EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 259 - March 21, 2010 - ISSN 1528-6703     1 of 8

From the Editor

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eBay sellers may be in for a wild ride next week as eBay rolls out major changes to the site. As announced in January, it is implementing a new, complex fee structure, and all Store listings will become regular Fixed-Price listings that will appear in eBay search results (no more "core" versus "Store").

We summarized some of the fee changes on the AuctionBytes Blog in January when eBay made its announcement. Fees are not the only things that are changing, so make sure you have read eBay's announcement carefully, along with its checklist for sellers.

For example, sellers must comply with the Selling Practices policy, including a provision called Appropriate language: "Listings cannot include comments that undermine confidence in the marketplace, such as comments expressing negativity toward buyers or the selling process." And if you want to qualify for Top-rated status in European Union countries, eBay instructs you to update your Account Information in My eBay from "Private" to "Business."

I imagine if sellers don't do this, they will not get the same exposure in search results on international sites. However, there are requirements to sell in the EU as a business, as this page on eBay UK explains.

It's also wise to keep a close eye on your eBay listings and to monitor eBay announcements, discussion boards, and AuctionBytes news article and blog posts during the transition. Please let me know if you encounter any surprises, good or bad.

eBay sellers who have sold on Amazon know that "the River" is quite different from selling on "the Bay." Tomorrow I'll be publishing a podcast interview on Ecommerce Industry Soundbytes with Steve Lindhorst about the key things eBay sellers need to know about selling on Amazon.com. Steve taught classes at eBay Live and eBay University and wrote a book, "Selling on the River: the eBay Seller's Guide to Amazon.com," and he has a good perspective on the strengths of each marketplace.

Last month, we asked you what questions you had for the USPS, and in today's newsletter, the USPS provides answers to your shipping questions. We've also got an interview with PayPal about its micropayment service that allows eBay sellers and online merchants who sell items for under $12 to save money on PayPal processing fees.

Also in today's issue, Greg Holden takes a look at a new way to buy online. Groupon is a group-buying site with a local twist that is gaining steam. Interestingly, the company just announced it has hired Rob Solomon as President and CEO. Rob was formerly Vice President and General Manager of Yahoo Shopping where he oversaw the move of Yahoo Auctions from a fee to free model, and then started travel site Sidestep which he successfully sold to Kayak.

Thanks for reading.


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 ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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