Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon June 3 2019 22:23:35

eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay is limiting the number of shipping options shown to buyers, it announced today. The change, which it calls an improvement to the buying experience, impacts listing pages and checkout pages.

It seemed eBay did some time travelling in making the announcement - on June 3rd, it wrote that the change would go into effect on May 28th.

eBay stated in its announcement:

"Until recently, shipping options outlined for the buyer did not always promote the best value. eBay will now only show the most cost effective shipping services for a given delivery speed, hiding higher priced options."

Some key points sellers should know:

- The first shipping option you designate will always be shown on the listing and in search and never removed.

- This change applies to ship-to-home services only. It will not apply to Buy Online Pick Up in Store (BOPIS) or Local Pickup.

- Shipping options with guaranteed by dates are prioritized if speed and cost is the same as a non-guaranteed delivery.

In an accompanying screenshot, eBay shows a listing where a seller offers free shipping via USPS along with three alternatives via FedEx. With the new change, eBay leaves the free USPS shipping option and the two most expensive FedEx options, but it removes the cheapest FedEx option - apparently since it has an estimated delivery date that is 5 days longer than the free USPS Priority Mail option. 

What do you think of the concept - take a look at the screenshot in eBay's announcement showing "before" and "after," and let us know if you think that provides buyers with a better experience than showing all options.

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This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Wed Jun 5 13:56:01 2019

@Sierra
Thanks for the tip.  Looks like I'll be giving them a shot next time eBay lets me have a sale!

Perminate Link for eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers   eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 5 20:24:55 2019

I design and build assembly machines and devices for the Auto industry, there are many times that I need parts for machines I am working on to be shipped to me ASAP, cost is not a concern,

Just last week we needed a part from a company, the part was only $16 I paid $107 to have it shipped to me as fast as possible,

We have even used taxi's to get stuff,, shipping is not a concern when you are dealing with car companies, the penalty to to some of my tier 2 customers if they shut a production line down due to part shortages are approx, $1.2 million an hour

ebay is out of touch with reality, they will loose business again, from manipulation,



Perminate Link for eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers   eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 6 10:43:49 2019

LOL eBay went from thinking Sellers are stupid, to now insisting that its Buyers are stupid too.

You would think that "from the people who know NOTHING about ecommerce" they would be a bit more humble - and let those who do (actual sellers and buyers) "do their thing", but no.

Why would ANYONE take selling or buying advise from the dope known as DW?

I wouldnt take advise from the FEARLESS DIRECTOR OF SELLER PROTECTION ......... 30+ yrs of it on my own is enough, I dont need HIS 2 cents.

eBay should leave well enough alone and ONLY fix the things that need it (like maybe the broken shipping calculator that hasnt worked right in 20 yrs) and stop "finding things to do".

First - lay off %50 of the dead weight that eBay employs - that in and of itself is enough "work".

Perminate Link for eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers   eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Thu Jun 6 15:02:16 2019

wellspring writes: "This is one step (push) closer to “Free Priority Shipping” as the only option."

You can be sure of that. eBay wants to compete with Amazon so badly, nothing is going to be off the table in order to entice buyers with a quick delivery time. It wouldn't surprise me if they wanted everything sent by Express Mail since they don't have their own warehouses and delivery vans to provide next day receipt.  

Perminate Link for eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers   eBay Limits Shipping Options Shown to Buyers

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

Fri Jun 7 10:59:14 2019

From eBay's own post:

''Until recently, shipping options outlined for the buyer did not always promote the best value.''

    How does eBay know what the best value for a particular buyer/transaction is?

''eBay will now only show the most cost effective shipping services for a given delivery speed, hiding higher priced options.''  

Seems to me that in their own example, they removed the most cost effective option. The cheapest option was excluded, allowing for more expensive albeit, faster options. Without particulars, like type of item, size weight etc., how could we see their example as valid?

On the surface, looks to me like another ''improvement'' that isn't going to work correctly.

This is a useless enhancement eBay. This is no different from hiding the search result that you ''determine'' are not relevant or provide the best value. We all know how that is working out.  Let the buyers decide what is of value.

You all have plenty to do just keeping the site up and running. Have you checked out Down Detector lately?

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This user has validated their user name. by: CanBrit

Sat Jun 8 10:01:40 2019

@I Must be Crazy

''Until recently, shipping options outlined for the buyer did not always promote the best value.''
They missed two key words at the end of that statement. "For Feebay"

The site is increasingly more unstable. You can't believe any information via the seller hub. They plonk in any number that suits them. Probably from a roulette wheel.

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by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Sun Jun 9 06:07:19 2019

@I Must be Crazy

I think if you look at things more closely you will find that Ebay is still pushing their Guaranteed Delivery program and they are now hiding lower priced options that take longer than the Delivery Dates they are now giving the buyers.  Since Ebay still has to shell out for late deliveries under this program this is Ebays way of stopping the bleeding on their end.  As with any change that Ebay makes it is all about how much money this will bring to or keep in Ebays pockets regardless of how many Buyers or Sellers they lose.  

Ebay has not had anybody who could think long term since Donohoe came in as the CEO and Wenig is even worse as all he cares about is trying to meet or exceed projections from Wall Street each quarter.  Ebay has no idea how to create or implement any changes that do not show immediate results as that is how Bain Capital thinks and Ebay adopted that thinking back in 2008 with Donohoe.

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by: DebraD This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jun 15 09:50:37 2019

I think Ebay does need to tweek the way shipping is shown in the listing. I generally use calculated shipping on heavier items whereby the cost from coast to coast varies considerably, unless the item will fit in a flat rate box/envelope. Usually, I will offer a couple of options in this case, but what I have found is, customers rarely review these options which are not shown on the main listing page. Often the customer will chose the higher priced, slower option, such as UPS ground, rather than priority mail, which can be considerably less in some situations depending on location. The opposite is also true, although a bit slower, UPS can be less expensive than priority. I would prefer that Ebay default to the least expensive option on the listing page, as this would give my listing a boost in rank, given the lower overall cost, and a better deal for my customer. I used to contact the customer and offer the alternative shipping, and refund the difference, however I stopped doing this when Ebay started charging fees on shipping. This new change does not address this issue, because the first shipping option is the default shipping cost displayed in the listing.

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