eBay Officially Announces Global Shipping Program
By Ina Steiner
eBay finally announced its long awaited program for U.S. sellers shipping internationally. EcommerceBytes broke the news of the new Global Shipping Program in August, and eBay finally officially announced the program after a false start in September.
eBay explained in its announcement on Thursday, "By enrolling for FREE in this program, you'll be able sell to buyers in multiple countries, but ship your packages to a shipping center located in the US - this means you're only responsible for the domestic leg of shipping! Once your item arrives at the designated US shipping center, the Global Shipping Program then takes care of ALL facets of international parcel processing."
eBay is currently testing the program with a subset of sellers who have opted in. Rafael Zimberoff, Product Manager for ShipRush, told EcommerceBytes in a podcast interview that there are some aspects of the program that eBay sellers will find quite compelling. One is the exposure U.S. GSP listings will receive in international markets, and another is simplification - sellers will not have to worry about calculating duties and tariffs, nor will they have to fill out customs forms.
However, sellers have expressed concern that the service will make their listings appear much more expensive than items from domestic sellers. International buyers see the complete and total price of the purchase up-front - during checkout - "so," as eBay wrote, "they won't be surprised by additional taxes or duties when the item arrives." Sellers are also concerned about the program's return-shipping requirements, something eBay did not reveal in Thursday's announcement.
About the author:
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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