eBay is sending emails to sellers urging them to lower the prices of items that are in users' shopping carts as an incentive to get the shoppers to complete the transaction. As you might imagine, some sellers hate the idea, but there are some who don't think it's a bad idea at all.
We wrote about the new feature recently
, and today someone forwarded us an email they received showing it in action. "This infuriates me," the reader wrote. "eBay continues to inject themselves into every aspect of my business. I'm tempted to RAISE the prices."
And that's just what another reader did. EcommerceBytes reader "Bidonmine" said, "Instead of reducing the price, I have been raising the price (since someone is interested in the item)."
They received four such emails over a 2-week period, and raised the price on all four. "Two actually sold for the higher price (I don't know if it was to the person who had had it in their cart).... So, I am happy with this new email notice!"
Another reader said the "liked the marking angle," though they didn't report whether they changed their price and how it worked.
The subject line of such emails are: "Your items are waiting in carts. Now make the sale." And inside, it says, "Drop the Price to Make the Sale. Lower the price by 5% on these items in shoppers' carts, and we'll email them to say their deal got better."
It's an interesting merchandising technique, but we see a potential drawback: if buyers see enough sellers lowering prices of items they put in their carts, what's the incentive to purchase items right away? Why not put a bunch of the same items in their shopping carts and see if eBay sends a message enticing them with any lower offers?
What do you think of this new (as yet unannounced) feature?