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From the Editor – October 13, 2019

EcommerceBytes Editor Ina Steiner
EcommerceBytes Editor Ina Steiner

In case you missed it, there was a major development last month – Devin Wenig is out as CEO of eBay. No specific reason was given for the abrupt departure. The Chairman of the Board for eBay stated: “given a number of considerations, both Devin and the Board believe that a new CEO is best for the Company at this time.”

Wenig himself turned to Twitter to post a series of tweets starting with, “In the past few weeks it became clear that I was not on the same page as my new Board. Whenever that happens, its best for everyone to turn that page over. It has been an incredible privilege to lead one of the worlds great businesses for the past 8 years.”

Another executive left around the same time, but there was no announcement from eBay about the departure of Steve Wymer, who was a member of the executive leadership team reporting to Wenig. Wymer headed corporate communications and was also Chair of the eBay Foundation.

As you can imagine, readers had lots to say on this September 25th EcommerceBytes Blog post.

However, the comments on a post from a few days later proved even more interesting. Jordan Sweetnam, who returned to eBay in July after a 3-year stint at Walmart, posted a message on the eBay Announcement Board on September 30.

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He solicited feedback from sellers, so we invited readers to share their thoughts about what they needed from eBay and what was working and not working for them. Will eBay’s new management take a long hard look at the feedback, much of it constructive? Time will tell!

In the meantime, PayPal and eBay are instituting new policies that will prove costly to sellers:

On the eBay discussion boards, a moderator told sellers, “eBay is the platform facilitating the transaction and the seller is the entity/business that made the sale that is a potential taxable transaction.”

Was it really the intention of lawmakers to put the burden on sellers, or did eBay just drive a giant loophole in laws intended to protect small businesses? Why not reach out to lawmakers in your state and ask them if that was their intention? And leave a comment on the EcommerceBytes Blog.

Another development costly to marketplace sellers is the built-in annual “fee increase” eBay and Etsy impose on sellers by virtue of the fact they charge a fee based on the percentage of shipping costs, which are going up again this year in January.

It’s another way marketplaces show revenue growth even when they can’t grow sales. The matter is particularly impactful as Etsy compels sellers to offer free shipping – if they don’t, their listings will not appear on the all-important first page of search results.

Holiday shopping is gearing up, and that means a busy shipping season ahead. In today’s issue, everything you need to know about holiday shipping, and a look at 2020 USPS rates going into effect on January 26th.

We also take a look at product returns – one size does not fit all!

Collectors Corner takes a look at jack-o’-lanterns, and we end with letters to the editor.

Thanks for reading.

Ina Steiner on EmailIna Steiner on LinkedinIna Steiner on Twitter
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.

4 thoughts on “From the Editor – October 13, 2019”

  1. Everytime I see the “One Size Fits All Ad ” I think of the person that needs two seats on an airplane or the person who is now in line for the third time at the local buffet.

  2. And the stone keeps rolling, and keeps on and on till its a zero sum game!

    How long will it be until ebay makes more on our sales than we do. I am almost there.

    And the more, and more the stone rolls, the more and more they make difficult and hide these details in the sales reports. I would like to see an 100% example of everything, and how it calculates out. Every month or two I have to play detective-accountant and play the where are they hiding it game-why do I have variances game.

  3. I agree with Ina that we should be reaching out to lawmakers in each of our state’s to make our voices heard. They can’t do anything to fix things if they don’t know what the problem is or how to best approach it. The DOJ is reaching out to us for that information, so why not give it to them?

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