and just want your best offer, haggling can be a fickle process so trial and error and give and take is what is needed usually, make a counter offer if you want more, ignoring it or just saying "no" is pointless, try explaining why.
Also when you say "no response means no deal" looks really bad and is frustrating for the buyer.Payment:
Get yourself a Paypal account for international stuff, suggesting to buyers to post cash is not a good idea and probably illegal, for local deals cash reigns supreme or bank transfers etc
Bitcoin ezi-pay swap-a-donkey Western Union type websites are to be avoided.Item details:
Is what you have on offer what you think it is, check things against Discogs, Musik Sammler, Rate Your Music etc refunding things because the buyer didn't get what you said it was isn't much fun, different pressings/versions, reissues, bootlegs need to be correctly and accurately identified, flicking off a repress as an original first press will get your hand slapped so think twice or research first before claiming such things, familiarise yourself with IFPI SID codes, matrix info, licensing info and distribution companies and manufacturers, these seemingly insignificant details are quite important to some people, if you don't know or don't care to know just be honest and say "I don't know what version this is" or similar.Verification:
take photos of the goods, hand write your username on the front of the most recent local newspaper you have, it's virtually impossible to fake this or even better get the buyer to tell you in a PM or email a word to use, taking a photo at the parcel at the post office is also good.Having your email address visible:
it's all fine and well having your email address visible, it makes it easy to contact you if you don't have pm alerts enabled, but don't be surprised if you get random emails from people you don't know, also what happens offsite stays offsite, we can't look at behind the scenes info if it didn't happen here, something you might like to look into is email header info, doxing, proxies, ip addresses, 'the internet' is an excellent place for scammers PM/private messages:
if you allow private messages there is a paper-trail of sorts it can also be handy to keep track of who said what where and when, not everybody has an email address that marries up with their MA username, fredster_one1 at MA could have a totally unrelated email address, then you have to remember their name too, telling people not to PM you and only to email can put some people offOther comments
Try to be a nice person if you can, maybe you are busy or have a dozen deals going down, but it only takes a few extra seconds to say "hi" and "thanks"
Saying things like "no response = no interest" is pointless, how is someone to know if you even got the message, reply with something like "Hi, I had a look at your list but see nothing of interest, sorry" or if you're responding to an offer that you're declining a similarly worded response would be appropriate.
Remember you can report private messages by using this icon at the bottom of the message