There are many who fear the Second Life (SL) economy is booming, growing, steady, slowing down or in the tank depending on who you speak to. For those who feel it is in some kind of steady to slowing decline, I beseech you to please stop for a moment and think "outside" the box. Retail rules in SL are vastly different from First Life (FL).


For example, in FL as far as foot traffic is concerned, you want as much of it as possible. But this is not really the case in SL. Traffic just does not carry as much weight because it is far too easy to literally bounce from retail point of sales to the next to the next to the next.
There are a couple things that are important to a successful retail business in SL and FL: the customer must want what you are selling. What you are selling must be compelling enough for the customer to want to purchase it. And you must make it easy and convenient as possible to make the actual purchase.

No one can help you with the first requirement. Only you can help yourself with the second. But with the third, I am trying to help you do better than you likely already are. I have written a 240-page book on the subject, all geared toward training you to think in SL terms, looking-out for what the Second Life Resident culture is all about and how it influences your product sales and many of these ideas are counter-intuitive, but they work.

I have presented 15 selling tips in a truncated, abridged format (plus an impromptu bonus tip regarding XStreet SL) that I describe in detail with step-by-step instruction in my book "Successful Business in Second Life" (SBSL) available at Amazon and XSL and Meta-Life.

If you haven't been following along, here is the fill index:
  • Tip #01: Traffic is against you. Why you want as little traffic as possible at your point-of-sales (POS) location, especially if you have your own showroom. 
  • Tip #02: Optimize Product Art for Fast Download. The problem in markets and malls is that everyone else is uploading huge, high-resolution images to put into their vendors. This not only works against them, it works against you. So use it to your advantage.
  • Tip #03: Good Product Art. The art itself must be good and really show-off your product. Learn to take good SL "photography" to make the best use of that three-seconds you have to convince the shopper to look at your notecard.
  • Tip #04: Informational Notecards. Never try to sell your product through the product art or advertising. Those are for getting the shopper's interest. it is in the informational notecard where you actually make your sales pitch.
  • Tip #05: XStreet SL is important. You absolutely must list your products on XStreet SL and other off-world shopping directories. Do not be put-off or fear the new XSL rules regarding listings. You can use those to your advantage also.
  • Tip #06: Permissions Paradigms. Give your customers what they really want and use the permissions system smartly to maximize sales.
  • Bonus #1: The new XSL listing rules and costs are a good thing. Here is why.
  • Bonus #2: How to use the new XSL listing rules in your favor and cut costs while doing it.
  • Tip #07: Vendor paradigms and why the simple box (system prim set to sell) "vendor" is the best and works better for the shopper over those "scripted page-flipping" vendors.
  • Tip #08: Reverse panhandling. The proper way to distribute "freebies" that will maximize sales and word-of-mouth for you.
  • Tip #09: Network selling. Get other people to sell your stuff for you without having to beg them to take and place and use "affiliate" vendors or your own.
  • Tip #10: Ten locations for the cost of one. Get your name out into ten different markets across the grid for the average cost of a single market booth.
  • Tip #11: Product art clutter. Back to your product art here. Go with clean, easy-to-see art. Don't muck it up by trying to make it too pretty.
  • Tip #12: For attachment attention to the sizing ability of your prim attachments. And don't use "modify" scripts in no-modify prims - you do your customer a massive disservice.
  • Tip #13: Hammock pricing. Every Linden Dollar the shopper. But for you, it is better to remember that half a sale is better than no sale at all.
  • Tip #14: Showroom optimization. If you have a showroom, keep it neat and easy to navigate. Make it easy as possible for me to get to the product I want to buy.
  • Tip #15: Customer care. Even if you do not apply any of the previous tips, this one here is by far the most important of them all. Though you certainly don't have to follow my model, it still is something you should take great consideration of.

These tips are my own Christmas gift to you. Of course they all are only advice until you decide to act on them, then they become your decision. But what hurt will it bring to try any of them? And when they do work for you, please go get my book and learn the how and why of it all, along with a lot more tips that will help you become even more successful in Second Life than you already are.

And with that, this is the second-to-last post here at Common Sensible. If you want to follow me on all my other Second Life-related diatribe, please head over to Socially Mundane. Or, if you can handle a very raw sense of humor, my "totally off-the-wall" blog is at And if you only follow that one, posts to Socially Mundane are highlighted there also so you won't miss a thing.

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Melé Kalikimaka, Ha'olé Maka Hiki-Hau.