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From the Editor – June 11, 2017

EcommerceBytes

EcommerceByteseBay is purging its site of “stale” listings in what it calls an act of “Spring Cleaning” that came as a surprise to sellers, and last week it launched its Active Content ban in Europe. eBay also says it’s cracking down on bad buyers, and CEO Devin Wenig said the company is tackling the problem of buyers who don’t follow through and pay for items they purchase, tweeting, “We are beginning to roll out a more aggressive solution to minimize unpaid items on behalf of our sellers.”

We haven’t seen any specifics as of yet, but eBay may have some news to report next month when it holds its second “eBay Open” conference in Las Vegas.

eBay also kicked off a new marketing campaign that is attempting to differentiate its marketplace from Amazon. Its new TV commercial shows its items arriving in eBay-branded boxes rather than plain “beige” boxes.

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But there’s some irony in the message. As a reader pointed out in this letter to the editor, eBay sellers are increasingly turning to Amazon to fulfill orders – in essence, using Amazon as a drop-shipper. That means a customer who orders something on eBay is increasingly likely to have their item arrive in an Amazon-branded box rather than the colorful boxes eBay showcases in its TV commercial.

As the reader shows, this practice can bewilder eBay customers, but as we wrote in April, eBay is fine with the practice, and Amazon seems pretty laissez-faire about the concept as well.

Amazon meanwhile is not stepping back from competing with Etsy in the handmade arena, recently kicking off a “Handmade Wedding Shop.”

Speaking of Amazon, be sure you’re up to speed on Amazon’s new requirement that all sellers adopt Two-Step Verification (2-SV) by June 30th. It’s caused quite a bit of confusion – you can learn more on this thread on the Amazon seller boards. As one seller wrote, “If Amazon sticks with this June 30th deadline and not send out an official notice, I would hate to be Seller Support on the morning of July 1st. The forum will probably “blow up” on that day.”

Etsy sellers are still processing the news of the ouster of Chad Dickerson who was replaced by former eBay executive Josh Silverman. Etsy is making some controversial changes as well, such as including competitive ads in sellers’ listings under certain conditions.

Etsy also announced improvements to its Pattern store-hosting service – if you pay the $15 monthly fee, you can now list items for free that are Pattern-only listings. Sellers question how they will get traffic to their Pattern stores – what might be getting overlooked is that Etsy is allowing sellers to link to their Pattern stores in their Etsy.com marketplace listings, a spokesperson told us.

We’re grateful to readers for all the news tips and perspective that inform and guide us – that’s what makes EcommerceBytes unique among online news publications.

In today’s issue, we explain what sellers need to know about eBay changes to Product Listing Ads and delve into a study that shows how sellers can optimize their eBay listing titles to boost sales.

We also talk to an expert about how to get ready for Amazon Prime Day, coming up in July – whether or not you are officially participating in the Prime Day deals. Today’s Collectors Corner looks at the potential collectability of a new fad, and we wrap up with Letters to the Editor.

Thanks for reading.

Ina Steiner on EmailIna Steiner on LinkedinIna Steiner on Twitter
Ina Steiner

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. Send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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