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Wed June 18 2008 16:02:42

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

By: Ina Steiner

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In her article, Julia Wilkinson covers some of the changes coming up for eBay sellers over the next few months - most notably in the areas of international payments, shipping, Trust & Safety and large seller improvements.

Read the article and let us know your opinion of the changes? Is eBay on the right track?










Comments (52) | Permalink

Readers Comments

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: M.C. Nygard

Wed Jun 18 16:29:19 2008

Am I getting this right about the buyer anonymity (eBay won't reveal the buyer's identity, including the e-mail address)? If sellers are unable to take a peak at a buyer before the sale, then a seller can't block him. We have been advising sellers to review buyers during the questioning process and block buyers if there is any discrepancy in how they have dealt with sellers in the past. It would be devastating not to be able to review a potential buyer who asks leading questions given the current climate eBay has created. Best wishes to all surviving eBay sellers. We stopped listing in mid May as it's not safe to sell and there are so many options like Amazon.com, Etsy.com and RubyLane.com

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Jim S

Wed Jun 18 17:12:03 2008

Using eBay messaging removes the ability to send prospective buyers additional documentation (user guides, etc.) to help them with their purchase decision. And, there's no way to bring forward the buyer's email into the reply for continuity. One more roadblock to providing the best customer service.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Laura

Wed Jun 18 17:17:28 2008


Really the US isn't going to Paypal only?

Right why would they when the search results favor PP payments. Search results WON'T return items that don't offer PP. At least on my search it ONLY offered items with PP UNLESS I opted out of this option. There is a tiny little link to do this.

Hope other buyers are as observant or MANY items will NEVER be viewed. I don't remeber eBay disclosing this to me when they took my listing fees.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Karen

Wed Jun 18 17:57:56 2008

Oh that makes tons of sense.  Not.

Revise hundreds of listings to show a refund policy of "none"?

What are these people drinking?

But of course now I have to revise all my listings to take out my email address.

eBays message system doesn't always work (now there's a news flash) so now buyers can't contact us dirctly?

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: roy

Wed Jun 18 17:58:49 2008

From now on if I receive a question without an email address it will not be answered and the questioner will be told why. I suppose I just don't care anymore about eBay. I am just starting to make my first sales on ecrater and a couple of other venues. That is where my attention and energies are being directed now.

I have been fortunate to have found a niche with little competition on eBay so I still rank at the top of search. I also now rank at the top of search in Google. Once I stop listing on eBay I am confident I can take much of the business with me as I will be able to sell for less and keep most of my present margin.

eBay , the new great new bazaar of China rubbish and counterfeit goods.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: The Apple

Wed Jun 18 18:29:36 2008

A quick read shows me no negative impact.  (Sounds like a lawyer, doesn't it. LOL)

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: J. R.

Wed Jun 18 19:20:16 2008

I couldn't believe what I read:

''For example, an ''I understand why you did it this way, but have you thought about doing it this way?'' would be more welcome than just explaining why you think the existing way is bad.''

Incredible, so now eBay is telling us what we should say!  eBay, the problem is we don't know understand why you are doing things the way you are.  

The decisions made thus far are so beyond the pale of coherent that Sellers are scratching their heads and longing for the good old days when eBay was as fun for Sellers as it was for Buyers.  

Really, it is very sad to see eBay being ruined by people who are totally clueless.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: julia wilkinson

Wed Jun 18 19:35:23 2008

Thanks so much, everyone, for your thoughtful comments. I hadn't thought of all those points.

I do want to clarify, however, that in the last paragraphs about how eBay prefers to get feedback, I was paraphrasing what Adam said. In general, the point was, people will get farther in talking to eBay executives if they are constructive and not totally negative.

At the DevCon they really seemed to be open to hearing if people had ideas for better ways to do things.

We'll see how things go at eBay Live...John Donahoe called the DevCon attendees a ''kinder, gentler'' crowd. ;)

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: DallasDeb

Wed Jun 18 19:53:20 2008

Because of the constantly evolving rules for sellers and "anything goes non-rules"
for buyers, we also have moved to Etsy.

I am a powerseller on ebay with 100%+ feedback, but my items still get only "standard" placement. My 4.8 - 4.6 DSRs are not good enough, and  as I have low DSRs (a mostly Summer and Fall seller and with the new feedback changes a lot of BUYERS are "supporting the cause" by not leaving feedback at all!) and those "Good Job, will buy again - 4 Star" ratings are actually hurting me.

I understand why you took away negative feedback, but have you considered adding something else as a replacement? Neg feedback helped sellers keep an eye out for each other.

I understand the star rating and I think it's a good idea, but have you considered being HONEST with the buyers about what a 4 Star REALLY MEANS??

I understand that you are trying to force bad sellers off ebay, but have you considered the "Best Match" search is misleading? Best Match doesn't mean item best matches search terms, it means sellers who sell a lot of items and have been with ebay for eons go to head of line.

I understand the new ads at the bottom of every page, but have you considered that having the ads BEFORE the -next page numbers- is not only costing sellers views(and BIDS) but is ALSO costing EBAY in effectively lowering FVFs?

I understand wanting to make ebay as attractive as possible to buyers from all walks, but have you considered you are leaving sellers sitting ducks for thieves and cheats and scammers?

Did I miss anything?

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Greg

Wed Jun 18 20:01:47 2008

Well Ina. It's come to pass that we are no longer Sellers, but simply vending machines in the virtual lobby of eBay.

'nuff said

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

This user has validated their user name. by: Ed Gadfly

Wed Jun 18 20:14:13 2008

''Trachtenberg said the U.S. was not going to PayPal-only''

Unless you are a new seller with less than 100 feedback...

Unless you are going to ship International...

It's NOT PayPay only - you just HAVE TO offer it. Slick...

PLEASE ASK THIS QUESTION: Why does it take MONTHS for PayPay to add the new USPS Standard Rate Priority Mail box?

They knew it was coming and they have had MONTHS to get this taken care of. Why so long - only one person can do the work, is it more complex than the algorithms for the smaller box?

Digital download sellers were expected to comply in a week but no deadlines for PayPal?

PayPal is a ''service'' people HAVE to pay for and that many are FORCED to use. Why is there such a lack of, uh, ''customer service''?

Oh yeah, Julia, Ina... DON'T drink any kool-aid that's offered to you.

Thanks for your efforts!

Ed Gadfly

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Drew11

Wed Jun 18 20:47:49 2008

Sorry but ''open to hearing'' is SOP for ebay at these events. Then they go back to HQ, decide what they want to do and then go get the metrics to justify it.

Ebay is already basically paypal only. They have inserted so many layers in the checkout process to steer a buyer to paypal. Ebay has many  other levers available to them to require paypal  such as best match.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Boycott Ebay/Paypal

Wed Jun 18 21:01:05 2008

All the folks who count on their dotcom email address in their listings to help steer buyers to their websites can forget about that now.

It's pretty clear there is no more "using" Ebay to promote your website except for dropping a business card in a package, assuming you sell something. They are using you but you can no longer return the favor.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: chinese goods

Wed Jun 18 21:06:10 2008

When a flea market fails, it typically turns into a produce market.  Perhaps ebay should just go do a deal with 1-800-Flowers and start selling flowers on its site.  Every policy it has enacted recently is undemocratic and not conducive to growing e-commerce.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

This user has validated their user name. by: Ed Gadfly

Wed Jun 18 21:27:54 2008

Bill Cobb didn't want the flea market image.

Mr. Donahoe turned it into a HUGE flee market.

Flowers eh? Put me down for a bouquet of Blooming Idiots.

Ed Gadfly  

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Jason

Wed Jun 18 21:56:54 2008

In my opinion, eBay is opening themselves up to all sorts of lawsuits. Not directly pertaining to any specific rule changes, but instead to their oft repeated stance they are ''just a venue'' between buyers and sellers. In the past, this may have been true, and thus when a seller was defrauded by a buyer for example, sellers may have had no recourse against eBay. But now that Jim Donahoe is allowing eBay to become so heavily involved in all parts of the transaction, they are becoming more than just a venue. How long will it be before full-time sellers must ''verify'' their inventory sources with eBay before being allowed to sell, similar to the way Wal-Mart suppliers must go through hoops to get products on the shelf at Wal-Mart?

I am no lawyer, so I certainly can't make any legal argument on the subject, but the next time a suit comes forth where eBay would normally respond by saying they are just a venue between buyers and sellers, they will have a much more difficult time being convincing. eBay has so much control over sellers these days, the lines between individual sellers and eBay as a company are becoming blurred.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Lisa

Wed Jun 18 22:16:02 2008

I think the comment they made about giving consideration to ideas that are asked "nicely" says Ebay is just winging this whole thing. Will see what JD says in his Keynote.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: PlugTheLeaks

Wed Jun 18 22:25:36 2008

The sellers savvy enough to build and promote their own sites are the only ones that will be around long-term.  eBay is getting around to plugging all their revenue leaks (off eBay sales via e-mail) and also alienating their seller base in the process. It'll be great for eBay's bottom line since they get to make more money in the short term. But if sellers can not make money online, it drives away business from eBay. I'm done defending eBay.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Cliff Aliperti

Wed Jun 18 22:49:19 2008

Please slow down guys!

I like most of the changes, the ones that do bother me aren't deal breakers for me, but give us a break and make the announcements all at once (or at least annually like it was prior to this year).

I'm in the middle of revising over 2,000 listings one-by-one to correct for the last round of changes.  At least I think I can make this ''handling time'' change through their bulk listing tools, but still, you're making too much work for us all at once.

All I'm asking is for the changes all at once.  You start shooting them at me once per month I end up thinking you have no plan.

More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session   More Seller Requirements Outlined in eBay Devcon Session

by: Mary

Wed Jun 18 22:53:43 2008

I read the article. I do not really see problem with what eBay is planning on this new seller requirements. I am sure I will be hated but here is my take on this.

First of all, anonymity in seller and buyer emails prior to auction ending. They will give you the email when the auction ends, they have to, and they even said so in the article. But, if you get a question with no email who cares. EBay has the little yellow button thingy already where any ebay member can block the other person from seeing their email. So what. Its not like ebay is hiding their IDs. Read the article, they are not talking making IDs anonymous, but emails. You do not know a buyer’s email until he wins anyway. Ebay removed the email feature from the bidders’ list months ago. You see the ID; check the buyer’s bidding history and feedback.

Second of all, everyone has major SPAM blockers on their personal emails anyway. I use the ebay message center a lot more then direct emails, simply because I know that more than 90% have spam and junk blockers and they will not see the message anyway, at least it’s in the message box in their ebay account. They log in and see a message. I know it will be read then. Many ebay buyers told me that they do not get ebay messages because of the spam blockers anyway and to use the message center to contact them.

Third, I have a no return policy on all my accounts. Once purchased no return. At this point, I cannot put that up on ebay return policy section because it not there for me. Its returns only and they give time frames. Since I have NO RETURNS, I wish they have a place for that. But as of now, if you have a NO RETURN policy, you just do not fill out the return policy in the listing section. I sell some things that by Federal Law cannot be resold once retuned. So I have to have a NO RETURN policy. If I allow returns, I cannot resell and I will have to take a loss on the items. So NO RETURNS.
So as long as NO RETURNS still allowed on ebay I am golden. Just so you know, if ebay implements a mandatory return policy, it will have a very devastating affect on sellers. Almost all the tings in the pharmacy, health & beauty cannot be resold once retuned by customer. Go to your pharmacy and ask them what their return policy is in their store. Then ask if they resell the returned items. If they say yes, run out and do not buy anything. I mean do you want to purchase a box of condoms or aspirin that were retuned by someone? For now the returns are not mandatory on ebay, let’s be thankful for some things.

Forth, ebay said no links to other sites or you emails. So what. If you are smarter then a 5th grader you know exactly how to get around that policy. If you do not, then go ask your kids he or she will tell you.

Ebay is one huge loop hole; if you have not figured out how to get around eBay’s moronic policies then you deserve to get screwed.

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