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Sun Feb 16 2020 12:49:46

eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

By: Ina Steiner

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A seller took issue with a marketing email eBay sent her after she put some jewelry cleaning cloths in her shopping cart. The subject line of the email read:

"Similar item found! $1.37 less than 10PCS Silver Polishing Cloth Cleaner Jewelry Cleaning Cloth Anti-Tarnish Tool SL"

She didn't understand why eBay would send her a link to listings for tongue ring jewelry when she was purchasing jewelry cleaning cloths.

In addition to wondering if the featured listing was relevant, sellers who succeed in getting a customer to put one of their items in a cart may wonder why eBay pushes the shopper to purchase a different seller's item instead of nudging them to complete the purchase.

In addition, the screenshot shows the cleaning cloth in the shopper's cart cost $2.60 - and eBay is trying to get the shopper to purchase a different item for $1.23 instead! "Save. $1.37," the email stated.

During the recent eBay weekly chat, a seller raised another issue with eBay marketing emails: "I do not like getting an "are you still interested..." email on an item I have reported for a policy violation," they wrote.

A second seller responded that they had started getting eBay marketing emails, including one asking if they were still interested in an item they had stopped watching only a few hours earlier. "If I stopped watching it, seems like that should be indication that I'm no longer interested," the seller wrote. "If we get too many irrelevant messages from eBay, we tend to stop taking them seriously and could miss one that really is important."

We'd be interested to hear what readers have to say about the marketing emails they receive from eBay and other online marketplaces. Do they hit the mark in terms of relevancy, without taking business away from a seller close to making a sale?



Comments (13) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 16 14:58:30 2020

They shouldn't be sending such emails, period. They're obviously not doing it with the intention of promoting sellers. They're simply doing it to line their own pockets, through whichever seller the customer chooses.

To send a marketing email that directly competes with the seller a customer is interested in doing business with is just plain wrong. Why would anyone want to sell on a site that robs them of their business and gives it to someone else?

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: thievesBay This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 16 15:41:11 2020

eBay is always looking to undercut sellers trying to lead buyers to the cheapest items regardless of quality. It's like they're begging for a sale just so they can collect fees on something. In many cases they're pushing buyers to the lowest priced junk in the worst conditions. They do it all over the site, and even after a sale. This causes order cancellations, returns because of bad quality items, maybe another buy because of previously mentioned, but most of all it leads to seller and buyer disputes and ultimately seller penalties (more fees) and listings becoming invisible. That's the circle of eBay. They actually want to cause problems because they profit from it. True crime organization which needs investigation for their mafia tactics.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: SellerGirl This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 16 18:30:31 2020

Etsy does the same thing, right on the listing page.  Scroll down to the description and there is a row of similar items right in the middle of the listing.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 16 20:28:43 2020

This is nothing new. Been going on 2-3 years. It seems the dept in charge of the catalog development didn't tell the marketing dept that the catalog doesn't work.

I think my gmail marked most of ebay's marketing emails as spam. I dont see them unless I go to all mail, instead of inbox. It's not a setting I choose, it just ended up like that somewhere along the line in the last year. After leaving it on all mail for a few days, I can definitely say it is annoying. But most were in line with what I was looking for at least.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: BobNJ This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 00:34:40 2020

Tons of eBay emails every day and every single one is totally useless, items I would never even consider looking for on eBay.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: Whatever This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 01:32:23 2020

just one confound ignorant business decision after another. Are the kindergarten kids steering the ship? How low is the stock now? The big buy back is underway - buy cheap - sell high. It's nothing more than stock manipulation. Maybe I should be buying some.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 04:26:23 2020

Since I closed my store in 2018 I don't get those annoying emails as a seller (not a buyer).  I would get price cutting emails consistently or suggestions to sell.  I was beyond annoying.  They need to reprogram their robots or offer sellers a choice to opt out of emails.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: hawk This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 07:20:30 2020

the only emails i get from ebay anymore is ones trying to sell me my own items i had for sale. then i get another email saying if i don't offer this and offer that , they will suppress my listings. the greed and stupidity has eaten their brain cells so bad , they don't even know what they are sending you. they need to get off the greed train and actually learn about other peoples business practices.  

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 09:04:17 2020

I use an ad blocker, so never see what's on the listings on Etsy. However, eBay's similar items are not considered ads by the blocker, so I do see them on eBay listings.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 09:21:26 2020

We just delete and move on. Not losing any sleep to those people looking for cheap or to greedbay in their we know whats best for you nonsense.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: Windkissed This user has validated their user name.
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Mon Feb 17 10:10:45 2020

I am only interested in the emails that show item in carts.  It lets me know if I should drop a price or let it ride.  I always review those items and make those decisions.  If someone is watching an item, I use the make an offer most often to get the sale if possible.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 17 12:47:29 2020

IDK. The price I list is the price it is. I dont have make an offer, and I never got involved in any of that chasing watchers or potential buyers with the item in their cart by lowering the price. If it gets to the point where I need to do that I will just quit selling.

The site Reverb I sell on has the same thing "make an offer". I dont use it on there. But every once in a while I forget to uncheck the box when listing something new,
and the ridiculous offers I get. To me its just a waste of time.

Even without make an offer I get all the kook's coming in asking me if I will take 1/2 the price...with free shipping. I usually tell them "ok, let me get this straight, you want me to give you this for less than what I paid for it, and also pay to ship it to you?, is that what your asking? There are some bad ideas ebay come up with, but this has to be one of the worst!

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart   eBay Sends Offer that Undercuts Item in Shopping Cart

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.
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Mon Feb 17 14:00:23 2020

Those kooks you mention are one of the reasons I chose never to sell on eBay. I don't even include eBay in my pricing research. Too many go there looking for garage sale prices and even free shipping on top of that.

Then, you have the sellers who race to the bottom of the barrel trying to compete. I would call them inexperienced sellers because I would much rather work smarter than harder for the same amount of profit.

I've always said they may as well just have garage sales if that's all they're getting for it online. Why go through all the extra work (and stress these sites cause) to make the same peanuts? It makes no sense.



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