Hello to my monthly readers. It's been a beautiful
spring time here on the Central Coast this past
month. The days are lasting longer and the birds
are back.

There seems to be a sense in the air that new and
exciting things are coming up on the horizon.

I hope you find some useful tidbits of info that
I've put together for this month's newsletter.

To Your Success,
Coach Danny


- New Product Source for April
- Raising Your eBay Margins & Profits
- Google Docs Offline Access
- Check Out Your Page Rank
- 2010: D-day for the Internet
- iOffer.com, 'Make Me an Offer' Site

"We are told that talent creates its own
opportunities. But it sometimes seems that
intense desire creates not only its own
opportunities, but its own talents."

-Eric Hoffer

New Product Source for April


Here's another product I thought was interesting.
I use something similar and enjoy using it to
cut my CD covers. Scrapbooking is another popular
hobby that seems have taken off. Lots of people
looking for supplies.

It has lots of TV exposure and might be a good item
to include with others on your website.

Perfectly cut crafts every time
Do the job right with the Craft-Lite Cutter. It’s
the first sliding trimmer with a built-in light so
you can see what you’re cutting. There’s even a
fold down guide to hold your paper in place and
a swing out ruler to ensure perfect cuts in any
direction. The Craft-Lite Cutter gives you
precise cuts in seconds. No more mistakes, no
more ruined projects.

Ditch the scissors
Just slide the rolling blade for unrestricted,
accurate cutting. It’s great for photos, scrapbook
embellishments, paper and other materials.
Includes 3 interchangeable blades allow you to
add creativity and flair to your projects.

Resell this item by becomming an Affiliate


Tips for Raising Your Margins & Profits on eBay

The following information was sent from eBay's
marketing people and we wanted to share it
with you.

Use Optional Features

A recent study by the Parthenon Group indicated
how powerful eBay's optional features were in
raising margins & profits on eBay.*

Bold featuring increases final price by 24% and
bids by 23% on average (the most effective feature
overall for the $1.00 cost).

Highlighting increases final price by 15% and
bids by 12%.

Gallery featuring increases final listing price
by 11% and bids by 15%.

Featured Plus! Listings increased final price by
47% and bids by 65%.

Many sellers develop a features usage strategy by
monitoring listings in the categories they sell.

Maximize your ebay Store

Try listing items with a lower average sales
price in your eBay Store. This will also allow
you to merchandise these items using the
Merchandising Manager feature (offered through
Featured and Anchor Stores) and take advantage
of the Store Inventory's lower cost insertion fee.

In addition, opening an eBay Store can
significantly increase a seller's gross sales
on average, a seller realizes a 25% incremental
increase in gross merchandise sales (GMS) after
opening an eBay Store.*

Try New Listing Strategies

Try multiple selling formats among your product
types. Fixed Price auctions, multi-item BIN,
wholesale lots and other item "groupings" can help
allay high costs. Reduce your cost of doing business
on eBay by testing and integrating $1 No Reserve
listings into your selling strategy. Start items
(or a portion of item listings) at a low price,
such as $1 No Reserve. Often times, these items
sell above retail value due to the excitement a
low starting price causes in the marketplace.

Look to the Community

Check out what other sellers on the site are
currently doing to sell items on eBay. The
community boards are also a great place to find
helpful information on new listing strategies
direct from the community of sellers.

Do your homework

Review category specific information and data to
help grow your business and increase productivity
and profits.

Read the monthly Seller Newsflash for innovative
ideas from other sellers and eBay. If you do not
currently receive this Newsflash, you may receive
it in your email inbox by visiting the link below
and updating your communication preferences to
receive 'eBay Email'.

eBay's Seller Central

Provides monthly information on categories with
high buyer demand. This information can be
invaluable when testing new products and expanding
your eBay business.


Only you know what works best for you. Try
different things start by taking risks with low
cost items first and ladder your way up to high
average sales price items.

For example, there are sellers who sell laptop
computers on ebay starting at $1 every day.

* Please note: We cannot make any representation
that a seller's specific item's final price, bid
count, and conversion rate will increase by the
weighted averages noted.

To receive ebay Newsflash, sign up here


Google Docs Getting Offline Access
by Rafe Needleman

Google Docs' word processor is finally getting
offline access. Using the free Google Gears
extension, users will soon be able to read and edit
their files even when they have no Internet

The Gears-enabled version of Google Docs will roll
out to users over the next few weeks, starting
in April. If you don't have access to the feature,
just keep trying, Google Docs product manager Ken
Norton said. You'll know you have the feature when
you see a little "offline" menu item in the upper
right of your document window in Google Docs.

Offline access for Google's spreadsheet and
presentation app will follow after the word
processor rollout is complete, Norton said, and
will be read-only to start.

Google Docs will not, at first, let users create
new documents while offline. The feature's
first-use case is, "I'm amending a document and I
lose my Internet connection," Norton said.
Document creation capability will come eventually.

Of course, users will not be able to collaborate
in real time when offline, or see if other users
are simultaneously modifying a document they are
editing in offline mode. Google Docs will "do its
best" to reconcile changes made by multiple users
when one or more are offline,
Norton said. If there are conflicting edits, a
dialog box will pop up when an offline editor
comes back online.

Offline access is a necessary feature to make
Google's productivity suite a competitor to
Microsoft Office. However Google Docs' feature set,
while improving over time, still falls far short of
the functionality available in the Microsoft suite.
The only other Google application to use Google
Gears currently is the RSS reader, Google Reader.
A few other apps use Google Gears, such as
Remember The Milk.

Mozilla maintains that HTML 5, which includes
specifications for offline access tointeractive Web
sites, will obviate the need for Google Gears.
That'snot likely to stop people from trying the new
offline version of Docs.Norton reminded me that
Gears is open source, and that it is "the onlyway
to bring offline support to the entire Web audience
as a whole." Gears does indeed run on more
platforms than HTML 5 today, however it still
doesn't cover every Web platform: Google Gears runs
on Firefox 1.6 and above (but not beta 3) on
Windows, Mac, and Linux. It also supports
Internet Explorer 6.0 and higher on Windows.
There is no support for Safari, Flock, Opera,
Maxthon, or mobile browsers.


Check Out Your Page Rank

This month I wanted to bring out a handy SEO tool
for checking websites' link priority, according to
Google's Page Ranking (PR). Of course, it's free
to use!

Use this tool when adding links to your link
exchange and seeking sites with higher rankings
to help boost your rankings.

The scale runs from 0 to 10 and is calculated by
over a hundred different variables. Small business
sites may have a ranking of 2-4, while ebay.com
only scores an 8 as of April, 2008!


2010: D-day for the Internet hits "full capacity"?

by Christopher Null

Doom-filled warnings arrive from AT&T this week.
The company says that without substantial
investment in network infrastructure, the Internet
will essentially run out of bandwidth in just
two short years.

Blame broadband, says AT&T. Decades of dealing
with the trickle of bandwidth consumed by voice
and dialup modems left AT&T twiddling its thumbs.
The massive rise of DSL and cable modem service
in the 2000s has had AT&T facing a monstrous
increase in the volume of data transmissions. And
that's set to increase another 50 times between
now and 2015. That's enough, says AT&T, to all but
crash the system.

In response, AT&T says it's investing $19 billion
to upgrade the backbone of the Internet, the
routers, servers, and connections where the bulk of
traffic is processed. Of course, AT&T is using this
breathlessness in part to point fingers beyond
simple broadband use. Web video (especially
high-definition video) is the most commonly
mentioned bandwidth hog. AT&T says video alone
will eat up 80 percent of traffic in two years
vs. just 30 percent now. One wonders how YouTube
doesn't collapse under the pressure.

Meanwhile, many are wondering whether this is
prelude to AT&T announcing (or not announcing,
but doing anyway) a traffic prioritization/shaping
system like Comcast has been tinkering with...
and which has earned it nothing but scorn. Net
neutrality (which would forbid premium pricing
for certain Internet applications and destinations)
is a topic that continues to be hotly debated on
Capitol Hill, and telcos are anxious to kill the
idea since they'd love to be able to charge
additional money for different kinds of web traffic.
If the whole Internet is about to crash, well, that
makes AT&T's argument all the more compelling,
doesn't it?

iOffer.com, the 'Make Me an Offer' Ecommerce Site

by Greg Holden

Wouldn't it be nice if buyers and sellers could
exchange goods online the way they do in the real
world? When you see something you want in a
physical store or marketplace, you don't keep an
eye on it for a week and then bid furiously on it
just a few minutes before a predetermined ending
time occurs, do you? If sales worked that way in
the brick-and-mortar world, businesspeople would
find it hard to survive. Instead, you either pay
right away or make an offer and then bargain with
the seller until you agree on a price.

That's the kind of thought process Ryan Boyce and
some friends went through in 2002 when they created
the online marketplace iOffer (http://www.ioffer.com).
This site, which is becoming increasingly popular,
allows buyers to make offers and to negotiate with
sellers without a hard-and-fast deadline.

"There was a group of us in the beginning; some were
friends, and some had worked on a Web site called
eWanted.com," explains Boyce. "We were in the right
place at the right time. One of us was using eBay to
buy a hard drive, and he set his alarm clock to get
up at 2:30 am when the auction was ending. He looked
tired when we all met the next day. We did some
brainstorming and said, "There's got to be a better
way to buy something. There are plenty of other hard
drives for sale online, so there's no reason for him
to be up at 2:30 a.m. to save a couple bucks. Why
couldn't he just buy it the way you would in
real life?""

iOffer was launched on May 1, 2002. Boyce, who
started out as a network engineer, is now CEO of
the San Francisco-based company. He originally
helped set up the infrastructure and network for
the site, and still does some programming
when needed.

The site provides a dramatic contrast to eBay's
auction sales formats. First, you don't have to pay
anything to create a listing on iOffer. You can set
a starting price if you wish. But if you don't know
what something is worth, you can simply invite
prospective buyers to make offers. In this case,
you leave it up to the buyer to suggest a reasonable
price. You can either accept that price or make a
counteroffer. Offers go back and forth until a price
is agreed upon.

"Although eBay was in the back of our minds, we wanted
to create a better alternative," says Boyce, who is 28
years old. "We never looked at eBay so that we could
copy them. I think eBay is more about the experience
than the auctions. We've tried to develop live
interactions. More than half of our buyers get
notification with only five to ten minutes of lag
time," he says.

iOffer offers many innovative services for both buyers
and sellers. For example, sellers can open stores,
and the site has a discussion area along with "clubs"
that members can join. iOffer has a local service that
lets individuals find buyers and sellers in their
immediate area. And software tool called Mr. Grabber
takes your unsold listings from eBay or other sites
and imports them to iOffer so you can resell them.

"We can find out right away if people like or hate a
new feature. It's the instant gratification of being
able to look at a page and change it right away that
makes it all worthwhile," he says.

Of course, it takes courage to stick to change when
there are complaints. Boyce remembers what happened
in 2006 when the site's architecture was rewritten
from scratch. "Half a year later, nobody was using
it. It was hard to explain to our customer base.
They kept saying, "Why did you change that?" We'd
outgrown our old systems and had to do it," he says.

Like any online business, iOffer has faced a series
of other challenges. One is adverse selection:
buyers attracted by the free listings but whose
merchandise simply wasn't desirable. "We had one
seller who listed around 20,000 items," recalls
Boyce. "Only half had a picture. Some photos were
blurry, and some listings only had three-word
descriptions. He never sold a single item." The
problem is not only attracting sellers with good
inventory, but simply having an adequate mix of
buyers and sellers, he adds.

Boyce believes that the computer has replaced the
TV as the major form of entertainment, and the key
is embracing the whole mobile connectivity. "We see
a lot more consumers online everywhere. Most phones
have the capacity to get online and take a picture,
so we have a notification feature that lets sellers
be connected all the time," he says, adding that
the feature is still in beta testing. iOffer sends
notifications to buyers and sellers, and plans to
enable sellers to list items for sale from their
mobile phones.

And more people are connecting to iOffer. He
estimates that last year, there were two to four
thousand sellers online at any given time. In the
last month or two, seven to thirteen thousand
sellers have been waiting to accept offers.

One factor is the economy, according to Boyce.
"I don't want to call it a recession, but when the
economy is down people tend to buy more used
merchandise and to sell more of their own stuff.
They don't have extra money to make purchases,"
he says.

Boyce also finds that sellers are increasingly
disenchanted with eBay. "Sellers don't like the way
eBay treats them, and if they can find an
alternative, they will. We have the buyers.
This last week was our busiest week on record,
and I don't see it slowing down. We are seen as
Number Two in the auction space. We may be a
distant Number Two, but that's an important
place," he says.

Go to iOffer.com