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Wed July 17 2019 20:37:15

Does eBay Lure Amateurs Who Get In over Their Head?

By: Ina Steiner

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A new petition on Change.org raises an interesting question: is eBay marketing to novices and amateur sellers but subjecting them to terms they're ill-equipped to meet?

"Phineus Doxsip" started the petition titled, "Ebay Falsely Advertised Service to Sellers SNAD." 

SNAD is a term eBayers use for items sellers send to buyers that are "Significantly Not As Described." And note that we don't know who "Phineus Doxsip" is.

An excerpt states: "this petition argues that the company advertised a casual market for used items to amateur sellers, that was fraught with risk and unrealistic commercial standards, while also profiting from fees despite the success or failure of participants."

Interestingly the petition includes a screenshot for an ad eBay ran that encouraged people to sell their old smartphones.

You can take a look at the petition on Change.org - let us know what you think of the author's argument and if you agree or disagree.

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by: moonmyst This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 19 11:51:12 2019

Wow, iheartjacksparrow - you stopped selling on eBay over 10 years ago, but you are still commenting on their policy and still on these discussion boards? When I find somewhere truly better to sell my few items, eBay will immediately cease to exist for me.

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by: Jerad This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 19 11:57:48 2019

When I started on Ebay it was an auction centered site. Things you couldn't find just anywhere. Now it's like trying to be some sort of strange Amazon clone. Ebay, if you want to compete with Amazon then go all out. You can't be the old Ebay and Amazon in a bundle. It won't work. If you go all out to compete with Amazon? Good luck. That will be a hard sell. You better find some way to compete. It's like politics in some ways. Myself, I don't get rich on Ebay of course, just like all of us. It's just another of the sites I sell on. But I still use it. I do wonder a lot about the business sense of the ceo. If your gonna compete then do it all out. Or just be ready to fail.

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by: Jerad This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 19 12:21:08 2019

If I were ceo of Ebay (God please let that never happen), I would split the company into niches (maybe with different brand names). Each with it's own services. I think that's the only way you could compete with Amazon.  

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by: wellspring This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 20 06:10:26 2019

@DavidSteiner

Thank you

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by: SANT1N1 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 20 19:41:07 2019

They just need a WARNING: The Surgeon General has determined that selling on ebay may be hazardous to your wealth!

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This user has validated their user name. by: unsuckEBAY
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Sun Jul 21 11:58:48 2019

moonmyst said, ''Wow, iheartjacksparrow - you stopped selling on eBay over 10 years ago, but you are still commenting on their policy and still on these discussion boards?''

Jack's contributions are usually funny, insightful, or both. It's not clear how the fact that she no longer sells on eBay diminishes her contributions here?

~~~~~~~~~

As to eBay inciting naive consumer sellers - absolutely. eBay wants to make getting started as quick, painless, and even fun as possible initially. It's only after that eBay lights the slow-simmer flame under the pot of newbie seller tadpoles.

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by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.
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Mon Jul 22 15:22:57 2019

I have never sold on eBay and it's due to all the shenanigans they pull to take your money for nothing. I had the intention of selling there back in 2008, so found products to sell and listed about 20 items.

Along the way, they kept making suggestions that cost me more money. One suggestion I implemented and then cancelled when I realized that's not what I want, but did not get reimbursed for it.

At the time, I only had them listed for 7 days. I can't remember what the setup was at the time, but there had to be a reason I didn't go for 30-day listings. Maybe it wasn't available? I don't know. What I do know is that not a single thing sold.

Mind you, this was at a desperate time. I needed money and fast, so I spent over $40 of my grocery money to list those items and all for nothing. My fees should only have amounted to half that if I would have been reimbursed for a suggestion they talked me into that simply didn't work for me.

I was so upset. My instant thought was that they are a bunch of crooks and I made the decision right then and there that I would never sell on eBay -- and I haven't. The fact that Etsy charges a $0.20 listing fee is what kept me from setting up a shop there for so long, which I now regret ever doing because I have spent a lot of money for nothing there.

Although, the first two years seemed to be worth it, but things have been going downhill since before the new CEO came along. They only got worse fast after he came along and it would seem 2019 is the year they're implementing all of their worst seller-unfriendly tools.

Well, 2019 is also the year I closed my shop there. I will never again sell on a marketplace other than eCrater -- as long as they remain privately owned. I have my own site up and running now and, if I can't make that work, then I'm just going to quit selling online altogether.

I have been at this every day since late 2009 and I've watched two marketplaces run my business into the ground after gaining some momentum for my efforts. Etsy forced me to demote it to a hobby after causing me to go 8 sold months without a single sale because they were hijacking my Google links and sending my customers to my competitors' listings.

Unless a marketplace is privately owned, you can rest assured that it's being run by a bunch of greedy crooks.

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by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jul 22 15:35:00 2019

Sorry, didn't finish my last paragraph there...

Unless a marketplace is privately owned, you can rest assured that it's being run by a bunch of greedy crooks. The problem with signing up with any marketplace is that, even if it is privately owned (as Bonanza and Etsy were when I joined), the vultures will always flock toward any marketplace that displays any money-making potential. If the owners give in to the investors' false pretenses, then you might as well just close up shop and start your own site.

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