Originally posted by W. Luke I forgot to add....
If you offered auctions on your site you could stand to make a lot of money. You can look at scripts by searching hotscripts.com or use a ready made solution like epage.com. Either way you could really increase your sales and lower your dependence on advertising.
I've thought of doing something similar on my site but decided not to pursue it since EBAY pretty much seems to have a stronghold in the auction arena. Automotive related items are a hot ticket on EBAY as I'm sure science fiction items are as well.
I don't want to take this thread off topic, but I'm curious if others have experimented with running auctions on their sites and how successful they've been. It might be best to start a new thread in a different forum.
You are correct.. eBay is an 800 pound gorilla in the auction market and hard to fight against.
My suggestion would not be to fight with them in this case.
eBay has a lot of strengths and weaknesses. They are large, have name recognition and are established in the market. They will also be slower to react to changes, charge more and have enough categories to confuse some users.
Your main strength lays in the loyalty of your members.
Let's use an offline analogy here:
I could go to Wal-Mart and purchase a lot of things for my car. Including Oil, wipers and other additives. However when I need new vented air-flow rotors for my front brakes I have to go to the local auto parts store. They offer me the specific part I need.
By offering customized auctions to your customers you give them an advantage they can get over a large do-it-all site. If I was looking for a hood logo to be put on a 1967 corvette, I would start at a site that dedicates itself to corvettes this seems logical. I search for hood logo and bam there it is.
The key to knowing if something like Auctions would work for your siteis to research your market. In other words ask your members, you just might be surprised on what they say. You can do this by putting up a survey script from somewhere like hotscripts.com or using a professional survey company like zoomerang.com.