Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Sun July 19 2020 21:02:50

eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

By: Ina Steiner

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Sellers who are studying the new eBay Managed Payments fees should take note of the fact there is a surcharge for selling internationally.

On its help page for "Selling fees for managed payments sellers," eBay states, "We charge two main types of selling fees: an insertion fee when you create a listing, and a final value fee when your item sells."

But, as a seller pointed out to us, keep scrolling down until you get to "Additional final value fees," and look for the section called "International fee." Sellers in the US who sell to an international buyer will pay a 1.65% surcharge - even if the buyer is registered in another country but is having you mail the item within the United States. 

It's not unexpected that eBay would charge higher fees for international sales than domestic ones. eBay sellers not yet enrolled in Managed Payments have to pay a higher fee for international sales when using PayPal. 

PayPal payment-processing fees:
- Sales within the US: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
- International sales: 4.4% transaction fee plus a fixed fee based on currency received

However, it's difficult to compare eBay payment processing fees and PayPal payment processing fees, since eBay is lumping commission fees and payment-processing fees together into one "Final Value Fee."

The "International Fee" is one more example - don't let the surcharge catch you by surprise.

Comments (34) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: dans parts This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 08:58:13 2020

@Marie -

Yes, I realize eBay isn't deciding on their own to start charging GST/VAT/tax, etc.

What I object to is not being easily informed ahead of time.  If they do announce it, it's normally buried somewhere no one reads or notices, not even Ina.   And I'm unhappy with the huge increase in FVF that these "new" collections cause.

As to finding the blocked countries list, your suggestions no longer work.  Following every link in those you've suggested, everything leads back to Business Policies.  And on that page, I have almost 800 saved Shipping policies.    I cannot go through 800 of them individually to add one country.

There used to be a place where you could find all the blocked countries, and you could add or subtract, and it would be applied universally, not have to do it policy by policy.

Try it yourself and see if you can find it another way.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Jul 22 12:36:15 2020

@Geetar

The surcharge on Ebay is the same thing PP has done for years.  It just seems different to you because instead of paying PP for it, you will be paying Ebay.  If it never bothered you with PP, then why is it a big deal with Ebay?

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Jul 22 12:43:39 2020

@dans parts
Sorry the links didn't work for you.  You must be right, it has something to do with Business Policies.  Because without them, the links work.

Unless you have already been in Mp for awhile, the new fee structure is not a big difference to sellers for US sales.

The new fee structure is a set fee that is charged on the total amount the buyer pays.  So on the surface that smells like a price increase because we have never had a FVF charged on Sales Tax before.  However that is not the entire story.  I know many stop there and can't get past it, but there is more to know so that you can look at this factually.

It is like this.  In ANY category you sell in on Ebay, the simplified fee breaks down like this:

 2.9% Money processing fee [same as PP]
10.00%  FVF you currently pay on Ebay
-0.55%  FVF reduction
12.35%  The new Simplified fee

So where I have the 10% above, just replace that formula with whatever it is you currently pay for FVF on your sales, whether that is 9.15 or 12.00, just replace and recalculate and that is your new Simplified fee in MP.

So yes on a sale that has a 10% sales tax on the item, 90% of the sale is at a lower rate than is currently paid between Ebay and PP fees but 10% of that sale is higher since we have never had a FVF on sales tax.  But overall due to the reduction in FVF for the majority of the sale, it will likely result in a more neutral outcome.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 13:45:18 2020

I'd just like to know what the point of the surcharge is? It doesn't cost eBay anything for a seller to get an international sale. That's what surcharges are for -- to cover the additional expense of something. Do they have a separate fee structure for international sales like PP?

From Wikipedia: "A surcharge, also known as checkout fee, is an extra fee charged by a merchant when receiving a payment by cheque, credit card, charge card or debit card (but not cash) which at least covers the cost to the merchant of accepting that means of payment, such as the merchant service fee imposed by a credit card company.[1]

A surcharge may be prohibited by card issuers, such as Visa and MasterCard, but the enforcement of the prohibition is not uniform. Some jurisdictions have laws which require, allow, regulate or prohibit a merchant imposing a surcharge. If no surcharge is permitted, the merchant's costs are borne by the merchant, who may incorporate the burden in its prices. In some jurisdictions, when a customer pays with cash, the merchant may offer a discount."

That second paragraph should give sellers cause to review their state's laws.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 14:07:06 2020

@Marie

In paypal too? if an intl buyer buys and has it sent to a US address?

I never thought about it. But it has to do with currency exchange, I remember reading about it a few years ago. So I would suppose you are right.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Jul 22 14:20:34 2020

@purpleiris

If it is the word you don't like, you will be happy to know Ebay doesn't call it a "surcharge".  It is described as that in this article, but on on the Ebay site.

@Geetar

Conversion fees are separate.  PP has always had a higher rate for international buyers.  It goes by their registered address not if they are paying with other currencies.  PP charges 2.9% for US buyers and 4.4% on international.  That is a 1.50% increase.

Conversion rates are much higher.  In MP it would be 3.5% and PP 2.5% on top of the other fees.  But for most of us this isn't anything we need to worry about when selling on the US site.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 14:30:30 2020

@Marie, it's not the word. It's the added fee that I'm asking about. I didn't say I didn't like the word. I was clearly asking what the purpose of the charge is and you failed to answer that question. So, thanks for the useless response once again.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: Lumpus This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 14:31:13 2020

I've been a long-time eBay seller since the late 1990's... and I think I've had enough.  The fees constantly go up - and the corporate disrespect for their sellers only decreases.  It's been a long, slow death of a thousand cuts :/

Alternatives?  Where else to sell??  Bonanza/eBid???
Etsy will do for about half of my listings, but I need a good place to sell Books (Amazon is not an option).

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: RL15 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 14:52:10 2020

@Lumpus. - check out ecrater.. very good site to sell on

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Jul 22 14:54:23 2020

@purpleiris

We have ALL been paying the fee for YEARS with PP.  Ebay's is slightly higher but the same type of fee.  So other than the minimal increase I don't see why anyone is concerned or upset by it.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 14:59:04 2020

Geetar said, "it has to do with currency exchange."

Regarding that, there are settings in your PP admin where you can opt to accept payments in USD only. That way, the customer will either have to pay the conversion fees or pay in USD. So, I only pay the international payment fee.

If I didn't already have so many hands in my pie taking bigger and bigger chunks, I would gladly eat the fees for my customers. That's why I'm questioning what the purpose of this charge eBay has added. Is there an expense they need to cover because, if not, then there should be no reason for it.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 15:05:43 2020

Sorry, Marie, didn't see your post in time. So, it's basically just the higher international payment fee they're compensating for. Thank you, that's what I was wanting to know and agree that it's just one of those things we have to pay.

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 22 15:37:47 2020

"@Lumpus. - check out ecrater.. very good site to sell on"

I second that =)

Perminate Link for eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales   eBay Adds Surcharge for International Sales

by: Rooster Corburn This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 24 11:34:31 2020

It appears that Canadian sellers are going to pay 0.4% and US sellers are going to pay 1.65%.

Why can't we all just pay 0.4% for the cross boarder trading fee. This fee should be the same for all sellers across the board.

From eBay.ca - For Canadian sellers

International fee:

If your registered address is in Canada, we charge an international fee of 0.4% to the US and 1% to all other countries if either the buyer's registered address or the delivery address for the item is located outside of Canada. This fee is automatically deducted and is calculated based on the total amount of the sale.


From eBay.com - For US Sellers

International fee

If your registered address is in the US, we charge an International fee if either the buyer's registered address or the delivery address for the item is located outside of the US. This fee is calculated as 1.65% of the total amount of the sale and is automatically deducted from your sales.

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