Monday, May 23, 2011

Product Posting DOs and DON'Ts for TpT

Posting a product on Teachers Pay Teachers is easy, but it is also super important. Which boxes you check and how you fill in the description field can make a huge difference in sales.

DO read the fine print
This will keep you from posting file types that are not supported, give you valuable tips, and help you to understand the posting process

DO include a Preview File
If you don't include a preview, all the buyer has to go on is your description and the 4 thumbnails. People like to know what they are buying! Check out this post for more on creating an effective preview.

DO include a descriptive title
In some cases, your title may be the only thing a potential buyer sees when deciding whether to click or move on. It is also a big deal for google. Google looks at titles so make sure that you start with relevant key words.  Put keywords first:

Bad Title:      Fun and challenging activities for learning about adjectives.
Good Title:   Adjective Activities - Fun and Challenging, 20 pgs. Answer Keys Included

Take your cue from ebay and make your title long and descriptive. If you have extra space in the title field, add extra words like "Common Core Correlated" "Fun and Challenging"

DON'T use all caps  in your title (or anywhere else)
ITS ANNOYING! I BET YOU ARE ALREADY ANNOYED! And, in internetspeak, it means you are yelling. And also, you are a teacher for goodness sake, use text appropriately. Please.

DO write a thorough description
You are writing for both potential buyers and google, and both like information. At the very least you should include an overview of the product, why it is useful, and how teachers might use it. Include relevant information like the number of pages (I know there is a field for this, but it is good to put it in the description too), if there are grading rubrics, answer keys, differentiation plans etc. Make sure your description is accurate and clear. If you mislead a buyer, he or she may be upset enough to leave negative feedback and you don't want that!You are writing first and foremost for people, but you should also make sure you have included relevant keywords for google.

DON'T forget to proofread
Since TpT does not have a spell checker, you might want to write your description in Word first and then copy and paste it into the description field. Since you are a teacher and you are marketing to teachers mistakes in speling are particularly noticeable (see?)

DO choose three types of resources and three subject areas
The more categories your product is listed under, the more it will be seen by buyers. If your product is very specific, you can always add in the "Other" category.

DON'T exaggerate your grade range
This is a big pet-peeve with many of us. It is highly unlikely that your product is appropriate for both kindergarten and high school students (and yes, some people do check all the boxes). Although there are a few resources that span the grades, most do not. Not only does this practice make it harder for buyers to find appropriate material for their grade level, it also reflects poorly on the seller. If I am a sixth grade teacher and I see a product with huge fonts and extremely cutesy clip art that is being sold to upper elementary, I know that this is a seller who is not being honest. Likewise, if I teach kindergarten and the product his teeny-tiny write on lines and really big words, then I know this seller is not for me. Clearly, students come at many different levels even within a grade, so you can add a grade or two, just be reasonable...please.

DON'T under price
I know it can be tempting to set your prices low in the beginning to attract buyers, and going a little low is probably a good idea, but drastically under pricing (selling 80 usable pages for $5 or 20 usable pages for $1) devalues your work. Often people assume that if it is cheap, it is junk. People will pay for quality.Further, if everyone priced cheap, TpT would turn into a giant dollar store and that isn't going to help any of us. Take look at similar product to get an idea of how you should price. My personal rule of thumb is .20-.25 a page, so a 20 page product would be $4.00 - $5.00 (higher if you are selling for K-1). But there are a lot of other factors to consider like how much work you put into it and how useful the product is. .

DO include thumbnails
Your primary thumbnail is usually your cover page. It will attract attention. The other three give the buyer an idea of what they are getting, and hopefully convince him or her to download the preview. If the thumbnail generator is clogged or makes your pages look weird, you can create your own thumbnails using your snipping tool.

DO check your listing
Once your listing is live check the page for mistakes and make sure everything looks hunky-dorey. Then, you are ready to market!

5 comments:

  1. How do you delete a preview and replace it with an updated one????

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was thinking about the pricing suggestions. I see many people even top sellers with lots of pages selling the product for next to nothing. A lot of products are in the $4-$5 range. I recently marked down my prices because so many other people were selling huge packets for next to nothing. I agree with your posting but how do we compete with sellers who are selling large packets at low prices?

    It seems to me that just getting people to your store is the major thing. With so many people on the site selling, it is difficult to stand out in a crowd. You have great information on your blog and I do much of what you suggested but my sales have been disappointing.

    ReplyDelete
  3. If your item is worth the price you put on it because of it's quality...then stick with that price.

    Find a way to market your item that highlights IT'S uniqueness. Get a customer base that isn't interested in just a low price but an item they really NEED.

    Also, if your are interested in the "packet niche"...you'll have to create packets that are not saturated in the market. Otherwise, you will indeed be waiting for the sales....which will come...but at a slower rate in the beginning.

    Research what items are already out there...and find some that don't have much competition. That's your best bet before lowering your prices...otherwise you are just marketing the the "low price" customer base.

    Hope this helps!

    Rebecca

    ReplyDelete
  4. How do you delete posted items? I apparently uploaded the same item like three times!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Quick edit has a delete button...I did the same thing. :)

    ReplyDelete

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