Live day two: a short post about love

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I have to confess my holiday romance. I know next week I’ll be back home with the France I love, but right now, this thing me and Chicago have going just feels special. I love the way the lions outside her art museum glow green in the night. I love the way that when she rains, the raindrops are warm. I love her tall, tall buildings that go all the way to the sky.

And actually, I’ve fallen in love with eBay again too. For many sellers, the relationship with eBay is the so-over one that you can’t quite bring yourself to end. As one seller put it, “I feel like an abused wife. I know I should leave but I have nowhere else to go.”

It’s time to face reality. We’re not 14 anymore and eBay isn’t Donny Osmond/Simon le
Bon/someone from McFly (pick your own decade). We don’t plaster our walls with posters torn out of Jackie magazine, and sellers at this year’s Live are not groupies; they’re not covering themselves with ribbons and pins, and they don’t appear to be even slightly interested in the execrable sticker book. This is suddenly a relationship with some perspective to it; eBay’s not the hottie we once raved about, it’s done bad things and hurt us in the past, but it is – or can be – now a business partner we can work with. I feel as though this week we quietly turned a corner. Let’s make this thing work.

9 Responses

  1. Great Post Sue,

    If only it were that easy. If buyers decide it isn’t worth it then all the seller resolve to make it work won’t change a thing.

  2. I think Biddy has been on the sauce Norf.

    I just hope no pictures of Mounty riding a green Lion are forthcoming.

  3. Youre spot on Sue, but the problem I see is that the reason why Ebay was so successful and was loved round the world was for exactly the points you mention that ebay have now taken away.
    I used to tell anyone who would listen to get onto ebay to buy and sell, now i’m scared to mention it, and when I do espicially to buyers they just shout and say no choice and over priced.
    Elvis has left the building!

  4. Sue, I agree with your optimism! I’m sorry I didn’t get to meet you and Chris this weekend, but I do keep up with your blog regularly.

    I’m pretty encouraged going forward, both for my business and for eBay. I do feel sorry for sellers who are struggling, and we certainly are struggling as well (this year’s fee hike hit our business model very hard) but I do believe John Donahoe is on the right track, as difficult as it is. Ebay isn’t an island anymore, it exists in a much larger online marketplace, and the sellers here have to be competitive with off-eBay websites as well. This is a tough go.

    JAY Senese / jayandmarie

  5. ok, i might not be popular with what i am going to post, but here it goes.

    I am very happy with the changes. even though there has been alot, ive learnt to adjust to them. I felt that the old eBay was the typical car boot sale, but now it can be seen as a more serious business partnership.

    The reason why so many sellers are up in arms, is because, lets face it, we have had it easy over the last few years when it came to customer services etc. eBay let us decide what we felt was ”acceptable” for our buyers.

    I feel by ebay putting standards onto the site, then in time it will be for the good.

    what i have learnt from my early years in business, is not to put hurdles in front of buyers. I always remeber my first job in a super market, where my boss said, remember ”the customer is always right, (even when there wrong).” so i have kept that motto in my eBay business.

    personally i dont put any terms and conditions on my listings! you ask why?

    well i feel why should i be puttung in conditions and restrictions to my potential buyers. My pet hate is when sellers put in, ”ive no control of the postal service, so no refunds if lost’!!!!

    i prefer keeping it simple – ”if not happy with your product please let me know, as i strive for 100% customer service” – or ” feel confident shopping with me, as If not 100% happy with product please return for full refund”.

    well thats my rant. and i know many people wont agree with me, but thats just my opinon.

    enjoy the weekend folks 🙂

  6. the customer is not always right
    but if they have money to spend with me, I dont mind deluding them

  7. abs,
    You’re very correct. I’ve been supporting the one-way feedback change all along. Most other retail sites don’t have feedback for buyers. Everyone’s up in arms about it because that’s what they’re used to. I do wish eBay would count feedback so heavily for everything. I’d rather it be almost a non-issue, like it is on Amazon. Instead, eBay currently revolves around feedback.

    As a seller, I always do whatever I can to make my customers happy, even if I think they’re complete asshats 🙂 eBay buyers do tend to be more high-maintenance, but I’m hoping the changes will eventually make it less so.

    I do wish eBay would work with us more than against us, though. Some two-way communication would be a benefit for everyone. I suspect a lot of sellers are leaving because they feel slighted or downright insulted by eBay’s approach to the changes.

    Personally, I haven’t listed anything since the changes were put in place. I’m waiting for everything to shake out before I get back to listing. I’m also diversifying to other platforms, since it’s just good business sense to do that, rather than depend on one platform. I’m more hopeful about eBay, based on some of the new announcements, especially the new seller protections for all levels of seller (do these apply to you guys in the UK or other non-US sites?). I guess all I can do is wait and see what happens.



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