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Fri Aug 15 2008 14:38:49

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

eBay has been making enormous changes to the site this year, and it may all be leading to a fundamental change in how eBay charges sellers for listing on its site. All signs point to eBay moving to a free-listings/higher commission-based model - the question is, will it make the move all at once, or roll out category-based pricing?

Here are some questions that come to mind:

If eBay did eliminate listing fees and raise Final Value Fees, would that make a FVF based on the entire transaction, including shipping and handling, more palatable to you?

When will eBay roll out a more restrictive Accepted Payments policy banning checks and money orders?

Will eBay be more aggressive with contextual advertising on the site if sellers are not paying listing fees?

Today's AuctionBytes Newsflash article has more on some of the implications of such a move.

And be sure and take our survey to let us know what you think of any of these possible changes eBay may be making to the platform.

Comments (135) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: dan

Fri Aug 15 14:41:51 2008

Hey everyone,

Just wanted to bring you up to date on something interesting.  I was poking around the other night and found a site:

The site is ok, but there are is a very interesting rumor at the top.... check it out

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: dissed ebayer

Fri Aug 15 15:15:30 2008

why not just closed the site down, buyers & sellers are jumping ship fast fast fast...

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Chuck

Fri Aug 15 15:19:11 2008

As a powerseller with 500+ item listing and automatically relisting every week, I would love this as long as the FV fees don't go through the roof.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Kat Simpson

Fri Aug 15 15:23:27 2008

Listen to the archive of the Ask Griff eBay radio show last night for more hints about this! Kat

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Donna

Fri Aug 15 15:25:47 2008

No! Listing fees cause sellers to be prudent in what they list.

I'm one of the rare sellers who loves the recent changes.  They're working for me and I am expanding my business on eBay.

Too many sellers have an "infomercial" type attitude of wanting "make money while you sleep!  NO WORK!".  News flash - work hard to make the site work for you and it will.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: embeekay

Fri Aug 15 15:27:44 2008

after nine years of faultless execution ebay kicked me off over what their robots think were 2 misrepresented items of my 5000 items. complete nonsense. without hardly a word they amputated my buying and selling business causing losses for sellers and buyers and even when i am reinstated i will probably get 4-5 negative feedbacks. that said - ebay can go hang - i now list on ebid, abebooks, alibris, bibliopoly and 3 other listing services. in 4 years my biz has gone from ebay = 80% others = 20% to the exact reverse. whether ebay dumps fees or not they will take it out of higher fvfees which is still better but the nasty machine that is ebay today will still rollover the unfortunate seller caught in their gears.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: ss

Fri Aug 15 15:28:33 2008

As a powerseller with over 20,000 feedback and great DSR. I would list list list and list some more. Everything in my store would be out on auctions. Thats about 15,000 items. Talk about flooding a catagory.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?


Fri Aug 15 15:33:51 2008

Trust in the site has more to do with listing that the fees being charged ... at least for the small seller. For a site that wants their sellers to provide world class customer service, they sure set a bad example!!!

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: speckles

Fri Aug 15 15:34:26 2008

Might as well since so much that gets listed no longer gets views... (snark)

That said,

RE: FVF on shipping...  eBay's gone to great lengths to get sellers to minimal/free shipping and now they want to charge sellers on amounts that are being paid elsewhere (USPS,UPS,Office Max etc)? That's nuts.

I'm sure that BUY and GM and the other big players won't pay as much as I will if the way they have set up the listing fees is any indication.

The non-user braintrust sure has trashed this company.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Unknown

Fri Aug 15 15:41:44 2008

If one thinks the site is cluttered now and nothing sells, just as ss above states they will list,list,list.  Think of how every drop shipping seller in the world will flood the site with listings, all identical.  It would be nice if all sellers were forced to already own the items that they list on ebay.  Might cause the number of listings to drop through the floor as so many drop ship sellers have started on the site.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Larry Phillips

Fri Aug 15 15:43:29 2008

My immediate reaction was that I would move my 3,500 store items to fixed price, and quickly double or triple the other 2,500 FP and auction items I list weekly.  But then, after some discussion, I realized that my competitors will do the same thing creating a flood on the marketplace.  What will that do?  It will cause us all to lower prices so we're less expensive than our competitors.

It's going to significantly change the playing field, and make it tougher for smaller sellers to compete.  I still haven't decided whether I think that's a good thing or not.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Powerwheelerchris

Fri Aug 15 15:53:43 2008

This may be a bit off topic, but if eBay goes to a no listing fee format, for me I still will not be happy with the PPC links on the new designed page.

I also feel that the no insertion fee will flood the market with items then no one, who is selling will be a winner, my fear is that with the market being flooded with more items being sold, and other changes I am seeing eBay is considering, a place that a seller can not make money on eBay - that eBay can no longer be a businesses sole sales channel.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Patti

Fri Aug 15 15:53:46 2008

This is their way of justifying not showing all listed items.  Well, it was free, so you can't complain.  It does make sense of the new rule of only showing 10 items per seller.  I don't care if listing is free, charging FVF on shipping is enough to keep me from going back.  I'm a happy BISI seller now. Even with free listing, the feedback mess and constant changes reasons to stay away.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: jen

Fri Aug 15 15:59:22 2008

Sorry for the double post.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Patricia

Fri Aug 15 16:00:27 2008

If this is Ebay's way of getting sellers back...its not going to work.  Unless they roll back some of their wacky polcies, show some respect for sellers and FIX THAT BLOODY STUPID SEARCH so listings can fairly be SEEN - even free won't be good enough.  If you can't sell and make a profit what possible reason could you have to waste your time listing?  Also, knowing ebay, expect the full 15 percent FVF that Amazon gets.  This means might as well go to Amazon or stay on Amazon.  Ebay still feels they're they only game in town and will milk sellers past the screaming point!!!

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Beth M.

Fri Aug 15 16:05:21 2008

Well, this brings up lots of interesting possibilities. I think the free listings are a great idea, IF:

1. They limit the amount of identical items one seller can list and include just title variations! I really hate looking for a blue widget and seeing two pages of what is obviously the same seller. Thye change one word in the title and list another 15 of the same thing. Irritating and a time waste. I avoid those sellers any way.

2. Extend the listing time to include 2 weeks long. I'd play the game, but not wasting my time every week to relist everything, even if it is free. They waste enough of my time as it is!  

3. Watch that ending commission!  If they do move to PayPal only (and it sure sounds likely), I can deal with that, BUT... don't be charging a high commission on the total sale (incl S&H, which isn't too fair) AND the fee to accept the payment too!  That is too much.

Face it - eBay's changes have insulted such a large seller base, that even free isn't going to bring everyone back.  If that is what they are hoping for, better keep on looking.

As I understand it, they are only really considering this as an attempt to compete with Amazon for sellers. Seems to me that leaving store items in the search results, stop fiddling with the feedback, and booting the scammers off is a much better use of their resources.  

Free listing is fine, but it is like oiling a squeak - it works for a while, but the squeak will always return until you find the reason it is squeaking.  So, all these stop-gap measures they are taking, and big changes they are considering still won't fix the bigger problems.

Better - get rid of some glutted middle management, decrease the golden benefits packages, level the visibility fields (if you want to give discounts to the big sellers, fine, but my items deserve to be seen too), and listen to your customers, which are the SELLERS (not the buyers!).  

Until they start listening to the sellers, there is no hope for eBay's continued growth.

You have to hand it to Meg - she knows when something had been bled dry and when to move on! ;  )

Meanwhile, if they get me back as a regular seller would depend on a lot more than offering me a free listing.  There are plenty of places to get exposure now - I don't need eBay as much as they need me!  

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Beth M.

Fri Aug 15 16:08:06 2008

I did also want to say that I really believe including S&H charges in the new commission (if the listing was free) is a BAD idea.  

Sellers do not control what carriers charge to mail a package. They don't control what envelopes or boxes cost either. To charge a commission on that cost is like a punishment to have sold the item on eBay.  

It all sounds like a recipe for disaster to me...

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Fri Aug 15 16:11:43 2008

Elimination of listing fees and increased FVF would not be enough to bring me back to selling on eBay.

FVF on Shipping and handling is outright theft, but eBay has been trying to get to that PayPal fee level for years anyway.

Feedback is still a mess. Customer service is horrible. Search gets worse with every alleged improvement.

What good are free listings to sellers when the DSR system is designed to bury the visibility of casual sellers listings?

Bottom line, buyers can not buy what they can not see, and eBay is engaged in favoring listing visibility skewed toward their favored sellers.

Thanks eBay, but you chased me and I will not stop selling on sites that are 100% free to sell on and I can offer alternative payments to avoid paying all inclusive PayPal fees as well.

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: soniadelaunay

Fri Aug 15 16:18:20 2008

What eBay seems not to realize is that sellers actually GET something for paying higher commissions at Amazon/Alibris etc.  Namely: no hassle payment.  We don't have to DEAL with nitpicking payments received/oops not/oops reversed etc.  Not only that, the sites WORK.  The search engines WORK, consistently.  We aren't dumped into Finding Experiences/Playgrounds etc.   It's simple, it works, we get paid regularly with no hassle.  If eBay can replicate that, great, but I'm not holding my breath.  Their tech quality is not up to it.  Not to mention the trainwreck that is Paypal's tech quality.  
With free listing i.e. millions upon millions more type listings, the search engine will become EVERYTHING. It can't cope now. What's it going to do then.  Of course, if listing is free, then who cares -- except for the confused, frustrated and ultimately run-off buyers.
Cheers. Sonia

eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?   eBay Eliminating Listing Fees?

by: Will

Fri Aug 15 16:19:52 2008

If I wanted to sell on Amazon I would. I sell on eBay since it allows more direct comunication with the buyers. This is really needed in the collectables catigories. Where the buyer really want to know the history of the item and who they are buying from. It looks like eBay is trying to turn the site into the FAILED eBay express. They Failed then, why take that risk with the bread and butter site?

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