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eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Shipping Marketplace

What do you do if you sell items that weigh over 150 pounds that can’t be shipped parcel? eBay has entered into an exclusive partnership to influence its users to use uShip to get heavy items delivered to buyers doorsteps. (See clarification below.)

A quarter or more of eBay GMV comes from “larger than parcel” (LTP) items. While sellers typically determine how they ship items, eBay influences the decision, as is the case with freight shipments. In the past eBay had several different shipping options for freight, but this week’s announcement marks uShip as the sole shipping partner for eBay freight.

uShip-powered delivery options will be incorporated across eBay categories that frequently contain larger-than-parcel goods over 150 lbs and buyer-arranged shipping. Initially available in eBay Motors’ U.S. vehicles, motorcycles, powersports and boats, more categories will be added this spring. Within a year, uShip will be integrated into global eBay properties, more deeply into listings and in the buyer checkout process.

When an eBay buyer enters their zip code, they are given a list of quotes generated from uShip, either by pulling in a variety of quotes or by going directly to uShip to get a custom quote. eBay users making a purchase don’t need to have a uShip account to receive the quotes, but they will eventually need to set up a uShip account to complete the shipping process, a uShip spokesperson explained.

uShip is an online shipping marketplace and is the company behind A&E’s “Shipping Wars” program on cable television. The company said it helps deliver orders of items such as cars, boats, jet skis, armoires and more. uShip maintains a global network of 400K carriers, and reports facilitating more than $500 million in shipping transactions.

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uShip CEO Matt Chasen said his company’s agreement with eBay is a natural fit. “eBay users are very familiar with uShip’s eBay-like feedback system, which helps them choose a carrier from among those with an average score greater than 97% positive.”

Update 3/14/14: eBay has clarified the partnership, stating: “uShip is not an exclusive partner, but uShip has become eBay’s preferred global partner for vehicle and freight shipping.”

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
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.