Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Feb 28 2017 10:33:32

eBay Raises Fees with Today's Spring Seller Update

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay announced its Spring Seller Update (EcommerceBytes 411 subscribers, look for this morning's email Alert).

At a time when sellers are coping with higher shipping costs and are struggling to get traffic and sales, eBay is adding to their challenges by raising the cost of doing business on its marketplace.

What may grate on sellers' nerves is that while eBay is raising the cost to lower-performing sellers (by a lot), it's also raising fees for its best sellers: Top Rated Sellers (TRS) and those who pay a monthly fee to have an eBay Store.

- The Final Value Fees for Store subscriptions will increase on May 1, 2017.

- The Top Rated Plus final value fee discount will change from 20% to 10% on qualifying listings on May 1, 2017. (eBay is also raising the bar for becoming TRS: The tracking requirement to qualify for Top Rated Seller status will increase from 90% to 95% on June 20, 2017.)

- Final value fees for sellers who do not meet eBay's minimum performance standards will increase by 4 percentage points on items sold on or after May 1, 2017.

On the plus side, eBay is removing product listing ads that take shoppers off of the eBay platform. eBay will replace those ads with Promoted Listings - in other words, pay to play. However, eBay currently restricts the program to multi-quantity items in certain categories, and only eBay Store owners can participate.

eBay is taking a different approach to fees in the UK, as you can see here.

Take a look at the changes in the Spring Seller Update and let us know what you think!

Update 2:00 pm: eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore reached out to clarify a point about Promoted Listings and announce some news regarding the program:

"1) Promoted listings are open to eTRS sellers, including those who don't have a store and 

"2) We're currently testing single-quantity capabilities and expect promoted listings to be available for single quantity items in the near future."




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Readers Comments

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Tue Feb 28 10:54:20 2017

10% ?

eBay can stick where the sun don't shine!

I won't bend over backwards for 10%

Looks like I'm going to 3 day handling and back to paid shipping.

I WON'T DO IT

A seller has to draw the line somewhere!

I'm happy to say my cannabis garden is doing well. Harvest is only 10 days away. It's a great feeling to know I can grow thousands of dollars in my garage with no interference from a corporation with little to no respect for it's sellers!

F*CK YOU EBAY!

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by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:02:37 2017

If you are TRS+, w/ a Store, & 1 day handling... the net net is about 11% on item AND shipping... all for a dwindling customer base & constantly lower realized prices... sigh...

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by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:03:20 2017

THIS on top of January's POSTAL INCREASES... eBay gets 11% of THAT, too...

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by: thriftyattireandstuff This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:07:20 2017

Interesting that the tracking requirement will be 95% but the on-time remains at 97% which is virtually impossible to hit with the way they do their USPS late shipment reports.

The 20-10% for TRS is a huge hit. That is an insane jump, and I'm sure the angry birds who are so perfect will be out to complain soon, as they should.

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Tue Feb 28 11:09:11 2017

F*CK YOU EBAY

That's how I feel right now!

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by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:19:53 2017

Hmmm....I found better fees and better advertising support at dedicated sites for fashion.  I'm doing much better on those sites than EB, so it seems that in order to make a profit on EB we/I will have to sell a higher priced item....luxury purses...computers...cameras....otherwise it's not worth it.

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by: rachel This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:26:02 2017

Slow sales, no visibility, continuing to TRY to mirror Amazon in all the bad ways, no $10 coupon is going to make someone buy an item that costs over $300. eBay doesn't realize that most of us sell in other venues too and that they are advertising. They take out a lot less and are pleasant. They know that without us they will have no customers and that's what eBay doesn't get Sellers have choices. We may still sell on eBay but it's not the bread and butter on the table it once was. The forgot that we, the sellers are also their customers and the stuff from China that costs them 0.29 cents well you have to sell a lot of it and the quality and shipping time is unpredictable yet they expect American sellers to ship REALLY FAST as if we all have warehouses for of valuable items. They don't care that we sold 5 million on eBay over time. They could care less. So what happens when you are not appreciated? Take a guess like every bad parent should know...if you have 6 kids and they all are "rotten" maybe you are the one that is at fault If you have a company and all your employees are quitting maybe you, the company are the one at fault. If you are a company tat does not vet buyers and allows scammers on that just want to buy anything with silver or gold in it with stolen credit cards without vetting them properly  and wonder why sellers don't trust eBay, you are the one at fault  When you hire someone with NO EXPERIENCE in online marketing or sales rather than promote some capable employee...and give millions to the horrible CEO that just left...so that there is no money for infrastructure improvement farm out jobs to the Philipines where some are great but some are not customer focused, you are the one at fault. When high value claims people treat sellers like garbage even though they have a stellar record then raise fees to make up for their horrible business practices, we call that a sinking ship.

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by: TrickyMick This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:34:19 2017

I will be dropping the TRS in may, and going to shortest return window possible.

I also read about a new shipping tool. It may help me a lot, since everyone in remote desert or mountain areas love ''free'' shipping of large items.

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by: Secret Seller This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:34:35 2017

What this basically will do it force people to raise prices now higher than what they would on the Ebay site in turn turning people away from ebay and having them look at at other websites now for the best deal.  

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by: orangecat This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:34:38 2017

What a nasty bit of news to wake up to. Will have to look around for another venue to sell on, as EB is clawing most of our profit back now.

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by: uppercutknives This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:37:35 2017

Just another nail in ebay's coffin. That's a cut to the bone. I may very very small profits on a number of items and this cut will probably be my last. I'm already selling on alternative sites that are less costly. With the additional postage costs, ebay double dipping on FVF on shipping and now just dumping on TRS sellers its a strong indication they now longer want quality trustworthy long time 20 year sellers like myself. TIME TO GO.

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by: JohnGermaine This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:40:48 2017

Wow! Amazing that they could be so clueless! This may be the "last straw" for many sellers.

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by: rstpete This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:41:21 2017

The drowning ebay hangs more weight on their rescuers necks.  

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by: Vernfern This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:52:29 2017

Time to wind this party down. Sales are already sliding downward vs. previous years with a 25% drop vs. last year for me and with shipping costs rising, eBay fees rising, it's just not worth it. I am reading many comments in other forums that top rated sellers are ready to say ''screw it'' and fall back to 3 day shipping, no returns, etc as TRS isn't worth chasing anymore.

Speaking for myself, I'll still stay as a TRS but I seriously plan on cutting back and switching back to traditional employment. I have an estate to settle due to the death of a family member, and that is the only reason why I have not moved back to traditional employment and liquidate what I have.

The only positive side? Since more and more sellers will just give up, ''thrift'' stores like the Greedwill may be forced to drop their prices down to thrift levels again as the flippers have given up. Think about it - eBay really caused a positive ripple effect when they opened their doors. Sources for goods benefited - auction houses, thrift stores, garage sale sellers... as more and more sellers walk away, times may return to pre-eBay days of cheap goods again.  

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by: Toledo Maude This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:53:39 2017

Now it becomes apparent who will be paying for eBay new advertising program.  

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by: castlerob This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:56:13 2017

Looks like the only silver lining is that they will quit sending people off of ebay. I've tried the promoted listings, and they just don't work.
Hopefully, this will help

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by: Barbbie This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 11:58:42 2017

Not too happy.  
I do not find that the promoted listings work very well.

I do find that advertising my website items on ebay works great!

I think the most disturbing thing is in addition to the 10% hit for all TRS, if you fall below a month, you not only lose 10%, but you experience an extra 4% FVF for being standard!

On most items, not counting the TRS loss - which I don't think anyone actually reduces prices for unless they are crazy, 4% in addition to 9.15% plus paypal at over 3%.  I think this officially puts them way higher than Amazon and Walmart at 15% for most items and I think many sellers are going to have to plan for the worst case and price accordingly.

Hopefully, it will work out for the best for everyone.  I know it has long been an issue of them taking the traffic offsite so we have no choice but to take the good with the bad and plan for higher prices going forward.

I don't know if it will help with any issues, I see a lot of low quality, possibly foreign sellers do not have TRS but don't think that an extra 4% on a 5.00 sale with free shipping will phase any of them.

I think it will hurt those sellers that are competing with wholesalers and also small sellers who are not going to qualify for TRS so hopefully keeping the buyer on site will offset the problems.

Good luck all!!

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by: unhappyebayguy This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 12:18:05 2017

Is this for real?    Seriously‚Ķ  Who comes up with these ideas at eBay?

Sales are down across the board, auctions are dead only ''buy it now'' items work these days.  

So many people have left already.   It makes no sense to punish the few people that are left.  More sellers will leave,  less items to buy means less customer traffic .  The people that stay will have no motivation to ship fast or take returns.   It is going to have the opposite effect as they think it will.  It doesn't take a genius to figure that out.  I simply do not understand where or how they come up with the stuff. *smh*

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This user has validated their user name. by: eXtinctBay

Tue Feb 28 12:25:50 2017

WOW!! When even the biggest eBay cheerleader gives them a F**K YOU bomb (twice), this is really saying something.

The cutting of the discount in half amounts to a lot of money over the course of a year. If one can navigate through the minefield and even achieve TRS status, there is little incentive to do so.

Couple this with virtually no seller support, allowing fraudsters to run rampant, taking shipping fees for postage paid for by THE BUYER, etc., etc., etc..... does eBay really think their sellers will continue this madness?

Sure, they will spin this as benefitting their coveted buyers, but if most all sellers go to 3 day handling, no returns policies, and raise prices to offset the losses of TRS discounts, how can this possibly improve quality and service??

Also the ''promoted listings'' program is a joke. With the exorbitant fees paid to the site, their job already should be to feature and advertise all items by all sellers. Sadly, it is not.

If (as stated many times on ECB) eBay wants to rid themselves of small sellers, this is a step in the right direction.

Two words: FACEBOOK.

This is Zuckerberg's window of opportunity to take his company to the next level, and make it a true e-commerce site.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Jono

Tue Feb 28 12:27:13 2017

If you think eBay are increasing fees because they are in trouble think again.... they made 6.93 Billion profit last year. It is all down to their shameless greed. Just like most corporations on this VIP driven planet. They do their sums & think....right what can we gat away with this time. If you think eBay will care one iota that a few people leave eBay you are living in cloud-cuckoo-land. It is despicable behaviour & we all saw it coming but there is nothing we can do. It is a natural occurance in every aspect of modern business....and they will always find a way to steal our profits one way or another. They do not do business they way they ask us to do business.

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