|Tue Jan 17 2012 09:35:20|
eBay Raises Cost of Domestic Goods, Lowers Costs of Asian Imports
By: Ina Steiner
Entrepreneurs and mom-and-pop sellers in the U.S. had to accept a bitter pill from eBay when it began charging a "commission" fee on shipping costs - something unheard of in commerce. At the same time, eBay is lowering shipping costs for Asian exporters selling goods to U.S. consumers.
By making U.S. goods more expensive (eBay advised its sellers to raise their prices to cope with the new fee), and helping make Chinese goods less expensive and easier to get, buyers on eBay may be more tempted to purchase items from China-based sellers than those in their own backyard.
What may raise eyebrows is the role the U.S. Postal Service is playing in this development.
As we report in today's EcommerceBytes Newsflash, the USPS has entered into a third trilateral agreement with eBay and Asian postal systems to provide expedited, low-cost shipping services to Asian sellers that even lets their buyers in the U.S. track orders!
eBay sellers in China and Hong Kong exported $4 billion in goods into the U.S. in 2010, and that number is likely to increase each year as buyers in the U.S. find it increasingly easy to purchase from Asian sellers on eBay.com.
Meanwhile, U.S. sellers continue to express their unhappiness over paying a commission charge on a cost that is out of their control.