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Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Wed Mar 25 2015 11:01:14

Big News for Online Sellers: Stamps.com to Acquire Endicia

By: Ina Steiner
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Stamps.com is on a buying spree, with Endicia its latest target. The two companies provide shipping solutions popular with online sellers who rely on the services to streamline USPS postage, shipping, and tracking tasks.

Stamps.com entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Endicia for $215 million in cash, though the sale is subject to the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, which gives the Justice Department 30 days to evaluate acquisitions and decide whether to investigate further possible antitrust implications.

In its announcement, Stamps.com said it primarily focuses on acquiring small business and enterprise mailing customers with approximately 514 thousand paid customers. Endicia focuses on professional high ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Big News for Online Sellers: Stamps.com to Acquire Endicia
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Tue Mar 24 2015 00:07:33

Help I'm Being Taken to Court, Says eBay Seller

By: Ina Steiner
Sponsored Link
A plea from an eBay seller got our attention this week - "Help I'm being taken to court." The UK seller explained on the eBay UK discussion board she had sold a Tiffany bracelet given her by her ex-husband. The buyer initially didn't want to pay for the item because the seller had no receipt. She only paid when eBay got involved, and now, over 6 months later, the buyer is claiming it was a fake.

"I've just received a message now saying that she's contacted eBay legal department who's advised her to go to a small claims court. How am I ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Help I'm Being Taken to Court, Says eBay Seller
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Sun Mar 22 2015 11:39:38

eBay Considered Anonymizing Seller IDs Says Source

By: Ina Steiner
Sponsored Link
How many times have you found an item on eBay sold by a merchant that clearly had an ID mirroring their own web stores? For example, you find a widget sold by eBay merchant "WidgetWorld" and type in WidgetWorld.com in your web browser, taking you to their retail site where pricing and selection might be better than on their eBay store.

Evidently, eBay felt the practice was prevalent enough to consider making seller IDs anonymous.

According to a source close to the matter, the concept of anonymizing seller IDs was raised at the same time eBay decided to anonymize buyer IDs, ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: eBay Considered Anonymizing Seller IDs Says Source
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Fri Mar 20 2015 08:49:31

Etsy Puts Innovation at Risk by Pulling Popular Tool

By: Ina Steiner
 
Etsy won't provide details on why it is pulling the popular listing-management tool BETSI from its API program - see details in today's EcommerceBytes Newsflash

But without explaining the move, it could scare away third-party developers who consider building tools for Etsy users, which could ultimately hurt Etsy by hampering innovation. Some of the best marketplace tools and features for sellers have been built by 3P developers.

There has been an outpouring from Etsy sellers who used BETSI, many of them saying they never could have grown their business without it, and who wonder how they will manage ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Etsy Puts Innovation at Risk by Pulling Popular Tool
Comments (34) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Wed Mar 18 2015 22:29:38

Are Apology Coupons a Wise Use of eBay Marketing Dollars?

By: Ina Steiner
 
eBay is sending apology emails to shoppers who have experienced delivery delays or other problems with their orders, and the marketplace is including $5 coupons good for a future purchase on eBay. 

We noticed shoppers discussing the "apology coupons" on and off eBay. What was interesting about the comments from buyers who had received $5 coupons for slow delivery was that they hadn't complained to eBay, and were not even sure for which orders they were receiving the coupons.

In another case, eBay gave an apology coupon to a buyer who had experienced problems with a Chinese seller and ultimately had ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Are Apology Coupons a Wise Use of eBay Marketing Dollars?
Comments (38) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Tue Mar 17 2015 06:53:27

Will eBay Spring-Update Fees Succeed in Growing Auctions?

By: Ina Steiner
 
eBay is announcing its Spring Seller Update later today. It includes some major changes: new fees; a new requirement to include product identifiers in listings; and category changes. 

Most hard hit are media sellers: they will see insertion fees for fixed price listings in Books, DVDs & Movies, Music, and Video Games listings go from 5 cents to 30 cents

Surprisingly, there appear to be no changes to seller performance standards, feedback, or defect rates, nor any news about policies such as eBay's Global Shipping Program or Managed Returns.

We had previously marveled that the head of eBay had seen no difference between ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Will eBay Spring-Update Fees Succeed in Growing Auctions?
Comments (110) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Sun Mar 15 2015 21:27:29

How Has eBay's Managed Returns Policy Impacted You?

By: Ina Steiner
 
eBay announced in its Fall Seller Release in August that it would force all sellers who offered a return policy into its "Hassle Free Returns" program. eBay said it would begin extending its returns program on more U.S. sellers in 2015 until all eligible domestic returns were handled this way by the 2015 holiday season.

As we explained last summer, that means buyers will be able to return an item for any reason, though sellers will still have the option of not accepting returns at all (with certain exceptions of course).

Some of the highlights of eBay's new policy include the following:

- An eBay ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: How Has eBay's Managed Returns Policy Impacted You?
Comments (61) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Sat Mar 14 2015 13:51:33

Ex eBay Employee and Ecom Guru Arrested on Felony Charges

By: Ina Steiner
 
A former eBay employee turned online-selling guru and author was arrested on suspicion of possessing child pornography in January, according to San Luis Obispo Tribune

Steve Lindhorst began working at eBay's San Jose Headquarters as its Advertising Operations Manager in 2000 and in 2002, he became a contracted eBay University Instructor and eBay Education Specialist, according to a profile on the eBay website. During his 2 years at eBay, he built an operations team to manage all advertising delivery and related revenue.

After focusing on teaching people how to sell on eBay, he shifted the focus to how eBay sellers could sell ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Ex eBay Employee and Ecom Guru Arrested on Felony Charges
Comments (39) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Wed Mar 11 2015 15:29:39

eBay Comes Under Fire for Its Handling of Banned Gun Parts

By: Ina Steiner
 
A damning report published Wednesday alleges it's easy for people to purchase gun parts on eBay that can be used to build assault weapons. The report from Reveal didn't dwell on whether or not eBay should allow the sale of legal gun parts. Instead, it focused on how eBay enforces its ban on illegal gun parts, claiming it's easy for sellers to get around the rules.

Reveal said its reporter flagged a listing for a prohibited part, a process that is supposed to result in a review by eBay and removal if found to be in violation of its Firearms policy. Reveal ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: eBay Comes Under Fire for Its Handling of Banned Gun Parts
Comments (22) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Tue Mar 10 2015 21:29:26

Kohls Bans eBay and Amazon Sellers

By: Ina Steiner
 
There are increasing reports from sellers that they are being banned from sourcing products at chain stores like Kohl's. But why would the store care what shoppers do with the items once they leave the store with their purchases?

The strategy of sourcing items from retail stores to sell on eBay has been around from the beginning - remember this story from 2007 about Pottery Barn banning eBay sellers? But the "arbitrage" movement has really gained steam in recent years.

Part of the reason for popularity of retail arbitrage is Amazon FBA - the hope among entrepreneurs that they can pick up items that ... Read More
Reading EcommerceBytes Blog: Kohls Bans eBay and Amazon Sellers
Comments (63) | Leave Comment | Permalink
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