The Powerseller Report

An Outsider's Look Inside

eBay Live 2005 - Map of Hotels within walking distance

Wednesday, March 02, 2005
If you're planning on attending eBay Live 2005 in San Jose CA, you might find it hard to cut through all the marketing, and advertisements trying to lure you into their websites while you just want to see what is around the McEnery Convention Center.

Something I found very difficult when planning for eBay Live 2004 in New Orleans was finding a decent map of the area so I could plan my business / vacation. The problem is, every site out there that has anything like that was so commercialized that it was of no affect, and I found it very hard to get a decent map.

Well, I have one here for you, I created it using Google's Keyhole application as a guide - http://www.keyhole.com

You can sign up for a free 7 day trial that will allow you to see everything from Hotels, restaraunts, gas stations, shopping etc. The best part is you are in control of what you want to see. All you do is toggle the overlay you want to see.

Here is a map of Hotels with in walking distance of the Convention Center. The distance was gathered with a measurement tool I used in Keyhole.

Take a look at these tips I used last year to book $200 per night Hyatt Regency rooms for only $65 per night, I'll be using them again. Tips and tricks to get the best deals on Hotels for eBay Live 2005

San Jose Hotels

Mystery Envelope Sold For $7,600

Monday, February 28, 2005
An envelope with "UNKOWN" contents just closed today for $7,600 and the seller will not disclose the contents, not even now that the auction is closed. I guess this is part of the marketing draw because now you will have to go to the winning bidder's website to see if they will tell the world what was INSIDE.

It never ceases to amaze me, how some of these off the wall auctions make tons of money.

Take a look at this auciton . . .

Mystery Envelope

BTW, GoldenPalace.com was the winning bidder, and it seems they have their eyes and ears out for any auction that is getting attention.

So at the very least, if you can come up with something original, and off the wall, and you can draw tons of traffic to your auction, you're likely to see GoldenPalace come running.

Keep checking back, if I find out what was in the envelope, I will post it here. At least that way you don't have to visit the casino's website. They have the MOST annoying flying pokerchip that floats around on the screen and gets in the way of what you're reading, I HATED IT!!!

So I will spare you the frustration, subscibe to our RSS feed and you will know when we do ;-)

Enjoy . . . Scott

Ever been hit by the spelling and grammer Nazi's

Tuesday, February 22, 2005
First , I want to say I believe in proper spelling and grammer, and I admit I am far from the best. I often carry on with sentances placing commas everywhere, as well as many other aspects I have forgotten since English class, which was not my best subject I might add. I prefered Math and Science. There may even be mistakes on this page, but it should be the message first then the technical aspects such as spelling and grammer.

Often times I find myself having to type out a page on a computer that doesn't have a spell check, or I am typing so darn fast I miss something. I'm sure there are more people out there who share my dilema, why is it that some people get so hung up on a typo or improperly structured sentance. You would think someone was running their nails down a halk board with the way some of them react to spelling mistakes.

Anyway I am always thankfull when readers point out mistakes I have made, I love it when people do it in a helpful manner.

BUT . . .

I can't stand it when a person shoots you an email and tells you there is an error on your website, or they include a small snipet of the text and no referrence to the page where the error can be found.

I often wonder how helpful they think they are being, like I have time to hunt through my website of more than 500 pages to find a typo. PLEASE if you want to help, let the person know where you saw the typo. Just because the page is new to you, it may be a year or more old therfore making it very difficult for the site owner to remember the page let a lone where to find it.

. . . Scott

eBay Treasure Hunt madness, or better yet INSANITY

Friday, February 18, 2005
For me it all started the day before the launch (Feb 15th) I was prepared to start the Treasure Hunt at 5am Wednesday (MST) morning. I was thinking there wouldn't be too many clues given out in the first 4 hours.

So on the morning of launch day at 5:36am (I'm an hour ahead of eBay' time) I started working through the clues, and at that time there had only been 4 given out thus I was working on clue #5 "One of Seven Modern Civil Engineering Wonders" .

Needless to say I had NO idea how the connection to the auction title related to the clue "Annie Braodway karaoke CD" and at this time it was possible to catch a glimpse of the winning auction. as eBay hadn't started pulling the auctions before updating the found status.

It didn't take long before eBay noticed people in the forums posting links to the winning auctions before they were pulled, even though they urged users not to post them in order to protect everyone from scamers posting false treasure hunt auctions.

This lead to a delay in the updated to the clues being found, for obvious reasons it appeared eBay was now pulling the auctions before the clue grid was updated. It was mentinoned in the forum (from a user not an eBay employee) that she was told the clues are posted automatically in random intervals according to a Live Help support operator at eBay.

I don't agree, I saw a clue posted with the date of 2/26 and upon a refresh a couple of minutes later the typeo was corrected. If the process was automated then the typo would have remained or not have happened altogether.

At around 11am a good friend instant messaged me asking about the Treasure Hunt, so we started working on the clues together, she also emailed her Husband so we could use his crossword solving skills. We were fanatical, I had two computers with three monitors running in order to multitask through the different screens, as well as keep an eye on the forum to see if anything would help.

Later that evenning the three of us continued in the insanity until 2am in the morning, and then started up again after we had slept for a few hours.

Skipping forward to today, we are getting burned out FAST, especially now that eBay has changed all the patterns we were using thanks to people who couldn't keep their mouths SHUT in the forums. These people thought they were helping others ( as is the nature of many eBay users) but what they didnt realize was, eBay was also listening. There was a huge 4 hour lapse on Thursday between clues, and the next clue that came out didn't have any of the patterns we were used to seeing. No doubt eBay most likely called a meeting to fix the patterns. ( I don't know that for fact, but it only makes sense)

Now that the pattern is gone and it's taking longer, I don't have the time to sit here refreshing the creen every 30 seconds and clicking on thousands of auctions in hopes I will beat someone to the treasure.

I will continued to keep an eye on things but not as close as I had before.

If you would like to listen to our Treasure Hunt search for the 13th clue (was the first 3 hour clue) I have used a recording of our progrssion through that hunt to post a pre-launch segment to our upcoming Podcast (internet radio show)

AuctionPodder.com

I wish you all good luck, and let me know you win, I would love to here about how you found the winner.

Enjoy . . . Scott

eBay Treasure Hunt - $25,000 per day giveaway

Wednesday, February 16, 2005
The hunt begins February 16th - Presidents Day - where eBay will begin giving away 25 $1000 cash prizes to those who find the "Treasure" hidden in special eBay listings.

According to eBay's general announcement board;

"For eight days, we'll list 25 listings a day at various times, going through the end of Wednesday, February 23, 2005.

To help you find the prizes, we'll post a clue on our “Get Clues” page for each listing we put up. In celebration of President's Day, the clues will be words or phrases relating to U.S. Presidents, U.S. history or other Americana. Each clue will be a puzzle, and solving it will help you find the hidden prizes! Since we'll be listing items and posting clues at different times throughout each day, you'll want to check the page frequently."

"eBay will host a "Treasure Hunt clues board" and a "Treasure Hunt discussion board" where you can visit with other treasure hunters to solve clues and discuss the treasure hunt.

"Here's an example of how a clue might work: Let's say you figure that the answer to the clue we've given you is “motherhood.” With that answer in mind, you might try searching on “maternity dress” to try to find the hidden listing. If you find it, you'll know – just follow the instructions on the item page to claim your prize. We've made it so that none of the text in the description is searchable, so you'll have to use your wits (and maybe some teamwork) to figure out where the prizes are!"

In addition to the treasure hunt, eBay will also host a Grand Prize Sweepstakes for a chance to win $25,000, plus an eBay Featured Store subscription for life! Each day of the contest, you can earn one entry into the sweepstakes simply by buying, bidding on or listing an item (up to a total of 8 entries) on eBay.com or eBay Motors.

For more information visit the eBay Treasure Hunt page then head over to The Powerseller Report where we will be discussing the clues.

Enjoy . . . Scott

New eBay affiliate tool

Tuesday, February 15, 2005
There is a new tool that can be found in the eBay affiliate toolbox Keyword Linking Tool

The Keyword Linking Tool provides eBay affiliates with an easy way to generate trackable links by entering keyword searches or unique identifiers such as ISBNs or UPCs. Affiliates can submit a list of up to 5,000 different search terms and quickly create links to the corresponding search results pages.

In addition, if the affiliate chooses to submit a list of ISBNs, UPCs or MPNs (Manufacturers Part Number), they can build search results links OR links pointing to the Product Details Page for each of the corresponding products.

Keyword Linking Tool

Enjoy . . . Scott

Have you Googled your own name lately?

Friday, February 11, 2005
Ok, this is SCARY . . .

I was listening to Adam Curry's Podcast and clicked on the BioPedia link and saw the page on the background of Adam Curry.

I was curious if there was anything on my name, so I entered my name in and as expected there was nothing, but I clicked on the web search button and noticed a Google Adwords ad with my name as the title.

Click on the title of this entry to go to that search page.

I have to thank BuySafe for posting an Adwords on the hopes people will be searching for me and see their ad. I'm assuming they linked to the testimonial I gave them ;-)

Anyway, I thought it was just WEIRD to see my name in an Adwords ad.

Enjoy . . . Scott