Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Sun Apr 24 2016 12:13:37

eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

By: Ina Steiner

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The eBay Seller Growth Team is surveying professional sellers who want help overcoming some common barriers. A reader forwarded the survey to EcommerceBytes - those who complete it have a chance at getting a free expert consultation from eBay.

Sellers must provide their eBay Seller ID, their primary category, and where they've sold in the past 6 months - options provided include: eBay, Own Website, Amazon, Groupon, Wholesale, Deal site/Flash sales, Brick and Mortar store(s), and Other.

eBay also asked sellers, "If your barriers to listing were removed, what type of inventory would you like to list on eBay?"

One of the questions indicates eBay may be considering offering free listings for some sellers: "If you were to not be charged insertion fees, how many new listings could you add to eBay in the next 1-3 months?"

The options listed with the questions that sellers can choose from are interesting in that they provide insight into eBay's thinking. For example, eBay asks professional sellers, "What are your listing barriers on eBay?" and provides the following choices:

- Insertion Fees

- Difficulty integrating product feed / integrating with eBay

- Time

- Seller limits

- Other

eBay also asked sellers to indicate which listing tool(s) they use, providing the following options:

eBay - Sell Your Item
eBay - TurboLister
eBay - Merchant Integration Platform
eBay - Direct API
Channel Advisor
Auctiva
Magento/M2E
Frooition
WHI
InkFrog
Vendio
CommerceHub
SureDone
Shopify
Big Commerce
Other

Here are some additional questions eBay asked "professional" sellers in the survey:

- In a typical week, how many listings do you have on eBay?

- Do you sell internationally?

- Do you currently list all your products on eBay?

- What is the average price for the items you sell?

- What % of all the products you sell are drop shipped? 

- What is your average handling time for a product? 

- What is your website URL?

- Have you ever contacted eBay regarding how you can grow your business?

- Total number of employees in your company?

- Number of employees dedicated to your eBay operations?

- If you would like to potentially hear from eBay about addressing your growth barriers, please provide your contact information below.

Let us know what you think of the survey questions and what eBay may be cooking up for "professional" sellers.




Comments (65) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sun Apr 24 12:40:37 2016

We got two of these....Like the government Ebay needs to stick their noses somewhere else and no into my business affairs.

Some of their questions are down right NON OF THEIR BUSINESS.

Getting tired of using the delete button all the time....but it works. Delete and move on.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Sun Apr 24 12:51:01 2016

We know how these surveys always go: "You spoke, we listened." And then they implemented whatever changes they already had planned before the survey went out.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

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

Sun Apr 24 13:31:40 2016

"[A] free expert consultation from eBay."—Now that's something every seller should look forward to—LOL ...

"The options listed with the questions that sellers can choose from are interesting in that they provide insight into eBay's thinking"—What, with all that "Bain" power in place, they still can't figure out why the rusting old scow is sinking ...

"In a typical week, how many listings do you have on eBay?"—What? Their database can't tell them that?

"What is the average price for the items you sell?"—ditto ...

"Have you ever contacted eBay regarding how you can grow your business?"—LOL ...

"If you would like to potentially hear from eBay about addressing your growth barriers, please provide your contact information below."—LOL ...

The eBay executive suite—where the incompetent mingle with the disingenuous, the unscrupulous, the malevolent, the outright criminal, and the just plain stupid.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

by: rhawk This user has validated their user name.

Sun Apr 24 13:51:38 2016

No doubt, nowhere on that survey will it ask if visibility is a problem.

The Cassini search engine that links  seller performance and listing performance to visibility is what is killing off many small sellers.

Surveys are cheap.  Getting rid of performance based algorithms and giving sellers what they pay for in a fair and level way  is what ebay desperately needs to do.

Cassini is killing ebay.....slowly.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Apr 24 14:15:47 2016

In a typical week, how many listings do you have on eBay? 100-200

- Do you sell internationally? NO

- Do you currently list all your products on eBay? YES

- What is the average price for the items you sell? $50

- What % of all the products you sell are drop shipped? ZERO

- What is your average handling time for a product? 1 Day

- What is your website URL?

- Have you ever contacted eBay regarding how you can grow your business? NO

- Total number of employees in your company? 2

- Number of employees dedicated to your eBay operations? 2

Cassini is NOT the problem. The problem is that too many people are selling the same thing. It's the merchandise not the search engine. I have no problem with my customers finding what I have for sale and I have no problem finding what I want to buy. Sellers need to stop blaming Cassini for their merchandise problems. If no one is buying it it's because no one wants it, it's not because they can't see it. . .

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Sun Apr 24 14:28:06 2016

We were sent the same survey, but DID NOT fill it out, ebay was asking too many questions about other places we are selling, plus other details of our company that have no value to selling on ebay, and is none of their business,

''those who complete it have a chance at getting a free expert consultation from eBay.''

Get Real ebay, with the fees we pay, you should include a full time employee to our account, all day every day.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: BuildingMyOwnSite

Sun Apr 24 15:05:41 2016

Why would I want to waste all that time, unless Ebay ACTUALLY cared.  (See JackSparrows comment).  I could spend an entire day, telling them how they have wrecked their company.  Oh yeah, and the LAST thing I want is “a free expert consultation from eBay”.  WHO???   Griff???   LMAO!!!!

I'm sorry, how Dumb am I?   I should answer all those questions, so that EBAY can monetize my answers.  Both in how they deal with and charge me, and to sell that information to someone else.

Regarding my business, I sell 99.9% Antique, Vintage, Upcycled, Repurposed, Handmade.  I have at least 5M, good, mostly small, vintage items.  Probably closer to 10M.   I had a wonderful business on Ebay, and still would if Ebay would fix search, dump algorithms that try to solve everything, and actually investigate complaints, fraud, etc.

Here's just a SINGLE instance, of DOZENS I could DOCUMENT, right now today:

From a Vintage sellers standpoint, in order to fix this mess, they would need to roll-back just about everything the have instituted in the last 8 years.  Fire everyone overseas, programmers and CS alike.  Institute some penalties for bad sellers, that can be instantly enforced.  Ex: I call, or report a violation.  A PERSON takes a look.  If I am correct, the listing comes down, & the seller gets a strike of some sort, depending on......  If I do this to eliminate competition, etc, the strike goes against me.  the Ebay employee HAS to have a good command of English, to accomplish this.  They have to be TRAINED!  They have to have a supervisor that can rule/overule instantly.  I am not afraid of vetting sellers in the future.  Algorithms can't do it.  If they want to know what's wrong, why doesn't Ebay just read the forums?  (Oh yeah, See JackSparrow's comment)

I'm sorry, but I'm MAD.  It may be Ebay's sandbox, but they're the ferral cats went and pi--  in it, and wrecked it for everyone.  And now, let them PAY ME, if they want to know how to fix it.  For God's  sake, they're just admitting they can't do it.  Call up JD, maybe he'll remember how it used to be.  (Someone must have let on, that it used to work)

This is just one huge joke, NOT funny..........  See JackSparrows comment.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

by: JQ This user has validated their user name.

Sun Apr 24 16:40:27 2016

I received a different survey which focused only on use of eBay shipping labels and why I chose the shipping service I use (USPS).

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sun Apr 24 16:43:08 2016

DELETE

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Apr 24 17:01:14 2016

Maybe ebay isn't the place for "Antique, Vintage, Upcycled, Repurposed, Handmade" anymore.

The world has changed and so has ebay. I used to collect a lot of things but stopped in 2008 when the economy got bad. Never got back to collecting anything again after that. I have big collections of Budweiser Beer Steins, Baseball Cards, Matchbooks, Stamps, Coins, Knifes, Rocks, Hot Wheels, Coffee Cups, and McDonald's Happy Meal Toys. I would never attempt to sell any of this stuff on ebay because there's too much of it already there. Too many sellers and not enough buyers.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Sun Apr 24 19:05:26 2016



The biggest barrier to seller success on eBay is eBay's own executives who are more interested in accumulating shares of stock and cashing out than they are about seller success.

If eBay's BOD really wanted to see GMV grow, they would link executive compensation packages to GMV expansion and growth.

This one change would result in the real decision makers at eBay becoming more engaged with marketplace growth than they are with the stock ticker.

Once they are more engaged, the positive changes for sellers will follow in short order.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Apr 24 21:13:43 2016

@Ric

"If eBay's BOD really wanted to see GMV grow, they would link executive compensation packages to GMV expansion and growth."

I agree 100%

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Sun Apr 24 21:20:18 2016

@toolguy - You are definitely in the minority with regard to Cassini (Can't-See-Me) showing your merchandise if the comments from the majority of sellers posting here are to be believed. I don't know how many times I've read about a seller who did a search for his own items, using the exact words that are in his listing titles, and his items don't show up! How do you explain that? Or is it only tool sellers who have 24/7 visibility?

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Apr 24 21:57:09 2016

@iheartjacksparrow

" I don't know how many times I've read about a seller who did a search for his own items, using the exact words that are in his listing titles, and his items don't show up! "

I've read the same "rumors"

I have only once not been able to find a listed item a seller had that was active. It was a UK seller and 1 of her items wouldn't show up no matter how you tried to search it except for using the item number. Once in all the years of listening to all these sellers say their items are not to be seen.

Otherwise it's just a fairy tale. . .

I've seen NO hard evidence of items that were in a so called "rolling blackout".

Even Griff admitted last week on eBay Radio that "rolling Blackouts" were a myth. Don't you believe him? I do. . .

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Sun Apr 24 22:29:16 2016

@toolguy - I seriously doubt anyone believes anything Griff says since he's an eBay shill and says what eBay wants him to say.

I can guarantee there are rolling blackouts because it happened to me. Back in 2007 when I was still selling on eBay, and my sales started tanking, I'd have one week where all my sales came from one or two particular states, and then the following week all my sales would be coming from another one or two states. Rinse and repeat. I originally thought it was such a coincidence that that was happening every week, but as Fox Mulder once said, "There's no such thing as a coincidence." It wasn't until years later that I first heard of rolling blackouts, and the examples people were giving were exactly what had happened to me. I suppose I also had selling limits imposed against me, which would explain why I only had four or five sales a week, every week, from that point until I stopped selling there in 2008.

And a fairy tale is a story of fiction, not a recitation by seller after seller about their actual experiences.  

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Apr 24 22:42:11 2016

@iheartjacksparrow

"2007"

My God that's almost a decade ago!

I have the same thing happen all the time.

3 sales from Florida and then 2 from Ohio, 1 from California and then 3 from Arizona.

It's just Coincidence, that's what a coincidence is!

Let's see some hard evidence of "Rolling Blackouts"

I'm not from Missouri but please SHOW ME. . .

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Sun Apr 24 23:19:16 2016

@toolguy - My evidence is that prior to the rolling blackouts hitting me, I was getting sales spread across the entire country every week, not relegated to one or two states (usually in close proximity) per week. My sales on eCrater now are spread across the entire country and are never confined to a certain area. A rational person would not think that it's "normal" that, suddenly, everyone in Florida wants your tools, while the entire rest of the country doesn't need them. And then the next week, everyone in Arizona wants your tools, while no one in the rest of the country needs them. You can't seriously believe that your sales are not being controlled and the areas where your listings are being shown aren't switching on and off. If you think the spread of your sales is a coincidence, you need to come out of your purple haze and join the rest of us sellers back in the real world.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Apr 24 23:25:01 2016

@iheartjacksparrow

Why would I want to come back and join the rest of the sellers who aren't happy with ebay.

My stuff is seen and sells. I don't know what I can say except Cassini works and works well for the stuff I'm selling.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

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

Sun Apr 24 23:55:18 2016

Toolguy's got one thing right: eBay's now got "too many sellers and not enough buyers."

And, clearly, that's why eBay thinks that they now have to pander to buyers, regardless. And who is to blame for that? Mostly, the cretinous Johnny Ho, but it appears that Devin Little is continuing on the same "Bain" destructive path, and the fact that eBay is now asking such questions of its sellers demonstrates just how utterly clueless eBay's management team is.

"Too many sellers and not enough buyers."—LOL ...

The eBay executive suite—where the incompetent mingle with the disingenuous, the unscrupulous, the malevolent, the outright criminal, and the just plain stupid. ...

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face   eBay Surveys Professional Sellers on Barriers They Face

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Apr 25 01:35:02 2016

I was the one that sent this in to Ina (there may be others here as well - but we exchanged emails on the topic).

I just thought it funny? that eBay was fishing under the guise of trying to help sellers.

Of course in the comments box, I gave them an earful - which is why they wont contact me - I agreed to be contacted. I just want the chance to shamble them abit.

As for rolling blackouts ....

1) Griff is dumber then a box of rocks - if you believe him - then you believed that you would save $2500 a year on healthcare if you switched to Obamacare, or that it was a video that caused Bengazi, or that TPP is actually GOOD for the US (Im not picking on Dems here - its the politics and the lies Im referring to).

2) Since 1998 Ive never gotten sales on eBay from France, Spain, Italy EVER. I do get from Israel, Greece, the UK all the time. Ive also never gotten sales from N Dakota, S Dakota, RI, VT, ME, NM and a host more. Coincidence? hardly!

3) CS reps have told me MORE then a few times about the rolling blackouts. Excuses included "we have to let everyone have a chance", "we arent here to promote YOU exclusively regardless of your prices/service level, "we need to save server space".

Why would they lie?

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