Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The End of November

The end of another month, and of course this puts me in mind of our eBay sales.  Not so much of the actual sales, but I'm always trying to figure out the why's of it all, and it's not easy.  Although I won't have all the info I need until tomorrow, I have enough info to think about it today, not that it makes a difference.

We mostly sell postcards and antique photos.  The postcards we sell are the standard/chrome and earlier, so from the early 1900's to the 1970s or so.  The antique photos are from the 1860s to 1920s for the most part.  There are always exceptions.  We also sell snapshots, and those may be mid century or later, and we sell Victorian Trade Cards, which date from the 19th century. 

Sales rise and fall from month to month, but over all in 2010, sales have increased since June.   January thru May was at one level, from June on has been at a higher level.

Our sales this month are 20% higher than in October, but about 6% lower than September. (October was a bit slow, for some reason).  Our sales in November were going pretty good until Thanksgiving, then we had very little activity for 3 or 4 days.  It picked right up again Monday - had that period of inactivity not happened, we would have outsold October.  Of course if a toad had wings it's tail wouldn't bump the ground.

I keep a lot of metrics, more than perhaps I should.  And I can run some reports, but I don't really have the means to dig up detailed trends in the world wide postcard and photo collectible market.   We've learned some tricks to (we hope) make our items more visible - paying attention to titles, item specifics and such, and try to provide good pictures and descriptions.

I even know 4 or 5 reasons most people buy postcards - and that's good stuff to know, though there are a million other not so major reasons someone may buy a postcard.   I've learned that some subjects sell better than others, though it's rare that I can look at a card and say with any certainty that it will sell.  Or won't sell for that matter. 

My favorites are the old cards - but I've learned that many people prefer the "newer" cards (newer being 'only' 50 years or so old)

When you get right down to it, I'm surprised we sell so many.  I wish I could get some definite answers as to why.  Or how to sell even more.

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