Wednesday, June 15, 2011

June Bonanza Update: New Features

I want to begin with a strong word of caution to Bonanza sellers. Bonanza has a new feature in the batch editor in which a user can apply a change to all items in the booth. While this is a great new feature, it can have devastating consequences.

The batch editor has two buttons: "apply to selected items" and "apply to all items." The buttons are right next to each other. Prior to this month, the "apply to all items" was not present, so users are not used to seeing it.

When a user is deleting items, both buttons have a warning message that appears right after the button is clicked warning users that the action cannot be undone. The trouble is that we are all so used to seeing a warning message when deleting individual items that we are not necessarily going to pay close attention to the warning box that is seen if we accidentally select the "apply to all items" box.

I know of several users who have accidentally clicked the wrong box and made changes to all items without intending to do so. I also know of one booth owner who was intending to delete one item, clicked the wrong button, and deleted every single item in the booth. Close to 200 items were destroyed by clicking the wrong button. That person is someone I know, so this hits close to home.

The other day I was deleting a few items and clicked the wrong button. I am so very fortunate that I noticed what the resulting message said and caught myself. I was one click away from destroying over 600 items.

While I have my descriptions saved on my computer, they are mixed in with items that have sold. I have my images, but the same is true for them. It would take a very long time to rebuild all of my listings from scratch.

Be very, very careful when deleting items. In fact, I recommend avoiding the batch editor when deleting items. Go to "Sell" and search your booth for the item you wish to delete. You can then delete the item from that screen.

I am hoping that Bonanza will make the warning message larger and more noticeable when a user accidentally hits the wrong button and risks deleting all items. Or even better, perhaps that button should be disabled when a user is trying to delete something.

Bonanza now has a feature called "Bonanza Rewards." Users can earn tokens in several ways, and once a user has 500 tokens, the tokens can be redeemed for a $1.00 savings in monthly fees. The easiest way to earn tokens is to visit My Bonanza each day, click on the rewards, and claim your daily allotment of 10 tokens.

Another way to earn rewards is to tag items. The item tags show at the bottom of each listing. It is important first to check in the "Item details" section of a listing to see whether any item tags are present. So long as a user chooses an item tag that has not already been applied, the user will receive tokens when the booth owner approves the tag. The catch is that the user has to "bet" one or more earned tokens in order to suggest a tag.

Users also get badges on their profile pages for certain accomplishments, and users also earn tokens with each new badge. See my profile page to view my badges.

So far, the Bonanza rewards are not useful to people who only buy on the site, but the word is that eventually buyers will have some type of reward.

A month ago, I reported that I was getting books listed, but slowly since I was having problems with the new listing form. I am happy to report that most of the glitches are gone, and I can now list very quickly with the new form.

Furthermore, since I no longer have to adjust my photos on Bonanza (see this post), the listing process is quicker than it was before.

I am currently getting regular sales through Google, meaning more than I have been for the last nine months. My Google traffic appears to be trending higher in June than it was in May, so I am very encouraged. If this trend continues, my sales may also return to the level they were at prior to the name change. Depending upon what happens during the second half of June, my June sales may approach the level of sales that I had around one year ago.

I used to name my photos years ago when I primarily used my scanner. This was because I had to rename the photos, since the names used by the scanner would not upload properly to my website. Later when I switched to a Sony camera, I became lazy and kept the default file names which are of the form DSC02345 and go in sequential order. It made it easier not to have to create new names.

A seller can gain higher placement in Google by naming the photos, such as "nancydrewhollowoak." I have resisted, but I am now going to begin doing this to try to further improve my placement. I have only done this for the most recently listed items on Bonanza, which is why the Dana Girls books I just listed in my Jennifer's Series Books booth go in numerical order with both sets of books mixed in together. It's because of how my computer sorts the images by file name, so this changes how I list items.

My current improvement in Google placement is not due to image file names since I just began using better names for images. By beginning to use better names for images, I should be able to further improve my placement for any new items that I list. I will not go back to my old items and change the image names, since that would be too much trouble.


Jennifer White said...

After several reports of people losing all of their items, Bonanza has acted fast. The "apply changes to all items" button will be moved away from the other button where we are not that likely to accidentally click it. Details are here. Scroll down for Jordo's response.

Jennifer White said...

Of course, this is no consolation for people who lost their items, but at least it will be less likely to happen to anyone else.

Coffeegulper said...

Although this is off-topic (yet related to the subject of Bonanza), what I find really irritating about navigating through the site is when your cursor hovers over a listing---even for a second---the pop-up appears with more pertinent information having to do with that listing.
I know the feature is there to save time on clicking the listing, itself, but the pop-up is so big, it covers a number of other listings I want to see!
I try to leave my cursor to the far left or right while scrolling down from now on...


Jennifer White said...

That feature has been annoying. It has now gone away. People have been complaining about it for a while, and what happens now is that a light see-through image shows up, and you can choose to click in the corner to see an item preview. If you choose not to click, the image does not affect you seeing other items while browsing.

In an update to my previous comments, the button that applies changes to everything has now been moved away from the regular button. Yay!

Coffeegulper said...

Ha! They must've changed it in the last 48 hours.

And yes, that's a lot less annoying than the way it was before!