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Tue Feb 22 2011 17:12:20

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay UK has been testing a shopping cart (called shopping basket there) to a small number of users since August 2010 and will soon be ramping it up, as I reported 2 weeks ago. The shopping basket will automatically replace the eBay UK Checkout. eBay has also said it would launch the shopping cart in the U.S., and some are expecting it to launch on eBay.com by June of this year.

eBay UK sent an email to its users today telling them to get ready for shopping basket launch (it's currently in beta testing). eBay also set up a discussion thread on the UK forums asking buyers for their feedback, several of whom liked it, and several saying they found it confusing, particularly for the auction format.

"In the test version auction items go straight into your basket as soon as you bid, it's a bit of a pain as live auctions are alonside the BINs. It would be better if auctions only showed in the basket when you've won them and they need to be paid for.Also auctions never seem to be in end time order and I have on ocassions missed the end of an auction."

"When an auction isn't won it goes to the bottom of the basket and sits there until you delete it and again it is a pain because there are no tick boxes to choose which items to delete, so you have to delete each one individually."

The UK shopping basket supports both fixed price and auction-style listings from all eBay sellers in a single site-wide shopping basket experience.

I've been keeping an eye on the Shopping Basket in the UK, and one of the biggest problems sellers report is the perception by buyers that postage should be combined among all of the items in the basket as it is on other sites. Another seller said he had to cancel a transaction because "the buyer said she felt conned because the other sellers (so, they DO realise it's all from different sellers) didn't offer combined postage but I did so why wasn't it possible to combine all on one invoice."

The shopping cart being tested in the UK only works for items from sellers offering the same payment methods - if a buyer has items in her cart from sellers who accept PayPal, and then tries to add an item from a seller who accepts a different payment method, that item won't be "selectable."* Users have also questioned whether the UK shopping basket would allow buyers to send items to different addresses.

Here is the email that eBay UK sellers received today:

Shopping basket will automatically replace the eBay checkout. You don't need to do anything.

The Buy it now button will become an Add to basket button (1). Buyers will be able to add multiple items to their basket (2) and pay after they have selected the postage options for all their items.

Tips to maximise your sales success

* Offer discounts for combined postage. Postage discounts are a great incentive for buyers to purchase more from the same seller. With shopping basket, all your discounts are clearly marked and buyers can view other items you offer. It's easy to set up. Find out how

* Offer a variety of postal options, including international delivery Having more than one method of delivery and detailing the cost of each can increase the likelihood of purchase.

* Offer multi-quantity listings with a longer duration on fixed price inventory A listing that expires is a lost sales opportunity. List items for longer and stock greater quantities, so they remain available in buyers' shopping baskets.

Visit the shopping basket page or view our Beta test to find out more. You can also join us for a discussion about the test results and upcoming launch.

*An eBay moderator explained the payment-method limitation in this December discussion board post:

"On the Review your Purchase page, the member will see all payment methods offered across all of the items the user is trying to check out. Each checkout can only use one payment method and it needs to be shared across all of the items being checked out, so any methods not shared across all of the items will not be selectable. In order to use those methods, the member will need to check out with only the item(s) that support that method by either deselecting items on the Review Your Purchase page or going back to cart and moving other items to Save for Later."




Comments (40) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Rich

Tue Feb 22 17:17:45 2011

I think this is definitely a sign that eBay is moving in the right direction. Can't wait till its on the U.S. site.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Hurrah!!

Tue Feb 22 17:40:14 2011

Welcome to 2003, eBay!

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: coconut

Tue Feb 22 18:25:12 2011

If it works like the rest of Fleecebay we won't have to worry about it anytime soon

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Tue Feb 22 18:27:45 2011

If there is anything we can count on with an ebay shopping cart, it's any or all of the following:

1. It will have dozens of glitches most of which will cost sellers money with no recourse.

2. Ebay will increase seller fees to pay for it.

3. Buyers will get sellers confused and leave erroneous DSRs and feedback for one seller that were meant for another.

4. It won't be able to calculate anyone's shipping charges correctly.

5. It will be SNAFU to the tenth power.

These incompetents have the reverse Midas touch -- every piece of gold they touch turns to ebay which is a synonym for crap.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: MIng the Merciless

Tue Feb 22 18:31:10 2011

Ebay moving in the right direction?

I have a watch with a dead battery that's right twice a day.

Same thing.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Sharon's Vintage

Tue Feb 22 20:26:22 2011

Does anyone know if sellers will be able to opt out of this shopping cart?

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue Feb 22 20:43:18 2011

Buyers looking for combined shipping on shopping cart purchases from different sellers?

Leave it to eBay to create a system wrought with buyer misconceptions caused by high expectations that are fueled by a lack of information and education.

This looks like another case of eBay creating a system and leaving it up to sellers to first suffer at the hands of frustrated buyers only to be told that it is the seller's job to educate those buyers.

Who would have thought eBay could create another way to systemically disappoint buyers then turn around and leave seller's on the hook for that disappointment?

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: buck efay

Tue Feb 22 20:46:31 2011

Probably not, because I'm sure after someone puts your item in the cart, Ebay can then take one last chance to redirect the sale to the Doggy D's!

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Mark Taylor

Tue Feb 22 20:49:49 2011

While I see certain benefits to a shopping cart, it makes me wonder if you will be able to pay with methods other than PayPal. I suspect this is a way to more firmly entrench PayPal as the only payment service on eBay.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: whatever.

Tue Feb 22 21:51:40 2011

Since I sell on eBay I have to try to continually figure out Seller Update #53.2011 (of 365.2011) and this Shopping Cart still is confusing: WHY in the Lord's name would I want IN my shopping cart an auction that has not yet ended and which I have obviously not yet won (and may not win)? Why would I want it to then STAY in my shopping cart until I manually delete it (and without a multiple delete function)? Hey ebay have you forgotten about something called the Watch List? (Maybe you did--since you hid it under the useless the ''My Lists'' link instead of having it easily visible as a link under ''Bidding'' etc.)

Why would I want sellers with different shipping terms in the same cart? Can anybody say: ''IT SAID ''FREE SHIPPING'' ON THE LISTING!!!!'' in my feedback (obviously will be a negative with all ''1''s)--just because ONE seller in my cart had free shipping).

As a BUYER I don't want an ''ebay shopping cart'' either: on ebay I shop via Watch List, via current Bidding, via Buy It Now, via all of the above PLUS ''view seller's other items.''

IF I want to ''pay all my sellers at once'' THAT is already an option in ebay ''Checkout'' and in Paypal.

I personally DON'T LIKE ''shopping carts'' on sites with multiple third party sellers. Are there other buyers like me? Maybe I'm the anachronistic small potatoes buyer who doesn't buy dozens of items from individual sellers all in one shopping session. Is that the kind of buyer who wants a shopping cart?

Oh, and here's another issue: if I put something in a shopping cart I typically am intending to buy it right away: can I ''checkout'' with my shopping cart with currently running auction items so that I can at least complete the BIN transactions that I can pay for now? Will ebay say ''sorry but some of the items in your shopping cart are not yet available for payment, please checkout later''?

And maybe that question is dealt with in the detailed email referenced above and in some new faq somewhere but guess what? I don't want to have to search for a new tutorial in order to just BUY something on Donahoe's site. I don't want my customers to have to do that. And I should not have to spend the time to update all my listings to EXPLAIN to my customers what's going on.

(I just had to do that back during the holiday season with all my listings thanks to that godforsaken new Ask a Question/Seller Q&A/Let us find an answer for you/Seller has provided no information on that topic/Did we answer your question--do you still want to ask a question/Click the Continue button that we hid up til now/type in a subject line that you can't leave blank but will never show up to the seller/now type in the Captca numbers that are usually wrong the first time.)

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Tue Feb 22 23:27:19 2011

'WHATEVER' says: ''Why would I want sellers with different shipping terms in the same cart? Can anybody say: ''IT SAID ''FREE SHIPPING'' ON THE LISTING!!!!'' in my feedback (obviously will be a negative with all ''1''s)--just because ONE seller in my cart had free shipping).''

I believer you're correct. That's a very astute observation.

Face it, folks... aside from the outright scammers, shoplifters and thieves, the eBay buyers who are the biggest threat to honest sellers are the ''dumb'', or ''unsophisticated'', or ''easily-confused'' buyers.

Those are the ones who will be put-off by this, and who will NOT understand how it works. They'll assume that they were getting ripped off because they shipping charges weren't combined. Or they'll assume that the ONE item with ''free'' shipping meant that all items in the cart also qualified for ''free'' shipping.

These are the easily frustrated buyers who will rush to punish sellers with low DSR scores.

I'm convinced that the more confusing eBay makes things, the MORE it benefits eBay... and the more it harms small sellers.

You know I do like my customers, and I'll always strive to give them the best service at all times... but over the years, I have noticed that the average (apparent) IQ of eBay buyers seems to be headed south. They're either getting dumber, or lazier... or they just lack the ability to read and understand (or even care).

I'm not sure where these people are coming from, or why they are suddenly congregating at eBay... but the fact is that they are here, and eBay seems to be doing everything possible to add layer upon layer upon LAYER of awkward steps and procedures, rules and policies that have little impact on actually improving the shopper experience... but that DO make things predictably worse (and more difficult) for honest sellers.

The poster ''Whatever'' gives us an example of how one seller who offers free shipping may cause the others in the same shopping cart to be punished unfairly. ~~ The other side of that coin is that the one BAD SELLER who is part of a single shopping cart transaction could give the buyer a bad feeling (and negative feedback, poor DSR's) for ALL sellers in that shopping cart transaction.

We see what an AWFUL job eBay has done in PROPERLY educating buyers about how to leave feedback, and the TRUE meaning of DSR's. So, given their p1ss poor track record, are we supposed to believe that eBay will do any better in making a ''shopping cart experience'' any easier or more intuitive?!

Trust me, it just ain't gonna happen. This is yet another hair-brained idea that may have mild (and qualified) ''success'' in the UK or any EU nation... but those buyers are hardly a true test of feasibility and workability when springing something like this on a less sophisticated middle-America crowd.

Oh, don't roll your eyes at me! :-) I know it's not ''nice'' to suggest that rural middle America lacks intellectual sophistication, but in your heart you know it's true. (Besides, I speak from personal experience...I'm talking about my OWN middle America country bumpkin roots.)

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Rick1313

Wed Feb 23 00:11:52 2011

1) What happens if seller has ''immediate payment required''? Will the basket/cart override it or will buyer be unable to add that item to the basket/cart?

2) What happens if a buyer does not pay for a basket/cart full of multi-seller items? That means several unpaid items strike against the buyer. Is buyer immediately suspended?

3) If some of the sellers do not have calculated shipping for combined purchases, will buyer have to wait for each invoice to pay everyone at one time?

4) Is this applying to international sales? Many sellers do not have any shipping costs listed for out-of-country sales. Does my #3 question come into play?

5) Buyer has a non-auction item in cart and while waiting for another auction(s) item to end, the non-auction is purchased by someone else. How mad will the buyer be? My guess is volcanic.

6) #5 scenario again except that buyer receives an unpaid item notice from another seller while waiting for an auction(s) to end. How mad will the buyer be? My guess is super nova.

7) I could go on (some scenarios have been brought up by other posters) but I believe this will lead to some sellers having buyers taking it out on them (feedback/DSR) if the whole process does not go smoothly or a processing error happens that is not the fault of the seller(s).

As queried by poster Sharon's Vintage, I do hope that eBay will allow a seller to opt in/out of the basket/cart. If no opt out, then this is all about PayPal.

As a Canadian seller on eBay.com, I cannot block buyers from editing the S&H invoice line item and cannot block them from doing their own checkout as I have PayPal as a payment method (issues that are part of my small claims court case against eBay,inc.).

For me, I do not need the potential headache of having to try and explain the whole cart business to a buyer who does not fully understand the whole process and having to potentially file more liable damages against eBay,inc. for account mismanagement.

Opt out for me.

And I am not saying that this is what everyone should do. Just how I see it in conducting business with my potential buyers.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Rich

Wed Feb 23 02:29:40 2011

I'd be most worried Ming's post will happen and fees will rise and bad dsr glitches will happen with wrong feedback posted for wrong seller.  I'd prefer buyers shop on my account and win multiple items from me instead of shopping from other sellers and winning just 1 item from me and a bunch from others.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Wed Feb 23 06:08:53 2011

"Ask a Question/Seller Q&A/Let us find an answer for you/Seller has provided no information on that topic/Did we answer your question--do you still want to ask a question/Click the Continue button that we hid up til now/type in a subject line that you can't leave blank but will never show up to the seller/now type in the Captcha numbers that are usually wrong the first time."

As an eBay occasional buyer, I’ll second that; what an extremely irritating “improvement” all that nonsense is. Then, that is what we have come to expect from these headless turkeys at eBay & Co.

eBay/PayPal/Donahoe: Dead Men Walking.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: AC_in_mich

Wed Feb 23 06:28:30 2011

And there's no mention of all the different shipping and handling times that various seller's offer.  I can just see a buyer getting PO'd cuz they had a Chinese seller delivering in 3-4 weeks and taking it out on an American that delivered in 3-4 days.

You should NOT be allowed to have an auction in your cart until it is won!  It is not yours yet!

Sigh, as much as I want eBay to have a shopping cart, why do I have this STRONG feeling they will F it up - and of course to the detriment to the small sellers.

The only thing worse is some of those 3rd party checkouts with another 8 pages to click and fill out.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Brenda

Wed Feb 23 06:39:02 2011

Amazon has a shopping cart for multiple sellers that actually works.  But they don't have auctions and they don't have the stupid DSRs.  And because they're clear about things, you KNOW you're buying from multiple sellers with multiple shipping charges.  It just provides the convenience of paying for everything at once with one click.  And they did it years ago.  Enough said.

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: carma48

Wed Feb 23 06:55:45 2011

As an Ebay seller for 13 years, I have to agree with the majority of posters here. This "shopping cart" will be an absolute nightmare of confusion for both buyers and sellers, for all of the reasons already cited here by others. As sellers, we have enough trouble already just getting buyers to read our listings & understand our TOS. A shopping cart will compound this problem a thousand fold. In the end, it will likely only serve to drive even more good sellers and buyers off the site.

The current checkout system works just fine & an easy to use for both buyers & sellers. LEAVE IT ALONE!

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: fee

Wed Feb 23 07:07:17 2011

more disruptive innovation

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: John

Wed Feb 23 08:48:44 2011

C'mon people. You been complaining about eBay not having a shopping cart and now their close to having one, you're complaining about that! Unbelievable.

If you spent less time b!tching here and maybe following successful SMS then you wouldn't have the time to complain. Think about it!

John

eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US   eBay Ramps up Shopping Basket in UK, Cart Also Expected in US

by: Rick1313

Wed Feb 23 08:49:26 2011

According to today's AB news article, it will be standard for the UK (and eventually all the eBay?) selling site.

No opt out or in for sellers.

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