Trading Graces Online Auction Event
Preview Gallery Toolkit
Lutheran Services in America
700 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230-3850
Trading Graces Menu Options 5
Auction Items 6
Add New (button) 6
Verify Items to eBay (button) 6
Submit Items to eBay (button) 7
Transfer (to another event) (button) 7
Select Auction (event drop down list) 7
Add New (item) 8
Select Category (field) 9
Item Name/Title (field) 10
Description (field) 10
Opening Bid (field) 11
Bid Increment Amount (field) 11
Buy It Now (field) 11
Payment Options 14
Shipping Options 15
Error Messages 17
Verify to eBay 17
Sellers (information) 18
Seller’s eBay ID 19
PayPal Email 19
Hit Counter Style 19
Select Available Charities 19
Authenticate Seller/Retrieve Seller’s Token 20
Preview Gallery 20
Additional Resources 22
Trading Graces Online Auction Event Cycle Two
Preview Gallery Toolkit
Trading Graces Online Auction Event-Cycle Two participants list items into the Preview
Gallery via the Lutheran Services in America (LSA) Growing Connections database, a
web-based application accessed through assigned user’s rights. The primary contact
person at each participating organization is assigned a User Name and (default)
Password once the Trading Graces Participation Agreement has been returned to the
Trading Graces Online Auction Event Manager. User Name and Password information is
supplied individually to participants by email. [Contact John Carter, Trading Graces
Online Auction Event Manager, at 410-230-3548, to obtain a user name and password].
This document walks a participant through the steps necessary to enter items into the
Trading Graces database that will appear in the Trading Graces National Preview
Gallery. Updates to the database include additional information to prompt participants in
completing fields of data.
Participants are encouraged to contact the Trading Graces Online Auction Event
Manager, John Carter, with any need for assistance in using the database.
Log into the Lutheran Services in America (LSA) Growing Connections database at the
using the assigned User Name and (default) Password. Each Trading Graces Online
Auction participant organization obtains an assigned User Name and Password. The
User Name and Password will be required for logging in each time a participant begins a
session to enter items into the database. At the initial log-in, participants will be
prompted to change the (default) Password to something the participant will remember at
future log-ins. Call John Carter at 410-230-3548 with any problems encountered with
logging into the system.
A screen shot of the log-in screen appears on the following page.
Participants are encouraged to add this page to their webpage favorites. Add the page by
clicking on the tab at the top of the browser entitled Favorites. On future visits, this will
allow you to speed up the process of logging-in.
Enter the assigned User Name here.
Enter the (default) Password here. Click on Login. [At the initial log-in, you will be
prompted to change the Password for future log-ins. Please remember your changed
The system advances, and the following screen appears:
Click on Trading Graces to obtain Menu options.
Your choices include:
This is the place to begin entering items into the database. When you click on Auction
Items, the following screen appears:
Our instructions begin by explaining the horizontal function buttons: Add New; Verify
Items to eBay; Submit Items to eBay; and Transfer (to another Event).
The Trading Graces Online Auction Event Cycle Two upgrades move more
responsibilities to participants than did last year’s database. Each participant will manage
more information in Cycle Two than was managed in the original database.
Add New items processes remain fairly much the same as last year’s procedures,
however, each completed item automatically processes itself for errors to verify accuracy
and system ability for future transmission to eBay for the live event.
When entering items one-by-one, you will not need to click on the Verify Items to eBay
button. This will be an automatic process. If an error occurs you may have to use this
button to manually verify the item once the data has been corrected. Normally, when a
correction is made and the process is followed properly, the verification will still run
automatically. Under normal circumstances, you will not need to be concerned with
using this button.
The Submit Items to eBay button is currently disabled and you do not have the ability to
use the button right now. You will use it later…just prior to the event going “live” on
eBay. On February 19th and 20th 2007 each participant will use this button to move your
organization’s items over to the eBay platform. We will all do this sometime within
these two days, but it will require that you actually move your items to eBay during that
time. (Last year the system moved things to eBay in a batch and a lot of behind the
scenes work to clean up the data went un-noticed by participants.) This year, our
database is improved to help us catch errors early, fix them, and allow us to move things
to eBay will more ease.
The Transfer(to another event) button is new! Because we have enlarged the event
time span to cover the online event starting on February 25, 2007 and closing on March
22, 2007, we are actually offering three consecutive ten-day auctions. This change gives
us a longer presence on eBay and allows participants to schedule items over three distinct
events so that not all of your items start and stop on the same day. This will be useful to
members who list a large number of auction items. This feature allows you to move an
item from one event to another, and it also allows you to pull items from last year’s event
into Cycle Two should you still have the item on hand for another attempt at selling it.
Choices for scheduling items in Cycle Two include starting ten-day auctions on:
February 25, 2007 –March 8, 2007
March 9, 2007-March 18, 2007
March 12, 2007-March 22, 2007
To begin, you must select an auction start date by clicking on Select Auction:
Three start/stop dates are available. Choose one to begin listing an item by highlighting
one of the choices, and...
Select your organization from the drop down box:
Click on: Add New
The following screen will open:
Begin listing an item by clicking on Select Category:
Select the main category and drill down selecting subcategories as the screens require.
You’ll know when you’ve come to the last subcategory when you don’t see any more
right-pointing arrows in the category list.
The screen returns to the item description fields view:
You will complete the fields: Item Name; Description; Quantity; Opening Bid
Amount; Bid Increment Amount; and/or Buy It Now.
Creating the perfect Item Name/Title invites you to think of your item title as a great
newspaper headline. The most valuable real estate on eBay is the 55-character title of
your item. Some tips for helping you write an item title, include:
• Using the most common name known for the item
• Mention, if rare, that the item is rare or hard to find
• Mention the item condition, i.e., new or old
• Mention the qualities such as its style, model, or edition
• If the item is commonly misspelled, incorporate both the correct and misspelled
• Ebay title lingo:
o One of a kind
• DO NOT CLUTTER ITEM TITLES WITH PUNCTUATION MARKS or overly
use capitalization. Capitalization is considered “shouting” at people and can be a
Writing your item Description does not require you to be a Pulizter Prize author. Include
some of the following as you create an inviting description:
• Write a factual item description carefully describing the items and the fact you
know about the item
• Because you have a lot of space, list all of the reasons someone would want to
known before buying it such as the size, color, and material.
• Tell the truth about the item, especially, if there is a flaw, scratch, nick, dent, ding,
rip, tear, missing pieces, etc.. Buyers will send things back if they think you have
not represented the item honestly.
• Remind the customer that the proceeds from the sale benefit your nonprofit
organization. Tell them, if you can, what the proceeds will provide.
• If your eBay “About Me” page describes a lot about your organization, invite
buyers to check out your “About Me” page by suggesting it in your description.
• If you’ve got a great selling track record, write something about that in your
description, such as: “I’m great to deal with. Check out my feedback!”
• Wish potential bidders well by setting the tone, such as: Good Luck! And invite
bidders to email you with questions.
Quantity is preset in our database to one (1). On advice from Wendy Kress Meredith,
eBay Power Seller, Trading Assistant, and volunteer advisor to Trading Graces, we do
not encourage you to list more than one item even if you do have multiples of the item.
You can always make a second chance offer to high bidders with your excess items and
still follow eBay’s rules for participation.
Opening Bid is really a very important thing to consider. You do not want to start
bidding too high and scare away customers. Setting an opening bid right requires you to
do a little leg work. Visit eBay and do a search on your item to see how much your item
might potentially fetch. Setting a lower bid might attract more bidders into the action,
but do your homework first. Setting a lower bid is also good for your bottom line. eBay
charges an insertion fee that is based on your opening bid amount. In some instances you
save a considerable amount by setting a lower opening bid. For example, an item valued
to bring $50 or more should be carefully priced for the opening bid. You might feel
certain that it will bring at least $50, but you don’t necessarily want to start the bidding at
$50. See the chart below to help you find the savings in setting a lower bid for the range
you expect to sell an item:
Starting or Reserve Price Insertion Fee
$500.00 or more $4.80
That $50.00 or more item might best be placed at an opening bid of $49.99 so you save
considerable funds in your insertion fees.
eBay can automatically set the Bid Increment Amount so that the next higher bidder has
to come up on the price. This field does not really require that you complete it. If you
don’t, eBay will automatically set an increment. Otherwise, you can enter an increment.
Buy It Now is a feature allowed for use with sellers having a feedback score of 10 or
sellers having an ID verified. This feature allows you to set a price where a customer can
purchase it immediately and take the item out of the competitive bidding process.
The other fields on this screen are preset and populate based on information loaded into
the database elsewhere. For example, the Charity Donation Percent, by default, is 100
percent for each participating organization as each organization is selling items to directly
benefit their nonprofit. Coding in the seller’s list is carried into this field. The auction
duration is pre-set at ten days as each of the consecutive auctions runs for ten days on
eBay. The fields at the bottom of the page are all preset, except the start time. Note, that
start times are according to eBay time---Pacific Standard Time. For the purposes of
Trading Graces, we are using the start time of 9:00 a.m. on all entries. This will result
in events starting on the West coast at 9:00 a.m. PST; 10:00 a.m. Mountain Time; 11:00
a.m. Central Standard time; and 12 noon Eastern Standard Time. Please enter 9:00 a.m.
start time across the board on all items!
When you have completed all of the information required in this screen, please click on
Save/Update before moving on to add photos, payment or shipping information.
Before you add photos to your listing, you will need to have already taken your
photographs and saved them as JPG files smaller than 50K. The following
requirements will allow you to make good quality photos that are easily loadable to eBay:
o Image resolution at 72 pixels per inch (72 ppi)
o Use digital settings no higher than 640 X 480 format (use 320 X 240 to use
less space and add more pictures)
o Finished/saved size no larger than 300 X 300 pixels
Begin adding a photograph to the item description by clicking on Add New:
The following screen will appear:
The system is set that your first photograph will become the default photograph. You
can pull it into the database by clicking on browse and double-clicking on the specific
photograph. You may or not add a caption (optional)
To add additional photographs, click update and repeat the process. The system allows
you to add up to four photographs and they will be transferred to eBay when you move
your items for the live event.
Note: Your first photograph is free. You pay for additional photographs (see eBay Fee
When you have completed adding photographs, click on Save/Update before moving on
to add Payment information.
To complete the fields required for Payment information, click on the button: Payment
Options. The following screen will appear:
You will check the appropriate boxes to the left of the payment type to highlight all of the
payment types you accept. For example, if you have set up the required PayPal account,
you are able to accept credit card payments made to PayPal on your behalf. PayPal will
notify you of the receipt of payment and you will get information that payment is
received from the eBay website, too. You need to select, then, PayPal as an option.
Additionally, you may choose to process personal checks and/or money orders. This can
get to be a little tricky as you do not want to ship an item until you know you’ve really
got funds from the buyer. If you are going to process personal checks and money orders,
you will need to select the appropriate boxes and make a note in the narrative field
specifying your terms or conditions.
If you are directly processing credit cards outside of the PayPal system (you can process
credit card on-site), select, then, the appropriate cards from the options and be sure to
spell out your terms in the narrative filed.
Generally, most Trading Graces Online Auction Event Cycle Two participants will use
PayPal, personal checks and/or money orders. Few organizations want to be bothered
with processing credit cards, and the PayPal and eBay systems provide security and
incentives if you make use of the compatible features and convenience of accepting
Write a narrative that spells out all of the conditions you impose on buyers, including:
o We accept/prefer PayPal
o We accept personal checks with a 7-10 day clearance before shipment
o We accept money orders with a 7-10 day clearance before shipment
Your narrative should be inviting, not off-putting. Suggested language to include:
Your purchase of this item provides funds to support < organization name>, a nonprofit
501(c )(3) organization. Timely completion of transactions is our goal and we ask that
buyers remit payment within 48 hours of notification that they have won the item. We
accept PayPal, personal checks and/or money orders and will ship items paid via PayPal
within 48 hours of notification by PayPal that funds are on account. 7-10 day clearance
is to be allowed on personal check and/or money order purchases. All sales are final
unless buyer negotiates return to seller. Email seller at <enter your email address>
with any questions.
Complete the Payment information section and Save/Update before moving on to the
Shipping Information Section.
To enter the Shipping Information, click on the button: Shipping Options. The
following screen will appear:
The shipping options can be a little complicated. Please read this section carefully.
The Ship to Option drop down screen allows you three choices: Site Only (USA);
Worldwide; and Will Not Ship (Pick Up Only). Unless you are intentionally shipping
overseas, you will not use the Worldwide option. If shipping domestically, highlight the
Site Only (USA) option. If the item is large and requires customer pick-up at your
location, highlight the Will Not Ship (Pick Up Only).
Select from the drop down menu of Shipping Terms. Normally the buyer pays, so this is
the likely choice to make.
You will need to decide and select a Fee Type: Flat Fee or Calculated. The Flat Fee is
used only when you have an item that fits into a USPS (or other carrier) Flat Fee Box that
ships for a published flat rate, i.e., USPS flat rate box (domestic) @ $7.85. Use the
Calculated choice when you have an item that you know the dimensions of the package
in which you plan to ship via common carrier. You will enter the dimensions and weight
of the package in fields below to activate a calculator on eBay.
Select the Service from the drop down box. You will need to be familiar with the
services provided by the various major carriers which include: UPS and USPS.
Shipping Cost or Handling Fees must be entered in the field if you select the Flat Fee
fee type. The amount is entered in the format 000.00 without adding a dollar sign.
Select an Insurance Option. Not Offered should be the default. If an option is selected,
you need to enter a dollar amount to cover the added expense to the buyer in the format
The Package Options (Required for calculated shipping) must be completed in order to
activate the UPS or USPS calculators associated with the eBay database. Note: You
cannot edit an item once bidding has started to add these dimensions and weights in order
to provide the calculator as a convenience to the buyer. You must plan ahead by
measuring the item, weighting it, and finding a box that fits the item before you complete
the data entry process.
Once all of the data is entered in the correct fields, click on Save/Update.
The completed listing should automatically process verification with eBay and when it
verifies the screen will automatically re-set so that you can proceed to list a new item.
Start listing a new item by beginning with Select Category.
Should an error occur, a message will show and you will have opportunity to correct the
error right away.
Any status, other than a verified status, will require your attention. This includes the
status: pending or failed. Pending indicates that data-entry for the item is incomplete at
some point or that an error has caused the item not to verify with eBay. A pending status
may show, from time to time, when there is unusually heavy traffic in the database and
the system has not had sufficient time to complete the verification process or move the
item into the items list. Report any pending status errors to the Trading Graces Online
Auction Event Manager.
A failed status will provide details as to the cause of the failure. Click on failed to obtain
information as to why the error exists, and edit the item to correct the situation. Edits can
also be made by clicking on the notepad in the next to the far right column. When
making edits, please be sure to Save/Update and, if the item does not automatically
verify with eBay, manually verify the item by highlighting the item in the auction items
list (check the box in the left hand column) and click on the Verify to eBay button.
A successfully verified item will appear in your auction items list that looks like this:
The seller’s information is maintained by the participating organization assigned user,
and can be access by clicking on Sellers from this screen:
Participants have the responsibility for updating and maintaining their seller information.
The following screen shot shows the fields of data required:
Seller’s eBay ID is the field containing the participating organization’s current eBay
User Name. All Cycle One participants are instructed in pages 35-37 of the Getting
Started Toolkit (Trading Graces Cycle Two) to change their eBay user name from its
current configuration to a form of tradinggraces-cXXX. New participants, too, will
follow instructions to establish an eBay user name in the format: tradinggraces-cXXXX.
The consistency of having all participants using a form of tradinggraces-cXXXX will
help facilitate the search process on the eBay platform. Participants are invited to contact
John Carter, Trading Graces Online Auction Event Manager, for information on properly
coding your eBay user name. Call john at: 410-230-3548 to obtain the code before you
set up or change your eBay User Name.
PayPal Email maintains the official email address that you identified and linked with
your PayPal account. This information appears in the item listing database.
Hit Counter Style adds an eBay compatible hit counter to your items in the eBay
Select Available Charities is linked with the information you download from
MissionFish and eBay in retrieving your seller’s token. This is part of the authentication
options that appear at the bottom of this screen and is the responsibility of the participant
(a change from Cycle One where LSA retrieve tokens for member participants. Note:
you will not be able to authenticate or retrieve your seller’s token until you have
successfully established and linked your eBay and MissionFish accounts. (see the Getting
Started Toolkit (Trading Graces Cycle Two). Participants have responsibility for finding
their organization from the drop down. Once found, the current Charity ID number
populated the next field. The Current Charity ID maintains the code number that
resides in the MissionFish database which is retrieved when you complete the
authentication and retrieve token processes.
Authenticate Seller and Retrieve Seller’s Token are prompts that the individual
member participant will be responsible to execute once all of the fore-mentioned
information is entered into the fields in this screen. There is a slight time delay before the
MissionFish registration acknowledges and updates your organization’s information in
the list and assigns an IRS charitable organization code. This can take up to three days
after you successfully complete your MissionFish registration and will not likely be a
problem, as participants will not get access to enter items into the database prior to
having established the required accounts as outlined in the Getting Started Toolkit
(Trading Graces Cycle Two).
The Preview Gallery link is shown here:
Participants can view the preview gallery while logged into the database by clicking on
the Preview Gallery link button. This access is for internal use by participants only.
The general public may access the preview gallery in two ways:
From eBay’s website: http://www.ebay.com/tradinggraces (Ctrl + click)
From the LSA website: http://www.lutheranservices.org (Ctrl + click)
Enter the live auction action from either portal when the event goes live!
Searching item in the Preview Gallery will allow visitors two options: searching by
Seller/Organization (list view)
Main Category/Key Word (list view)
Featured Items will appear on the National Preview Gallery page beneath the search
Participants may request adding items to the Featured Items by contacting John Carter,
Trading Graces Online Auction Event Manager at 410-230-3548 or at:
Check out eBay’s website for information on listing, researching, and selling items.
Marsha Collier’s paperback edition available on eBay and in
local book stores.
John B. Carter
Trading Graces Online Auction Event Manager
Lutheran Services in America (LSA)
700 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230