|Wed Mar 27 2013 09:02:43|
Point Counterpoint: Are eBay's New Fees an Increase or Decrease?
By: Ina Steiner
After eBay announced last week a restructuring of fees, sellers have been busy trying to determine how the new model will impact them and if they should change their listing strategy. eBay is offering more opportunities for free listings and, among other changes, will eliminate its category-based, tiered commission fee structure for non-store owners in favor of a flat across-the board commission.
eBay is focusing on the message of a simpler fee structure, while acknowledging that some sellers will see their costs go up when the new rates take hold.
So we asked our readers - is eBay's Spring 2013 fee change an increase or decrease?
The majority of survey respondents said it would be an increase (74%), while a quarter (26%) said it was a decrease.
In many cases, survey respondents explained exactly how the fee changes would impact them, and as you would expect after reading about the new fees, it depended on what they sell and how they sell it.
That leads us to today's feature: Point/Counterpoint. We asked two sellers to explain their views on this issue. An antiques and collectibles seller who uses the auction format exclusively explained in his "Point" column that his costs will go up under the new fee structure. And an antiquarian/collectibles book dealer explained how her costs will go down.
Many other survey respondents explained how the changes impacted them, and I've extracted a few responses below to provide a picture of how varied the impact will be on eBay's sellers.
"It depends on what you are selling. In the case of Coins and Currency the charge is 7%. This means that anything with a final value fee of $230.00 or less will cause a decrease in fees. Under $50.00 and it is a 4% decrease as we have a basic store. For other items that we sell (mainly Collectibles) we are in the 9% fee area which means anything under $90.00 is less, but anything past that amount we are paying more. Both of these scenarios include the free 150 insertions. It is kind of a mixed bag, but in our business we have an average price of $47.00 per transaction so it works in our favor for the most part."
"For me eBay's Spring 2013 fee change is a decrease. I have always budgeted 9% for fees anyway, because messing around with the sliding-scale fees was just too much effort on my part. I have a premium store, and am thrilled to now have 500 auctions and fixed-price items included every month. This will make me run far more auctions, hopefully generating more sales.
I also sell on consignment for other people, so having "free" insertion fees makes for less bookkeeping on my part. It will also allow me to run my clients' listings longer if they don't sell right away. Once the listing is written there is very little effort whatsoever required to keep using Sell Similar until it's sold. I'm very happy with the changes to the fee structure.
"For me it will be a definite decrease. FVF for fixed price store is going down in the category I sell. If I sign up for the yearly store my monthly fee remains the same, but I don't pay .05 per listing, and I can mix in auctions with no listing fee if I want. I've never had more than 500 items in my store at one time anyway, so I probably won't go over my allotted free listings. For the first time I feel good about a Spring Seller release!"
"It's a 1% increase for the kind of occasional things I sell (9% to 10%). I sell so infrequently now I can't get upset by this. However, on the flip side, I do enjoy having the listings be free, so I do save on upfront costs of things that do not sell. This way I can list something, and if I don't get the expected response or sale, I can just throw it away without any loss of money (even if it just is 50 cents or so), and for other items, just keep the listing active over and over at no cost. However, I really wish they would drop the FVF on the shipping cost. I *WILL NEVER* ship for free."
"Using eBay's provided calculator, I inputted my statistics as accurately as I possible could - even upgrading my store from Premium to Anchor my fees will be approximately $150 more a month (if I stay with a Premium store - fees will be approximately $400 more a month). Call it 2500 free listing if you want, but I still contend that NOTHING in life is free! :-(
Rethinking my business model has become a yearly and sometimes twice yearly process with eBay, but there is no getting around it - eBay produces the most traffic for selling antiques and collectibles on the web, my sales on eBay have consistently out performed sales in my own brick & mortar antique store every year for the last eight years. In real life comparison - my property taxes for my brick & mortar store have gone up more than my eBay fees. It's all the price of owning a small business in this economy."
"Actually, it is BOTH. It is a increase on some items and a decrease on others. Using eBays "Fee calculator", we found that the lower priced items (generally under $80) the fees went down, where the more expensive items $90-300 (the most expensive prices we have), those items the fees are going up. We based it on our Premium store we already have and with the 20% top rated seller discount."
"I'm a small seller on eBay, so I'm going to get hit with the 10% FVF on my listings. Since I sometimes list high priced items, that 10% is going to hurt. I also sell items on consignment - my consignors are not going to be happy about receiving less money."
"I am a relatively small seller. $10 more per month for store subscription. Double the cost of each fixed price listing for Good Till Cancel listings. This will definitely increase my eBay bill with little up side. Sure the 500 free auction or short term fixed price listings will be good, but not with the increases elsewhere.
If they had thousands of free listings per month, we would be talking a very great thing for many of the smaller sellers, like me. They just finished a 500 free listing promo. I wish they would have more of those promos. More free listings would be wonderful, but I will take what I can get."
Now, visit today's Point and Counterpoint columns, and then come back and weigh in with your views!