Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of
Thu Jan 11 2018 21:21:08

eBay Exposes Actual Postage Costs in Apparent Glitch

By: Ina Steiner

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Online shoppers can get very grumpy about shipping and handling charges, and savvy sellers often use "stealth postage" to keep their actual shipping costs private. (I dug up an EcommerceBytes article about stealth postage from 2003!) 

But a reader who buys and sells on eBay said the company is exposing actual shipping costs to buyers in the purchase history section of their accounts.

"At least for me, eBay is displaying what the shipping label cost the seller, not what I paid for the seller's shipping cost," the seller said. 

How obvious would this be to buyers? "I don't know if the average buyer would notice ... Read More

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Wed Jan 10 2018 23:47:05

eBay Mod Wades into Commission Fee Controversy

By: Ina Steiner

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An eBay moderator responded to a seller's question about yesterday's blog post describing a case where eBay informed a seller it would charge a commission for a listing it had removed due to a copyright complaint.

During Wednesday's weekly chat session, the moderator responded to the question with the following statement:

"eBay does not charge commissions for unsold items that are removed for VERO copyright complaints. When an item is removed for VERO, Listing Fees are credited back for unsold listings. However, Final Value Fees for previously completed transactions are not credited - as was likely the case for this customer."

However, this didn't clear up ... Read More

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Tue Jan 9 2018 14:52:36

eBay Charges Commissions on Infringing Listings

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay is charging commissions for unsold items that it removes due to copyright complaints, according to a seller who had listed a $1,400 item and now owes eBay a final value fee of $140, even though eBay removed the listing unsold. The seller posted the letter from eBay that stated:

After reviewing your eBay account, we've taken the following action:
- Listings have been removed. A list of items that were removed can be viewed at the bottom of this message.
- We have credited all associated fees except for the final value fee for your listing(s).
Your listing was reviewed after the rights owner notified us ... Read More

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Sat Jan 6 2018 22:50:54

eBay Marketing Email Features Recommended Sellers

By: Ina Steiner


Most of the marketing emails I get from eBay feature commodity goods that generally don't pique my interest, but today, eBay sent an email that caught my attention. After listing 8 "popular items," eBay included four "Recommended Sellers."

How did eBay come to pick four sellers to recommend? Did those sellers have to pay eBay for the extra exposure? And with artificial intelligence and personalization being the flavors of the day, did all recipients see the same four sellers?

eBay also included three trending products - and one was "2017 Hallmark Ornaments" - bingo, finally something I could sink my teeth into.

How well does ... Read More

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Wed Jan 3 2018 14:03:30

eBay Passes Along Discounts as USPS Postage Rates Rise

By: Ina Steiner


eBay alerted sellers to the forthcoming postage rate hike and said it had negotiated discounts on behalf of sellers. Note that all online postage providers receive discounts, and eBay didn't disclose whether it passes along all of the discounts to its sellers.

USPS rates are increasing effective January 21st. eBay told sellers today, "Once USPS increases their shipping rates, the eBay shipping calculator and eBay labels will be updated with the new rates. You'll need to make sure shipping prices on your active listings reflect them, too."

As we frequently note, since it charges a Final Value Fee ... Read More

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