Saturday, August 19, 2017
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Amazon Condition Guidelines – Most Sellers Get This Wrong

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Amazon Condition Guidelines - TaughtToProfit.com

For the sake of discussion let us say we have a brand new item that has damage to the packaging and the plastic wrap is coming off. The item itself is untouched and the package is still factory sealed. What is the condition that this item can be listed in per Amazon’s condition guidelines? New? Like New? Very Good? Good? Acceptable?

The vast majority of the sellers I know will get this wrong, including long-term sellers. Most sellers will say, “New” or “Like New” would be the proper condition for such an item. The answer is neither of those and Amazon is very clear on this, but this is only clear to you if you know Amazon’s actual condition guidelines. Here is what Amazon states as their condition guidelines:

New: Just like it sounds. A brand-new, unused, unopened item in its original packaging, with all original packaging materials included. Original protective wrapping, if any, is intact. Original manufacturer’s warranty, if any, still applies, with warranty details included in the listing comments.
Used – Like New: An apparently untouched item in perfect condition. Original protective wrapping may be missing, but the original packaging is intact and pristine. There are absolutely no signs of wear on the item or its packaging. Instructions are included. Item is suitable for presenting as a gift.
Used – Very Good: A well-cared-for item that has seen limited use but remains in great condition. The item is complete, unmarked, and undamaged, but may show some limited signs of wear. Item works perfectly.
– Taken from http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=1161242

Notice how the condition guidelines for “Used – Like New” say that “the original packaging is intact and pristine” and that there “are absolutely no signs of wear on the item or its packaging.” The item we are discussing is brand new but has damage to the packaging, so the best possible condition it could be rated is “Used – Very Good.” Rating the item as “New” or “Used – Like New” is against Amazon’s terms and if they caught you on this it could result in account suspension. Just because Amazon is lenient on this right now does not mean that they will not eventually crack-down on sellers who consistently rate their item’s conditions inaccurately.

It is always best if you have any question about what Amazon wants to actually check their own guidelines. If you just listen to what many sellers are saying you may be wrong and putting your business in the hands of people who are ignorant of what Amazon requires of sellers. Keep in mind that for each category there are specific guidelines, so make sure you are aware of any special guidelines required for the category the item you are listing is listed in. You can read up on the “Category-Specific Guidelines” at: http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=1161242#CSCG

Time Management – Speedyroute – Map Out Your Sourcing Trips

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If you are sourcing in a new area or going to locations you have not been to before then it can save time to have a plan to route you to each location in order to ensure that you are on the fastest route to each location. If you need to get the best route to 12 locations or less, Speedyroute.com offers a free service that does just that for you. They have a limit of 5 free route calculations from one client IP Address over a rolling 24 hour period. You can calculate more than 5 routes from the same IP Address within 24 hours and more than 12 locations in one route, but you must purchase a subscription in order to do so. For most people, the free service will be more than adequate for their needs.

A service like this is especially useful when you are going to garage sales. Since each location changes every week, you do not develop a general idea for the best route to the locations like you would a retail store, thrift store, or wholesale store that you frequent regularly. Make sure to plan your sourcing outing in the most efficient method using a route planning tool like SpeedyRoute. If you have navigation systems like Garmin or TomTom then SpeedyRoute’s export feature supports GPX files as well as CSV files (GPX files can be used by some SatNavs such as TomTom and Garmin devices).

Speedy Route

Time Management – FollowUpThen Email Reminder Service

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FollowUpThen - Reminder Email Service - TaughtToProfit.com
FollowUpThen - Reminder Email Service - TaughtToProfit.com

If you have ever set a reminder on your phone or other device you know how easy they are to snooze and never get done. Reminders are important, but how the reminder is sent is equally important. This is where FollowUpThen comes in handy. It provides you with unlimited reminders via email. You can send yourself reminders with pictures, text, and forward emails to yourself to follow up on later. The later becomes especially valuable if you are trying to keep your inbox uncluttered with emails that you “keep meaning to get to.”

FollowUpThen is simple to use. You simply send an email to a pre-selected email like 4hours@followupthen.com, and then in 4 hours that email will be sent to you. You can set it for specific days like December24@followupthen.com. You can set monthly reminders by emailing every15th@followupthen.com, which would have that reminder be sent to you every 15th of the month. You can be more specific with every15th8am@followupthen.com, for every 15th of the month at 8 am. You can set reminders at custom intervals like every12hours@followupthen.com or every2years@followupthen.com. You can set daily reminders like daily5pm@followupthen.com or weekdays5pm@followupthen.com. As you can see from these few examples the functionality is very broad, though it is as simple as sending an email to use. They also have features like response detection (to detect if someone you sent an email to responded), calendar integration, tasks, SMS reminders, email-based actions, and a lot more.

I used FollowUpThen to cut down my email workload from 2 hours a day to around 30 minutes a day. It easily paid for itself that first day in the time it saved me. In many ways it can be set up to operate like a true virtual assistant.

They have a free version and a paid version (which starts at only $2 a month). The free version may be all you need, but if you need more follow ups or advanced features like Calendar Integration, Response Detection, SMS Reminders, Customization, and User Management then the Premium paid version would be perfect for you.

FollowUpThen Logo
Click Button Above To Sign Up For FollowUpThen

How Not To Pack An Item For Your Customers

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There are a variety of ways to improperly pack an item to ship to your customer, but today I am showing you one such way that is thoroughly inefficient and bizarre. This particular method of packing was performed by one of the world’s largest retailers, and the same exact system of packing was done for three separate boxes from different warehouses! The only difference was one of these 30 x 17 x 13 inch boxes had 3 towels in it, the other two had 1 towel each. These boxes could have easily held 100 such towels per box, if packed normally.

This same company sent a half a dozen ceramic tooth brush holders to me in a poly bag with no bubble wrap or protection at all. As you might guess, every single one of those ceramic items was broken into many pieces. Then when faced with an unbreakable item like a towel, they chose to pack it with so much protection the towel is hard to even locate among all the packing paper. This is one of the common issues you will see with how many businesses pack their products when you do a lot of online arbitrage. It is worth noting these problems so you can correct them in your own business. This will save your business money long-term and keep your customers from shaking their heads im amazement at how your company is being represented through your packing system.

Two Cointerra Terraminer Bitcoin Mining Machines Died

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Cointerra Terraminer Bitcoin Mining Machine - TaughtToProfit.com
Cointerra Terraminer Bitcoin Mining Machine - TaughtToProfit.com

Over the years I have purchased a number of Bitcoin miners pre-owned. All the various models of Antminers I have purchased are still mining without fail after years. On the other hand, I purchased two Cointerra Terraminers and they both failed quickly. One failed after a few weeks. The other did better and lasted about 3 months before it decided to go into an infinite bootloop.

Bitmain Antminer
Bitmain Antminer

Due to the low price I got the failed miners for, they did end up paying for themselves, but just barely. They were easy to set up and run, but their unreliability made them not worth getting regardless of the price.

If you are considering getting into Bitcoin mining you would probably do well to avoid the old Cointerra miners. Do not let their inexpensive price lure you in. In Bitcoin mining you need reliability over a low price point. These low-cost miners will become high-cost as you are replacing them every few months or wasting your time on endless repairs.

I boxed up my two Cointerra Terraminers today and shipped them to someone who wanted them for parts for their own problematic Cointerra Terraminers. That is a hassle I am not wanting to deal with, so I got rid of them and moved on.

Getting a good price on a pre-owned miner is important, but take the advice of someone who has been in your position and get a miner known for reliability. Do not get the cheapest miner you can find unless you enjoy wasting time doing repairs and replacing units regularly.