EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 1034 - June 07, 2005     1 of 5

Yahoo Auctions Eliminates All Fees

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Yahoo Auctions eliminated all fees on its auction platform. Sellers will pay no listing fees and no final value (commission) fees, effective as of June 6, 2005.

Rob Solomon, Vice President and General Manager of Yahoo Shopping, said on Monday that Yahoo monetizes the auction platform with its core graphical media (banner advertising) and search-based services.

Solomon said auction listings receive exposure on the Yahoo site through integration with Yahoo Shopping. The Yahoo Shopping results come back with merchant listings and Yahoo Auctions listings, and are presented in order of relevance. (Editor's note: I'm waiting to hear back from Yahoo's public relations department, since searches I conducted on Yahoo Shopping late Monday evening did not seem to be bringing back auction listings at all.)

When asked about concerns whether free listings would actually decrease the quality of the listings since anyone could list an unlimited amount of items, Solomon said Yahoo Auctions is utilizing anti-spam technologies developed for all Yahoo properties, including Yahoo Mail and Yahoo Groups, and technologies that detect fraud.

Yahoo requires credit-card verification for all sellers, and Solomon said Yahoo Auctions will leverage the community in a similar style as Craigslist - an example, he said, of a viable site with no listing fees.

While some smaller auction sites offer free listings, no established site offers commission-free listings. Reactions of sellers posting on auction-related discussion board ranged all along the pessimism-optimism scale: optimistic because of the money they will save on listing fees; and pessimistic over fears of low sell-through and a high Non-Paying Bidder rate.

About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to

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