|Thu Feb 14 2013 21:54:09|
eBay Unpreparedness for USPS Changes Costs Sellers Money
By: Ina Steiner
eBay sellers are still dealing with the fallout from eBay's unpreparedness for USPS changes that took effect on January 27, 2013, and it is costing them time and money.
First, a recap of what changed: The USPS renamed Parcel Post to Standard Post and, as we explained last month, eBay changed active listings with Parcel Post to the new comparable replacement service, Parcel Select. However, eBay does not make Parcel Select available through its eBay Labels program - it won't be available until March.
A lot of people were caught off-guard the week after the USPS changes went into effect, and sellers are still dealing with it. This week, I received an email from a seller who said eBay undercharged one of her buyers by $5.21, which had to come out of her pocket. She spent over an hour on the phone with eBay customer service.
"eBay says that the (shipping) calculator shows a rate that 21% off. The customer service lady I spoke to said that I as a seller must adjust my listings to accommodate this problem by:
1) Editing my 1,000 plus listings to eliminate shipping by weight and changing all of them to a fixed price based on cost to California, then refund any overages to my customers that live in closer zones.
2) After the buyer purchases my item, send them a non eBay invoice with the additional postage costs (yeah, like that is going to go over well with the buyers)
3) End all listings and wait for eBay to accommodate the changes from the USPS parcel select service until "March" (no exact date offered, could be March 1st or March 31st)."
Sellers are also discussing it on the boards. "As one who never, ever uses ParcelPost/Standard Post/Parcel Select, the eBay glitch is not affecting me at all. But I agree that eBay should have programmed the correct rates for their mailing/shipping options. If they could not do so, then they should have disabled Parcel Select entirely - remove it as a choice."
Another seller wrote, "I am pissed. Ebay offered Parcel and then I find out that the PO doesn't! Cost me 20.00 extra to ship Priority."
Sellers also discussed the issue in another thread, with one seller writing, "eBay has totally messed this up. Not only will they not offer printing of Parcel Select labels until March, but the shipping calculator is showing Parcel Select prices even when it's left at the default setting that shows the retail (i.e., over the counter at the PO) prices for Priority Mail and First Class packages."
It's not clear what is taking eBay so long to make Parcel Select available to sellers, but it's clear it's costing some small sellers big money.