EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 376 - March 08, 2015 - ISSN 1528-6703     5 of 5

EcommerceBytes Soundoff: Letters to the Editor - March 8, 2015

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In every issue, readers soundoff about issues important to them. From shipping issues to payment processing, from fees to online marketplace policies, EcommerceBytes Soundoff gives you a chance to air your views.


Re: "eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions" - link to EcommerceBytes Blog

Dear Ina,
Well looks like eBay is up to another hair-brained idea meant to kill sales... HIDING DESCRIPTIONS

I went to look at my current listings today and noticed that all of my descriptions were gone.

In its place, a button to "see full description" and a "tell us what you think" description.

HOLY &&*

I put a lot of effort into my descriptions including measurements, a more detailed condition, and most importantly list out my terms such as returns, AS-IS statements and the like.

The only thing I can see this doing is increasing my defect rate and returns because a buyer never sees the description, finds the sizing is off because the measurements are off, etc. I was very lucky. 2-weeks ago I had a buyer who made an almost $1000 purchase and the item was the wrong size for them. I had clearly marked the correct size in the listing, but more importantly had full and accurate measurements. The buyer agreed I had listed everything properly, they had taken a chance, had seen it was no returns, but had hoped it would work for them.

I also had let them know that some items I don't mind shipping out to be tried as long as they are returned promptly, but because this was a New With Tag item, very hesitant because issues that can be unnoticed from their trying that may affect a future buyer. They were cool with it, and understood... Had they had this kind of listing... I probably would not have been so lucky.

Why does eBay force these changes on SOME users and not allow an OPT OUT.

Way wrong, and why force users to have to click once more to get to the real meat of a listing. I cannot thing of a single reason a user would not want to click to see a sellers terms, if there is something worth mentioning, etc.

Complete insanity.

See more reader comments about eBay's test on the EcommerceBytes Blog.


Hi Ina,
Attempted to speak with eBay about this stupid unannounced change where eBay is hiding descriptions.

I got a PIN number, dialed customer service and received a message stating that eBay is not taking any customer service calls at this time due to "maintenance".

So if I have this right, eBay rolls out an extremely controversial change to sellers listings that forces potential buyers to click a tab to see the description, and then they decide the same day they will shut down customer service so they do not have to hear the complaints!!

Just when you thought this company could not go to hell in a hand basket any faster, they find a new way to grease the skids to accelerate the alienation of both buyers and sellers.

All I can say is I wish I had some of what ever they are smoking!! Regards, Ric


Just to let you guys know that my sales are up in the sky, sold a lot of items even more than the last 3 months together, I don't know what they did but my religious items sell very well sudenly, and even more importantly when I search for my own items (we have 3 ebay accounts all selling the same stuff) they pop up, which is fascinating because most of these were unfindable (and it's not because it was bad quality stuff, it was exactly what the customer was searching for and for a long time it barely sold.


Thank you for all of the work you do.

I have an issue with PayPal. I have two accounts, one for buying and one for selling. I transferred money sitting in one account to another, as well as some extra from a credit card.

PayPal states that there is a fee if the money comes from a credit card. I was charged the fee on the entire amount that I transferred, not just the amount from the credit card.

I know I can avoid the whole mess if I connect a bank account, but I will not. PayPal is high on the hit list for hackers.

That would be as bad as when eBay was offering $20.00 if you signed up for something, I think it was a credit card. Great, selling them your social security number for $20.00, how smart (not). And they have been hacked. I wonder if they actually got people to go for that one.

Even though it must have been handled by a bank, I would bet that eBay harvested all the information they could. Information is as valuable as gold.

If I ever need to do this again, I'll transfer first the money sitting in the one account to the other at no charge. Then I will transfer from the credit card and just be charged a fee for that.

I understand that the fees pay the bills for PayPal. Their profit is a lot smaller than people realize though. Every time you use a credit card, whether on PayPal, the gas station, grocery store, and so on, those places lose a percentage of the sale to the credit card company/bank that owns the card you just used. It isn't free for a place of business to accept the credit card that you just made a purchase with, unless they own the card. But depending on the volume of sales a company has, they can negotiate a lower rate for themselves with the credit card company. Just a thought, people don't seem to realize that PayPal has to pay fees too.

Hope I was able to help someone else to avoid paying fees on money that wasn't a credit card. In the meantime, I feel that is in error with PayPal.
Thank you for lending an ear,


Re: More Reports about Incorrect eBay Shipping Charges

Dear Ina,
Sometime in the fall, I had a customer tell me the rate they saw on the listing was about $5 less than what was subsequently invoiced after the auction. This happened again last week. I believe the first time in the fall was actually USPS though. So? Both occurrences were auctions, not BIN.

Also, too point out in case it wasn't obvious, that CSR email was clearly written by someone in Asia/Philippines, could tell by the dropped plurals. What does it take for something to get back to the main hub?


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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

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