Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Fri Nov 4 2016 22:29:44

Why Sellers Feel Abandoned by eBay

By: Ina Steiner

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Imagine losing a key software tool you use to manage your business - that's what some eBay sellers are experiencing as executives made the decision to abandon support for its current tools in favor of a new platform called Seller Hub.

"eBay will no longer support older tools, such as Selling Manager and Selling Manager Pro after Spring 2017," the company announced in August, and some sellers are still stressing about it, particularly small sellers who use a free desktop tool called Turbo Lister.

In September, a seller wrote an open letter to eBay CEO Devin Wenig explaining how the decision to end support for the tool next June impacts their vintage collectibles business on eBay. The seller maintains almost 9,000 listings in Turbo Lister. "My successful business model requires that I have available a large inventory of listings which I can periodically upload in an effort to connect with very specialized buyers interested in these limited-in-number, if not unique collectibles," wrote the seller with the user name Qualitypaper.

"These listings took a long time for me to create in Turbo Lister and their continued availability is important to me and my business model. eBay's planned migration to Seller Hub with its elimination of Turbo Lister's functionality as of June 2017 undermines my work and continued operations."

Adding to the stress was eBay's decision to remove the link allowing sellers to download the software.

"Discontinuing downloads of Turbo Lister is ridiculous," a seller wrote on eBay's weekly chat session on Wednesday. "It's still supported (allegedly) until June 2017. Sometimes the (database) gets corrupted and it's necessary to reinstall Turbo. If users can't do this all the info they have stored in TL will be lost. This is unconscionable."

An eBay moderator responded, explaining, "We removed the download link to minimize the number of new sellers who begin using the tool, but if existing users have an issue that requires reinstallation just visit: (LINK) for a download link. Our dedicated support team is also happy to give out this link anytime you need it by calling in and asking for the Advanced Apps team or by emailing turbodata@eBay.com

As for Qualitypaper's September 7th open letter to eBay's CEO on the Selling board, no one from eBay responded - but colleagues offered suggestions, including a desktop selling tool available from a third-party developer.




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by: 1st Armored Div. 1971-1973 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Nov 4 23:22:27 2016

I would never try to manage 9,000 listings on Turbolister. Years ago I moved to ebay's Blackthorne from Turbolister and when ebay closed it to Sixbits. Runs rings around Turbolister and I have over 18,000 listings on ebay.

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by: munson68 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 5 00:09:11 2016

The title of the article is so true. I use turbo lister with an inventory of over 13,000 items. Maybe it wasn't designed for so many but I use it every day with no issue. What my future selling on eBay after June is now up in the air. With no updates from eBay on progress of having a similar listing tool in the new seller hub has been discouraging to say the least. I have been running smoothly since the late 1990s selling but this as a  make or break issue for me and some others I have connected with over this. I realize there are 3rd party programs but to equate what I do with tl I'm looking at around a $70 a month service on top of relearning a new program. Sometimes I just wish JD was still in charge as hard as that is to believe.  

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by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 5 06:06:37 2016

Gesh remember when the only thing you had was the typewriter. I hardly believe that people cried as much for the lost of the typewriter as they do for turbo lister....I for one am glad to see it go.

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This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Sat Nov 5 06:38:00 2016

If I let them, Ebay would give me a BAD reputation.
My wonderful things would be lumped in with all that chincey, broken, over priced, garbage.  

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by: Frank F This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 5 11:19:43 2016

Again, the issues with removing Turbo Lister are the MANY sellers have large season inventories of listings stored in Turbo Lister. If ended listings would not disappear on Seller Manager and other processes in 90 days, we wouldn't need it, but they do and we need this for ended listings. AND ebay needs a tool to migrate saved listings from turbo lister to any new process in seller hub. There are MILLIONS of seller work hours put into this, SO WHY IN THE FREAKING WORLD WOULD THIS COMPANY NOT MAKE THIS A 'MUST HAVE' REQUIREMENT?!!! The responses we have gotten from ebay on this are absoutely pathetic as they tell us the new tool will have this capabity but we all know it will come around and will not.

Its like when they required the higher resolution photos a few years ago.. We were doing the right thing and fixing the listings.. And we used TL to download them and do periodic relists. Would you believe that TL wasn't set up to handle the larger pictures and reduced them to a smaller size that was below the requirement.. I bet I wanted 200 or 300 hours of work by their stupidity..... LET'S NOT MAKE THAT MISTAKE AGAIN EBAY!

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by: Huncrelan This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 5 15:36:04 2016

In a response to Turbo Lister now being abandoned by Ebay, I just feel compelled to step up to the plate and share a personal insight into something I discovered that made me leave Turbo Lister some time ago and now that TL is going to be discontinued entirely I need to spell out an alternative for Turbo Lister for everyone.
I spent over 3 years using Turbo Lister and all that while was always looking for something better. I tried several other options for listing through the years and finally discovered an application – program called Wonder Lister. In a nutshell I discovered after starting to use Wonder Lister that it just blew all of the other options I kept finding away.
It took years to find. These are the same people that managed BlackThorn for Ebay [after the original developers were let go]. Ebay dropped its interest in Turbo Lister long ago, but let it hang around in its clunky state for several years, buggy and slow as it was. But there was BlackThorn as an alternative. Then several years ago, Ebay stopped their financial interest in BlackThorn [which Ebay offered prior to Selling Manager Pro] and abandoned the Blackthorn team. Now we have all discovered Ebay is going to totally dump Turbo Lister.
So, I found Wonder Lister by chance about a year and a half ago and discovered the old BlackThorn team had formed this new company and built Wonder Lister. It is Turbo Lister and Blackthorn all rolled into one then shot up with Steroids. Ebay data, Sales data, customer data, financial & Sales reports, scheduler, uploader, photo handling, searchable database, folder organization, template creator, sales promotion, listing editor and much more all rolled up into one program / application.

There are just so many good things that Wonder Lister does that I would do it an injustice to try to remember them all but here are just some of the many, many attributes of Wonder Lister for those that are having to leave Turbo Lister and looking for an alternative.

And I wouldn’t do justice by leaving out the statement that their Support Team is Absolutely Great. They answer fast, will instruct you if needed, I even had one of them use TeamViewer and just do something I asked, for me directly in front of me remotely.
The upload of 12 photos is in about 1 to 2 seconds. All 12 are uploaded before EBay's app can upload one photo.
Personally I create tons of different templates and they will keep forever because everything is stored on my hard drive, not on EBay's servers. When I list I just click on a saved template by category like Men's Shoes and that blank listing pops up and all I fill in is the specifics for that particular item.
It pulls all of the same type of data from Ebay that SMP offers but it is in my files forever, not gone in 90 days. I also create ''Folders'' and keep various drafts in process by what I need to do, like a folder for items that need more research.
As far as bulk editing goes, Wonder Lister blows Turbo Lister and EBay's Selling Manager Pro and new Dashboard away. No two hundred or 500 limit on how many to bulk edit. If you had 10,000 items in your store, you can bulk edit all of them at one time. The Bulk editor tab allows you to add your edits in many ways, including any Boolean language traits. Say, I want to add the word ''Blue'' to the end of all of my Titles, it can do it. By the way, again, at speeds you just wont believe. Turbo Lister would take 20 to 30 hours to do thousands of listings, Wonder Lister 10 times or more in less time. Anything Turbo Lister can do, Wonder Lister can do and so much more at blazing speeds.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sat Nov 5 19:14:09 2016

@froggy

The nice thing about TL is you can choose to use it or you can choose not to.  I see you have chosen not to.  But because you have done that, it doesn't make it any less important to those who do use it.  While you may not like it there are many others that do.  I respect your decision not to use it.  Why can't you respect those who choose to use it?

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sat Nov 5 19:16:49 2016

One of my big concerns about the loss of TL is that Ebay really wants sellers to use their new Sellers Hub.  And to accomplish that they may systematically stop supporting and/or allowing access to Ebay data for the remaining alternatives.  In time all that will be left is the Seller's Hub or whatever Ebay will call it at the time.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sat Nov 5 19:24:00 2016

This may be helpful to some.  I've been collecting this data for use in trying to pick a new program to use in the coming years.  These are what I've found so far.  Well until Ebay cuts them off too.

Possible Turbo Lister Replacements All of these charge a Fee

Six Bit [they have a coupon offer code TLOFFER gives you 30% off through March 2017]
https://www.sixbitsoftware.com/

Ink Frog
https://www.inkfrog.com/

Auctiva
https://www.auctiva
.com/

Auction Wizard
http://www.auctionwizard2000.com/

Wonder Lister
http://www.wonderlister.com/

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 5 20:00:02 2016

I dont use Turbolister, but as a long time seller - Im not suprised and neither should "you" be.

eBays #1 goal in life seems to be abandoning its sellers - so why should it be different here and now?

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by: alaska This user has validated their user name.

Sat Nov 5 23:24:03 2016

eBay likes to abandon its sellers and buyers. Taking away the wild card search left us buyers with hundreds of complex bookmarked searches that no longer work. Countless hundreds of hours of work down the drain. And sellers ask where all the old buyers have gone!

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This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sun Nov 6 09:40:39 2016

FeelingFroggy sounds like many software developers these days.  If he doesn't use a feature, all the bugs get marked WONT_FIX or it gets removed.  And then it's Microsoft's fault that his userbase or profits are down.

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This user has validated their user name. by: bitbybit

Sun Nov 6 14:30:55 2016

Here's a thought..if something needs fixed it doesn't get used and because it doesn't get used it doesn't get fixed.

I don't use TL even though I did years ago. Just looked at Wonder Lister and saw  there was an import tool for all Turbo listings. Affordable pricing plans.  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sun Nov 6 14:54:01 2016

The reason that I feel abandoned by eBay has nothing to do with software.   They turned a $70k business of mine into a few orders per week.

I have a career, so I really don't need them.  But they destroyed a very lucrative business that I thought I would have during my retirement years. Others are not so lucky.  This was their livelihood and they lost everything.

Hopefully karma will pay a visit to those "pigs at the trough" management who were responsible for destroying small businesses. You know, those small businesses who built eBay from the ground up and then had it all take away by several greedy idiots.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sun Nov 6 16:44:21 2016

@bitbybit

What do you mean by "if something needs fixed it doesn't get used and because it doesn't get used it doesn't get fixed."  I do understand the statement, but not as how it pertains to TL.  While you may not be using it, there are many other folks that do.  And judging from the comments here and on Ebay there are a lot of folks being affected by this.

It is hard to compete with FREE.  And TL is free.

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This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sun Nov 6 18:41:23 2016

It's a self-fulfilling prophecy is what it is.  Those are the kind of games you play when you're a weasel.  Just as a gutless manager reduces hours until people quit, so does a useless developer blow off maintenance until users move on.

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This user has validated their user name. by: bitbybit

Sun Nov 6 21:49:16 2016

Marie I was just expounding on RKToys insightful comments.

Ebay has been playing this game for years and is one reason why sellers do feel abandoned by eBay. Look at how many wrenches eBay threw at the auction format. JD with his destructive innovation steered buyers'focus toward stores with fixed pricing and away from auctions.

As far as TL is concerned, I do remember all the glitches and problems with images it had to the point I went to another listing service.

I was only trying to be helpful suggesting WonderLister after visiting the site and noticed it had a TurboLister import. Also noticed there was a $5.00 monthly plan for 1000 listings and a $10.00 for 5000? and on up. There was even an export tool for other sites including your own website. I may try this for the $5.00 (3 mo. billing) and go from there.



 

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by: munson68 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 6 23:36:43 2016

Is it true some 3rd party listing programs can also list your inventory onto Amazon? I never sold there but this may be a possibility with having to use a 3rd party.Maybe there is a silver lining to losing TL,I'm kinda excited about trying a new venue or at least having the option readily available.  

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by: kilogirl78 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 6 23:55:08 2016

I really wish Ebay wouldn't abandon Turbo Lister. Almost all the listers are internet based. I have really slow internet.  I like the option of being able to make my listings and upload all at one time.  I'm not sure why people like sixbit. I tried it and it was buggy and impossible to figure out.  

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This user has validated their user name. by: cfrphoto

Mon Nov 7 00:30:22 2016

I gave up on Turbo Lister years ago after a few listings disappeared from its Microsoft Access database. More recently Turbo Lister moved to a completely proprietary data format making it difficult to export running listings. I use SixBit because the database is managed by Microsoft SQL Server. It is possible to write custom SQL Server queries when necessary and to automate imports of new listings or process orders originating outside of eBay.

SixBit also offers Amazon and Etsy support.

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