EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 205 - December 16, 2007 - ISSN 1528-6703     1 of 8

From the Editor

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David and I were talking to a friend recently about her holiday shopping experience. She admitted that she only shops on sites like and because she's not sure how to find products online and worries about the risk of fraud. The conversation got us thinking about the online-buying process, so we decided to conduct our first buyer survey to learn more.

Please put your buyer hat on and take a few minutes to answer the survey, and pass it along to friends, family and colleagues. We will share the results with you next month.

It seems that eBay and are increasingly moving into each other's turf. On Friday, AuctionBytes Newsflash ran an article about's new online-payment service. The "Pay Now with Amazon Payments" buttons can be added to product listings, shopping carts and checkout pages on your own ecommerce websites. Competition is good, and Amazon Payments joins PayPal, Google Checkout and BidPay in offering payment-processing services for small merchants. It behooves these companies to be open, and I hope eBay will change its stance on prohibiting sellers from accepting payment services offered by mainstream companies such as these.

Friday's article, "Amazon Goes Head-to-Head with PayPal and Google Checkout," has more about the Amazon Payments program, including merchant fees (

We wrote this week about eBay fee-changes coming in 2008. eBay spokesperson Hani Durzy said the company is still reviewing the testing it has done with various promotions conducted this year, and said in terms of fee changes, "everything is on the table." While he would not get specific, he did say the following: "It appears that the pain point caused by the ratio of upfront fees versus success fees seems to be a little more severe in fixed-price listings." Read the full AuctionBytes Newsflash article from Thursday here:

Several AuctionBytes readers have urged us to make the Ecommerce Industry SoundBytes podcast ( available on iTunes so they could download them automatically to their iPods. Our trusty programmer created an iTunes-compatible feed. If you have iTunes installed, click on this link to subscribe:

I hope the holiday shopping season has been kind to your wallets. We're looking forward to spending Christmas with family. May you enjoy your holidays, and here's to a happy, healthy 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

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