eBay UK will announce a raft of changes on Monday including compulsory free postage for DVDs.
From early next year there will be maximum postage rates set for media and mobile phone categories. Richard Ambrose from eBay stated that some of the maximum rates will be below actual cost and for DVDs they will insist sellers offer free post, although upgrade to priority services and overseas postage can still be charged.
Other changes to be announced will include:
Feedback Revision will be live on the site in about a weeks time. Sellers will be able to request buyers revise negative or neutral feedback upwards with a limit of 5 revisions per 1000 transactions, which is roughly the rate of negative feedbacks left across the whole site.
eBay have already announced they’ll be protecting seller accounts by checking they are creating listings from the computer they habitually use. This is already turned on in TurboLister but will now roll out site wide by the end of October. If a seller tries to list from an alternative PC they’ll be required to confirm their identity before continuing which will prevent fraudsters from listing on hijacked accounts.
Annonymisation of emails
Similar to Australia eBay will begin to hide email addresses between eBay users until they have transacted. When buyers and sellers communicate eBay will create a temporary email address which can be replied to from email clients such as Outlook or webmail without the requirement to log into the eBay account.
This will be a great assistance for sellers trading on multiple eBay IDs to save time having to log into the relevant account just to answer a simple buyer enquiry.
Postage and Packing maximum charges
eBay will begin to set maximum postage costs from January, begining in the media and mobile phone categories with free post enforced for all DVD listings.
eBay will increase visibility of DSRs to enable sellers to improve their businesses. Users will begin to see a breakdown of DSRs by category to establish if particular product lines are dragging their overall scores down and enable them to target areas for improvement.
By early 2009 great DSR transparency will appear in the Seller Dashboard, but will be available to developers through the API by the end of the year.
eBay are focusing on the three top reasons why buyers stop buying on eBay
- Losing money on eBay
- Getting a negative feedback
- High postage and packaging charges
They have already made progress by banning sellers from leaving negative or neutral feedback for buyers, in 2009 they will be focusing on buyer safety – it’s simply not acceptable for buyers to be able to lose money on the largest ecommerce site in the UK. This is why changes such as anonymous emails and seller identity confirmation are being introduced. If fraudsters are unable to list on the site or contact potential buyers there is no way they can take their money.
Postage and packing charges will be next target area for eBay in order to meet buyer objectives. Although maximum or free postage charges are being introduced in media and mobile phones first, don’t be surprised if they come to your category next.