Saturday, September 18, 2010

To advertise or to not advertise. That's the question

Bonanzle, now Bonanza, has been live for about 2 years now. It's member growth has been phenomenal. The members for the most part are a good group of people, willing to help each other out and are a pretty funny bunch of folks.

There have been rumbles about the lack of advertising on the part of the site, for a very long time. There have been numerous threads started asking if members would be willing to pay a bit extra for some really good advertising by the site.  Talks about why there has been no advertising by the site itself. Almost every one of those threads get deleted.

Now tonight, someone posted a link to an article by AuctionBytes about how the smaller selling sites need to get going on PR work and get some serious advertising done to get their sites growing and bringing in sales.

In the matter of a few minutes, support or the owner did something to make it to where the members posting to that thread, not be able to see their own posts and subsequent posts made by other members.

All of a sudden the site announced that they are "opinion gathering" and not letting the responses to that thread be seen by either the persons that have responded to it or anyone just wanting to see what others have said, that they are "gathering"  those responses and that they are "going directly to supports inbox. 
Pretty suspicious if you ask me.

It leads a person to wonder why the site would treat a thread like it would like to delete it, but doesn't want the appearance of outright deletion to be seen. So rather than risk that, they fix the thread to where it will sink into oblivion under the guise of "opinion gathering" and allow it to be buried to where no one sees it, let alone be able to respond to it in any manner that could be seen.

The full article can be read here

Here's the original thread in the forums at bonanzle. This is the one that is rapidly sinking as the site has, at the time of this post, made it to where the posts that are made to it, do not keep it at the top of the forum it's posted in.

 And this is a new thread that started as the result of what happened with one post that got deleted that was made due to management making the other one stall.

The AuctionBytes article brings to light the fact that a lot of these smaller selling sites, like bonanzle, rely on what is in my opinion, almost a grunt labor to get their site advertised for almost nothing. The grunts being us, the sellers there.

We sellers spend countless hours advertising in the way of 
Blogs like this one
and countless other social and blog type sites in the hopes of getting just one customer to the site.
It's been proven over and over again that simply does NOT work. In order for a site to flourish, it needs to do some advertising for itself instead of depending on little sellers to do it for them.

Sites that are serious about wanting to grow and become a major contender for on line sales, can't just rely on it's almost slave labor to get the word out. As one of the sellers said, people come to market places with the expectation that at some point the site itself will do some advertising. And that should be happening with Bonanzle now.

Bonanza charges a fee when an item sells. 
Bonanza has paid memberships. 
Bonanza was handed a MILLION dollars by an investment group just a few months ago.

Some of that money needs to be used to advertise and in a manner that will get peoples attention, not to buy some silly adwords like rootbeer.

There's an old saying that Bonanza and sites like it need to adopt and put into action. "It takes money to make money".
It was true when that phrase came into being, and it's true now.

My opinion only, like it or not, but it's shared by quite a few!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fun with Mini Storages

We all know what they are. They are evil creatures that suck your money and give you a false sense of security knowing that the stuff that you don't want or can't have in your home, is safe locked behind their doors.

You would be mistaken in all those beliefs. First of all, they are NOT safe. They can be broken into as I found out about a week ago and wrote about.

Second of all, they are money sucking pits really. You are paying to store stuff that you don't want at your home. And obviously it's nothing that you really need on a day to day basis as it's locked up in your mini storage. We've been renting a mini storage for almost 3 years now. Our unit is a pretty good sized one, 10x20. It's cost us $110.00 a month. Add that up over the three years and it's enough to put a down payment on a home.

We are cleaning ours out. And this time we are doing a really HARD sort on the stuff in hopes of getting rid of rented storage altogether this time. I would strongly reccomend to anyone that has a rented mini storage, to reconsider the stuff in it and do some down sizing. If your possessions have been in storage for an extended amount of time, you can probably do without them. 

And just think of all the money you'll save when you get rid of that monthly storage bill.

I have a feeling that my on line store, RAYVENS RARITIES, will be getting in a lot of new items for sale, very soon.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Warning to all that have the rented Mini Storage buildings

My attitude with life right now is "life, I love you but I'm very angry with you and I want to break up".

We've had a really bad year so far and so have a lot of nice people we know and it seems as though it's not really getting better.

I lost my Dad a couple of years ago to, well I won't say cancer as thats not what killed him. It was the treatment, chemo, that actually killed him, but either way, I lost him.

The guy was, bless his heart, a pack rat extraordinaire. He had two HUGE storage units rented for many years. He started out with the biggest one they had at the place he was renting from, then took the next size down from that.

After he was gone we spent almost a month cleaning out the big one and condensing down to the smaller. We managed to get that done finally and what a job that was. Wheew.

Anyway, day before yesterday we get a call from the property management company that is taking care of the storage business. Seems as though one of the other people renting from them had been broken into and they were calling everyone to let them know what had happened.

This place we have a unit at used to belong to a tire sales store. The people that owned the tire business lost it due to financial troubles and the bank that financed it had repossessed it. 

Anyway, back to the phone call. the man told me that they wanted to let all their renters know about this break in, and thought the worst. And unfortunately I was right to be thinking the worst. Our unit was one of the ones that were hit. 

These thieves got into our unit, took a few tool boxes that were sitting up front and then just basically threw everything they could get their hands on, apparently looking for more stuff to steal. 

In addition to the tool boxes, they also took a very old glass jar that was about half to a quarter full of polished agates. Now while that is not a very valuable thing, it's of great sentimental value to me. My Dad when younger, was a rock hound with his Dad and they actually got the equipment like rock tumblers and cutting saws to work with the rocks. Those agates in that glass jar were what was left of the agates he and his Dad collected and polished.

Even my two kids when they were young went out with my Dad and collected a few of the agates in that jar, so the loss is one that we won't be able to replace.

The one bright spot in this whole mess it that the thieves did NOT get my Dads almost new wood working equipment or the rest of the tools in the back of the unit. The other thing I am very grateful for it the family rocking chair.

I have an old wooden rocker in the unit and while the thieves threw it towards the back of the unit, it didn't get damaged and for that I am sooooo thankful. That chair has rocked 3 generations of my family in it. My Mother and her brother, Myself when I was a baby, I rocked both my kids in that chair when they were babies, and my hopes are that if my children have kids, they will be rocked in that chair as well. So that chair not being damaged means a lot to me.

What these thieves are doing is they are cutting the locks off these units, taking what ever it is they want, and then putting another lock similar to the one they cut off, back on so it doesn't "look" like the units are being broken into.

We are going to start emptying out the unit this coming weekend. The place is in bank owned hands with no security measures in place and apparently this has been taking place in broad daylight. The site has no security people around, and no security cameras installed either.

So we are going to bring as much of our belongings home and store in our garage as possible and then look into another storage facility that has some security measures in place. I would caution anyone with rented mini storage to keep an eye on them and check them periodically.