Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Oct 10 2017 15:55:39

eBay Payment Requirement Hurts Its Bottom Line

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay seems to desperately want to do away with the quirkiness of is site, but when it tries to put its round pegs into the square holes of "regular" retail, things generally go awry. 

The payment practices of buyers and sellers is one such example. A sale should occur when a buyer pays for an item, right? But on eBay, there are many cases where buyers wish to purchase multiple items from a seller over a period of time and have the seller ship the items to them in one batch - with the idea they would receive a discount on combined shipping.

Many sellers are okay with that, and those who aren't have had the choice of requiring immediate payment. But as we wrote in July, eBay is forcing Immediate Payment Required (IPR) on buyers and sellers. 

Anecdotally, it's hurting the bottom line of eBay and sellers, and frustrating buyers.

This post on an eBay discussion board is must-reading for eBay executives. A record collector wanted to buy 7 records from an overseas seller, but because of the roadblock IPR presented despite all his best efforts, he only purchased one.

Sellers discussed the new requirement in this thread, with one seller stating that their buyers aren't able to ask for combined shipping. "Last month buyer wanted to buy 2 large lots of kids clothes for over $300 and was not allowed combined shipping so chose to purchase NOTHING."

eBay executive Bob Kupbens has said the new "test" is intended to reduce unpaid items. (Sellers point out they already have the *option* of using IPR.) If that's the only criterion it's measuring, eBay has a big problem, because not only is the new practice reducing unpaid items, it's reducing legitimate sales as well.




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Perminate Link for eBay Payment Requirement Hurts Its Bottom Line   eBay Payment Requirement Hurts Its Bottom Line

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 16:18:48 2017

Hey ebay...wanna "test" something?
Run a 5% FVF promotion for a week, and notify sellers thru email, not on the announcement link buried at the bottom of the page.
You might discover that less IS more.
Meanwhile, there's the weeping and gnashing of teeth on the boards about slow sales, many from well established sellers...

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This user has validated their user name. by: BuildingMyOwnSite

Tue Oct 10 17:06:00 2017

Ebay executive, Bob Kupbens:
''the new ''test'' is intended to reduce unpaid items.''

Ebay Seller: ''Last month buyer wanted to buy 2 large lots of kids clothes for over $300 and was not allowed combined shipping so chose to purchase NOTHING.''

Well Bob, far as I can see, it's really working well...........

Every time we hear from Bob, something gets worse.  Send this guy to Etsy, maybe he can help 'em out with free shipping on fake jewelry.  Another clown, with no clue.

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

Tue Oct 10 17:06:06 2017

Marketing by definition is 'meeting the needs of the customer', any top marketing manager knows this to be fact.

eBay has no idea on how to accomplish this task, they use gimmicks to try to increase their take rate and sellers hate 90% of their tactics, so when you piss customers off, this is not meeting the needs of the customer, something eBay executives clearly do not understand, that is why they continue to put up flat numbers and are losing market share to the competition.

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by: Stig of the Dump This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 17:17:18 2017

I do not know why eBay does not want to embrace one of its main competitive advantages, but for years it has shown that it does not. In fact quite the opposite: it puts roadblocks in the way. Why did it inaugurate a shopping cart at all, one wonders.

Roadblocks in the way, that is, of INCREASING ORDER SIZE. Anyone at eBay awake and able to read?!

Do any of its executives themselves buy anything on eBay? The strong impression given is no. Presumably they have people to do that sort of mundane stuff for them. But if not, how can they hope to manage eBay successfully? How can they drive the car when they won't look the road?

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

Tue Oct 10 17:37:18 2017

Where the corruption comes in on this issue is the fact that this poster thinks that eBay is actually making more money because they are running up the shipping costs that they earn a commission on, but the problem is when buyers don't go for it as this poster illustrated, in addition to the numerous problems sellers are complaining about because their customers can not combine shipping.

Another thing is eBay's programming is so bad, on a large invoice where there is one item that closes due to an unpaid case, eBay's stupid coding voids the remaining unpaid items on that invoice that are still open costing the seller the entire invoice because eBay is so screwed up on multiple fronts.

eBay is so screwed up it is beyond repair at this point, they have even been pulling down millions of sellers listings for various reasons, a giant issue that is not even discussed by the seller community, Devin has tried to sweep this under the rug too with all these other issues that have busted the entire marketplace.  

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 17:51:14 2017

It's the ebay Paradox:
As ebay moves "forward, it's sellers (which ARE ebay) move backwards.
With all the whiz bang changes, the stock option grubbing execs can't see the forest for the trees.
They can't walk and chew gum at the same time...I.E., increase the stock price AND solve problems.

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

Tue Oct 10 18:00:50 2017

"eBay executive Bob Kupbens has said the new "test" is intended to reduce unpaid items."

Can't these guys EVER tell the truth? It's just one damnable lie after another.

Ming's ebay law #1:

EBAY LIES. ALWAYS HAS. ALWAYS WILL. And this includes intentional lies to to Wall Street.

First, this "test" isn't universal. Some sellers have been thus far exempted. Whether it's by category, seller history, or some nebulous criteria, I don't know.

Second, as someone else as already pointed out, its real purpose is to collect more money through their obscene FVFs of shipping charges, the money they keep on ebay generated shipping labels, and Global Shipping Program.

Third, IT'S ALWAYS ABOUT THE MONEY. ALWAYS.

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

Tue Oct 10 18:25:22 2017

Ming, the main problem is eBay executives will not clarify the policy either, some sellers think if the immediate payment box is not checked that their combined shipping still works, others say it does not matter what they do, sounds like eBay to me.

They still never answered why they are pulling down millions of listings due to the dumb ideas of Hal Lawton when good old Hal was pulling down GTC listings that were not selling fast enough for him, they will not answer why they are pulling down millions of listings due to their idiotic UPC code polices either.

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Tue Oct 10 19:51:46 2017

@Ming

"Some sellers have been thus far exempted."

I would be one of those sellers.

No IPR on my listings. . .

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

Tue Oct 10 20:21:11 2017

@The Omniscient Tool

Check your listings on mobile regarding IPR and report back, please.

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

Tue Oct 10 20:39:31 2017

@ ebay shill buster

Ebafia keeps doing the same things or permutations of the same things over and over again that consistently fail hoping the results will be different. They personify the very definition of corporate insanity.

Further:

1. Never being able to correctly identify who their customers are and act appropriately
2. Lie, cheat, and steal from and otherwise demoralize and punish their best performing customers
3. Make customers pay for grossly substandard 'customer service'
4. Aiding and abetting criminals
5. Lying to Wall Street and investors
6. A failed infrastructure that crumbles even more with every change in algorithms
7. A so called Search that plays hide and seeks with both buyers and sellers
8. A pathological obsession with becoming Amafia Lite instead of being ebafia.
9. A destructive pattern of hiring one MBA after another with little or no experience in e commerce all with a tenacious unwillingness to listen to and learn from those who do.

Can't wait to read ebafia's Q3 report!

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

Tue Oct 10 20:45:36 2017

Ming, the funny part is they just sent out another highly discounted store contract promotion, this is the second one in the last few months because sellers are closing eBay stores in record numbers.

Until these stores produce ROI don't expect things to change much. when long time sellers who pay eBay 500 bucks a month are having their listings pulled down due to moronic ideas from Hal Lawton, you know eBay is not meeting the needs of their customers and few sellers will open stores, most are reducing their  subscription levels or closing stores altogether now days.

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 20:47:59 2017

@Ming
An even better read will be the lame a$$ press release excusing themselves...

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This user has validated their user name. by: eXtinctBay

Tue Oct 10 22:51:57 2017

If a smart potential buyer communicates with me that they would like to combine shipping, I gladly do it. Really no problem to put together a custom listing with an exact shipping cost.

Those who just go ahead and purchase without communication will receive a refund for the difference of price they paid and the actual shipping cost. And I also make sure I collect my 9% fee eBay charges me on mailing, and 30 cents for each PayPal transaction and add it to my expenses.

Another aspect of this is when a quantity of items that are offered with ''Free Shipping'' are purchased, seller profits increase since multiples can be shipped in one box. The problem is that PayPal collects their transaction fee for each sale.

So the requirement of immediate payment for each transaction does place more money into the pockets of eBay's 'former'' partner. INTERESTING.

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

Tue Oct 10 22:56:21 2017

@ebayout

lame a$$ = lies

After years of creative bookkeeping with no dividends or substantive ROI that Wall Street and its mutual fund managers have conveniently overlooked, stagnant or declining stock value will be their reward for willful negligence.

Perminate Link for eBay Payment Requirement Hurts Its Bottom Line   eBay Payment Requirement Hurts Its Bottom Line

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

Tue Oct 10 22:59:12 2017

@ebay shill buster

Weasel Wenig doesn't know it yet, but he's managed to kill the geese laying the golden eggs.

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by: dans parts This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 23:30:29 2017

I bought several auction items from one seller over a week-and-half period last month.  After the last one, I tried to add on 2 FP items to the batch.  Cart wouldn't allow me to request total (grayed out).  Told him to go into those two FP items and remove the IP requirement.  He did.  Cart then told me couldn't combine because seller "didn't allow combined shipping."

eBay CSR told me he needed to go into Site Preferences and Edit Shipping Preferences to "Offer combined payments and shipping" to Yes, and that should work.  CSR checked his account, and his said No.

Don't know if he actually did that or not, because he has always been very impatient with me, and doesn't really want me buying multiple items (technically I'm his competitor), but about an hour later, I got a copy of the Request Total from Seller in my email account, and another email from the eBay CSR, who apparently "overrode" the system to generate that Request Total.

At that point, I was able to buy the 16-20 auction items, plus the 2 FP items on one invoice.

Had it not been resolved that night, by the next morning, I was just going to pay for the auction items and forget the 2 FP items.

Plus, it was a LOT of work of back and forth, and a call to eBay.  WAY more work than most are willing to do, and most Buyers don't know how to do that.  I only had "inside information" because I am a Seller.

I believe Shill and Ming are correct in that this push for IPR is strictly to benefit their bottom line from the shipping FVF.

I have boilerplate in every single one of my auction descriptions telling Buyers that I'll gladly combine items, but they need to wait for an invoice.  If they don't wait for an invoice, and pay both the shipping costs, I don't refund.  I would if they asked, but haven't had anyone ask or complain yet, and I've been doing that for years.  Not even from the overseas buyers who are really getting raked over the coals when they pay the double shipping.  I offer UPFRONT, and if they don't take advantage, that's their problem.

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

Tue Oct 10 23:35:36 2017

eXtinctBay, no seller should have to do that, in addition as some other poster mentioned, eBay is not refunding their FVF to you when you make that refund back.

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by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 23:46:19 2017

  I have said this over and over and over again. WHY does ebay want to do away with calculated shipping. Why did they do the fast and free. why do they punish sellers who still use calculated shipping in the search results. Why do they require immediate payment for  all items to be in the guaranteed shipping program.

 Why do my customers have to be forced to pay more for shipping than it actually costs if they buy multiple items. Do you think this raises sales? You are not amazon. People who buy on ebay are thrifty, and look for a deal. They smell this a mike away, and are not stupid.

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by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 10 23:52:19 2017

You idiots at ebay want an advertising idea!!!!!

How about showing JOE looking to work on his car...he needs 5 parts, he saves money over Amazon, because of the combined shipping discounts on ebay. "JOE just saved $25 over Amazon because the shipping isnt added into the cost of the product"

How about mike that wants to hot rod his guitar. He needs 6 different peices to complete his project, but since he ordered them all from the same seller, he saved $22 over amazon.

WAKE UP!

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