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eBay Advises Sellers to Look at USPS Alternatives

eBay
eBay Advises Sellers to Look at USPS Alternatives

eBay warned sellers on Monday about new higher postal rates going into effect on Sunday while it touted USPS rivals UPS and FedEx.

eBay sellers have long shown a preference for USPS shipping, but the company advised them in Monday’s announcement to compare their current shipping preferences to UPS and FedEx’s discounted rates.

It’s not the first time in recent months eBay steered sellers away from the US Postal Service. Sellers reported in August that eBay displayed the following message on shipping-label pages: “USPS is experiencing significant delays across their delivery network. Please consider using other carrier options that may provide a better buyer experience.”

In Monday’s announcement, eBay wrote, “We are happy to announce that eBay sellers who ship using eBay labels will not be subject to a residential peak surcharge from UPS and FedEx. This means that if you use eBay Labels, you will not pay the residential surcharges that both carriers have announced. However, USPS surcharges remain in place across the board and will be in effect from October 18 to December 27, 2020.”

eBay listed the USPS holiday surcharges as follows:

  • 25 cents increase per package on First Class
  • 40 cents increase per package on Priority Mail
  • 40 cents increase per package on Parcel Select
  • $1.50 increase per package on Priority Mail Express

eBay referred sellers to its holiday shipping guide (link available on this page of the eBay website) that “offers insights into this year’s consumer trends, safe shipping practices, and cost-saving tips.”

One piece of advice eBay offered in the guide was not to extend handling time: “We are automatically extending estimated delivery dates as necessary to give buyers a more reasonable expectation of when their items will arrive. Our extended estimates should give you enough buffer, and additional handling days could lead to the appearance of your items shipping slower than they actually are.”

eBay also recommended sellers communicate with buyers, keeping in contact with buyers throughout the shipping process.

eBay also referred to its seller protections in the guide (“eBay announced seller protections against shipping defects and we will continue to review these protections as long as strains on carriers affect delivery dates”).

However, it recently “paused” those late-delivery protections citing consistent improvements in on-time shipments for USPS and all carriers and writing, “late deliveries have returned to pre-COVID-19 levels as carrier performance improves.”

You can find the full post on the eBay Announcement board.

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.

7 thoughts on “eBay Advises Sellers to Look at USPS Alternatives”

  1. Those little ups service fees that appear on your bill are probably not included in the rates ebay is charging you as per the letter above which makes them a higher cost than the usps. We have just raised all 15000 items we have by 5 per cent so we are well covered. Took all of about an hour. And no like ebay and the usps we will not be changing them back.

  2. For small lightweight items there is no cost-effective alternative to the US Postal Service. The insurance carrier limits coverage of high-value shipments to FedEx or USPS Registered mail. Postage First Class Packages has almost doubled in the last decade. The price of discount postage has dropped but not enough to offset USPS price increases.

    More orders are being shipped by ordinary USPS First Class Mail as mitigation.

    1. Every move or recommendation that Ebay makes is always aimed at increasing their revenue in some way. They are not worried about Sellers having issues but are worried about Ebays shipping times getting slower and slower while also trying to seize the chance to increase their revenues without saying it outright.

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