Microsoft Excel provides a number of interesting features that can help you manipulate the data you receive from eBay Web Services. Sometimes you have to gather this data over time. For example, you might collect the current bid for an item every hour during the auction to chart the times of highest activity. After some time, you can chart the information for several auctions to see the general direction of sales for your product at least on eBay. Some types of statistical analysis for eBay Web Services are very time sensitive. Consequently, you'll want to use something like Task Scheduler to ensure the system gathers the data at the specified interval. You can perform this task in a number of ways, including relying on the automatic document execution feature of Excel. Simply opening the document ensures the macro runs. The following sections demonstrate some ways to use Microsoft Excel with eBay Web Services. It's important to remember that these sections are just examples you can...
In the zeal to acquire and purchase merchandise, it's easy (and tempting) to throw all of the receipts and other documentation into a file folder or shoebox and deal with it when the need arises (usually April 14). Though this method might serve casual eBay sellers, as your eBay business volume increases, you will need a more systematic approach to documenting your purchases. The best time to do that is close to the time of purchase, when your memory is fresh and any paper trails are still close at hand. Whether your system is a notebook with lined columns, an Excel spreadsheet, or accounting or auction-management software, you have to dedicate the time to log the captured data.
Ensure you download data from online auction-management programs to your local system for archiving before the information is removed from the service and you can no longer access it. Most programs allow you to download the data in a format that can be read by spreadsheet programs, such as Microsoft Excel and Intuit QuickBooks accounting programs.
Although quite a few excellent online services for automating sales are available, we have room here to show you only a few. Many services are similar in format, so in the following sections we point out some of the highlights of a few representative systems. Remember that by using an online service, your Item and inventory management If you want to keep your inventory online, you can create it on their system. If you want to input your inventory offline, you can import it from their Excel template. You can also import open auctions or store listings to your ChannelAdvisor account for relisting or servicing. i Item and inventory management Features the ClickLaunch Single Step Launcher, which launches individual items to auction while adding them to inventory. (The site also has bulk item-launching capability.) LaunchBots provides automated launching of your listings. You can import existing auctions from eBay and import them with their bulk inventory upload form in Excel and MS Access.
How, then, do you create an import file Virtually all spreadsheet and database programs have a way to export to the .csv format. You could, in theory, create the file in a text editor, but you probably shouldn't it's easy to make mistakes. The easiest program to use is a spreadsheet program, such as Microsoft Excel, but merchants with large product catalogs may already have their products in a database. If you exported a .csv file from Catalog Manager and have Excel installed on your system, you'll probably find the file automatically opens in that program.
A Pocket PC runs a smaller version of Microsoft Windows, such as Windows Mobile 2002 or 2003 for Pocket PCs. These operating systems are often called Pocket PC 2002 or Pocket PC 2003. Pocket PCs typically have a larger screen and focus on the PDA functionality, although they may also have an integrated phone. Pocket PCs enable you to manage your contacts, calendar, and tasks surf the Internet plus run mini versions of programs such as Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel. A Smartphone, on the other hand, runs Windows Mobile 2002 or 2003 for Smartphones, also called Smartphone 2002 or 2003. Smartphones typically have a smaller screen and focus on the phone functionality, although they also have integrated PDA features. Smartphones allow you to access your contacts, calendar, and tasks, and surf the Internet, but they cannot run programs such as Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel.
Many men like to watch sport, play sport, and look good while they're doing it - opening up venues for a profitable empire on eBay.co.uk. We don't want to leave out all the women out there who excel and participate in many sports. Women may have even more discriminating needs for their sporting endeavours Your golf game may stink - but you do make a point to at least look good when you go out there, with respectable equipment and a fabulous outfit.
Keeping track of your winners isn't rocket science. You can track buyer information in an Excel spreadsheet or a Word document, both of which are PayPal allows you to download your sales data into a format compatible with QuickBooks, a highly respected and popular bookkeeping program. You can also choose to download your data in Excel spreadsheet format (the downloads also work in Microsoft Works). PayPal reports are full of detailed information about your sales and deposits. Putting this information in a standard accounting software program on a regular basis makes your year-end calculations easier to bear. (In Chapter 16, we detail what else you may need for this task.)
PayPal allows you to download your sales data into a format compatible with QuickBooks, a highly respected and popular bookkeeping program. You can also choose to download your data to an Excel spreadsheet. PayPal reports are chock-full of intensely detailed information about your sales and deposits. Putting this information in a standard accounting software program on a regular basis makes your year-end calculations easier to bear. (In Chapter 16, I detail what else you might need for this task.)
You have everything needed to get formatted data from eBay using a simple XML XSLT file pair. You can open the SimpleInput.XML file directly using many of the desktop applications that support XML. However, this combination is more suited to use within Word or another presentation application, rather than Excel, which is an analysis application.
You should also take time to read The Globe and Mail article about Office 2003 integration with eBay at .gtfldec4 BNStory Technology . This article describes how the sample application can post information from Excel to eBay as one or more new items. It's a good write-up of the sample applications in this section.
The example in this section shows how to detect online events. Listing 7.3 demonstrates one technique for using the GetSellerEventsQ call. You'll find the complete source for this example in the Chapter 07 Excel API folder of the source code located on the Sybex Web site.
It's time to consider how you'll use Visual Studio to create applications to access eBay Web Services. The choice of language is important because each language does excel in specific areas. Visual C++ is a great choice when application performance and flexibility are prime considerations, but Visual Basic provides the best database access for many purposes. Visual C and Visual Basic both provide superior database access and developer productivity. However, the cost of using these products is that every machine that uses the resulting application
The Pocket PC is the most capable of the mobile devices you can use for an eBay Web Services application. You can use local storage with this device and perform a multitude of tasks that some mobile devices can't, such as limited data analysis using the copy of Pocket Excel provided with the operating system. This platform even helps you create reports using Pocket Word. In sum, you can use a Pocket PC for most eBay Web Services tasks at least in a limited way.
The remaining three items in this spreadsheet let you work with items on eBay without ever leaving the Excel environment. The pages are listed in the order that you'd normally use them, starting with the Inventory page show in Figure 7.4. As you can see, this page contains a list of items to sell on eBay. You can add, remove, or modify items as needed. The final page is Sales. This page tells you which items have actually sold. In addition, it combines features of eBay Web Services with Excel to determine information such as the gross profit for the item and whether you have sent an invoice to the buyer. Although this isn't the most complex example of working with eBay, the fact that it combines so many new technologies to produce this unique result makes it extremely interesting. This example shows how you can build an add-on for Excel using Visual Studio .NET that makes eBay access almost trivial. It's the type of example you'd want to study if you needed to build a simple...
Script Web Services x with Microsoft Excel ( with Microsoft Accessy This chapter explores methods of coupling eBay Web Services to an application with VBA capability. You can use eBay Web Services to meet a number of needs. For example, you can write an application that draws current sales information for an item that you're auctioning using eBay Web Services and then uses Excel to chart the progress of that product. Likewise, you can obtain information from eBay Web Services to create a report in Word. You might use such a report to help management understand the current resources available on a particular subject perhaps a new area the company plans to target for business.
VBA is an acronym that stands for Visual Basic for Applications. VBA is a programming language that is included as part of several Microsoft products, including Access, Word, and Excel. For example, Access 2003 VBA uses VBA version 6.0, which is the same version of VBA used by Word 2003 VBA and Excel 2003 VBA. VBA is a programming language that can be used to incorporate additional features into your applications. VBA should not be confused with the Microsoft Visual Basic or Visual Basic .NET programming products. VB and VB.NET each has its own syntax of the Visual Basic programming language. The VB syntax, the VB.NET syntax, and the VBA syntax are very similar, but there are also differences between them. You do not need to install the Web Services Toolkit for Office if you are not calling a Web API using SOAP. You can use VBA code to communicate using HTTP POST and or GET (REST). Let's look at a basic example of how this works from Microsoft Excel. Example Calling Amazon.com from...
LSi Microsoft Excel - VBATestFromExce Q0(H Example Calling TerraServer Web Service from Excel Using VBA and SOAP After you have the Web services toolkit and MSXML installed, you are ready to work with the toolkit. In this example, you call a Web service called Microsoft TerraServer from Microsoft Excel. Open Excel, and create a new workbook called VBATestFromExcelSOAP. On Sheet1 of the workbook, arrange the fields as shown in Figure 9-4. It is important that the cells be laid out exactly as shown in the figure if you want the results to be displayed in the correct cells. Use the Visual Basic toolbar to add a button as shown. Again, to view the Visual Basic toolbar, select View O Toolbars O Visual Basic. 5j Microsoft Excel -VBATestFromExcelSOAP.xls HEHS
Timing The best time to use this strategy is when you have a catalog to follow up with prospects or you have an
Capture the name, address telephone number and email address of every single winning bidder on your auctions. Put them in a database or set up an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of them. Once in a while send them a coupon for 5 off the next auction they win. It works for me. People would come back to my auctions and bid on other things I have listed rather than throw out 5 bucks. Or send them a flyer with your 'specials'- you get the idea. (Remember your goal is to build long-term relationships through COMMITMENT to your customers. If you have something you think they would really like, tell them about it
Ledger systems wouldn't work for a company with a warehouse full of stock, but will work nicely in a beginning eBay sales environment. Many sellers tape sheets of paper to their boxes to identify them by number, and use that as a reference to a simple Excel spreadsheet for selling purposes. Excel spreadsheets are perfect for keeping track of your sales as well, but if you're using a management service or software, you don't need both for physical inventory. After you're running a real business, however, you have to keep Uncle Sam happy with a dollars and cents accounting of your inventory, so keep your inventory records in a standardized program such as QuickBooks (discussed in Chapter 16). In Chapter 9, I detail a variety of auction management software and Web sites, many of which include physical inventory tracking features. You may also want to use Excel spreadsheets for your downloaded PayPal statements, to hold information waiting to transfer to your bookkeeping program, or...
I Item and inventory management Features the ClickLaunch Single Step Launcher, which launches individual items to auction while adding them to inventory. (The site also has a bulk item-launching capability.) LaunchBots provides automated launching of your listings. With their Bulk Inventory Upload form, you can import existing auctions from eBay into Excel and MS Access.
Most of these inventory systems wouldn't work for a company with a warehouse full of stock but will work nicely in an eBay sales environment. Many sellers tape sheets of paper to their boxes to identify them by number, and use that as a reference to a simple Excel spreadsheet for selling purposes. Excel spreadsheets are perfect for keeping track of your auctions as well, but if you're using a management service or software, you don't need both for physical inventory. After you're running a full-time business, however, you have to keep the tax inspectors happy with pounds and pence accounting of your inventory, so keep your inventory records in a standardised program such as QuickBooks (discussed in Chapter 16). In Chapter 8, we detail a variety of auction management software and Web sites, many of which include physical inventory tracking features. You may also want to use Excel spreadsheets for your downloaded PayPal statements, to hold information waiting to transfer to your...
I Item and inventory management If you want to keep your inventory online, you can create it on their system. If you want to input your inventory offline, you can import it from their Excel template. You can also import open auctions or store listings to your ChannelAdvisor account for relisting or servicing.