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Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon May 23 2016 14:08:23

Buyers Have Problems with eBay Saved Search Emails

By: Ina Steiner
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eBay buyers are reporting problems with their Saved Searches and Saved Search emails. On the Ecommerce EKG board, a reader explained that they have not been receiving Saved Search and Saved Seller emails for several months. 

While this is a chronic problem that goes back to 2013, eBay seems to have made a change at the beginning of the year that led to additional complaints from buyers on the eBay discussion boards - we found several discussions of this problem in early 2016.

As for Sunday's report on Ecommerce EKG, the reader explained:

"Have NOT received most "saved search" (and ALL "saved seller") emails ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Buyers Have Problems with eBay Saved Search Emails
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Sat May 21 2016 10:25:43

An eBay App to Track Health and Offer Shopping Therapy?

By: Ina Steiner
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Can shopping help stave off disease? eBay filed a patent that shows it wants to help people with health issues find preventative services before they become full-blown conditions by detecting "health deviations" and offering treatments, including shopping for products and services.

Columnist and EcommerceBytes contributor Brian Cohen pointed us to the patent that shows eBay is paying attention to all sorts of technology, including wearable devices that can track your heart rate and other physical conditions.

Using gadgets (one presumes things like FitBit and Google Glasses), an eBay health app would compare your health data to that of others. It would then ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: An eBay App to Track Health and Offer Shopping Therapy?
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Thu May 19 2016 16:42:21

eBay Answers Amazon Prime with Fast and Free Program

By: Ina Steiner
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As Amazon continues to raise the bar on shipping, eBay is working on a new program to try to keep up. eBay executives told a Wall Street executive this week about an initiative in which it will give a boost to listings that offer free shipping and 3-day delivery.

eBay CEO Devin Wenig and Chief Financial Officer Scott Schenkel sat down with Mark May of Citi in two 1-hour meetings earlier this week. May wrote in his report:

"In the second half of 2016 eBay will launch a "Fast and Free" initiative where they promote items with free shipping and 3 ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: eBay Answers Amazon Prime with Fast and Free Program
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Tue May 17 2016 17:40:43

Amazon Adjusts FBA Fees to Optimize Warehouse Capacity

By: Ina Steiner
 
Hold on to your hats, Amazon is rolling out new fees for sellers who use its Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) service, but the new fees will be in effect only during the last 3 months of the year, after which normal FBA rates will resume.

The goal of the holiday-season fee changes is to ensure sellers use Amazon storage wisely - we've been writing all year about the capacity issues that caused some Amazon Fulfillment Centers to reject certain shipments or items from sellers.

Amazon spokesperson Tom Cook told us the goal is to make ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Amazon Adjusts FBA Fees to Optimize Warehouse Capacity
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Sat May 14 2016 22:12:06

Online Shopping Moves from Small Screen to No Screen

By: Ina Steiner
 
Online shoppers can use their smart devices to order products and ask where their items are, but we are moving into unchartered territory where there may be major implications for merchants in the short term.

Geekwire says Amazon has added package tracking to the Echo, which has a feature similar to Apple's Siri called Alexa - but the device is stationary and has no screen or keyboard. 

Geekwire explains: "Users can just say "Alexa, where's my stuff?" to figure out when their next package will arrive. Alexa will let you know the expected arrival date, along with info like who ordered the ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Online Shopping Moves from Small Screen to No Screen
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Wed May 11 2016 16:39:01

What Do You Think of the New eBay TV Commercial?

By: Ina Steiner
 
eBay ran a Mother's Day television commercial in 16 US markets in the run-up to the May 8th holiday. The ad was part of a multimillion-dollar "Celebrate Her" campaign that included online video, streaming radio, and digital targeting. 

The "More than Shopping" ad, available for viewing on YouTube, is kinder to moms than an ad it ran 5 years ago. People referred to that ad as the "fat Mom jeans" commercial, which offended some people.

While the current commercial gets high marks for storytelling, it's hard to see why shoppers would flock to eBay for a yoga mat they could ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: What Do You Think of the New eBay TV Commercial?
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Tue May 10 2016 11:35:41

Target Campaign Has Resellers Seeing Red

By: Ina Steiner
 
Photos of what appear to be internal documents from Target have online sellers buzzing and indicate the retailer is conducting a multi-week employee-education campaign against resellers.

Target banned resellers last year as part of a crackdown on eBay and Amazon sellers who use retail stores to source inventory in what's known as retail arbitrage. It instituted the policy after shoppers were disappointed when the retailer ran out of items that were part of a special limited-edition "Lilly Pulitzer for Target" collection.

At the time, Target told EcommerceBytes it had instituted the new policy in order to ensure it had enough ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Target Campaign Has Resellers Seeing Red
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Sun May 8 2016 11:49:09

eBay Includes Wrong Sales Pitch on Branded Boxes

By: Ina Steiner
 
eBay sellers who purchase the new eBay-branded boxes to ship their items to customers are objecting to the sales pitch that urge recipients to start selling on eBay.

eBay debuted the shipping-supplies store on its marketplace last month as part of the Spring Seller Update. eBay is selling boxes and envelopes that display the eBay logo prominently, similar to the way Amazon prints its logo on its shipping boxes.

But sellers who ordered eBay branded boxes without reading the fine print on the product pictures discovered that next to the recycle symbol, appears an advertising pitch for eBay:

"Put this box to good use: Start selling on ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: eBay Includes Wrong Sales Pitch on Branded Boxes
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Sat May 7 2016 14:39:23

Sellers Should Think Twice Before Cheating the Feds

By: Ina Steiner
 
In March, we wrote about a couple from North Carolina accused of shoplifting from Christian hobby stores and selling the stolen goods online. Their cardinal sin, however, was failing to report the income to the IRS, according to authorities - over $1 million in sales on eBay and Amazon between 2005 through 2011.

This week, we wrote about an eBay seller who was charged with defrauding the USPSfor allegedly counterfeiting postage labels totaling over $400,000 since 2008.

The lesson: just because you don't get caught right away doesn't mean authorities won't catch up with you - and what may seem like smallish sums can ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Sellers Should Think Twice Before Cheating the Feds
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Thu May 5 2016 16:26:15

Can Artificial Intelligence Help Save eBay?

By: Ina Steiner
 
eBay will acquire a Swedish company called Expertmaker, which, according to eBay's announcement, "specializes in providing intelligent solutions powered by artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and big data analytics."

eBay said Expertmaker has already been helping it bring structure to its listings. The "structured data" initiative is being touted as a way to help eBay regain some of its lost search engine mojo, improve "discoverability," and help bring better shopping experiences to the marketplace. Think of it as helping eBay create a product catalog the way Amazon has built its marketplace.

Comments (39) | Leave Comment | Permalink
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