EBay Designing Groups Unmasked

by Debbie Stuart, HoneyBKids

While shopping the 'eBay way' you have probably encountered various odd acronyms and name slogans and wondered what they really mean in the Handcrafted Boutique area.

Journal Modiste has a wonderful listing to help you decipher these unusual search terms already, but just what is this whole thing all about? Why are sellers using them?

Just as in any business, exposure is the key to good sales. In the eBay Handcrafted market, individual designers have taken a step to give themselves extra exposure opportunities by joining together with other like minded designers and creating a 'group'. In a sense these are a little like the old fashioned 'guilds' of days gone by.

Groups all vary greatly from faith based, to very business orientated, to those who just want to chat and interact with others in the same industry.

When a group is formed, the members decide on a name for their group. This essentially becomes their search term on eBay. With so many items available, grouping together under one search term gives buyers the ability to search multiple people at the one time. Many buyers have their favorite groups saved as a search on their My eBay page for ease.

Most groups participate in themes. A theme launch gives group members a chance to work together towards a common goal. It is also a good way of helping a designer step out of the box from their usual style.

Boutique groups have many different rules for their members, and also many different requirements for entry or invitation. Often these requirements are a reflection of the style of group that it is. Many groups have very high standards that a designer must meet, especially in construction of a garment or item, while others are more interested in the friends they make in the process. Entry can be as complex as providing pictures of the outside and inside of a finished garment along with a bio or referrals from clients, or on the flip side, just being friends with a member of a group. Obtaining entry to an 'elite' group, which has stringent controls in place for assuring that its members produce quality items is definitely something to be proud of for the designer!

By no means does being a member of a group guarantee quality for you as the buyer. Be aware of each individual's feedback and educate yourself what to look for. A good reference to use is Journal Modiste's Buying Guidelines page.

Just like sellers, groups have a measure of popularity, and you may find a number of your most favorite designers in one group or indeed amongst the most favored 4-5 groups. A seller's choice of group is rather important.

So head over to the glossary page here at Journal Modiste and enter a few of those group names or acronyms into the search box on eBay and see what you find. Just remember to hit the "Save to Favorites" link once you find groups with your favorite designers in them!

Debbie currently lives in Jacksonville Fl, with her husband and son (4), having shifted there from New Zealand 3 years ago. A voracious reader, loud Bunco player, and enjoys sewing enough to do it everyday, or at least haunt the fabric shops when not!

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