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Even Sellers Don’t Know How to Sign up for eBay Store Newsletters

Even Sellers Don't Know How to Sign up for eBay Store Newsletters

One of the benefits of paying a subscription fee to have an eBay Store is that you can send newsletters to customers who choose to sign-up to receive them. But during a chat session hosted by eBay on Wednesday, it became clear even sellers don’t know how to sign up to receive newsletters.

A seller called postcardcountry asked, “How to I get subscribers? There doesn’t seem to be any information on this that I can find.” The seller had checked the eBay help page but said it was “missing some important information.”

The answer: click on the “heart” icon. But participants on the chat expressed surprise.

Chuck Van Pelt is Product Operations Manager for eBay Stores and was answering questions during the chat session. He has been at eBay for 6 years and joined the eBay Stores team in June of 2021.

“Buyers can follow you by clicking the “heart” icon next to your store name,” Van Pelt replied. “It appears on your storefront as well as your profile page. Some sellers will include a message in their communications or packaging that encourages their customers to subscribe.”

“In that case,” postcardcountry responded, “how about a popup when you hover over the heart that says “subscribe to seller’s newsletter”? I am willing to bet you a great number of buyers and sellers have no idea what that heart means.”

“Agreed and thanks for the suggestion, I’ll propose this to the team,” Van Pelt said.

Another seller by the name of wastingtime101 said, “Wait, are you saying that when someone clicks on the heart it automatically signs them up for that store’s newsletter subscription? I thought the heart was exclusively to follow the store within your eBay feed and saved seller e-mails sent by eBay, not to receive newsletters written by those stores.”

Not only was wastingtime101 surprised to learn that clicking the heart icon in an eBay Store meant shoppers were opting in to receive the seller’s newsletter, they also raised a potential problem:

“I’m signed up to get a consolidated e-mail from eBay with new listings from my saved sellers about once a week. If I started getting newsletters from every one of those sellers I would stop following them or opt out of all e-mails. Newsletters was always a separate sign up. You could follow a seller without signing up for their newsletter. Did eBay change this?”

“Following a seller adds you to the list of buyers that a seller can target with emails, true,” Van Pelt replied. “That said, emails will only be sent if they are set up by the seller. The seller has the option to automatically send a single welcome email to new followers, or to email their followers on demand. Of course the follower always has the option to opt out of the emails from a seller from within the email footer.”

eBay also lets those with eBay Stores send newsletters beyond those who’ve “hearted” them. In a separate post on Tuesday, eBay explained that a new “Promotions/seasonal sale” template that works with Coded Coupons allows sellers to “reach beyond your newsletter subscribers by sending email newsletters to targeted buyer groups, such as buyers who’ve bought from you in the last 30 or 60 days.”

Sellers had many other questions about eBay Stores during Wednesday’s chat session, you can find them along with eBay responses on this thread on the eBay discussion boards.

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). 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/.

3 thoughts on “Even Sellers Don’t Know How to Sign up for eBay Store Newsletters”

  1. Nice to see eBay is learning about what is needed, after 27 years in e-commerce. One would think that they could go back to what has worked in the past and duplicate that, but it seems that they laid off all their U.S.-based IT folks and support people, so no one now working there has any clue about what it takes to grow the venue, attract buyers, or provide users with sensible ways to track or watch items they are interested in.

    I long for the days before 2008, when Donahoe started eBay on the slide that they’ve never recovered from, and probably never will. Yet they copy things from other e-commerce sites, usually without a clue as to what else is needed to make those functions work.

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