Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Why Do I Do This Blogging Thing?

As many of you know, I attended eBay Live last week on a Press Pass -- I thought it quite humorous that eBay would allow me to attend on a Press Pass as a blogger, mostly since I'm often viewed as having a negative perspective on eBay (I was smart enough not to wear a Google shirt). Before I forget, thanks eBay for letting me attend. (Maybe they'll let me come back next year)

As I walked the exhibit floor and spoke with old friends, newbie sellers, vendors and eBay employees the most frequently asked question I heard was: "What are you doing these days?" When I responded I'm a full-time blogger most gave me a quizical look and a follow-up question - "No really! What are you doing?" (and other variations of the same).

This post is really for those of you out there that read this blog and have the same question. In fact I have some very close friends who have suggested that I seek professional help and I occasionally hear from sellers who discount everything I say because I shut my business down. I honestly think what I'm doing can help, I'm certainly not doing it for the money.

At first this blogging thing was just a therapeutic way for me to exercise my eBay demons. I figured I would do it for a few months and get it out of my system and then move on but what happened surprised me. I found out I enjoyed it and it was helping some people. Because I write mostly about eBay I knew there would always be plenty of stuff to write about and I felt that all of the turmoil with stores over the past year needed to be discussed.

I'm still trying to figure this out; making a living off of blogging is not easy, it takes a lot of time and effort but I'm beginning to see some of the same dynamics that played a part in Glacier Bay's growth the difference this is the margins are fantastic even though the revenue is low. Besides what other job can you have where you sit around in your underwear all day "making stuff up" (that was for Matt Ledwith)

My readership continues to grow each month and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I know it may be hard to see when I rant about the problems facing eBay today but I actually care deeply for eBay sellers, more than many of you will ever know. My experience selling on eBay was unlike anything I had ever experienced before and even though I chose to end it because I didn't see any light at the end of the tunnel, it still works for many sellers.

If eBay was more transparent with their plans I probably wouldn't have much to write about. My goal is to identify what I think will happen in the coming months so that sellers can be prepared. I may not always be correct but at least the topic will be discussed. eBay is still a fantastic venue for selling online but if you rely on any one venue as I did with Glacier Bay you are putting your business in jeopardy.

I would encourage all sellers to change the way they think. Stop thinking of yourself as an eBay seller, Amazon seller or seller and become independent of the marketplaces. Build your own place on the Internet and use each marketplace for what it is best for. Take control of your business rather than have the marketplace control it.

Thanks again for reading and please contact me directly if you have questions or concerns. My email is rksmytheatyahoodotcom (you should be able to figure that out)

Just my 5 Cents



I'm glad you're finding your niche. I think that being one of the top 10 sellers on eBay was a true accomplishment. It is in the realm of how to be successful at selling, and seeing where the marketplace is headed, that you should pursue. When I first started reading your blog, I felt you were trying too hard to curry favor with Scott and Ida, and repeating too much of the eBay general news. I don't care if Rob Chestnut is on vacation, or who just joined the eBay brain drain. I can get that from them. I'm anxious to see the world of eBay selling through the eyes of someone who has been to the top. Go for it!

Anonymous said...

Keep blogging, you are bringing vital information to sellers around the world. I wake up every morning and check your blog for news.

Keep the heat on eBay and keep them legit.

Without your strong voice, eBay sellers, especially stores, would be hurting. Your words are making a significant difference in peoples lives, including mine... so keep it up.

I'd like to hear what tactics made you a successful seller. And what you think will be important going into this fall.

Randy Smythe said...

Thanks guys! I love to hear comments like that. I certainly need feedback on what I am doing and what you would like to see. I appreciate the comments immensely.

Bill, I try to leave the day to day news to Ina and the scoops to Scot but I sometimes get caught up in it so I will occasionally have a Brain Drain post, especially if it is about someone I know or if I hear something juicy I'll try to beat Scot to the punch. But, I will try and stick to seller related issues.

Thanks to both of you for your feedback and for reading.

Corey Kossack said...


Your blog makes me laugh! I had such a blast talking at eBay Live! You were my "idol" when I entered the biz, and there is much to be learned from your journey. I'll follow up with an email soon, I've been getting swamped by emails ever since the convention.

Best wishes,

Corey Kossack
Author of 'eBay Millionaire or Bust'

Randy Smythe said...

Thanks for the comments Corey. I enjoyed meeting you at live and thanks for mention in your blog. I am flattered. Good luck with the ProfitBuilder Software. I think you have created a very nice tool for eBay sellers.