Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Feb 11 2014 07:02:42

eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

By: Ina Steiner

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The theory behind eBay's new Global Shipping Program (GSP) is laudable - make it easy for U.S. sellers to list internationally without dealing with the hassles of international shipping. But there are a number of flaws in the program. One is that in some cases, eBay is disappointing global buyers: some items appear to be available to international buyers but, after being purchased and paid for, the orders may then be canceled.

eBay takes care of the buyer and seller in such cases. However, it then has a third party relist those undeliverable items on eBay - and they have no qualms about using the original seller's photographs, title, description and pricing.

In the case of one-of a kind collectibles, disappointed global buyers are likely to have their search saved as they continue to look for items to add to their collection. What must they think when they see the SAME EXACT ITEM for sale on eBay a week or two later?

Some of this could be avoided if sellers knew that items they had listed for sale were being advertised as being available to ship internationally. But some sellers don't even know when eBay has placed them in the GSP program. One seller explained how this is possible in a recent Letter to the Editor, and it is a common complaint. This experienced eBay seller had no idea eBay was making his items available to overseas buyers. Given that sellers are responsible for what they export, this presents a huge problem.

On eBay's page describing GSP eligibility, it writes, "The item must not be ineligible, illegal, hazardous, subject to export restrictions, prohibited by eBay, or prohibited by the Global Shipping Program." But if eBay opts the seller into the program without their knowledge, how can the seller turn off the GSP setting on items that are ineligible?

See more in today's Newsflash story about how eBay disposes of Global Shipping Program rejects.

UPDATE: Here's another challenge for sellers who choose to use eBay's Global Shipping Program. Preparing items for international shipment requires different packaging than sending domestically. The seller who wrote this letter to the editor said sending fragile items overseas would require extra packaging - but eBay GSP charges international buyers the same shipping and handling costs as domestic buyers.

In further conversations with the seller, she said, "For example the new USPS boxes would survive domestic shipping but never survive international shipping and (this is from personal experience) so you have to purchase or use extra packing materials." She has since removed all items from the GSP program. Over 500 items listed under multiple IDs - "To go thru and double check packaging is way too much work for one person," she said.

UPDATE 2/14/14: See eBay to Expand Global Shipping Program Beyond the US.




Comments (36) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Feb 11 07:23:23 2014

Great reporting Ina.  If I needed another reason not to use GSP you just gave me one.

Pray tell, why would they just not return the item back to the seller?

And in answer to your question  "What must they think when they see the SAME EXACT ITEM for sale on eBay a week or two later?"   My guess is that the buyer thinks that he/she has been scammed by the seller.  That seller should expect some nasty negative feedback and some very low DSRs.

eBay do things that they would never condone from eBay sellers.

Yesterday I believe someone mentioned that it seems ok for eBay and Pitney Bowes to profit from GSP. If a seller dare make a profit on his own shipping it is verboten.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 07:37:41 2014

None of this is anything compared to how eBay uses Global Shipping to restrict sellers and brands under the lie called "Parallel Import Violations".

Both people got paid here, and eBay gave the items to one of its beloved - Im hardly suprised.

Everyone knows how it works when you ar an eBay beloved, just ask TRU, Datavis and all the others that get special treatment.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: cobalt50 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 07:46:01 2014

Imagine!  Another way for eBay to dip in!  Now, they get eBay fees, PayPal fees, the fees for Global Shipping and then they get to sell the item!  (I am not a bit surprised)

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: frustrated This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 08:13:13 2014

WTF?

This "seller" has 96.7% feedback, and going DOWN.

http://feedback.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewFeedback2&u
serid=greatstuffcheapprices&iid=-1&de=off&items=25&which=negative&interval=180&_trkparms=negative_180

What
in the WORLD makes them use that seller?

They couldn't find anyone else in KY with a better reputation?

Most of the negs claim seller either refused to ship, or that the buyer was refunded, "item no longer available"

If there was ever a reason to OPT OUT of global shipping, I would think this is it.

I can't believe they would let someone with this kind of bad feedback sell on ebay PERIOD.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: unknown This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 08:14:01 2014

Did anyone else look?

Member id greatstuffcheapprices ( 3902 )

Positive Feedback (last 12 months): 96.7%

96.7 with straight 4.8 DSRs?

Doesn't guardrail or whatever work any more? :)

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: unknown This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 08:28:34 2014

$10.65 to ship feathers? LOL  

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

This user has validated their user name. by: Ina

Tue Feb 11 08:31:40 2014

Note that the original seller keeps the money from the sale even when eBay GSP can't mail the item, and the buyer gets their money back and can't leave negative feedback for the seller.

But in the case of collectibles in particular, I think eBay should give sellers the option of receiving the item back to resell themselves...

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: Leesantiques This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 08:34:51 2014

Ebay should never opt people into a program.  Opt out shouldn't be the option, opt in should be - in all cases!!

Since Ebay is refunding the buyer, and the seller gets to keep the money paid, I don't have a problem with Ebay reselling the item.  I do have a HUGE problem with them reselling it with the original listing information and on Ebay!  What kind of message does this send both buyers and sellers?

I never have, and never willingly will, use Global Shipping.  Since I first started listing on Ebay, I have happily shipped all over the world.  No problem, no hassle.  It's really easy - so why use Global Shipping??

Lee

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: Deltamaster This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 09:15:40 2014

I know several sellers that were permanently suspended from selling with virtually perfect account stats, yet this seller is one of eBay's preferred sellers and has an abysmal record!

Most of us posting to this site that are eBay sellers would first have our account restricted with a warning to fix it or else but the restriction would be such that fixing it would be impossible.  THEN the account would be permanently banned from selling... all in short order, However, much like Toys R Us and Buy.COM, this seller account gets washed somehow so as to continue on disappointing many buyers every week!

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: blaumann2 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 09:44:33 2014

Yet another reason to keep control of your ebay business.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 09:44:45 2014

Reading this article, I found it difficult to believe but then I think ebay. I agree with Ina. The seller should have the option of the item being returned.
ebay and GSP is a disaster.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: abid This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 10:20:13 2014

I found one of my items that had been not delivered. They took the item out of the box and photographed it. I host my own pictures and I am also a VERO memember so I don't know if that was the reason.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue Feb 11 11:04:29 2014

What a decidedly dishonest way for eBay to devise a new revenue stream wile breaking their promise that they would "never compete with our sellers".

eBay's Global Shipping Program was devised to generate revenue for eBay at the expense of international buyers.

The fact that eBay will arbitrarily cancel sales of items they can not - will not - or choose not to process through their system is not shocking.

What is shocking is the fact that rather than absorb the cost of return shipping to return these items back to the original sellers, eBay is choosing to resell the items themselves.

So with this free inventory acquisition program securely in place, how can sellers trust eBay to do the right thing?  The answer as usual is that eBay can not be trusted.

An honest company would return items that can not be delivered or processed further back to the original seller - not take advantage of the situation and confiscate the goods for future resale!

eBay's use of a new user agreement to compel sellers into the Global Shipping Program against their will is not  really a new tactic for this underhanded company.

What is a new low for eBay is the fact they are using the Global Shipping Program to source free inventory which is then sold on the site using the listing photos and details which are also stolen from their victims/sellers.

At what point should sellers believe that being forced to participate in GSP is anything less than an attempt by a greedy, underhanded and dishonest company to steal from their own sellers in order to make a profit?

Now sellers understand why eBay found it so necessary to leverage their User Agreement to shield themselves from class action lawsuits. Quasi legal tactics surrounding the Global Shipping Program is just one of the many illicit activities eBay is free to engage in now that they can not be held accountable by their victims.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: a_c_green This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 11:06:14 2014

It would help if we could see some specific examples of relisted items being put up again with the original seller's description and photos.

Does the (frustrated) original buyer ever learn why he was refunded? Or does he just buy the same item a second time and get burned all over again?

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: Gina This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 11:11:32 2014

Ebay should never opt people into a program.  Opt out shouldn't be the option, opt in should be - in all cases!!
If they did this, WHO would agree to their incredibly stupid new programs??

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: a_c_green This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 11:12:51 2014

P.S. Sorry, my bad; I should have read the other article first. I see that greatstuffcheapprices is apparently one of the resellers. I looked at a few of their listings at random, and they seem to be selling to U.S. only (and rather badly, too, to judge from their feedback).

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: Gina This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 11:17:03 2014

"I know several sellers that were permanently suspended from selling with virtually perfect account stats, yet this seller is one of eBay's preferred sellers and has an abysmal record!"
Of course!  eBay's favorites are UNTOUCHABLE!
Another example of eBay's Double standards at work yet again!
If you are a little-earner, screw up not for we are waiting to dump your worthless butt off eBay!  If you bring us big bucks, do whatever you want!

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

by: TRSeller This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 11 11:26:22 2014

A) Seller is shipping to a domestic address, technically - with Pitney Bowes being the exporter of record, thus export problems if any come back to Pitney-Bowes, not the Seller.
- so if Pitney Bowes can't ship the item, they don't.. Since they basically own it now (Seller's been paid, buyer's been refunded),
Seller makes a sale anyway (to Pitney Bowes), so I see no problem with them turning around and selling it themselves.

B) bad feedback and low DSR's from GSP DO NOT count against U.S. Sellers (At least not as far as ebay is concerned, it may count with buyers that look at feedback... We're still at 100% FB despite negs/neuuts. Thus, make sure and post a follow up. to such.. if it is indeed due to GSP issue.)
and lastly C) Packing for shipment should be no different than packing for U.S. Shipment - Judging by the few returns I've had, Pitney-Bowes will re-package in their own boxes (they just fit your original package inside their boxes - example, we ship an item in padded mailer, PB sticks it in a big fat box - one return included PB's original box, plus our mailer..)

So, overall, in our experience here with selling by GSP (and we've shipped stuff to P-B that otherwise we could not have shipped by USPS, such as ORM-D Hazmat, PB ships it with no problem.) - We have had few, if any problems (They take care of missing, damaged, lost packages, so safer for us anyway - better even that buying insurance!)
and finally, I've found that eBay's GSP is actually able to ship items for LESS than we can. (But then we only would offer  Priority Mail International or UPS/FedEx) , and compare $13.71 GSP including import duties to Canada Vs. our $19.50 PMI FRB, for example... or even UPS or fedex at $39 and change (our cost)

Far as we are concerned, GSP is an excellent deal all the way around for us - Your mileage may vary, I guess, depending on what products you sell.

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

This user has validated their user name. by: Diaper Mess

Tue Feb 11 12:10:22 2014

I just received a first page pop up message from my buyer ID to sign, AGREE to their new Terms concerning Global, Selling and so on. I did not accept it and clicked the ''Review Later'' instead.

I thought they did away with that revised ''required'' TOA page months ago?

Has anyone seen this today while either logging in or listing?

What a Diaper Mess!  

Perminate Link for eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay   eBay Global Shipping Undeliverables End up Back on eBay

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

Tue Feb 11 14:01:44 2014

This is nearly as sleazy as the PayPal scam a few years ago when buyers were directed to return items to a warehouse in Dallas where they were resold.

Seller lost both money and item.

At least this one reimburses the affected parties.

Ebay discovered that that sending items back to sellers isn't "free" after all, and it would require human labor and communication with the seller all of which ebay deemed too expensive to implement.

If it's illegal or ethically questionable, count on ebafia to do it.

How does Lyin Ryin sleep at night?

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