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eBay Clarifies New International Shipping Policy for Sellers

An update to the eBay user agreement usually arrives accompanied by spirited discussion, and sometimes a little controversy. Last year, a change permitting eBay to hide listings for any reason sparked debate at that time.

This year’s update seems somewhat less controversial, but to a few sellers discussing the user agreement on networking site LinkedIn’s eBay Sellers – Official eBay Group, the international aspect of the terms offered some confusion.

eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore offered some clarity on the matter in a discussion with Ecommercebytes.com.

EcommerceBytes: Are sellers who don’t specify an International Shipping option for their items being opted in by default into the Global Shipping Program?

Ryan Moore: Correct. eBay is always trying to expand the market for sellers and make it as easy as possible for sellers to sell internationally without some of the issues that can come with selling across borders. Sellers can always exclude shipping locations through Shipping Preferences in My eBay.

EcommerceBytes: What options (if any) do sellers have to not participate in the Global Shipping Program?

Ryan Moore: eBay is simply extending this option automatically to more buyers to make it easy for sellers to expand their sales internationally even if they don’t have any experience with international selling. Sellers will continue to have the option to use their own international services, to specify only certain countries they will ship to, or to opt out of international selling altogether.

EcommerceBytes: US export laws may forbid the shipment of certain items to foreign destinations. What is eBay’s process for evaluating sellers prior to opting them in to the Global Shipping Program?

Ryan Moore: The Global Shipping Program primarily evaluates shipment eligibility at a listing or item level (though certain seller based criteria may apply). The Global Shipping Program uses multiple system level checks to automatically determine what items are eligible to be shipped internationally based on export and import regulations. The checks happen at the time the item is listed by a seller and when an international buyer searches for the item on eBay.com. The last checkpoint is at the US Shipping Center where export and import compliance requirements for the item are ascertained and addressed.

You can read about other changes to eBay’s user agreement in this Newsflash article.

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David A Utter
David A Utter
David A. Utter is a freelance writer based in Lexington, KY. He has covered technology topics from search to security to online business and has been quoted in places like ZDNet and BusinessWeek. He considers his appearance on NPR's "All Things Considered" with long-time host Robert Siegel a delightful highlight. You can find him on Twitter @davidautter and on LinkedIn.