Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Sept 3 2013 20:46:42

eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

By: Ina Steiner

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Beware the fine print before listing on eBay during seller promotions. eBay is now requiring sellers to activate listing promotions before they can participate. But is it giving sellers more control, or simply adding a hurdle sellers must jump with each promotion?

The fear, of course, is that a seller may begin listing items to take advantage of a promotion but forget to hit the activate now button, meaning he or she will pay insertion fees for listings they would not have launched without the promotion - which could be quite an expensive mistake.

Interestingly, some eBay sellers have noticed a new section of their Selling Manager summary page that shows promotions to which they're entitled to participate. One seller said that lately, "promos have been showing up there before the eBay Mail, direct email, or any other form of notification."



With today's announcement, eBay said sellers could use promotional offers when the wanted - "time your use of special offers to work with your existing free listings."

But upon reading the announcement, one eBay seller said, "I think it's just one more thing to think about!" (See Wednesday's Newsflash story for more details.)

So does the new activation requirement give sellers more control in how they apply free monthly listings versus promotional free listings? Or is it just a new hurdle sellers must jump before taking advantage of free listings?




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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: Ebay Seller-Ebay Buyer This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 3 21:10:06 2013

I had a promotion 2 weeks ago and listed without activating anything and wasn't charge and have another one that ends tomorow that I'll be relisting items on and don't think there is any activation needed. I'll find out when I got to run everything tomorrow night.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: Xander This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 3 21:30:22 2013

Just checked our summery and it is there.
This could be a good option however, considering how frequently ebay likes the change things, by the time sellers get used to it, they'll probably change it to something else.

Naturally, for those who do not active, they will get charged fee's which could have been avoided.

Ebay has broken the sellers trust way too many times for us to see anything good in what they do. Perhaps if they were to do as many good things for as long a period they have been doing bad, this could be overcome but this is very unlikely to ever happen.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: NetWatch This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 3 21:53:40 2013

Come now Xander, you haven't lost faith that ebay has small sellers' best interests at heart have you?

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Sep 3 22:47:03 2013

Part of the problem is that people don't read the Ebay emails.  They try to inform, but the member doesn't choose to take the time to read the email.  And then somehow it is EBay's fault because they didn't know.

Now that is not to say that Ebay doesn't have PLENTY / Far to MANY unannounced changes.  But in regards to one that are associated with emails, it is always in our best interest to read them.  We may not like them, but we still need to read them.

Now don't everyone start attacking, my only point is that sometimes Ebay does inform us, we choose not to read the email, and then somehow we blame Ebay anyways for not informing us when they did, we just choose not to read it.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: NetWatch This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 3 23:19:02 2013

Marie, please do not be naive, ebay is COUNTING on users not reading their emails so they can get that fast extra income before most people realize what is going on. Ebay knows exactly what they are doing- step by step.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: Xander This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 3 23:19:34 2013

Hi Marie.
Unfortunately the way ebay perverts the message with twisted verbiage, it may be hard for some to decipher the meaning which can encourage some not to continue to read them.

Not everyone is insistent on staying focused on ebay policy as perhaps you appear to be. After a while, some just get burned out from the continued disruption and no longer want to know all the specifics of each policy.

I don't read their emails anymore; I'll glace on them and when I start to spin I hit delete and go back to work on our site. Ebay is a very small percentage of our sales now, only 18% this month so yes netwatch, we might have lost faith.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: windsorbear

Tue Sep 3 23:47:06 2013

Actually, this may turn out to be a GOOD thing.  This last promo started towards the end of the month, and I hadn't finished using my monthly 50 free listings yet.  When the promo started, all of my new listings went against the promo, and not the free 50 listings, so as of the first of the month, I actually lost those remaining free listings.  Now, during a free listing promo, I can choose not to activate it until the 50 free listings have been used up first.  This gives me a better control over which "free listings" get used.  I'll just have to remember to activate it before I start listing.  Also, according to the notice they sent, NOT ALL of their promos will require activation... only certain ones.  I guess only eBay knows which ones will and which ones won't.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Wed Sep 4 00:01:05 2013

Choices:

1. Know and/or remember to "activate" free listings = less ebay revenue
2. Not know and/or forget to "activate" and lose free listings = more ebay listings

Question: What is ebay's motivation?

Gosh, I've my brain has been in warp drive tonight trying to decide what the answer is.

And thanks to all the little helpers here who so kindly jogged my memory about reading ebay emails.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Wed Sep 4 00:02:13 2013

This is what happens when my brain in on warp drive:

2. Not know and/or forget to "activate" and lose free listings = more ebay revenue

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: Gina This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 00:04:27 2013

hmmm...how can I utilize a similar promotions in order to get customers to read all the CYA information in my listings?  eBay has bred a faultless consumer and a totally-always-at-fault seller so nobody reads anything!

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: Gina This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 00:11:33 2013

Just wait though!  eBay does nothing altruistically!!  That Activate button will someday activate larger fees. I foresee it!  Sure, you may get 50 free listings NOW....but what are you "agreeing to" by clicking that "Activate" button?!  Read the fine print...and read ecommercebytes in case you misunderstood that fine print!!
If I had not asked to have my account changed from Canada to the US, I'd still not be receiving any of those free listing offers which they are so generously now sending to UK & AU sellers...Canada is still in out the cold for these free listing promotions!

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Wed Sep 4 00:52:18 2013

Ah, more "pea and thimble"; so, what's new? ...

“We’ve had the disruption, now we’re having to disrupt the disruption.”—John Donahoe (2007)...
Six years later, what has the Ho to show for all his disruption? ... http://bit.ly/YvxFEg

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Sep 4 02:38:47 2013

@netwatch

I am not naïve.  And it is not EBay's fault if they send info to you and you choose not to read it.  I don't think it is Ebay that counts on members not reading their emails but those that try to make everything ebay does as being wrong, bad, evil or whatever.  YOu complain you are not informed, but then if Ebay informs you, you choose not to read it.  Exactly what is Ebay suppose to do.  Tattoo it on your hand or something.

It is all a choice each of us makes.  We can choose to stay informed or we can choose not to.  But because you choose to not be informed doesn't suddenly make it someone else's problem.  It is yours to work through.  It is no one's fault that you didn't know except yours.  You made the choice, you should be willing to take responsibility for it.

Yes Ebay doesn't always make it easy to read and many times it requires clarification.  This site and some thread are really good to work through some of that.  But not all their emails are like that.  Too many are, but still not everything.

For me, it is my job to sell on ebay.  I see selling on Ebay as I do any other job I've done in my life.  It is my responsibility to know what I'm doing and to learn about any changes so that I stay current.  If I don't, I could lose my job.  

Now I know that is really geared to those that sell frequently or full time.  Casual sellers will miss many updates as they aren't active on the site all the time.

@windsorbear
Your observation is very good.  That is what was intended.  This can be a very good thing for many and hopefully once members start using it more they will realize that this can actually help them.  

And just in case you weren't aware.  There is one more day on the current promotion if you haven't used up all 500 yet.  It goes through the 4th which is tomorrow.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: steve9801 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 05:00:10 2013

The last few private promotions I received from ebay I noticed from my Ebay page because I never received any e-mail invitations even though I receive tons of other e-mail from e-bay. so how does ebay expect someone like me not receiving the email to activate a promotion on an email never received.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: sasikat9 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 07:13:08 2013

Just another button to push for the carrot jumpers.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 07:43:40 2013

I listed 150 items on Etsy over the weekend and already have had decent sales. I'm shocked. But most important, it was SO EASY. eBay has become SOOOOO difficult. I really enjoyed the ease of transactions. eBay can keep its promotions.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: truehandmade This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 07:51:19 2013

Clear:  eBay will collect this new seller info and use it to put an end to free listings (50 per month plus other promos that they now run every month) to justify that sellers aren't really interested in free listings, end of story!

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Sep 4 08:25:51 2013

One better read every word and every single detail in the fine print before activating the "free" listings.

This is a perfect way for you to be signing on for something that you do not want, such as Global Shipping Service or eBay Managed Returns.

I find it hard to believe that eBay would implement something like this without a good reason.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

by: NetWatch This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 4 09:06:53 2013

Valid point, Marie, however ebay is QUITE aware of consumer/user behavior and is quite aware that many people won't read their emails and then will assume they have free listings like they've always had with these promotions without pushing the activate button (in which case ebay rakes in some fast cash off of these unaware people). Referring back to the "carrot" comment it is also a gimmick ebay is using to plant the idea the the seller is "enabled" by pushing that button (in B.F. Skinner behaviorism this is a conditioning technique subconsciously making the seller think they have some CONTROL over ebay). And yes, at some pint, something is going to be snuck into the small print that later on the seller regrets having agreed to by pushing that button. Maybe not the first time or two, but sooner or later the covert issue that want to drag you into agreeing to will be snuck in there.

Perminate Link for eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?   eBay Activate Now: More Control or Added Hurdle?

This user has validated their user name. by: baconsdozen
Web Site

Wed Sep 4 09:07:43 2013

Ebays twists and turns smack more and more of desperation. It really does seem determined to put all the obstacles it can in the way of sellers. Nobody now trusts ebay on just about anything,what a sad state of affairs for a company that  once prided itself on a reputation for fairness.

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