Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Fri July 17 2015 11:51:55

eBay Is Turning on Russia and China Shipping in Seller Listings

By: Ina Steiner

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Sellers are reporting that eBay is changing their listings to show that they ship to Russia and China without their knowledge or permission.

This thread on the eBay boards says it's a chronic problem that Russia is showing up in their listings. One seller who said they'd been experiencing this problem wrote on July 11 that China had begun showing up in addition to Russia.

"The first time this happened this morning, I assumed it was little more than my imagination but now I can see that it is not. Sellers, be aware that your default 'additional ship-to locations' at the bottom of the long sell form may be automatically selecting Russia as well as China. The Russia selection-by-default is many months old for me. CHINA is brand new."

Another seller said they first noticed the "irritating glitch" with the Russian Federation about 4 months ago.

Shipping internationally is a challenge, but one that's compounded with buyers in non-English-speaking countries especially in areas such as Brazil, Russia, India, and China - so-called "BRIC" countries that eBay has been focusing on. Getting orders from these countries is an unwelcome surprise to those who don't want to ship there, sellers said on the eBay board.

The original poster wrote, "I understand that both China and Russia have long been identified as under-utilized areas of potential growth by eBay, but I'll let someone else assume the risk, thanks. If this is being done on the sly on purpose, it's a dirty trick to say the least. And one that I do not appreciate. If they want us to start running amok with items to Russia and China, run a formal campaign educating sellers about the pros and cons and maybe try supporting and/or subsidizing trackable services et cetera. To do anything else is throwing a few sellers into the fire to pave the way and troubleshoot for others."

We'll point eBay to this post and ask if it's a known glitch or is deliberate - stay tuned.




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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Is Turning on Russia and China Shipping in Seller Listings   eBay Is Turning on Russia and China Shipping in Seller Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Fri Jul 17 12:19:59 2015

eBay put me into the GSP without my consent last year.

I had to call eBay and inform them that it is ILLEGAL to sell my merchandise out of the USA.

Most of it is military surplus and I sign an agreement NOT to sell or ship these items out of the USA or to a foreign entity.

eBay took me out of the program instantly. . .

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by: Troy Stiffler This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 17 12:36:58 2015

There's risk in shipping internationally.  China and Russia also have an annoyance, where postage for certain addresses has to be handled at the PO.  There's only a handful of countries that are like this.  But I've had it happen with both.  Ebay/PayPal and USPS.Com will tell you have to go to the PO.

You also have the possibility of fraud.  I never experienced this, as I sell a lot of B2B products that don't interest scammers.  But if you're selling consumer products, I'd imagine the fraud rate is something to worry about.

Furthermore, you have the general hassle of handling complaints and returns (ooo especially when they don't speak English).  And I think that scares away a lot of sellers.

Otherwise, I think ''domestic only'' sellers don't understand how easy it is to ship internationally.  When I hear that acquaintances don't ship internationally, I just shut up about it.  I ship probably 5% international (well, back when I sold on Ebay, less now).

I'll give Ebay credit and say that it is probably a glitch.  But who really knows?  Their management is so covert and unreliable they can't be trusted anymore.

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This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Fri Jul 17 13:08:47 2015

There is so much fraud in international sales because everybody knows the police in both countries will do nothing but tell you to call the police in the other country.  With eBay's poor performance these days, just one "lost" item can be a huge setback.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Fri Jul 17 13:40:17 2015

Because eBay will not stop meddling in our business, we ended international shipping. If they add it without our  permission, we will still not ship there.  No international shipping means no international shipping.

If I am reading this right, this is only happening to those who are still shipping internationally.

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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Fri Jul 17 13:50:50 2015

There's something incongruous about a site that's flooded with Chinese junk secretly opting-in sellers to do shipping to China. Maybe this is DW's plan to help the Chinese create more fake "new vintage" since those buyers will have easier access to more items to copy.

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by: ajeweler This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 17 14:04:07 2015

selling jewelry internationally is no no too much theft and freebay far too easy to issue refunds when international buyers claim SNAD as freebay forces sellers to refund within 3 days on shipping tracking numbers in my business they can place a rock inside package takes 30 plus days to return, sellers are forced to refund and beg when they receive something back 30 days later, to find a rock and then a rep say" wrap up the loss in cost of selling on freebay"

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 17 14:25:13 2015

Usually Im in the majority on eBay issues - this time Im in the minority - but maybe more experienced sellers can explain why Im wrong?

As Ive never had an incident with eBays GSP, Im at a loss as to why more countries are an issue - ONLY IF EBAY TAKES THE RISK.

What drew me to GSP was simply that I no longer had to deal with INR issues.

They pay upfront (we are skipping how much eBay rips the buyers off for - I cant/wont look it up each time to see if eBay is being honest), I ship to Erlanger and then I never have to deal with it again. Works for me.

I have though been hearing stories about defectives and forced returns ie being forced to pay for return carriage and possibly incomming duties/customs.

So far NONE OF THAT has happened to me - maybe Im just lucky. I havent seen anywhere that GSP has been updated/expanded to include those risks (its similar to shipping to a trans shipper - once it leaves the country "its over").

If Im wrong - someone please tell me - but if eBay is going to shoulder the risks - Im for it. eBay never shoulder ANY risk - at least not here in the US .. some any responsibility would be welcome.

I havent yet ever gotten a Russian or Chinese sale - has anyone here?

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This user has validated their user name. by: bitbybit

Fri Jul 17 15:07:31 2015

@pace

Sold an antique watch pendant a couple years back to China which  probably went for mass production and a samovar to the Russian Federation with a neutral feedback and low star on shipping time (probably held in customs). Neither was through the GSP. I did try GSP briefly with one sale. GSP gouges the international buyers and most int'l buyers learning of the shipping costs will not make a purchase or cancel as NPB. I have had many int'l sales over the 14 years but stopped with the USPS price increase and this refund shipping on int'l returns.

Wouldn't surprise me one bit if eBay made the GSP sellers refund initial & return shipping fees and custom duties for SNAD along with the popular INR scammers.

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 17 17:03:08 2015

bit :)

I would NEVER ship to either of those 2 palces without "GSP backing me up".

Question is WILL THEY?

So far, I've never had an issue and the returns I recieve are from US buyers (use and return).

For most other places I have a deal in place with DHL. They get signatures on every delivery - so Im at least covered for INR.

GSP gave me a sale for Mexico 3 days ago. My 3rd party insurance company wont cover Mexico or Brazil etc any farther then the airport - so the GSP was a suprise.

I guess we shall have to see how it goes :

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by: blackmail This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 17 19:42:05 2015

"eBay made the GSP sellers refund initial & return shipping fees and custom duties for SNAD along with the popular INR scammers. " answer is yes you have to pay within 3 days of printing return shipping tag e bay issues. however cost of shipping often exceeds the shipping and duties to these countries hence they request part refunds and or keep item without saying feedback will be left "as to the outcome of how you handle us as buyers" blackmail of course

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This user has validated their user name. by: Map

Fri Jul 17 20:04:45 2015

Ebay has turned on Canada & UK for my listings.

I took part in the recent promotion for 30 day fixed price free listings.

Don't care to waste phone time with ebay to get nothing fixed.

Will just cancel the order for Canada & UK buyers.

Perminate Link for eBay Is Turning on Russia and China Shipping in Seller Listings   eBay Is Turning on Russia and China Shipping in Seller Listings

This user has validated their user name. by: Shop and Ship

Fri Jul 17 22:04:52 2015

I opted out of the Global Shipping Program because eBay charges the Buyer high fees that supposedly includes package delivery insurance, but if there's a problem then the Buyer has no way to contact eBay or the Erlanger shipping center. So they SNAD me for items arriving broken or late even though eBay advertises that no Seller will receive a Neg for a late or damaged delivery. Sure eBay CS removes it after an hour or so on hold but that's not eBay taking responsibility as the self-Insurer.

So the problem with shipping to Russia is that no insurer will cover any shipment once the plane's wheels hit the tarmac. It's a problem with corruption inside the Russian postal service. Believe it or not, everyone in the world doesn't love Americans. As far as I'm concerned, the Russian Buyer can hire a USA freight forwarder with a USA street address to consolidate their purchases for combined shipping to Russia, Brazil, Italy, China, or wherever they are. There's not enough room on this web page to list all of the restrictions on importing into Russia and China. All the USA Seller is doing is inviting his goods to be confiscated by the foreign customs inspectors as ''contraband'' because the sale negatively impacts local sellers.  

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by: BB2 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 18 02:57:31 2015

I'm with pace306 on this one.

I recently switched all eBay international sales to GSP. I've been using it for several months. I've only had two issues. Customs wouldn't let the first package in (a small patch of artificial moss on the item was considered plant material), and the other arrived broken. GSP refunded both at no cost to me with no defects.

What I do now is make sure I don't add to the risk. For example... no items that might break and no artificial moss to Australia. :)

I've shipped to Russia and China in the past, but not through GSP. I'd welcome an opportunity to increase revenue with the addition of both countries in GSP, as long as I don't take on any more risk than the current policy.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Shop and Ship

Sat Jul 18 10:33:31 2015

@BB2 - sure, I've shipped to Japan, China, Taiwan, the Philippines, Malaysia, India, Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, Canada, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Sweden, Israel, Turkey, Egypt, Crete, Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal, and South Africa, several Caribbean islands, and several South American cities - with and without eBay/Pitney Bowes GSP - but once you catch a couple of overseas scammers that falsely claim ISNAD, and then eBay or PayPal deducts from your account both the cost of the item PLUS the fees it charged for overseas shipping, AND adds the return shipping cost to it, you'll wonder why you ever subjected yourself to such a great risk for so little profit. Just look at the the fee charged on your last GSP transaction and then double it. If your potential profit on each sale isn't greater than that amount then you're making a fool's bet against house rules. And do you know what you can do about it? Send them an email for their records. According to eBay CS, they have MILLIONS of complaining Sellers so no one has time to read your email much less the capacity or authority to act on it.  

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by: Volvo351 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 18 10:36:00 2015

I'd no sooner ship anything to Russia than I would hand it directly to a buyer for free, with an amount of CASH equal to the shipping charge on top!  

Sorry, Devil Wingnut, but this particular "disruptive disruption" ain't gonna fly.  Yet another harebrained move to Hiss Off sellers. In case you've forgotten, or the cretinous Johnny Hoe never bothered to tell you, sellers just happen to be your PAYING CUSTOMERS. If you can't respect us personally, at least don't insult our intelligence.

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by: Volvo351 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 18 10:39:04 2015

@Map - who says he'll "..just cancel the order for UK and Canada..."

The Hoe..oops! Devil Wingnut! - will love to have you cancel those orders..he keeps FVF since you've already gotten a bid!

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by: gizmo This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 18 11:45:09 2015

Ebay is broken , has been broke , will always be broke. Cannot be fixed , needs tossing. Garbage!!

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by: Troy Stiffler This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 18 12:52:54 2015

For those who hear that GSP causes a lot of extra taxes/duties at the border...  Here is my take...

To be honest, when I ship via USPS, and don't enter a Tariff #, I think destination customs tends to mark a really low-cost generic code. In example, if my customs form says "Ridgid 300 Pipe Threading Machine", I think they mark something generic like "Steel Bolts", just to pass it thru quickly. When it goes through Ebay's int'l program, they mark something much more specific, or call it something like "manufacturing equipment" and it can get hit with a high fee.

I never confirmed this. But something definitely happens. I've followed up with many international customers over the years, and would find out that there was little-to-no charges for a lot of shipments.  Different Tariff #'s do have different taxes attached.  And this is the only "variable" I can figure out.

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Jul 18 22:46:19 2015

I guess the question REALLY is - ship internationally or NOT.

Whats the difference between suing GSP to ship to Australia as apposed to Russia? Either GSP protects sellers - as they said it would (since once the item is shipped out of the country, its not possible for the seller to know how it was used AND GSP was "origianlly" supposed to match the item and the invoice to make sure SNADs didnt happen) or it doesnt.

If it DOES - then its safe to sell to ANY GSP country - even Nigeria and N Korea.

If its NOT safe and eBay screws sellers as usual, then it doesnt matter if its Russia, AU or Canada - as a seller you are still on the hook, no ?

eBays help page says under "Returning an item purchased through the Global Shipping Program"

The Global Shipping Program doesn't handle returns. Check the listing to find your seller's return policy, or contact your seller.  

The obvious question is when eBays money back guarantee program and GSP collide.

***** I just spoke to eBay at member to member support - take it for what its worth plz *****

He told me there is NO FORCED returns for ANY COUNTRY in GSP PERIOD. Its not planned nor in his notes. You "should be" %100 safe in shipping things (especially sellers of NEW items) to Kentucky and then being covered."


Its the best I can do to help out my friends here in the forum - cant promise eBay will keep their word - but one can hope!

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This user has validated their user name. by: Shop and Ship

Sun Jul 19 01:31:31 2015

I don't care what an Ebay CS rep says over the phone. Actual experience is that eBay has not stepped up to the plate to take responsibility for shipments passing through Erlanger. eBay charges and collects a hefty fee for this GDP service that it created and profits from. It's unconscionable to abandon the Buyer after collecting such fees. I'll not be an enabler assisting eBay GSP fleece overseas buyers. Reality is that GSP hands off to some pretty shady local delivery services overseas.  

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