Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of
Thu Nov 30 2017 09:02:57

Change Could Mean Buyers Pay eBay Instead of Sellers

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay struck a 5-year operating agreement with PayPal when the board broke up the companies in 2015, but a provision in the contract allows eBay more leeway beginning next year - and the biggest losers may be eBay sellers.

Speaking at a Wall Street conference on Tuesday, eBay Chief Financial Officer Scott Schenkel addressed a question about the provision which a Credit Suisse analyst described as giving eBay the ability to experiment with payments and become the merchant of record at the three-year mark, which would be July 2018.

Explaining the concept of merchant of record, he said, "eBay ... Read More

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Wed Nov 29 2017 13:47:54

Clawing Ahead of Rivals on Amazon Gets Uglier

By: Ina Steiner

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Selling to US shoppers has become a vital source of revenue for sellers here and abroad, and things are getting really ugly as the competition gets fiercer.

Two reports came out within the past week about some outrageous practices that are harming legitimate Amazon merchants. Bloomberg reports on a nefarious practice called "sniping" (not the bidding kind you see on eBay), and Forbes reports on a practice called "brushing."

The reports come after Amazon tried to crack down on the practice of paying people to leave positive reviews for their own products - the new practices that some sellers ... Read More

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Mon Nov 27 2017 21:44:07

eBay Literally Asked Sellers about Their Loyalty to Amazon

By: Ina Steiner

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In a survey in September, eBay asked sellers if they were more loyal to eBay or to Amazon. Surprising, but even more intriguing: what is eBay planning to do with that information? 

In September, eBay conducted a survey asking sellers how they felt about fulfillment services. As part of that survey, eBay also asked sellers about their loyalty to Amazon and about eBay's new Guaranteed Delivery program. 

Here are some of the questions eBay asked in the September survey:

Which of the following best describes your sales in dollars on Amazon compared to eBay? Select one:
- I sell more on Amazon
- I sell about ... Read More

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Fri Nov 24 2017 22:17:11

eBay Vows to Deal with Serial Bid Retractors

By: Ina Steiner


Would you like the ability to block serial bid retractors on eBay? Everyone makes mistakes, that's why eBay allows bidders to retract their bids if they enter the incorrect amount. But we've noticed sellers growing increasingly frustrated with serial bid retractors - those who seem to be gaming the system on a regular basis in order to find out what other bidders' high left bids are.

Buyers and sellers discussed the issue in this thread. Retractions make buyers suspicious that the they are coming from sellers trying to bid up the price of their listings.

Sellers also have to deal ... Read More

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Wed Nov 22 2017 19:39:36

New eBay Practices Vex Buyers and Increase Returns

By: Ina Steiner


Let's say you're looking for a holster on eBay, and you need to know if it will fit your Colt 1911. The seller didn't include the words Colt 1911 in their description because eBay told them that is "brand misuse," so you send the seller an email through the eBay messaging system to see if it will fit. 

Instead of an answer from the seller, you get a notice chiding you for trying to take the transaction off eBay, because eBay's Artificial Intelligence bots can't distinguish between a legitimate inquiry and a solicitation. According to users, the bots think ... Read More

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