eBay got sloppy with the wording of one of its latest promotions, resulting in customer confusion (the customer in this case being the seller) - and it could be costly for those who take eBay at its word.
On Friday, eBay advertised a free-listing promotion that indicated sellers had a choice of durations. But eBay had eliminated duration options when it put into place the Good Til Cancelled mandate (GTC) on March 18th. Now, all fixed-price listings auto-renew every 30 days unless cancelled.
Here are two excerpts from the "What is the Promotion?" section of the email invitation:
- "Invited sellers who activate the offer and then create a listing in fixed price format, with a 30-day or Good 'Til Cancelled listing duration,..."
- "The Promotion applies only to listings created with 30-days or Good 'Til Cancelled duration; listings created with 1, 3, 5, 7, 10-day durations are excluded."
Not surprisingly, some sellers believed they could use the promotion to run 100 free 30-day duration listings (not GTC). Here's a letter from one such seller:
With all the complaints about eBay's GTC enactment, I thought I better warn sellers about the newest listing special I received this morning on all 4 of my seller IDs.
I was excited about this special because the GTC had forced me into auction style only.
I always listed 30 day fixed price before the GTC enactment. So I accepted this new listing special because it was for fixed price 30 day duration or GTC. I thought that eBay must have gotten so many complaints about the GTC only, that they must have scrapped it.
So I started on 1 of my IDs and bulk relisted about 50 unsold listings, changing them to 30 day duration & repricing each one, only to find out that I could not choose 30 day duration after all.
The GTC had "not" been scrapped.
The listing special for 30 day or GTC is a typo, done intentionally or another glitch in the never ending sea of glitches on eBay.
And if you don't catch it before you launch your listing... It could be very costly.
Not to mention the time wasted bulk listing or editing.
You'll no doubt be getting many more sellers that have caught this and many who haven't until it's too late, but I wanted to put it out there.
The promotion runs from May 10 through May 16th, and if you receive an invitation, be sure to read the fine print for details and exclusions - and heed this reader's advice about duration limitations.