Many eBay sellers source stock by acting as a Trading Assistant. Trading Assistants are experienced eBay sellers who will sell your items on eBay for a fee so if you don’t have the time or have items of high value an experienced seller can handle the eBay transactions on a commission basis.
A Trading Post is a highly experienced Trading Assistant who provides staffed drop-off locations with regular business hours. You can drop by the Trading Post without having to call ahead or arrange a meeting time.
There is increasing legislation in the US with Florida joining Louisiana, Tennessee and Maine as the latest to start regulating Trading Posts and how they operate. The Florida Board of Auctioneers in their quarterly new letter said that Trading Posts should be treated as auctioneers, requiring their owners to be licensed. To become licensed involves some 80 hours of classroom work and a years apprenticeship so many owners of Trading Posts are stunned at the implications.
The ruling came as a surprise to both eBay and Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation who both consider an auctioneers license is not required for eBay Trading Posts. Red tape is increasing though, including the requirement to check any items with serial numbers against the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s stolen-property database. eBay show little concern at Trading Posts being required to carry out checks for stolen property but do fight moves such as requiring sellers to become licensed.
In the UK draconian legislation of this kind is some way off – there are only a couple of Trading Posts in the country, but doubtless as they expand and new companies enter the field similar measures will be considered.