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eBay Vice President Rob Hattrell Sends Christmas Message to UK Sellers


eBay logoThe Vice President of eBay UK sent a Christmas email to sellers this week, but not glitch- or typo-free. “Mine nearly got deleted due to it coming from eBay Czech Republic,” wrote one seller on the eBay discussion boards. A reader who forwarded the email, which said in the “From” line: “eBay Czech Republic <eBay@reply.ebay.co.uk>,” also questioned its authenticity for the same reason.

Rob Hattrell touched on the changes that sellers coped with in 2017, and said he would be back in touch in the New Year. Here’s the Christmas greeting sent to UK sellers:

From: eBay Czech Republic <eBay@reply.ebay.co.uk>
Date: 19 December 2017
Subject: End-of-year message from Rob Hattrell, Vice President of ebay.co.uk

Dear (redacted),
It’s been a busy year. As we come to the end of 2017 I wanted to get in touch to thank you for selling with us and to talk a bit more about what’s happening at eBay.co.uk.

I joined eBay in February. Since my first day it’s been my ambition to hear from as many of you as possible. The number of sellers I have met is now in the hundreds and I speak to more of you every week. Keep it coming.

I want to thank those of you who have taken the time to contact me. I can’t tell you how important your feedback has been. It’s absolutely crucial that we are hearing from the people who sell with us and your opinions are getvting through loud and clear to everyone who works here. It has allowed us to adapt our plans and change things when we have not got them right.

A quick word on change. The retail world as we know it is shifting. Our challenge now is to make sure you are at the front of that change and to keep up with ever growing buyer demand.
To do that, we have to keep moving. We are sharpening up the site and refining search. We’re introducing new features like the power to search by taking a photograph and introducing voice activated search through Google Home.

And we’re drawing in more buyers with big campaigns like our Christmas and Star Wars advertising, which I hope you’ve seen. We’re moving fast and getting in front of more consumers than ever before.

I know a lot of the changes we have been making this year have involved your help along the way. I assure you that it’s worth it. We just had our busiest Black Friday weekend ever for UK sellers, and have 23.5 million customers visiting every month. We know there’s more to do but with your support we’ve made a great start in 2017.

In all that change our ambition and purpose remain the same – to be the place the UK shops first and to connect buyers and sellers in the best way we can. That means being relevant for customers, adapting the platform to meet their changing needs and shopping habits and giving sellers the chance to build the businesses they want on eBay.

I’ll be in touch again in the new year. But for now, I’d like to thank you for selling with us. I know that many of you will be working right through Christmas, including the day itself.

Here’s to an excellent season of trading, to growing your business – and hopefully some rest too.
I’ll see you in 2018.
Rob Hattrell

We keyed in on the email’s footer: “eBay has sent this communication to (name redacted) (eBay User ID redacted). The fact that your first and last name appear in this communication serves as proof that the message actually comes from eBay.”

Given the massive data breach eBay experienced in 2014, combined with the recent privacy breach EcommerceBytes exposed this month, having an eBay User ID together with the user’s name is hardly proof that an email came from eBay, and telling recipients it is seems highly irresponsible.

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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). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.