eBay is mulling the fate of its Turbo Lister inventory management tool and may integrate it into Seller Hub and/or begin charging a fee for those who use it, according to sellers who took a new survey this week.
eBay was going to end support for Turbo Lister in June of 2017 since it was investing all of its resources into the new Seller Hub, but eBay delayed the tool's demise because, it said, "the Turbo Lister features you rely on are not yet available in Seller Hub."
At the time (May 2017
), eBay said that it would no longer make Turbo Lister available to new sellers and would not add new features - but it said it would allow existing sellers to keep using it and would offer technical support for the tool.
Most tools today are "web-hosted," but Turbo Lister is desktop software that allows sellers to manage their listings while offline. This is handy for those with a slow Internet connection, for those who like to archive their listings, and for those who worry about the possibility of losing data when it is stored in the cloud outside their direct control.
Some sellers who liked the advantages of desktop software continued to use TurboLister, with all of its limitations, while others turned to SixBit Software, which charges a fee and has continued to enhance its software, including adding support for additional marketplaces.
A reader who took the Turbo Lister survey this week provided us with the invitation they received from the eBay Inc User Experience Research Team:
"We're committed to providing you the best possible tools and services. Please help us understand where our efforts are paying off, and the areas that need more attention. Please follow the survey link to tell us about your experience with Turbo Lister. The survey takes between 5-10 minutes to complete. Thank you for selling on eBay and for helping us serve you and all of our business sellers better."
The reader said the survey asked respondents to indicate if they would pay to use Turbo Lister and what eBay should do to improve the tool.
Sellers discussed the survey on the eBay discussion boards and said eBay asked if they would be willing to pay between $4.99 - $9.99/month for using it.
There were several schools of thought. Some said they weren't generating enough sales to make it worth paying to use Turbo Lister. One said they would gladly pay $5/month if it meant eBay would fix glitches in a timely manner and provide support. And others said if they were going to have to pay for a tool, they might as well switch to one that offered support for other marketplaces.
Sellers pointed out that if eBay did institute a charge for Turbo Lister, it would have to keep up with all the new changes - and that would include its new Product Based Selling Experience as it moves to an Amazon-like catalog listing flow.
eBay is watching as its younger rival Etsy has learned to monetize "seller services," and we've previously pointed out how eBay too is looking to generate more revenue from existing sellers.
Could eBay be hoping to charge all sellers for using advanced functionality in Seller Hub?
Let us know what you think.