eBay kicked off a promotion on Monday that it has since "deactivated." It did not say why it cancelled the month-long promotion, but it appears it may have created terms more favorable to sellers than it had intended.
In looking over the terms of the promotion, we noticed it didn't place a limit on the number of listings eligible for the discount on commission fees, called FVFs. Sellers can list a lot of items for sale over the course of a month.
Note that the promotion did not waive insertion fees, however. Here's a snippet of the description, you can see the full page here
What is the Promotion?
Invited sellers ("Sellers") who activate the offer and then create new listings in the fixed price, auction-style, or auction-style with Buy It Now format during the Promotion Period, pursuant to the terms and conditions set forth herein, will receive a 25% discount on final value fees ("Promotional Rate") during the Promotion Period (the "Promotion").
The Promotion does not apply to insertion fees or optional advanced listing upgrade and supplemental service fees. Discounted final value fees will be applied to the total amount of the sale, including the cost of the item and shipping charges, excluding any sales tax. All existing selling limits on your account (as well as category and item limits) still apply, and may prevent you from creating the maximum number of listings in this Promotion. View the everyday rate plan for full details.
Some sellers also had a number of questions about the terms of the promotion and sought clarification on a thread on the eBay boards, where a moderator announced eBay had cancelled the promotion (message number 102
We have had to deactivate the promotion and apologize for the inconvenience.
If you opted in and received a confirmation of acceptance, we will be honoring the promotion. You will receive an email with details if this pertains to you.
In answer to a question from a seller, the moderator seemed to confirm that only those who had already opted in to the promotion would be eligible to receive the discounted fees: "If you received the mail today that was shared above in post #104, then it will be honored for you under the promo terms." (See message number 110.)
This is the text of the message to sellers who had already opted in before eBay cancelled the promotion:
"As you know, you recently activated a month-long promotion to receive 25% off on your Final Value Fees.
"We've had to cancel the promotion, but wanted to let you know that your discount has not been affected. You will still receive the 25% off Final Value Fee discount.
"You will see the discount in the form of credits on your invoice after the promotion period ends on Thursday, April 12, 2018. Terms and Conditions below.
"As always, thank you for selling on eBay."
The moderator also answered a burning question sellers had about the promotion:
"As long as the item is listed during the promotion period, it will receive the discount even if it sells after the promotion period. If that same item is relisted after the promotion period, it will not apply because technically it was not listed during the promo period."
It's more typical of eBay promotions to extend the FVF discount to items that sell during the promotion period only - another potential benefit it may not have intended to extend to sellers.
Five months ago eBay made another costly error, this time to a buyer promotion, as we noted in this October Blog post