Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Sept 14 2015 21:00:53

Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay is making changes to its User Agreement, and some of the changes have sellers wondering about the impact. The changes, which go into effect for current users on October 28, 2015, were announced today. Here are two sections that are changing that have the most potential to impact sellers:

Listing Conditions: In light of our introduction of the eBay Seller Hub, we updated this section to reflect that we may display information about the commercial performance of your listings to other sellers. Learn more about how our eBay Seller Hub works here. We also added language in this section to indicate that we may remove metatags and URL links included in your listing to improve third party search engine results.

International Buying and Selling; Translation: We added language to this section to indicate that we may automatically translate member-to-member messages into local languages where those translation services are available.

eBay is granting itself permission to edit a seller's listings by removing certain information. 

Translating sellers' messages to buyers through automatic translation services could result in errors or misunderstandings.

One reader has already asked what it means when it says eBay can display information about your sales in the new Seller Hub. We've asked eBay - in the meantime, if you look at the screenshot on this page, you'll see there's a section called, "Study your competitors" along with the ability for sellers to "filter competitors."

Update: eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore confirmed this is the case - he provided a screenshot (you can view it on the Newsflash story). Bottom line, eBay is providing information to other sellers about your selling performance.

If you have questions about whether eBay will be revealing information about your listings in the new Seller Hub, such as listing price or selling price, you might consider asking during Tuesday's eBay Radio broadcast which is set up to answer questions about the Fall Seller Update.

We've got more about the changes in Tuesday's Newsflash. Be sure to read the full announcement, and let us know what you think here.

Comments (55) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Wed Sep 16 11:32:29 2015

Why Me?

When you think the deal can't get any stranger.

The buyer wants me to ship it to his work location and he wants to pay 1/2 with one credit card and half with another.

I'm lost for words as I scramble to complete this deal.

Buyer wants to use his shipping account, buyer also wants it shipped to his work and wants to pay with 2 different credit cards.

I got this bad feeling in my gut right now when I should be rejoicing over a great sale :-(

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Wed Sep 16 11:46:10 2015

I got eBay DRAMA today!

A sale with so many strings attached I'll be surprised if I don't hang myself ~ LOL

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: Bloggo This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 16 11:49:15 2015

I like to make a decent margin on the items I sell but I don't get too excited if an item takes a year to sell, has to be relisted multiple times and I have to drop the price by 40%.

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Wed Sep 16 12:38:41 2015

So wait, _if_ they show my listing and _if_ a buyer clicks it, they're going to try _again_ to cheat me out of a sale by showing competing options?  God, race to the bottom and unsustainable losses is right.  It's already hard enough to sell online and these fools just keep making it harder.  And for what, so Toys R Us can keep cancelling orders that it can't fill?

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Sep 16 12:41:48 2015

Thank you KARMA!

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

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

Wed Sep 16 13:46:26 2015

I'm not at all sure that disclosing the business results of one seller to all sellers is legal.

Prepare for lawsuits, ebafia!

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 16 14:14:25 2015

TOOL - this is what happens when people who know NOTHING about your business (or really anything to do with retail/wholesale/mail order/ecommerce) get involved.

First of all - all the different "oddball" issues shold tell you UP FRONT that its a problem just waiting to happen.

THIS is why you use Paypal - since you "get that feeling" that things arent on the level. Let THEM earn their %3 vig on the transaction.

Of course if this was "just a venue" you could make all these choices ON YOUR OWN. You know - use your OWN BRAIN to decide whats right for you.

Know what happens when you cancel a sale? DEFECT.Yup, all for the pleasure of TRYING to help.

What YOU ARE GOING through - is what we all do - every day with eBay.

Most here dont want eBay to close up shop - we just want them to change, to be honest, to be fair, not to steal, not to purposely damage our reputation and businesses ... is that REALLY so hard?

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: dawnelaine This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 16 14:19:48 2015

Ebay really is trying to get rid of the small-part-time sellers, when I didn't meet what they thought my sales should be they lowered my selling dollar amount to $400. a monthe and dictated haow many items I could list. supposedly this is going to help me become a better seller, by being able to list fewer items.
They also lowered my sell average to below standard-I have a 98.3% rating overall because some buyers have not given feedback.
These new changes are going to put Ebay in the tank, I also am looking for a different online site to sell the items from around home,etc. My commercial site will be up and running shortly.

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: ignatz This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 16 15:50:57 2015

So ebay is going to try and dictate what price you can sell something for.  And show competitors' performance metrics to each other.  But they're STILL "just a venue"!

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: I Must be Crazy This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 16 22:17:20 2015

@toolguy

For what it's worth, I firmly believe that you go with your gut. You have completed many transactions so you know what works. You also know when something isn't right. Don't let the threat of a defect sway what you feel is right. If things seem difficult now it will get worse and you will lose your item, money and the cost to overnight the item. When it comes to Ebay, it is seller beware. Trust your instincts. Just my 2 cents.....

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Thu Sep 17 03:47:28 2015

@ToolGuy :
Can I interest you in a CNC milling machine ?

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Thu Sep 17 07:02:14 2015

Haven't many of us said (over the years) that when eBay changes the seller user agreement that we need to prepare for another whacking.

Business as usual.  Meanwhile, when I searched for "men's north face jackets" the results showed both men's and women's jackets.  I did not want to see women's jackets.  eBay's internal "think tank" of MBAs continue to come up with these ideas when basic search is a disaster.

The change that really has me concerned is the "eBay is granting itself permission to edit a seller's listings by removing certain information."

eBay is really out of control. If a company ever needed it's hand slapped by the government and a crack team of attorneys it's eBay.  The meddling and interference into our businesses has reached epic proportions.

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: Darby This user has validated their user name.

Thu Sep 17 10:20:21 2015

Why is everyone upset about seller info being available to other sellers. What they are creating is a free Terapeak. I can analyze data about any seller from Terapeak and I do. Nothing is private. Who should be upset is Terapeak. Unless I am missing something more please enlighten me.  

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

by: queenfloraday This user has validated their user name.

Thu Sep 17 11:42:12 2015

I wonder who eBay considers it's ''core'' small and med sellers. I don't think they define ''Core'' as mom and pop sellers of vintage, used or collectible type items. Their policies, so far, are designed to cull out these type of sellers. I am getting ready to lose my TRS standing due to some carriers not scanning my items at delivery. Something I do not have any control over. Commercial type  sellers may be exempt from this policy, who knows. All I know is my sales are less and less and all of these policies are based on percentages ruled by bots. The outcome is predictable and eBay has control on that prediction.  

Perminate Link for Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers   Changes to eBay User Agreement Impact Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: Unicorns and Rainbows

Fri Sep 18 19:35:51 2015

"What assurances are they going to give sellers that the translations are correct?"

I assume you're joking here... they're telling you straight up, it might well be incorrect, and you agree to hold them harmless.

As for removing stuff from Descriptions to "improve third party search results", improve them for WHO?  

My guess is they plan to strip certain listings of information that makes them visible to third party searches, but NOT for the ones signed on for the new "promote your item" program, since eBay has more profit in having those listings sell.

The improvement in third party searches just might be only improvement to eBay's bottom line.

Someone (hint, hint) should ask them why removing metatags is going to improve third party search results, and exactly how that's an improvement.  

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