If you sell products on eBay as your home-based business, you probably know that it’s quite competitive and that one way to stay ahead of the competition is to constantly be researching new product niches.
Andale’s ‘What’s Hot’ is a research tool that will help you brainstorm new product niches. Research tools like Mpire Researcher and HammerTap Deep Analysis require you to put in a keyword or search term to generate research data. But Andale What’s Hot simply displays hot items in eBay category/subcategory view and can be used to gather promising keywords for later use in those more specific tools.
Here are some things I like about Andale What’s Hot –
Shows How Hot – Indicates how hot an item is by red chili pepper icons. 3 peppers means “Burning Hot”, 2 peppers means “Medium Hot”, and 1 pepper means “Mildly Hot”
Shows Trends – It shows you what trend the item is taking: “Getting Hotter”, “Getting Cooler” or staying the same.
Aggregates Listing Titles – If there are 50 listings titled “Kelty Elite Baby Carrier Backpack” for example, it would only list that term once. This is useful because power sellers often find a title that works well for them and just use it over and over. If Andale didn’t aggregate these, it would create too much detail. You do have the option to display the individual listings that make up the aggregate.
Shows What not selling – In a separate screen, you can choose to look at the items that are not selling very well. This is useful if you have something specific in mind and want to see how it’s doing. It’s better to find out early on if it isn’t selling well!
Affordable! – The cost of $3.95 per month is probably less than you spend at Starbucks each morning. If you pay for a whole year by the way ($33.97), it’s less than $3 per month.
Here are some things about Andale What’s Hot that could be improved upon –
Includes Canceled Items – This tool includes canceled items in the item details. I know this because it included some of our listings. In our case, they were simply moved to an online auction from our store which caused the store listing to be ended without being sold (from the store). So that can be a bit misleading.
Over Aggregates Items – A lot of detail is lost in the aggregating of items and in some cases, it perhaps should be aggregated differently. For example, I found the item ‘Pampered Chef New’ aggregated. Drilling down into it to see individual items, I could see that there were all kinds of variations of this keyword among the listings; some with more specific brand names or part names that could have been grouped.
Sometimes Sluggish – This seems to be an ongoing problem with Andale in general. Sometimes, pages and results simply take a long time to load even with a fast connection.
Shortcomings aside, Andale What’s Hot can really help you brainstorm those niches for your eBay business. Andale’s partnership with eBay has been widely discussed since their contract to provide free counters ended on June 30th. However, What’s Hot remains a terrific value for anyone wanting to do research for their eBay home business.
What about you? Do you have pros or cons to share about Andale What’s Hot?