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eBay Sellers Can Tweet Congress to Request Inclusion in Aid Package

eBay Sellers Can Tweet Congress to Request Inclusion in Aid Package

eBay is asking sellers to contact members of Congress to ask them to consider aid to small sellers as they work on a relief package to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.

Online marketplace Etsy also asked its sellers to do the same, as EcommerceBytes reported on Monday.

eBay is providing a way for sellers to contact their members of Congress through Twitter, on this page of the eBayMainStreet.com website.

eBay also provided a form letter that sellers can fill out to have it emailed to their Congress members on their behalf. eBay Main Street explained to sellers, “The COVID-19 outbreak is affecting businesses of all sizes. Things are moving very fast as Congress makes decisions about providing across-the-board relief for small ecommerce businesses during this crisis. Please contact Congress NOW to make sure small ecommerce businesses are not left out.”

Here’s the text of the letter eBay will send to Congress on sellers’ behalf:

Dear: (Official),
Americans are turning to ecommerce, including millions of American micro and small online businesses, to meet their needs while they self-isolate in response to the COVID-19 threat. Many of these online businesses have brick-and-mortar locations, warehouses and employees that are drastically affected as a result of this crisis. As Congress considers legislation to support the economy, it is critical we do everything we can to ensure ecommerce remains a lifeline for many Americans, and provide desperately needed support for micro, small, and medium-sized businesses that sell online.

We urge you to pass legislation IMMEDIATELY that provides:

Emergency Appropriations for the US Postal Service:

The postal service is essential for small, rural online businesses where private express carriers are not competitive. USPS is already seeing a significant drop in revenues as a result of the crisis. Emergency funding for postal infrastructure and operations is critical to ensuring that online businesses, especially in rural areas, have all options available to get goods to Americans as quickly as possible.

Small Business Relief:

Loans and tax credits for micro, small, and medium-sized businesses.

  • Increase small businesses loan size through the SBA’s 7(a) program and ensure business operations such as payroll and rent are eligible for loan forgiveness.
  • Include sole proprietorships, independent contractors and other self-employed individuals as eligible for 7(a) loans.
  • Waiving of borrowing and lending fees and deferral of interest for a reasonable time.

Provide individual payments to individuals and families

  • Micro and small online businesses need relief NOW. A direct infusion of payments to help families get through the initial impact will help keep the lights on as well as provide money for customers to buy essential items.

Unemployment Compensation

  • Fund an increase in weekly unemployment assistance and increase the maximum number of weeks of availability.
  • Many micro and small online businesses are seeing business dry up – especially those much more reliant on brick and mortar stores. Those with employees are making difficult decisions on how to keep these employees on or let them go.

As a constituent and a member of the eBay Main Street community, I ask that you include these important provisions in the next federal relief package.

Thank you for your consideration.
(Your Name Here)

You can find more information on the eBayMaintStreet.com website.

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.