Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Sun Jan 12 2014 10:29:14

Could eBay Be Growing Sensitive to Cross Border Challenges?

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay alerted sellers to problems with packages sent to Argentina on Friday and proactively put into place some protections for sellers.

In the announcement, eBay encouraged sellers to sell to Latin America - "countries like Argentina offer opportunities for eBay sellers to expand their sales to buyers there." But at the same time, eBay said buyers in Argentina are facing delays in receiving their items. It blamed "stricter enforcement of import and customs regulations and duties in Argentina" and referred sellers to the Spanish-language Administracion Federal website.   

In an unusual move, eBay also said it had contacted buyers in Argentina and asked them to allow extra time for their items to be received and put additional policies in place to help protect sellers.

"While we review the situation, we will provide the following protections for impacted transactions:

- Automatic feedback removal of neutral and negative feedback, as well as any low detailed seller ratings for shipping time, along with any associated feedback.

-- eBay Buyer Protection cases opened by Argentinian buyers beginning November 17, 2013, for item not received that we determine are the result of this situation will not count toward your seller performance rating regardless of the outcome of the case."


eBay has greater expertise and more skin in the game thanks to the Global Shipping Program it launched in 2012. Could it be becoming more sensitive to the issues sellers face when things occur outside their control?

A seller who read eBay's announcement was cynical. "Is eBay starting to learn what sellers face as a result of the Global Shipping Program? They will automatically remove feedback for these transactions, many of which likely involve eBay Global Shipping, but their efforts to protect sellers domestically fall far short of what they are doing here."

Last month, eBay also added some flexibility to the Global Shipping Program. It now allows sellers to use their own shipping service for up to four locations while using the GSP program for all other countries.

eBay rebranded its buyer protection program to "Money Back Guarantee." It will be interesting to watch how it balances the requirements to protect buyers and sellers with its desire to minimize its own exposure to the risk of international trade.




Comments (18) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Could eBay Be Growing Sensitive to Cross Border Challenges?   Could eBay Be Growing Sensitive to Cross Border Challenges?

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

Sun Jan 12 14:40:00 2014

Probably, this announcement will be simply another dose of spin direct from the eBay Dept of Spin ... Only time with tell if there will be any meat on the bone, but I doubt there will be, eBay being demonstrably the master of the "bait and switch" and just about every other type of petty fraud on its consumers; and moving only their lips is so much easier than actually doing anything else ...

"[eBay] now allows sellers to use their own shipping service for up to four locations while using the GSP program for all other countries." ... At approximately double the normal cost of shipping and, with multiple handlings, probably a longer delivery time, why would anyone want to use eBay’s GSP at all; are eBay sellers so incapable of completing a simple customs declaration form?

eBay / PayPal / Donahoe: Dead Men Walking ...

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

Sun Jan 12 17:10:05 2014

I'd be willing to sell to the BRIC countries IF ebay would allow me to select not a measly four exclusions but a dozen.

There are still a few honest countries that ebay hasn't yet contaminated with their crime inspiring policies, and I'll risk selling to them without ebay's "help," thank you very much.

Sellers should and MUST have the ability in a "just a venue" to select which countries to use the GSP for without any interference from ebay.

THIS IS HOW EBAY CAN INCREASE CROSS BORDER TRADE!

Let's face it. The GSP like most other ebay money grubbing schemes is a hot mess and a colossal failure because ebay doesn't understand how to make the program more profitable for them and more helpful to sellers.

This is what happens when experienced sellers have no input that's listened to and the testosterone infused, father knows best culture infects everything ebay tries to do.

As has been observed here before by many different posters, the inexperienced, know it all control freak managers who make these asinine decisions are disconnected from reality.

Selling to Mexico, Central America, and South American without GSP is problematic so everything should be insured or sent USPS International Priority Express (or whatever it's now called) which is many cases bypasses postal services.

I lived in one these countries, and most of them have thoroughly corrupt postal systems as well as other corrupt governmental divisions where bribery is the order of the day.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Sun Jan 12 20:35:44 2014

eBay announcements of some new act of corporate largesse to "protect" sellers are all the same.

After you seine out the ifs, ands, buts and maybes qualifiers, there's nothing left but vapor.

A seller's money and merchandise are left in Buenos Aires, but your reputation may be protected.

Block sales to South America and you can keep all three without any handouts from San Jose.

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by: NetWatch This user has validated their user name.

Sun Jan 12 21:27:50 2014

Agreed, Puck

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by: Tornad0sRul This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 13 00:14:33 2014

I do not use the Global Shipping program and I was forced to sell to a country that I have blocked and I was also forced to provide Buyer Protection to a buyer in a country that I have blocked. Ebay doesn't honor the countries that sellers have blocked, and I am talking about sellers who do not use the Global Shipping Program at all. I have evidence that Ebay gives the same Buyer Protection to buyers in countries that a seller has blocked as to buyers from countries that are not blocked. Ebay does not honor a seller's preferences. Ebay allows buyers in blocked countries to still purchase items from a seller who has that country blocked and who doesn't use the GSP. Ebay just did that to me. Ebay is nothing but a scam. I do not feel safe selling on Ebay and no sellers should feel safe or protected on Ebay. Ebay always has the buyers' back, not the sellers'. Ebay cares nothing for sellers on Ebay and Ebay encourages sellers to take losses that Ebay is directly responsible for. It's a no-win game for sellers on Ebay.

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by: Bloggo This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 13 02:47:18 2014

''A seller's money and merchandise are left in Buenos Aires, but your reputation may be protected.'' That's right, it MAY be protected, maybe not.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Mon Jan 13 03:26:51 2014

"That's right, it MAY be protected, maybe not."

Correct, Bloggo.

eBay is always long on the mays/ mights and short on the wills.

As weasel-word meisters they have no peer.

A solid promise to sellers, other than "We promise to shut you down based on adverse personal opinions" would rupture their legal department.

They make the satellite dish TV and vacation timeshare crowd look like solid corporate citizens.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Jan 13 07:41:33 2014

I love my South American friends, but no way and no how will I ship there.  My Brazilian friends have told me that THEY would not even ship to their native country if they were me. This also applies to Greece and Italy.  Love the people, but it is too high risk.  

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by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 13 10:56:39 2014

One way to do this is to offer a "discount"  if the buyer will agree to take the sale OFF OF EBAY.  

Saves you and them money;  saves you your reputation;  saves you chewing your finger nails to the bone worrying.

And the buyer gets their item with out the absurd label LISTING what goody is inside the package.

Win win.  

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by: Toledo Maude This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 13 11:06:31 2014

Starting last January, the Post Office started to protect me from misguided international buyers (and all buyers as well).  Last January’s USPS international rate increases dropped my juicy business of selling vintage goods to Australia to near zero.  No international sales, no complaints, no negative feedback, and no low DSR scores.  

If eBay really wants to help domestic sellers in my position, it will start offering global shipping at a reduced prices.  

Of course ‘greed-Bay will receive less profit from it’s overprice global shipping but make the profit back in fees from increased international sales.  Snowball’s chance in hell, I guess.

Enough of whining about something that will not come about.  

But has anyone notice when listing and relisting in the last week, that the box to automatically relist the item up to three times, is now default checked?  

If the seller does not wish for the three auto relistings, the seller must uncheck the box.  

Another “backdoor” move by eBay finest to squeeze money out of sellers?  

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by: Tornad0sRul This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 13 11:51:35 2014

Ah, Rexford, you have no choice where you ship to or who you sell to. Believe me, Ebay is using fraud and misrepresentation when saying that sellers can choose what country to do business with. I have Singapore blocked and I don't use the Global Shipping Program and I just got a negative feedback from a buyer in Singapore who said the item was broken during shipment, but I have that country clearly blocked and I shipped the item to Oregon USA. The buyer clearly said in an Ebay message that he/she used "alternative" shipping methods to Singapore, probably his nephew threw it in a backpack, from Oregon USA where I shipped it. Ebay forced me to give refund using feedback extortion. I still have the negative feedback from the buyer and Ebay refuses to remove it. Ebay is using FRAUD to manipulate sellers into thinking that they are blocking countries when they are not, and that is completely outside of the Global Shipping Program. Wake up sellers. You all are required to offer Buyer Protection to buyers from a blocked country or risk losing money for ruined reputation due to negative feedback.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Mon Jan 13 12:37:41 2014

"But has anyone notice when listing and relisting in the last week, that the box to automatically relist the item up to three times, is now default checked?

If the seller does not wish for the three auto relistings, the seller must uncheck the box.

Another “backdoor” move by eBay finest to squeeze money out of sellers?"

They picked that trick from the 250 Free Business Cards advertiser.

Customer order the "Free" business cards and during checkout unwittingly agree to purchased a $199.95 annual subscription to the Jelly of the Month Club.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Jan 13 13:15:58 2014

Tornad0srul, says "Ah, Rexford, you have no choice where you ship to or who you sell to."

Thankfully it has not been an issue for me yet except for an APO package (I have APO blocked, but still got one.)   When it does, I will be raising hello with eBay.

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by: Tornad0sRul This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 13 15:11:38 2014

I did raise "hello" with Ebay and they told me "it's Business 101 that you will have to take losses" and "if you take something broken back to Walmart they will gladly give you a refund." Ebay refuses to remove negative feedback because they supposedly protect a buyer's "experience" on Ebay, but buyers from blocked countries should not have the ability to "experience" my store on Ebay at all. It's fraud and misrepresentation pure and simple when Ebay allows naive sellers to check the little radio button next to a country that they do not want to do business with because it does not matter. If someone from a blocked country wants to purchase something from you they will be allowed to if they find another way to get it to their blocked country. Not only that but that blocked buyer expects Ebay Buyer Protection as well and Ebay provides that to them. What a joke Ebay is and their reps are given the ability to ruin a person's business and the reps are nothing but idiots, idiots with a lot of power.

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by: Whizbanggvl This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 14 07:30:36 2014

Re:"Another “backdoor” move by eBay finest to squeeze money out of sellers?"

Puck, I was in the first group offered this relisting deal.

I can solidly state that there was absolutely no additional cost associated with this arrangement.

Beyond the cost of the original listing, Free Listing credit / Cash Cost to List / Use of Promotional Listing Credit, there was and is no additional cost.

I don't know why they offered this, but it was the best deal ever. A 30 Day Fixed Price Listing would become a 120 day deal. A 7 Day Auction could run for 28 Days.

The only possible fresh cost would be if listing features, Like Bold or Secondary Categories were selected in the original listings.

This was an honest deal. I miss it.

Best Regards,
Hank  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Wed Jan 15 14:06:20 2014

"Could eBay Be Growing Sensitive to Cross Border Challenges?"

The only thing that could sensitize the current regime would be the sound of tumbrels rolling up to the home office's front door.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Wed Jan 15 14:35:07 2014

"I can solidly state that there was absolutely no additional cost associated with this arrangement."

Outstanding.

It would behoove eBay to explain the deal to sellers *before* they're ask to click any buttons.

"When contacted, eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore said, "We're in the process of rolling out product changes for this particular feature. As of Jan. 8th, sellers who have elected into auto-relist are getting insertion and advance listing upgrade fees waived. The content on the site is in the process of being updated to reflect the pricing changes."

This is likely some sop being thrown to sellers to soften the blow of another fee increase to be "rolled out" in the Spring '14 update.

The Spring '13 seller update "simplified" my FVFs up to 10% and the simultaneous vaporization of the decreasing marginal FVF on higher dollar sales effectively trebled them.

"Equō nē crēdite, Teucrī! Quidquid id est, timeō Danaōs et dōna ferentīs."- Laocoön

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by: minervabird This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 10 15:17:17 2014

Write to itty



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