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Sat Feb 17 2018 21:31:13

Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
I have been pulling out my hair trying to figure out why my sales have plummeted. I am by no means a huge seller, but I was selling at least 70 items a month and my numbers were rising. For my store the subtle decline started in June of 2017. 

My items are not specific to one niche and I normally do well (for me) all year round. These past 2 weeks have been the worst since selling on eBay. Something is definitely amiss. I have sold a whopping 9 items this month and have over 600 items listed. 

I have called eBay and they are of no help. I have temporarily jumped through their hoops, run sales, run unpaid promotions on top of sales and nada. I have not run paid promotions and am seriously thinking about it, because sadly, I have come to rely on the additional money eBay used to bring in. Perhaps, this is probably intentional and forceful throttling to make me pay for the promoted ads.

I believe something happened at the end of January to put my store in this death spiral, but I have no idea what that was, if it is not eBay trying to make me pay for additional exposure. I have not had any take down notices or bot messages. 

I have no idea when they started putting all of the competitor ads on our pages, but noticed it is not on everyone's. Do you know why this would be? Do they not put any of these ads on Anchor stores? 

I found this one seller who does not appear to have any competitor's items on any of his listings and am wondering how he accomplished this.

Here is a link to one of his listings if interested: 

(redacted)

If you or anyone can shed any light on this, I would be very grateful!

Kind regards,
Alesia



Comments (41) | Permalink

Readers Comments

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This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sat Feb 17 22:17:21 2018

I don't know that I'd pay for promoted listings.  If you need the money, this is only digging your hole deeper on a potentially empty promise.   Frankly, I'd sooner hit a casino; the odds are better there.

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Feb 17 23:25:25 2018

If eBay doesnt want you to be seen - you wont be.

While my issues are different then yours - they are by no means rare either.

No matter what I carry, no matter what brand, no matter how many items I carry - I always do between X and Y in sales (dollar amounts).

I can be the best price with the best ratings, Im at %100 FB and nothing changes.

Being the son of a PHD award winning scientist - the science (and math) behind it all is ... someone is cooking the books for what ever reason.

If it was all ''random, then by changing any one variable, the outcome would be different. But not here on eBay.

Whatever the issue is, eBay ''isnt letting go''.

I just passed a few great deals because I cant count ''on my partner'' (you know the one that dictates, orders, punishes, never takes blame, and is usually at fault - that partner)(oh bob cupcake you fool) to make sure that Ill sell through .....

Thats why theres Amazon ... I guess

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by: shut1968 This user has validated their user name.

Sat Feb 17 23:36:27 2018

Try doing a search for some of your more popular items from a completely different location using a device not logged into or associated with your account. I'll bet you find a lot of it has to do with the new search features.  If your items are listed in competition with other sellers Ebay now pulls up a catalog page showing 1 item that it claims is the best match and groups all others into the same page. Buyers have to jump through hoops just to get to see what other buying options there are.  Lowest price alone will not get you the best match, shipping distance, price, handling time and seller rating can all play a part in it.  I think they have been experimenting with it since probably about that time last year but made it the full on search feature in January.  It's part of their lame feeble attempt at trying to become Amazon like.  Unfortunately until someone there finally figures out that they already had their chance to stop Amazon and blew it back in the early 2000's and will NEVER become Amazon..and that the only shot they have at taking back the #1 spot is to find a way to bring back all the sellers they pissed off and lost to Amazon over the last 15 years and go back to just being ''Ebay'' they will never have even the slimmest chance of re-claiming the top spot.   Too many ignorant people running the company that have no clue on  how to fix things or how successful online market places work.  Until they start listening to sellers or maybe bring in some sellers/former sellers to get things right it will never be fixed.

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by: SomeeBaySeller This user has validated their user name.

Sat Feb 17 23:58:02 2018

Might help if we have a link to the store.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sun Feb 18 02:09:18 2018

I see a slow down in sales this time of year, every year.  For me it starts about mid February and will continue until after tax day, April 15th, well April 17th this year.  Once people know what their tax impact is, they seem to feel better and ready to spend again.  Or at least this is what I've always thought as by the end of April things are picking up again for me.

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by: Sierra This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 18 02:14:51 2018

Alesia,
Before you pay eBay for ads, I'd suggest doing all the FREE promotion you can. This should include a FB business page, Instagram, and Pinterest. ALL FREE! If you're new to social media, it may take a bit to get followers, but it will happen!

On Instagram, it's ALL about the tags. With Pinterest, I've had the best luck when pinning to group boards. While you're on FB, check out the thousands of selling groups there.

There are other social media sites, but they're lesser known or has-been's.

Good luck!

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Feb 18 11:15:45 2018

The slow period will pass.

I too have been selling on eBay for 20 years.

January was the slowest month I ever had.

Things are picking up and sales are going back to normal rates of about 3-4 a day.

You might try lowering some prices on things you have little invested in to jump start sales. . .

Perminate Link for Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet   Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 18 12:15:55 2018

Your ebay user ID is slated for  Termination, ebay has found new sellers that their algorithm has determined are more profitable to ebay, then your items,

Do Not waste your time thinking it will change, or it's just a seasonal thing,  we sell fine thru our site steady all year long, it's ebay that is the problem, they might show your items every once and a while to keep you paying something, to keep you thinking it's your fault, to keep you at ebay, but overall you are finished at ebay  as a seller, your sales will never recover to what they once were, best to find another venue,

 

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by: Scotty This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 18 13:08:04 2018

I'm sitting in Australia right now for work and the visiblity for my listings are few and far between.  I have checked both the ebay,com.au site as well as ebay.com
I do this every time I leave the country and it is the same result.  I do this through the local internet as well as a VPN to mask my location and results are always the same (less and even less visibility).
With regards to monthly sales....I have miraculously been at a certain monthly sales $$$ +/- $100 for almost 2 years at this point.  No matter the mixed inventory, no matter the price, no matter the format, etc.....same monthly result.  NO ONE on earth is going to tell me this is coincidence....statistically IMPOSSIBLE.....the game is rigged,.

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Feb 18 15:41:59 2018

@Scotty

My past monthly sales:

July $5102

August $5990

September $4199

October $3975

November $4194

December $3795

January $2645

February (current month) $2292

Perminate Link for Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet   Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 18 16:01:34 2018

Just like in a grocery aisle where are the name brands pay for middle of sight shelf visibility. Its the guy who pays the most who wins the game. Small sellers don't pay the bills for ebay they only think that they do.

Its the big guys that get the shelf space as they are the ones who pay.

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This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Sun Feb 18 18:41:16 2018

If someone is selling a unique item, like I do, no ads will be present.
My sales are way, WAY down. It's the uncertainty in the economy.
Cash is worth more than almost anything you can buy with it.
I only buy what I absolutely need, that can also be used for unforeseen emergencies.
I buy less than one hundred in frivolous purchases for the month after all utilities, etc....

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sun Feb 18 19:58:02 2018

What the OP writes mirrors EXACTLY what I have seen on my accounts. The decline started in June, and these past couple of weeks have been the worst ever.

Thankfully I sell on other sites.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sun Feb 18 20:01:31 2018

Maxmad, I think that you are absolutely right. I would not disagree with anything that you said.

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by: Mark4 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 18 21:53:48 2018

Buyers are leaving, we get more sales now on Bonanza and Amazon than on ebay. Alot of ebay buyers now only use Bonanza, more are going there since ebay announced  the end of paypal.

Perminate Link for Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet   Seller Seeks Answers after eBay Sales Plummet

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Feb 18 22:08:49 2018

@Mark4

"Alot of ebay buyers now only use Bonanza, more are going there since ebay announced the end of paypal."

Most buyers are totally unaware that Paypal and eBay are breaking up!

eBay wants to get rid of Paypal but if buyers persist in using it it will still be accepted. . .

I think eBay has a "pipe dream", the only problem is buyers don't have the same dream!

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by: Janek This user has validated their user name.

Sun Feb 18 22:28:38 2018

It might take some time when somebody will ask Ebay a question: Are you manipulating the market, search engine, or pricing? They will answer NO, But your artificial intelligence does? They will say get ''artificial intelligence'' to jail !!!  

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by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 19 06:09:28 2018

@Rexford

Yes, we even tested this last year by obtaining a ''Brand New'' user ID
we did the full , ebay new seller restrictions, where they hold your funds, and limited amount of listed items, and we listed  the ''exact same items'', guess what?  ebay  started showing our items and we started selling again, for about 6 months, then out of no where exact same thing, zero sales, items buried, no sales. competitors getting ALL the sales again.

The China sellers do the same, they rotate and obtain many new user ID's  

ebay search programming is rigged, it's crooked, it's fixed, it gives an unfair advantage to whoever it thinks will deliver the most profit for ebay,

Once you have a few sellers selling  items that are even remotely similar, that's it, your either going to sell a lot or nothing at all.

it's a TOTAL DISGRACE, of a company, I hope one day they pay, best match ''for ebay'' is collusion to put the most money in their pockets, a fraudulent, scam, and all the while they say you're their partner, and how they want you to succeed, it's all a scam, pure lies

it use to be that when you listed an item you had equal exposure, with everyone else,  

Our website sales are steady,  are reliable, and predictable the more we promote the more we sell, our sales graphs are accurate, they show exactly what is expected, popular items sell more, we run a sale, or promote thru google or social media, we see an increase, just like a normal business

ebay is a warped and distorted world, the sales data is corrupt, and should never be used for anything,

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Feb 19 06:18:18 2018

Agreed MaxMad.  Those of us who have sold there for many years have witnessed their mission creep.

The best that I can hope for is that one day someone will expose the depth of their manipulation and its harmful effects on sellers.   Meanwhile, for the most part, I've moved on.  I need business partners who help me grow my business, not a business partner who goes out of their way to destroy it.  And that is just what eBay have done.

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by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 19 07:05:14 2018

@toolguy

unless you are getting your items for free, and pay no FVF those are some very sad looking sales figures.

I would seriously consider selling on some different venues,

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