Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Fri Oct 6 2017 21:02:00

The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay kicked off a listing promotion on Wednesday that was supposed to run through October 12th, but sellers say it has vanished, even for those who had already activated the offer.

The problem first came to our attention through a post on the Ecommerce EKG announcement board. "An eight-day (October 4 - 12) by invitation only free listing offer for ten items in select categories has completely disappeared from My eBay's Promotional Offers Active list. Although I accepted the offer on the forth, it is no longer seen in the list of active or expired offers and there is no trace of the offer (or its acceptance) in eBay's Message Center. Anyone else have a similar experience?"

The promotion was only available to non-Store Sellers, and the terms and conditions didn't mention it being by invitation-only, as is usually the case with eBay promos. It also limited the categories to the following:

Art ( 550 )
Collectibles ( 1 )
Entertainment Memorabilia ( 45100 )
Pottery & Glass ( 870 )
Comics (63)

When sellers discussed the disappearance of the promotion on a discussion board thread, an eBay moderator said they would look into it.




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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: unknown This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 6 21:21:20 2017

I got it, accepted it and it poofed too. Got another 'promo' pushing a Snupps 'app' in its place, no FVF discount with it.  

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: eBay Shill Buster This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 6 21:23:55 2017

The Snupps website serves pages like eBay does, the page was blank and would not resolve, so I could not even look at that one and forgot about it.

This latest eBay promotion reminded me of Hal Lawton's 'sell your one pair of old shoes' for free promo, this recent one is just as worthless.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Fri Oct 6 23:04:23 2017

I wonder just how much money Snupps had to spend to get ebafia to send out the Snupps email -- upfront money or kickbacks?

I hope no one buys into another layer of fees hoping to get better placement.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sat Oct 7 12:56:01 2017

To Ming's point on better placement, over the years, how many hoops have eBay waved in sellers' faces promising them better placement?  When you have rigged card came search, how is it even possible to get better placement?  eBay have fiddled with and manipulated search in so many ways over the years I doubt if even the IT folks could tell you how it works.

Moreover, on other sites, my inventory does not get stale and have to be "refreshed" if it doesn't sell in a timely means like it does on eBay.  If eBay would show buyers what they are actually looking for sellers' inventory would not become "stale".

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: eBay Shill Buster This user has validated their user name.

Sat Oct 7 13:46:46 2017

eBay's CEO is most likely the dumbest CEO in the history of the Fortune 500, all it would take for eBay to increase it's bottom line would be to give sellers unlimited free listings in any format to all sellers who meet high standards of shipping fast and have great feedback.

No but that is too simple, they want to sell you stores and promoted listings and waste time and money playing games with sellers who sit on unsold items waiting until the morons run a promotion.

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This user has validated their user name. by: BuildingMyOwnSite

Sat Oct 7 19:14:57 2017

Ina, regarding “The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion”, apparently some Ebayers are upset, that they had, should have had, have lost, never have had, or otherwise didn't get to avail themselves of 10 free listings in some select categories......  10 free listings..... yeah, 10 free listings.  And they seem to think it unusual, that there are strange goings-on, regarding this particular offer.  I would LIKE to remind folks, that Ebay listing promotions, with unexplained & cryptic rules, offers, and withdrawals ........ are in fact ............ nothing new, in “The Saga Of Ebay Pesky, Painful, Paradoxical, Problematic, Peculiar,  Perverse & Puzzling Promotions”

Back in 2011-2013 Ebay was constantly testing free promotions.  I think we need to remember that in one stretch from 11/14/2011-11/13/2012, they offered us 26 promotions with a total of over 1,000,000 free or reduced price auctions and listings.  The following actual promotion options are from my records 2011-2013:
WHO-WHOM:  —   store - non-store - invite only - everyone - no one
FREE / COST:  —   00, .01, .05, .10, .25
LISTING TYPE:  —  auctions only - bin extra - bin free - listings only - fixed price - yes - no - either
DAYS TO LIST:  —  1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 10 - 11 - ?
LISTING LGTH:  —   3 day, no 7 day, 10 day with & w/o .10 cent charge, 30 day, gtc
# OF LISTINGS:  —  150 - 250 - 500 - 1000 - 5000 - 8000 - 50000  - 800000 - unlimited
+  MODIFIERS:  —  antiques - yes - no - farm yes - no - emotors yes - no - industrial w/20.00 charge
+  MODIFIERS:  —  countless others I had no need to keep track of

So... (as they say) my personal record offer, was on 7/14/2013 for 3,200,000 free listings, and all I ever got done was about 200.  It was a 7 day listing period, so assuming I found out the next day, and worked a normal 5 day, 8 hour week, you would have 40 hours, or 2400 minutes, or 144000 seconds to get it done.  Since that was 22.22222222222222∞ listings per second, that didn't seem like enough time to get all 3.2M listings done.  If spread over 5 days, my own measly 200 listings work out to 720 seconds each, or 12 minutes apiece.  (Even though most were probably just relists, and Robo listed to Ebay, I take FULL CREDIT for getting up 200 listings in only 5 days.

 Anyway, given the ALLEGED renewed interest in free listings, and having nothing else to do today, since college football is now ruined on tv (all camera shots from the upper deck)   I decided to figure out how long it would take to list 3.2M listings.  With NO FORETHOUGHT, I calculated that if I listed 1/minute = 60/hour x 8 hours = 480/day.  Weekends off, 50 week year, with 2 weeks vacation to Brooklyn to visit my old friend Queen Etsy.  Well, it takes exactly 6666.66666666666666∞  days.  Really.  Try it.   Spooky huh.....  The whole thing counting weekends & vacations ends up equaling 26.66666666666666∞ years, which is 26 years, 243.33333333333333∞ days,  which rounds out nicely to 26 years, 243 days, and 8 hours.

Note that I have NOT taken into account 6 leap years, nor those other leap things that occur less often.  After reading the Wiki page on the subject, and understanding less then before, including which calendar we use, I will leave the link, for those of you that feel the need to correct or improve my mathematical calculations.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leap_year

It occurs to me, that Ebay has been most generous with their offers, except that I, at least need a little more time to complete them.

So, .... again .... I would say that instead of immediately jumping on the bandwagon to trash Ebay and it's efforts, we should remember that it took them nearly 3 years of testing to learn how to do properly test promotional listings, and then years of studying those results, before being able to write this new algorithm.  It isn't easy to write an algorithm, to offer 10 free listings, to just a few of your sellers.  And seeing as this offer is a totally new type, (8 day, 10 free listings) Can't we cut them just a little slack?

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: Ina

Sat Oct 7 21:06:05 2017

Sorry, the quote I used above indicates it's a free listing promotion, I failed to clarify that it's not a free listing promo, but rather, a free FVF promo.

"Sellers (“Sellers”) who activate the offer and then list up to 10 Qualifying Item(s)* in the fixed price or auction-style format during the Promotion Period, pursuant to the terms and conditions set forth herein, will pay no final value fees for the first 10 Qualifying items sold."

Much more costly to eBay, esp. as it doesn't mention anything about invitation only.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: eBay Shill Buster This user has validated their user name.

Sat Oct 7 21:16:28 2017

I don't see the promotion in MyeBay so it did disappear because even though I don't use a lot of their goofy promotions I still accept all of them.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: Vigilant Eye On eBay This user has validated their user name.

Sun Oct 8 04:07:04 2017

As the OP on the vanishing promotion mentioned on the Ecommerce EKG Announcement Board; given that a new message was received on 10/7 for a by invitation only listing promo (i.e., ''List 100 extra items, fixed price or auction-style, and pay zero insertion fees.'') running from the October 8th through the 12th, I'm now beginning to wonder if the wrong promotion (i.e., the now missing free final fees on ten listings) was previously sent to eBay users.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Oct 8 07:32:24 2017

@Rexford

" If eBay would show buyers what they are actually looking for"

Why is it I never have a problem finding what I want to buy on eBay?

If I look for something eBay shows me more then enough options to buy.

Need a "rivet squeezer"?

eBay has over of them 100 listed. . .even dies for the squeezer!

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sun Oct 8 08:34:02 2017

Toolguy says "Why is it I never have a problem finding what I want to buy on eBay?"

Why is it that you never miss an opportunity to goad someone into an argumentative debate?  I think that it has been stated here (many times) and it is a reality that you continually fail to grasp--just because something doesn't affect you, doesn't mean that it doesn't affect others.  

Rivet squeezer?  I can think of some creative things that I would like to do with a rivet squeezer--let your imagination run wild.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Oct 8 09:21:05 2017

@Rexford

Yea, I can too.

Like build an aircraft with it.

You rant and rave how bad eBay is yet my customers think different.

Maybe it's YOUR merchandise that is the problem. . .

What do you sell on eBay? clothes or collectibles?

Those items can be a tough sell as many others are selling the same.

Clothes & collectibles are easy as everyone has access to them!

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sun Oct 8 09:38:58 2017

I frequently have difficulty finding what I want to buy on eBay.

Of course, I buy tools from a store or a manufacturer site and go to eBay for collectibles.  I can never tell is it's fewer sellers, fewer items, the retarded search engine failing to make partial matches, or the retarded search engine redirecting to enterprise sellers even when they don't carry the searched item.  In any case, I've probably bought more collectibles at a handful of conventions than on eBay the last few years.  And if you put two (complaints about sales) and two (buying limited to profits) together, that's not very good for eBay.

In fact, I can only recall three eBay purchases this year.  In two cases, the seller didn't really make out - $15 shipped for $21 figures.  By the time you take out fwee shipping and fees, they were left with, what, $9 tops?

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Oct 8 09:56:39 2017

@RKTOYS

Most of the tools I sell CANNOT be bought at a store!

And the manufactures WON'T sell to the general public!

Making eBay the perfect place to unload aerospace & government surplus. . .

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Mon Oct 9 06:03:24 2017

HOLY CRAP !
Just tripped onto 200 TONS of porn ALL OVER Ebay ! ! !
Can't UNSEE it....
TRAUMATIZED ! ! ! !

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: skyhooks This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 9 06:05:49 2017

Me too, I contacted eBay and after 3 attempts I finally got them to credit me for the listings I was charged for.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Oct 9 06:38:04 2017

Toolguy says "What do you sell on eBay? clothes or collectibles?"

It's none of your business.  The less you know about me and my business the better.  I would sell apples on the street corner before I would ever take business advice from you. And as for ranting and raving you would definitely know about that, it's just that you spend your time ranting and raving against someone else.

What doesn't affect Toolguy doesn't exist.  They call that alternate reality.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 9 06:55:59 2017

The easiest way to communicate with Ebay about this is through twitter:  @askebay.  I have tweeted a couple of times and always get replies.  I don't know who the reply is from, but at least they saw the tweet.
I saw that first 10 free promo about a week ago (useless to me) and then the next day it disappeared.  The newest one - 100 free listings - I have used up.  It's all glitchy on Ebay's part, and everyone should relay this to the twitter account.
I don't understand why the co. doesn't do like others and let us list unlimited time and then charge us when it sells; like Amazon and a couple of other sites I'm on.  Charging for listing is antiquated.  If they choose, they can put a time limit on the free listing -- your product will be removed after 6 months if it hasn't sell and to relist it will be charged.  But instead we get these USELESS free listing promos.

Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 9 08:40:57 2017

''Charging for listing is antiquated.''

Perhaps.  As old as print ads in say, classified newspaper sections.  But maybe more appropriate.

Or is eBay simply staking questionable claim to be 'more' than just a 21st century version of a trade rag, so worthy of a more complex, manipulative, value-based 'take', ensconced as that is notwithstanding?  How does 'value' equate to a higher dollar due incidentally?  Ironically, it takes less 'real estate' to list a single $100 item than 100 costing a buck.  

It's as if the thicker the paper, the more attractive it's supposed to be for perusal.  Until one discovers it's filled with identical pages.  Imagine how that might impact long term subscription rates.  Imagine if print (or any other) ad media charged by 'sales value'?  And before replying such might be 'immesurable', are not the value of the ads BASED on such claims respecting ROI?

And would an entity that actually IS 'more', consistently - consistently spew infested 'promotions' warranteed by no more than ineptly oblivious quality control?  Kind of like having your number dyslexified in the want ad, with the only hope of salvation resting below the fold on the next to last page, in the 'corrections' graveyard.

Give away ads.  Imagine the 'quality merchandise' that might attract.  No matter the rag.

Actually, one doesn't have to.  They can already 'read all about it.'  (That's another blast from the past back when all phones were voice activated, for you millenials out there).


Perminate Link for The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion   The Case of the Vanishing eBay Promotion

by: Judy F This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 9 09:05:55 2017

Thank you for posting this article here.  I also noticed this offer on 10/04 to be good through 10/12.  It only showed up on my "My Ebay" page.  There was no email or message sent from eBay about it.  

I gathered up some collectibles and was going to list them on 10/06, but found the offer GONE.  I called eBay, was told that there was no record of such a promotion ever existing.  It seemed that I had been the victim of a hack or something, but I see that I wasn't alone.  I got the feeling that the eBay rep thought I was delusional or simply lying.

The eBay rep that I spoke with promised that further investigation would be done after which I would be notified of the results.  However, I'm not holding my breath.  

I see there's another promotion that posted yesterday, the 8th, but I don't trust it.  Again, there was no email or message sent to me regarding this new promotion.  I'll phone eBay before I move forward with this new promotion.  

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