We’ve been on a branding tear lately. First we talked about why you can’t ignore branding, and then we outlined some actionable tips for branding your business on eBay. Now we’re narrowing the focus even further. This week it’s all about visual branding: the elements that define the look of your business, including your Store logo, billboard, business cards, and postcards.
To capture the power of branding aesthetics, we partnered with Vistaprint for a “before and after” visual overhaul of three eBay Stores. It’s one thing to read about actionable tips on making your business look more professional, but it’s quite another to see the difference with your own eyes.
Here’s some real-life eBay Store makeover magic:
Before selling on eBay, Julie Shapiro was a trial lawyer. Then she had two kids in two years, and found herself a tired, overwhelmed new mom instead. One day, with a baby screaming in her ear, she looked at her maternity clothes and said, “I’m never wearing these again.” She listed and quickly sold them on eBay. Next she sold some of her “fancy lawyer clothes.” Soon after that other moms started asking her to list their items. Now Julie runs a busy, high-end consignment Store, featuring brands like Gucci, Prada and Louis Vuitton.
But, as successful as Julie was, she didn’t really put much thought into how her Store looked. “I set up a few categories, uploaded a homemade logo, and that was it. In fact, I didn't want to look too professional. I wanted buyers to know that I’m really just like a mom-and-pop shop, minus the pop.”
But things have changed, and online shoppers expect more—they’re looking for an experience, as much as a deal. So Julie first upgraded to the new version of eBay Stores. Then we helped her design a professional logo and billboard for her Store, complete with matching business stationary from Vistaprint. Check out the before and after:
“I love the new look. It’s clean, consistent, and I think it really appeals to the type of buyers that are looking for my stuff. I’ve been adding the business cards and postcards to my packages, and there’s just no way this won’t help with repeat business. In fact, I just had my best month ever. Coincidence? Probably not.”
Bill Brown has been selling on eBay since 1998. He’s a pro, specializing mainly in NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, and NCAA items. And, based on his Store feedback, it’s safe to say that Bill nails it in the fast-and-friendly service department.
Like Julie, when Bill’s business started to take off he opened a Store on eBay to save on fees and maximize his profit. He wasn’t thinking about visual branding, or how his Store looked, just about saving/making more money. But what happens when you’ve got a good thing going but want to make it better? You start polishing the rough edges.
So, like Julie, Bill first upgraded to the new version of eBay Stores. Then we helped him create a vibrant new billboard, and Vistaprint created a professional-grade logo and corresponding business stationary. The result? You tell us. Which Store would you remember?
“This new branding gives my business such an air of legitimacy, and I know it’ll help buyers remember my Store the next time they’re looking for something sports-related. Plus, I’m using the new business cards at trade shows, and putting the postcards in my packages. I’m really happy with what eBay and Vistaprint helped me create. They were great to work with.”
Kristin Swanson started selling on eBay shortly after giving birth to her daughter, and completing her MBA. Kind of a genius way to put her newly acquired business smarts to work while caring for her newborn baby, right?
But, unlike Julie and Bill, Kristin was attracted to selling a broader range of items. Rather than having a specialty niche, like fashion or sport-related stuff, she was drawn to anything that was “oddball, interesting, or different.” While this might make finding new inventory as easy as running out to her local thrift store a few times per week, it proved difficult to brand.
Nevertheless, Julie and a designer came up with a logo featuring a globe to give her business a worldly, “inclusive of all kinds of products” type of feel. Sort of a Cost Plus World Market meets antique store vibe. Then Kristin forgot all about branding for a while. That is until she upgraded to the new version of eBay Stores, and, together with Vistaprint, we helped change her overall look and feel—including her digital and printed assets. Look at the difference:
“The new design is really fresh and professional. It made me think about all of the other improvements I should be making, like updating my Store categories and keywords. Plus, I started running promotions and sales have jumped. So it must be working.”
We can’t make this stuff up. You’ve seen the difference with your own eyes. If you want what these sellers have, start by consulting this Branding Your eBay Store guide. Then, when you get to the part about creating a professional looking logo, as well as business stationary, work with the professionals at Vistaprint.* This is where the magic happens.
Have any tips of your own on branding your Store on eBay? Share them in the comments below.
*If you’re already an eBay Stores subscriber you can save up to 20% right now with Vistaprint.
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