056: The Social Butterfly – Stephanie Inge

Stephanie Inge began selling on eBay in 1999, founded the original eBay sellers group, The Dallas eBaybes & eMales in 2002 and became first EVER college-level eBay instructor. She published Meetup Organizer Step-by-Step Success Guide in 2013 and is the organizer of the annual Sea Commerce Cruise, an at-sea eCommerce conference.

Interesting Notes

  • Stephanie, who loves to integrate with people, is an advocate of eBay community, of which she strongly believes as the heart and soul of eBay.
  • Her desire to connect with other people that did the same thing and spoke the same language as she does lead her to form the original eBay sellers group. It started small and has grown over the last 13 years, and whose focus is on education and support.
  • She has seen a lot of transition in eBay and cited changes like on the listings that get lost in the big sea of competitors, and that the marketplace was saturated with overseas sellers from China.
  • Stephanie loves eBay so much that she adapted to eBay's changes and would continue to do so because it is her way of life.
  • She loves technology and can be found all over the internet. For her, technology knows no limits and boundaries and enabled her to teach people to sell online. However, she admits that she is not geeky when it comes to cell phone simply because she doesn’t like typing on a tiny screen.
  • Her Sea Commerce Cruise, aside from being a conference, is a great bonding experience. Brainstorming & mastermind sessions, as well as PowerPoint presentations, are done during the days at the sea. Since there is no internet, for seven (7) days, everyone actually gets to know each other and gets the chance to know the speakers, and pick their brain as well.
  • One of the things on her bucket list is to write a book, and it came true when she authored “Meetup Organizer Step-by-Step Success Guide” – a book based on what she knows and uses every day.
  • Stephanie loves the good feeling from the idea that even if she will be gone, her book continues to live, inspire, and help people.
  • She organizes her tasks based on necessity. Her eBay business (listing, shipping and all that) takes top priority and her teaching is second. But if she has a choice to stay, take pictures and list or teach a class or an individual, she would always choose to teach.
  • Stephanie is very passionate about teaching others and loves the fulfillment she gets from doing that.
  • She has an office, with a photo section and a shipping section, dedicated to her eBay business.
  • Her advice to new eBay sellers: 1. To have a dedicated photo section where the lights are always set up and the backdrop is always there to keep motivated. If it is right there, handy, you will be more likely to go ahead and take your pictures, get them edited and then ready to upload as you list. 2. Do market research first, take pictures next, edit pictures and then you're ready to rock and roll. The market research would dictate what items you would photograph and what items need not to. If items are not worth to sell, then you would not even have to list it. 3. Research the completed listings on eBay to see if the items are selling, and if so, how well it is selling, and for about how much you expect to get for that item. 4. When out in the field shopping or sourcing, you can use the eBay app to research before you buy the item. So, when you get home, the research is already done. This way, you can eliminate a lot of guesswork right out in the field, and you now do shopping correctly. 5. To look up on poweru.net, a third party administrator of the eBay education program. From there, you could find a certified instructor in your area to train you properly and teach you exactly how to do it. This way, you could avoid the common pitfalls that most eBay sellers make, and hopefully increase your odds of succeeding.
  • She personally prefers the Auction-style listing.
  • Stephanie’s ultimate goal in life is to be an ambassador for eBay and fly around the country, start a media group in every single state, and just tell people that it is so important to have a local group in their community for support and education.
  • In her lifetime, she wants to see Devin Wegnig, the current CEO of eBay, focusing on the eBay community. Since our interview, Stephanie was able to make that come true at the 20th eBay birthday party in San Jose, California.

Quotes

  • “No matter what your interest is, you can find a group that fits exactly what you are looking for.”
  • “It is unbelievable how helpful people are and how willing they are to share their information.”
  • “Your customer comes first!”
  • “You have to stay on top of your game.”
  • “Time is money!”
  • “The highest price items get listed first and the other things get listed last.”
  • “You make your money when you buy, not when you sell.”
  • “It can make a difference in your whole career if you have a community to fall back on, learn from, and bounce ideas.”
  • “If you don't shoot for the moon, you will never get there!”

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