Last week eBay invited some sellers to participate in "Fulfillment for eBay," but the pilot program works differently from the rival Fulfillment By Amazon program (FBA). Instead of building out its own fulfillment centers, as Amazon has done, eBay is working with third-party fulfillment services.
Keep in mind that one of the most compelling things about Amazon's program is the fact that FBA products qualify for free delivery through Amazon Prime, meaning sellers' listings become more appealing to shoppers.
It's unclear if eBay is considering rolling out a Prime-like program as it did in Australia this summer, where shoppers pay $49/year to qualify for free shipping through the program, called eBay Plus. eBay is also using a third-party fulfillment company in Australia rather than building its own infrastructure there.
eBay enticed sellers on eBay.com last week by promising that participants' listings would qualify for "Guaranteed Delivery" to 90% of buyers: "end-to-end fulfillment on 3-day deliveries are standard for 90% of buyers in the continental US," it stated.
eBay described additional benefits of participating in the fulfillment pilot program as follows:
- Enjoy special eBay negotiated, variable shipping rates.
- See increased velocity that can boost your sales.
- Focus on selling, while eBay and our partners handle the rest
In order to participate in the pilot program, sellers must use either eBay listing tools or use one of the following listing tools: ChannelAdvisor, Shopify, Zentail, SellerActive, GeekSeller, InkFrog, or WooCommerce. eBay is looking for sellers who can turn over their inventory within 3 months, and sellers must be able to split their inventory into at least two locations.
eBay will run the pilot for a limited period of time and then evaluate its performance to determine the future direction of the program.
eBay has been floating the idea of offering its own fulfillment program on and off for the past decade
. eBay currently offers a fulfillment program in Germany as well as Australia. eBay Germany hired former Amazon EU's Director of Prime Michael Pasch in 2017.
Let us know if you'd be interested in participating in the program and what you think of it.