Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Mar 3 2015 08:41:31

What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay has introduced a new surcharge in the UK for "old" listings, which is scaring sellers in that country and beyond. What's at issue: are stale listings clogging up the site, or do sellers need to show a lot of product selection?

To understand the latter point, just look to a recent controversy on Amazon when it began limiting the number of SKUs novelty sellers could offer. For example, Amazon forced one seller who had 6 million SKUs of novelty tshirts (with variations such as size and color) to reduce his listings to 100,000 SKUs, explaining: "Our goal is to help customers more easily find what they are searching for by reducing the number of novelty and similar SKUs that do not receive customer interest."

But how could the seller predict the preferences (and gender and size) of a buyer on any particular day? 

Now eBay appears to be using a similar argument with its UK sellers, referring to listings that haven't sold in 18 months as outdated:

"We want to encourage sellers to either update or remove outdated listings by bringing in a new outdated listing fee. This means that listings which haven't sold within 18 months will be charged an additional 10p fee on top of the usual insertion fee when renewing the item."

eBay UK sellers can continue to list the "outdated" listings, they'll just pay an extra 10p per listing each time they relist them. Naturally some sellers are nervous the marketplace might expand the policy to the U.S. and beyond.

The change was introduced along with fee hikes in the UK. eBay UK is raising Final Value Fees - in some cases as much as 15%. And it's dropping the discount Premium Service sellers receive. 

In January, eBay revealed poor performance in Q4, and these fee changes look like a desperate attempt to boost revenue for the Marketplace, which soon must stand on its own after the breakup with PayPal.

One fee change coming to eBay UK impacts Anchor Stores - they'll no longer qualify for unlimited listings. Instead, eBay will limit Anchor Shop subscriptions to 50,000 inclusive fixed price listings each month.

That change - along with the "outdated listings" surcharge - could indicate eBay's search engine is struggling to cope with the quantity of items on the marketplace, something the new Cassini was supposed to handle.

Let us know how these changes impact you and what you think is behind the changes.




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Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: DingDong This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 09:21:09 2015

We need to stop selling on ebay and get moving to other selling sites or your own site. I have set up 2 websites for 2 separate categories of my items that will have blogging and such for them. I just started listing on eCrater and I am getting hits and I am only just starting with 25 items listed and adding a lot more and cleaning up my old listings from ebay and bonanza. What's nice is I can send my eCrater store to google with the URL they provide verses other sites that removed that option.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: miss peachy This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Tue Mar 3 09:25:54 2015

Desperation?

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: topdog This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 09:33:06 2015

What once made eBay great was that they had a very long tail. You could find basically ANYTHING there, even when you couldn't find it anywhere else. That has become the case less and less for a number of years, but this could kill it off.
If only there was another viable venue for many of these things - eBay jumped the shark a good decade ago.  

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Tue Mar 3 10:05:14 2015

If USA bound, the outdated listing part will probably not affect me. I do ''refresh'' my older items periodically. Much easier because I have less listed these days.

Could it possibly affect the millions of phone cover type listings that are many times imported?



Fees? TRS? I have expected my TRS to disappear for years now. Who knows what they'll dream up to change - expectations will be low. Anything spun positively will not be trusted.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: thebobman This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:06:23 2015

I sell used computer/electronics items. Most of my items sit for months/years and then one day a part in a server fails and they need it tomorrow and willing to pay a ton for it. Since my listings tend to lean a little more towards a business crowd, you aren't going to find "Jims Optometry" searching for a light bulb for their eye chart on bonanza, but they will probably be on ebay/amazon.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Mar 3 10:14:11 2015

Since people are constantly reporting search issues, perhaps if eBay made an effort to fix those, there wouldn't be any "stale" listings on the site (i.e., listings no one can find).

This seems like another attempt by eBay to squeeze out a few extra pennies/pence from the sellers.  

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: exdwh This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:17:14 2015

Sellers already cheat the duplicate listing policy by making trivial changes to the title. Refreshing 'old' listings will be just as easy. Only those too lazy to do something will pay the surcharges.

--David

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: iwasjoe This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:19:57 2015

First if ebay showed all our items in their search we would not have listings that are 18 months old. I searched ebay for items get no results then copy paste to google and find several ON EBAY.I now use google first and if I find the item somewhere else same price I buy it there.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: ebay refugee camp This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:32:52 2015

Just delete those listings that do not sell, get ready for rate hikes in the spring. The outgoing boy king is going to stick it to you before he leaves. List elsewhere and make sure it is cheaper than ebay!!!!!

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: Bidonmine This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:40:14 2015

Ebay just keeps pushing sellers away from their venue all in the name of stock-holder profits.
Why is it that a business cannot just do the same each year as long as it shows a profit?
Pushing for higher and more fees that do not reflect inflation or deflation will only drive sellers away, raise the prices on merchandise for those who stay and as a result, alienate buyers.

I am glad that ebay is not my only selling venue so it will not affect me as much as others. I can easily shift a larger percent of my efforts to my other venues.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: Mark4 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:48:20 2015

so glad we are moving our inventory to amazon and bonanza. this ebay ship is sinking fast.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Mar 3 10:50:24 2015

So now it is in eBay's best interest to hide listings so that they become stale.  $$$

Instead of helping sellers with visibility, they do just the opposite--they devise a way to make money off of it.

For those who own stores on eBay, why should eBay care how old a listing is?  This is just insane, but it is exactly what we have come to expect from this greedy badly managed company.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: sasikat9 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 10:52:50 2015

We used to have over 15000 listing in our store on GTC. Daily we delete 20 / 50 listing and relist elsewhere or donate the stuff to goodwill. Currently down to less than 8000

By the time the headless jerk raises our fees we should be ready to downgrade our store, and have less than 4000 listings. We will be totally out of there by Thanksgiving.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Mar 3 11:00:33 2015

Does anyone know if items relisted using "sell similar" from Seller Source Book and other third parties after those listings have run 30 days are seen by eBay as new listings or relisted items?

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: Fred Turnip This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 11:00:36 2015

One day someone will write a book about the way EBay seems intent on self destruction.Any ideas on the title?

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Mar 3 11:09:48 2015

True Fred Turnip.  An ethical company will take a fee for items that sell.  Only eBay would dream up a scheme to take a fee for items that do not sell. Despicable.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: Deacon Blues This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 11:19:11 2015

*sigh*
Lagging sales and disenfranchised sellers are the problem, and all these creative "think outside the box" MBA types can come up with is raising fee rates? Sounds like something the postal service would do.

eBay is doomed *end transmission*

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: LynnN This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 11:51:00 2015

Due to the lack of other viable marketplaces in the UK, especially for sellers of one of a kind collectibles, eBay know we have little choice but to take whatever they throw at us.

I don't think there's anyone who won't be happy to see the back of Donahoe but will it get better without him? I doubt it, the rot set in long ago and is well beyond the point of no return. eBay will continue its journey down the pan and will take a lot of once successful small businesses with it.

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: foothill This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 11:59:42 2015

I hope the other auctions sites will be ready for the increased exodus of both eBay sellers and.. buyers.

Will be interesting to see, eBay stockholders reaction when the shares will start do drop due to less listings=sales.

We now have an idea what we can expect,with eBay new fee structure.

But eBay will again inform us
''We are excited''

Perminate Link for What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search   What Fee Hike Implies about eBay's Growth Rate and Search

by: Harriet This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 3 12:03:54 2015

I have been definitely keeping my listings very low for a while now. The fees are already too high for the now more limited traffic. Sales have tanked for most people. That makes eBay less desirable. Why would we be willing to pay more for something that is not as good as it used to be? I wouldn't do that in a brick and mortar store, and I won't do it on eBay. There are other sites which work very well without such horrible and scary hassles. eCrater.com is one of them. Let's all remember the selling truth, that competition will keep prices low. eBay does have some competition, perhaps not as great, but the more people use the competition, the better and stronger the competition will grow. We all have a hand in improving the competitive market. Diversify your selling. You don't need an MBA to know that competition works.

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