July 2014

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20 | www.cedmag.com | Construction Equipment Distribution | July 2014 Sales eBay store augments those efforts. The prices of items sold in the Hawthorne CAT store on eBay range from $250 to more than $30,000. The biggest movers are items under $5,000. While Ness concedes that eBay fees incurred by the dealership may be slightly higher than some traditional channels, he believes the wider audience, opportunity to brand the dealership, and higher prices it delivers make it worth the invest- ment. eBay boasts 145 million active buyers with more than $20 billion in sales generated over mobile devices. "eBay is a marketplace for everything," said Rob Francis, eBay Verticals. "We pride ourselves on having an enormous selection – from vehicles, trucks and boats to cloth- ing, iPads, cell phones. We have true end-users who are willing to pay the highest price." eBay recently stepped up its efforts to position itself as a place for used heavy equipment sales with the launch of its Heavy Equipment Center in December 2013. The center is a hub for the largest equipment sellers on eBay including bidadoo, Prowler, McGrew and Titan Attachments among others. The site features online auctions held every Thursday. According to Francis, the Heavy Equipment Center started by featuring the largest equipment sellers but will soon open up to more eBay heavy equipment, parts and accessories sellers with substantial sales volume (more than $50,000 per month). Sellers on eBay's Heavy Equipment Center benefit from premium placement, an eBay consultant to offer best practices and integrations, as well as advertising support. If interested, you can e-mail eBay at heavyequipment@ ebay.com. Howard Hawk, co-founder and president of bidadoo, an online auction company that is the largest industrial seller on eBay, built their entire business around the eBay platform. "Being on the eBay platform allows us to sell to a different type of user – true end-users – who are not looking to wholesale buy one or two machines; they need to make informed intelligent trusted decisions online," said Hawk. bidadoo offers an alternative for dealers who want the eBay audience but don't have the time or volume to invest in managing the channel themselves. He says bida- doo's expertise in selling on eBay typically earns sellers a higher price than through other outlets. Dunn at Hawthorne Cat says that while many eBay customers are new custom- ers and one-time buyers, others have become repeat buyers. By gathering e-mail addresses on eBay and promoting the eBay store initially with print and later with social media and e-mail, Hawthorne Cat has grown their eBay business. "eBay customers are very loyal to eBay and loyal to sellers," added Francis. One unanticipated benefit of selling on eBay for Hawthorne CAT has been the impact on the company's search engine optimiza- tion. According to Dunn, Hawthorne Cat's eBay store items typically rank very high in search engine results. How It Works An eBay seller can choose to list an item in several ways including: (1.) auction with no reserve, where the seller agrees to sell to the highest bidder; (2.) auction with a reserved price; (3.) fixed price where the buyer can purchase immediately with no bidding; or (4.) fixed price with best offer. You can also add a "Buy it Now" price to an auction style listing. Ness prefers the fixed price option for the majority of Hawthorne's listings. "We strive to keep the pricing affordable," said Ness "Our goal is to sell an item within six months," To set the price, he will compare what the company would get at auction with the price they would get at Machinery Trader or other publications. Francis says an eBay store (versus individual listings) Ritchie Brothers is extending the EquipmentOne solution to its huge database of equipment buyers ("Sold On eBay" continued from page 18)

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