There is little information available about eBay Managed Delivery, but one tantalizing tidbit was revealed during the company's week chat session.
A seller asked about eBay's version of a fulfillment program for sellers, asking the following three questions:
1) When can we start using it?
2) What else can you tell us about its status?
3) How can we get accepted into this group for discussing it?
The seller prefaced their questions by saying they were really excited to use eBay Managed Delivery - "We believe it will enable eBay and us to move eCommerce market share away from Amazon, Shopify, and other sites currently outperforming eBay."
An eBay moderator responded by revealing eBay had closed the pilot program in December and wrote, "there have been no announcements made regarding its expansion." He added that because the pilot program was closed, eBay closed the private group as well.
Note that he did not say eBay "ended" the pilot, but nor did he say eBay closed the pilot program "to new participants," leaving the fate of the program unknown.
One year ago, we reported that eBay had invited some sellers to participate in "Fulfillment for eBay," reporting at the time that the pilot program worked differently from Amazon's FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) program. "Instead of building out its own fulfillment centers, as Amazon has done, eBay is working with third-party fulfillment services." You can read more in this January 2019 EcommerceBytes blog post
In July, eBay finally made the initiative public when it officially announced "eBay Managed Delivery," as we reported in EcommerceBytes
. However, the page it linked to in that announcement - eBay.com/manageddelivery
- now displays an error message ("We looked everywhere. Looks like this page is missing. If you still need help, visit our help pages.")
Sellers are of course free to use third-party fulfillment programs, but what eBay promised sellers with its in-house program were benefits such as lower fulfillment costs, seller protection, faster shipping, and increased visibility.