Newsflash: eBay moving to free insertion fees

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In a workshop at ChannelAdvisor Catalyst, Jody Ford from eBay has just announced that they are heading towards FREE insertion fees.

They are working to offer great economics linked to sellers success and are working to reduce insertion fees. Having already reduced them in January this year they are looking towards a pricing structure which would include free insertion fees to enable sellers to list all of their inventory on the site.

There are no timescales, but free insertion fees are definately on the agenda for some products / catagories / listing formats.

45 Responses

  1. No it wont Mark, as SIF allows products to be grouped as desired by the seller.

    SIF should stay. In my mind insertion fees on SIF should be ZERO or nominal 0.01. It doesnt appear in the search results by default, only if the potential buyer opts in to search SIF. When the SIF item sells, the FVF pays back eBay. Win win win situation. I’d list all the high quality items I have to sell and not have to worry if one item takes 6 months to sell.

  2. Can’t see it working. Free to list surely would mean the whole site would be flooded with duplicate listings.

  3. It worked on yahoo auctions whirly.

    Also, don’t forget the DSR and search result linkage.

  4. And there is a listing policy that can be enforced ๐Ÿ˜‰ ebay dont seem to care unless someone complains.

  5. I have an awful feeling the gods of ebay are going to bugger things right up!

  6. yahoo uk auctions, ended around 2002. Bought by eBay? Yes, the site was full of tat, but they didnt have a listing policy of any note – nor was the searching and cat layout as developed as eBay. I bought a lot of good stuff there. Cheap too ๐Ÿ˜€

  7. system_skins – I can’t see free listing fees without a higher FVF.

    They must feel they can control search now with Best Match so only the best product will be surfaced.

    This change would actually make Shops more important as i believe Shop listings will be available in search just like everything else. eBay said they want all of your inventory listed.

    Shops actually may grow from this.

  8. Personally I am all for lower listing fees. The free gallery a few weeks ago certainly encouraged me to list more. Yes eBay maybe moving more to the Amazon type system, but if it works why not. I see this as a positive move.

  9. I would certainly welcome shops showing better as my stuff is mostly shop based. But as there are no free lunches (especially at ebay) then we can expect to pay even more in FVFs

  10. I would imagine that the majority of Ebays profits are earned from insertion fees, they would be crazy to remove them as it would destabilise their revenue.

    Much as I would like lower fees I prefer to pay them to ensure stability, let them remove gallery fee and stop at that.

  11. That is hard to believe with the history of their fee structures, but I will be interested to follow what happens. They always seem to find a way to stick it to us some how, if not insertion fees it will be FVF’s or something.

  12. I’d love to see them refund the posting fee for SUCCESSFUL listings, or give listing credits for each eBay item that sells.

    I’d love to see the after Christmas listing sales based on the pre-Christmas selling volume. For instance, if you sold 100 items from Thanksgiving to Christmas, you could post 100 items to the core for free in January.

    I wouldn’t mind if they tied some of this stuff in with seller performance. Maybe they could give deep discounts on posting fees to sellers whose sell thru percentage is higher than average.

    I’d also like to see this monkeying around OPTIONAL. If sellers could choose between low posting fee / high FVF high posting fee / low FVF, and medium posting fee / medium FVF, then it would attract sellers to the site rather than repel them. People can choose their cell phone plan. They should be able to choose their eBay fee structure as well.

  13. I was at Catalyst today and although not at the Round Table mentioned above, the theme I picked up on was that eBay would continue to consider lowering fees if that incentivised sellers to commit more inventory to the site.

    Now I can see how Free Gallery might support that and certainly improve the buyer experience in an increasingly busy search results page but it was only suggested that Free Gallery was being considered. I expect the results from the US to sway the UK team towards that decision but don’t bet your last dollar on that just yet if the proposed move to free listings is to be believed. They might need to monetise the option yet.

    As for free listings. A few years back the scenario was scary and one that actually helped differentiate eBay from the Yahoos and QXLs of this world. It helped put eBay where it is today. One DVD seller I spoke with on a rather rocky boat this evening would commit up to three times as much inventory (read invoice) if eBay were to lower the listings fees and I can see how that is attractive to eBay. They want volume. If that does occur then FVF will have to increase as “their success” is aligned with “your success”. That has been the message coming from eBay HQ now for 6 months and I think it will continue.

    In this deal DSRs would now give eBay the ability to accept more listings (regardless of quality) and then suppress the bad ones based on seller ratings. It means that the good sellers with lots of stock may well enjoy the chance to dominate whilst those that wish to simply flood the site with tat can do so but with diminishing views/bids/returns.

    In simple terms it makes sense but that might mean they have to ratchet up the lowest qualifying DSR ratings permitted to qualify for Best Match (a hunch, nothing more…).

    Pleasure to meet some of you eBayers at Catalyst today by the way. The prawns on the Thames were particularly good!

  14. One other thing I should add to Jamie’s comment is that Best Match as we’ve seen it in the US (and starting to see in the UK) is just the tip of the ice berg. A question that’s long flumoxed me is why when a search returns no results isn’t the “Seach item title and description box ticked?

    This would pull up more hits than simply offering an off eBay link. In the near future I’d expect search to be even smarter than before, but there is a definate will within eBay to remove obstacles to sellers listing their entire inventory on eBay, and one of those obstacles is listing fees.

  15. I was at Catalyst yesterday and there was a lot of, we might do this and we might do that, it was like listening to politicians, a lot of talk and not a great deal of action.

    When ebay was asked about free gallery, again there was a lot of ooh, aah, scratch my bum, we will see what the US are doing, we’ll have a cup of tea and think about it, anyone for a garibaldi!

    ebays session on “doubling your business on ebay this Christmas” was basically advising you to list all your inventory and you will have more sales – not sh!t sherlock!

    How much did I pay for these words of wisdom? I’m not going back to catalyst today…….


  16. My concern is that free listing fees will still enable poorly-performing sellers to flood the site with tat, as long as they don’t mind setting up new accounts every few weeks or so.

  17. ePay doesn’t give a flying FORNICATE about anything except putting money in Meg’s pocket. I’m absofornicatiinglutely positive that the thought process behind free listings is something on the order of “if we have free listings, everybody in the world will list and then we can FORNICATE THEM OVER with outrageous FVFs”.

    They fornicate honest sellers. They let the motherfornicating scammers rip everybody off and do not a fornicating thing about it. With the latest round of changes you can’t even warn somebody they’re going to get ripped off. Hades, even before you were taking a chance by warning somebody — if they complained to ePay, YOU were the one to get in trouble; not the motherfornicating scammer.

  18. Is it still half-term then? ๐Ÿ™„

    How DARE eBay try to make money! Someone tell the Daily Mirror!

  19. Look, ebay are really good at ifs and buts. Do you not see that this is just another publicity stunt before the feedback change. Then there is plans for paypal to be the ONLY method of payment worldwide within months according to the new CEO.

    ebay are toooooooooo greedy to give you something for nothing,

    Stick to sites like where listings are really free, lower fvf’s from 0% to 3% and also let sellers choose payment methods, like google checkout.

    Everyone needs to wake up and realise ebay do not give you something for nothing unless they make more back in another way is the way to go.

  20. It’s interesting to see ebay panicing anbd trying to copy the siccesful model used by Amazon and ebid. However my choice will always be ebid.
    why ebid?

    ebid: Free listing
    ebid:Free FVF (or small price for upgrades)
    ebid:ability to use google checkout and any other payment choices i like.
    ebid:ability to have 5 free stores
    ebid: High visibility-items automatically uploaded to google products if i choose
    ebid: ability to leave appropriate feedback for buyers and sellers- ANF feedback can be easily edited if situations change
    ebid: emails sendt to support team are answered by actual people- not automated responses
    ebid: My listings are visible to all 14 ebid sites- this week i have made sales to USA, Australia, Holland and Singapore.
    ebid: Accelerated growth rate. thousands of new members since february- and expectinmg another huge influxz next month
    ebid: Able to find bargains- not page after page of Chinese import!
    ebid: easy to report fakes or scams- every listing has a ‘report this auction’ button on it. Plus ebid act fast to remove.
    ebid: ability to include videos in listings

    There are lots more reasons-the ones above were those that quickly came to mind ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. The last two posts says it all

    Ebid is a must
    Ebid you can trust

    Ebay is no longer cool
    Stay and end up the fool ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

  22. Hey Minx41, if only Ebid had some buyers that might hold true. Fact is that eBay have 14,000,000 visitors to the site a month (that’s one in every four man, woman and child in the UK).

    I’ve personally tried Ebid and they don’t have any buyers. I get more sales from an ad on a classified site or in the local print free ads than I do by putting a listing on Ebid.

    If you want to sell somewhere other than eBay currently your only other serious marketplaces are Amazon or (if you sell media). Currently eBay, like them or not, have all the buyers and until that changes it’s a like it or lump it situation.

    No point having free or close to free listings if no one is buying them (and incidentally listing on Ebid is NOT free, you have to pay to get free listing).

  23. Ebid is getting more and more sellers coming over by the thousands, the damage ebay has been doing to the moral of both buyers and sellers is taking a tremendous affect. Ebay started off in small way once helped along by the small as well as big sellers but the abuse and disregard for those peeps now is taking it’s toll. Ebid is already established and is user friendly for both buyers and sellers and they have nothing to lose in listing there and as for buying it is cheaper for the simple reason there is no listing fees and the savings are passed on to the buyer. :mrgreen:

  24. Ebid is getting more and more sellers coming over by the thousands

    So Ebid has thousands of sellers and still no buyers? ๐Ÿ˜†

  25. Oh crikey here we go again ๐Ÿ˜ฏ Apples are better than PC’s, Nintendo’s are better than Playstations, Canon’s are better than Nikons, Albion are better than Wolves (though that one happens to be true), blah blah blah, blah, blah blah.

    The only thing that I know is that my sales grow every month. So whatever ebay are doing, it is working for me. If you are so sure that ebid is better than ebay, why don’t you go shout about it on tamebid? ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Chris Dawson, Please could you keep to facts regards free.

    You say “(and incidentally listing on Ebid is NOT free, you have to pay to get free listing).”

    That is simply not true. When you register, you become a buyer. Then you can upgrade to either seller WHICH IS FREE or seller+ WHICH IS FROM 1.99

    If you choose to just be a seller and you choose the STANDARD auction the listing is FREE

    If there were no buyers on there, could you then wake me from my dream because I have had 24 sales in 2 and a half months, but I am ONLY A SMALL SELLER. Incidently 10 of these sales were sold to people in USA & Canada & Italy

  27. You’re right… so long as you don’t want to use BuyNow Price, Gallery Picture, Cross Promotions or Checkout (and a few other features) it’s free. If you want to use any of those essential features it’s not, but you sure as hell won’t get any sales without gallery etc (and probably not with!)

    Congratulations on your sales, glad you’re having more success than I did where I got more actual sales from a single classified ad than I had page views on Ebid. Without page views there’s no chance of a sale.

    I don’t know of a single seller who can make a full time income out of the site. If anyone is making a living on Ebid (say earning just the national average of around ร‚ยฃ25k) I’d be very interested to talk to them.

  28. no buyers on ebid ??? well i have sold over 120 items this month 95 to one usa buyer and i`m in the uk

    i guess some people just cannot get their facts correct before spouting out rubbish

  29. I think your right Chris…

    Ebid is just not a viable sales channel as it stands, and ultimatley i dont see it happening for the Ebid guys in the future.

    Ebay knows it has to change to keep up with the Amazon’s and Play’s of this world, and they will change…

    I predict by xmas 08 you will see a completly different eBay in which there will be changes in the way they charge sellers to list items.

    You have to see it from eBay’s point of view in regards to them changing their fee structue’s. If they let all the sellers list fixed price items for free, that is a hell of a lot if income they are loosing on the provision that sellers list more and sell more (which in-turn generates the lost income from insertion fees).

    I think sellers should hold fire, and see what happens…whatever the guys do, it will be of benefit to sellers and eBay!

  30. My sales are improving all the time on eBid. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Yesterday I sold 10 books and had 8 bids on other items. The buyers are coming.
    I only list on ebay when they have cheap listing days and I never bother to list books at all.

  31. I think sellers should hold fire, and see what happensรขโ‚ฌยฆwhatever the guys do, it will be of benefit to sellers and eBay!

    Whatever the guys do will be for the benefit of ebay, ebay and ebay.

  32. I have had more sales on eBid this month than on ebay and have sold cheaper but with a bigger profit. Glad I found eBid

  33. I joined eBid 1st February 2008
    I’m a seller+ lifetime member (1 payment of $49.99)
    Only 1 registration allowed – no multiple identities (I like this feature)
    Up to 5 stores FREE
    My own gallery to store all my images FREE
    List all I want as long as I want FREE
    Easy 1 page listing format
    Gallery listings are 2% FVF – Non Gallery listings 0% FVF
    Multiple payment choices – even cash if you want
    Unlimited private messaging
    Buyer/Seller feedback – editing option to reflect any changes in transaction
    Excellent customer/admin service – response within 24hrs from real people
    Excellent forums with friendly/helpful members – admin participation also
    Incentives: Affiliate links on my own website, buddy points earned for each buy/sell/refer transaction to use as payment for special eBid offerings.
    I am also a buyer, like so many other sellers are also
    My first sale was on 25th March and have made 5 more since then (2 today)
    My total fees to date (excl membership fee) $1.64 (using gallery listings)
    eBid cares about it’s Sellers and Buyers

    Business is picking up pretty good for me now

    eBay charges an auction style listing fee for 7 days – more for 10 days
    eBay charges $15.95 per month for a store + listing fees every 30 days
    eBay charges 8.75% FVF for auction listings – 12% FVF store listings
    eBay forces paypal payment option
    eBay Feedback – sellers can only give positive – Buyers can give what they want (as of May)
    eBay don’t give a toss about it’s sellers (their customers)
    eBay encourage scammers
    eBay have an excellent canned email response
    eBay live help don’t know what they are doing
    eBay customer service is abysmal (do they even have one?)
    eBay have become dictatorial

    Why would I ever want to go back to eBay???

  34. The above post says it all, ebid is flourishing and the buyers get the benefits, I have sold seven items between yesterday and today ๐Ÿ˜†


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