Tips for using HTML in your eBay listings

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Tips for using HTML in your eBay listings
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Writing your own HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) can at first seem unworkable and beyond your technical abilities, however it is in fact very easy. With a little practice the tenderfoot beginner can be sprucing their pages up like a bebop on a Winter evening in New York. To say the use of HTML in an eBay listing would be extremely advantageous is indeed an understatement for a well designed listing can mean the difference between a sale and a flop.

The following is a guideline on how to use HTML in order to produce certain pleasing effects. By the time you've finished you will understand why I stated it is very easy once you grasp the underlying concepts.

1. Basic Arrangement

Most HTML codes work in pairs, a little like turning a light switch on and off. One part turns the code on, the second part turns it off. Each of the codes are contained within brackets (< >). The important part to remember is to use the forward slash in your final part of the code within the brackets which is best highlighted with the following example.

< p >YOUR TEXT< /p >
< center >YOUR TEXT< /center >

(Please note: In order to preclude from activating the HTML code on the page you are reading I have left a gap between the brackets and the code word. Therefore < center > would look like and so forth.)

2. Basic Codes

< p > - Inserts a paragraph break between pictures or text. It's always easier on the eye to provide adequate spacing between pictures and paragraphs. You don't want the page a cluttered mess otherwise the potential buyer will leave. Remember, adding < /p > at the end will complete the code and render it active.

< br > - Moves your text and pictures to the next line. This is the same basic principle as the paragraph break.

< center > - Places your picture or text in the center of the page. If you center a picture it often looks better centering the text as well.

< u > - Underlines the text.

< b > - Makes the text bold.

< font color="red" > - Changes all the words that follow red until < /font > stops doing it.

< font size="6" > - Makes your text larger or smaller depending upon the number entered, it will stay at that size until < /font > is entered.

3. Adding Images and Links

In order to bypass the eBay listing fee for adding more than one image, it is advisable to learn how to add images using HTML. First you need to set up a picture hosting account which can be created free with a system such as Photobucket. This will store your images elsewhere for you to use on your listings, multiple times if needed. The HTML code is automatically produced for you on the above mentioned picture hosting website.

Alternatively you can add an image from an existing web address although beware of any copyright rules beforehand. The code is as follows:

< img src="THE WEB ADDRESS" >

Adding a link is similar and just as easy. However eBay does provide ready made links to other pages on your account, such as the 'About Me' page and other listings pages.

However, this is the code to add a new link:

< a href="THE WEB ADDRESS"> NAME OF WEBSITE < /a >

4. Further Possibilities.

With further research you can create advanced HTML codes which can change the background colour of a page, increase image sizes, create borders, design picture links and a wide variety of exciting looks and formats.

There are 5 tips to bear in mind when using HTML.

(i) Be aware of page load times. The more you add the slower the page will become. This in turn will loose you customers.

(ii) Use moving text and animations in moderation. These are easy to create using HTML but are also liable to distract the customer from the most important items, namely the product.

(iii) Simple Backgrounds. Similar reasons to the previous point.

(iv) Make use of external links. That does not mean offsite links however.

(v) Use large pictures. They sell items!. Small pictures have the danger of deceiving.

By mastering the rules of HTML you will be better than 90% of the competition who are either unaware or too lazy to integrate the system into their business. The results will be both fulfilling and lucrative.

Edward Beaman-Hodgkiss
Beaman's Bazaar

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