From the Editor
By Ina Steiner
We all expect eBay to "adjust" fees each January, but this year the news came earlier in the month than normal. I believe eBay was trying to get this announcement out of the way before announcing the initiatives that the President of eBay North America mentioned in his letter about the fee-hike.
Bill Cobb wrote, "Later this month, I'll be addressing a group of eBay sellers who will be here in person in the San Jose area, and I'll be sharing some of our plans and priorities for the coming year. My keynote speech will be available via a recorded Webcast for our whole Community to tune into. And we'll also be following the event with more announcements on specific initiatives. I think you'll find we're taking a surprisingly fresh look at some of the old challenges, and I'm excited about the road ahead." http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/abn/y07/m01/i03/s00
People are discussing a new PayPal security device on the eBay discussion boards (http://forums.ebay.com/db2/thread.jspa?messageID=2005070616&). I haven't confirmed it with PayPal, but it could be one of the initiatives referred to by Bill Cobb.
I wrote up some things to watch in 2007 in an AuctionBytes Newsflash article: http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/abn/y07/m01/i02/s02
I'll add one other thing to the list of things to keep an eye on: eBay drop-off stores. While the eBay drop-off store trend grew very fast, it seems it is now past its peak. It will be interesting to see what happens this year.
In the last issue, I wrote about the U.S. Postal Service's Click-N-Ship SCAN form (http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/abu/y206/m12/abu0181/s02). Several people wrote in wondering when Paypal was going to implement SCAN in its shipping-label service. As far as I know, it's scheduled for the end of January, but I have not yet received official confirmation.
This is a good time of year to get organized, and in today's issue, Brad and Debra Schepp discuss some strategies for preparing an eBay business for a crisis, such as a family emergency or weather-related catastrophe. Hopefully you'll never face an emergency, but it makes good business sense to put some safeguards in place to be prepared. Thanks to the readers who wrote in with personal stories when I announced this topic would be forthcoming (and to the reader who suggested the topic before we announced it!). We've opened a forum thread for readers to share their stories and offer helpful tips, you can find a link at the bottom of the article.
Here's to a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year, thanks for reading.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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