052: Founder of Cat’s Magical Shoppe – Cathi Dillard

Cathi has been selling on eBay since 2003 and has been a power seller since 2004, and Top-Rated Seller Plus since the program began. She is the founder of Cat's Magical Shoppe, a New Age eBay store. She runs the store with her husband out of their home in the Pacific Northwest. What started as a hobby has evolved into a full-time job after Cathi left her accounting career in 2011 to focus on her eBay business.

Interesting Notes

  • Cathi maintained her top-rated seller status primarily because she makes sure that every contact she makes with the customer or potential customer, makes the customer feel and know that Cathi's shop is the good place to be.
  • She believes that logistics is the key to power selling. Together with her husband, they ship within 24 hours and always keep stocks available.
  • Has a repeat business of at least 30% of their customer.
  • Cathi wants to be on her own and doing what she loves so she chose to quit her well paying corporate job to make her dream a reality.
  • In their home, Cathi dedicated one room for the inventory and her office, and a very long hallway with all the shipping supplies.
  • She sells new items only, and are sourced out from half a dozen suppliers who cater to her type of business.
  • She adapted a buy-it-now style with a 5-10% discount off the retail price and gives promo like free shipping for an orders of $50 or more.
  • She pointed out that her general failure is purchasing the inventory that she liked rather than the inventory that is going to sell.
  • Her biggest success story is when a customer reaches out to her to thank her, and telling her how happy the customer is.
  • HERE ARE CATHI'S STRATEGIES TO MAKE HER CUSTOMERS HAPPY: 1. Refund excess shipping costs; 2. Add incense to every package they send out whether it's a 99 cents or $99 packages. Everybody gets it and are treated equal; 3. A “Thank You” note on the invoice for repeat customers; or 4. A note that says “It's lovely to see you again!” for customers who have not been seen for a while.
  • 6046 positive feedbacks in one month with zero negative. How? By taking the feedback personally and reaching out to customers asking, “What could we have done to make the sale better? What were you unhappy with?”.
  • She thinks that learning how to do a listing and maybe writing your ad or your description in a way that would entice your buyer, is one of the most difficult things to learn.
  • The weirdest thing she sold on eBay is graveyard dirt and coffin nails.

Quotes

  • “You have to absolutely treat people the way that you want to be treated.”
  • “Running out of stock is probably one of the biggest failures in a new seller that sell at any volume.”
  • “Do research and ask enough questions. Don't always rely on yourself for what you think might sell.”
  • “You just absolutely have to have patience and realize that you are in this for the long haul.”
  • “It is like the stock market. You are not going to make an investment in one day and be rich the next. You just have to wait it out.”
  • “You have to be smart.”
  • “You have to be nice.”
  • “You have to be kind and try to put yourself in the other person's shoes and feel what they are feeling so that you can really make the transaction a good one and that they want to come back.”

Tools

  • Auctiva

Contact Information

  • Email:         cats@catsmagick.com
  • eBay Store: Catsmagick
  • Facebook:    Catsmagick
  • Twitter:       @catsmagick

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