Offering PayPal no longer compulsory on eBay Australia

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eBay have backed down in Australia and will no longer require PayPal to be offered as a payment option on eBay listings. In the future it will be sufficient simply to offer one of three safe payment methods, with one option to sellers being to offer PayPal.

Following highly publicised criticism and investigation by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), eBay Australia’s Accepted Payment Policy will be revised as of July 14th 2010.

The long running dispute attracted over 350 submissions from interesting parties, most notable of which was a lengthy document which turned out to be from none other than Google, who at the time were hyping Google Checkout as a PayPal competitor.

eBay say that due to the changes the “ACCC has decided to discontinue its current inquiries into eBay’s payment policies. However, this does not restrict the ACCC from reviewing the effects of eBay or PayPal’s conduct in Australia if it raises competition concerns in the future”.

Moving forward in Australia many sellers will still be obliged to offer PayPal, but for those with either a Paymate account or who have their own merchant credit card facility the compulsion to offer PayPal will cease.

It does open the interesting question – do buyers *really* prefer PayPal? Will sellers continue to offer PayPal as an alternative payment method alongside Paymate or credit cards and if they don’t will it put off customers from purchasing from their listings?

8 Responses

  1. Good news ! Let’s hope the rest of the ebays around the globe take note.
    I have always believed that paypal has been force-fed to ebayers the world over because it’s so tightly woven into ebay fabric. The two are inseperable becuase ebay have made it that way.
    Not allowing, making one payment method exclusive or making it difficult to use an alternative payment method IS anti-competitive imho and that’s exactly what ebay have done with paypal.
    If I had a choice I wouldn’t use it. But I have no choice. My website customers however do have a choice and a very large % of them choose to use nochex.

  2. Would buyers like Paypal if they had to pay to use it?

    In effect they do as it is built into the sale price. One of those hidden costs that eBay buyers don’t see but pay for.

    I do sometimes wonder what impact it would have on sales to be able to offer discounts for the selection of alternative payment methods?

    The cute buyer is aware of the hidden costs of selling on eBay. More buyers than ever are making direct contact anticipating discount if they do.

    This was always going to happen the momeent eBay moved from a predominantly auction environment to a predominantly fixed price environment.

    I would expect this direct contact trend to conditinue to rise.

  3. This has to be good news.

    Maybe if Paypal had a little extra competition they wouldn’t bully sellers with things like 90 day rolling reserves.

  4. I signed up for Google Checkout and probably would have pursued it for Ebay sales if it werent for their edict on limiting who we can take payments from.

  5. I actually like paypal – it would be a nightmare trying to manage multiple payment options. Google checkout is ok, but it costs exactly the same as paypal (3.4%)…paypal at least have a reasonable tiered payment structure. I pay 1.9% which is ok.

    The reality is paypal gives buyers great protection, which allows me to sell high value goods. They have great anti fraud measures…I dont get fraud anymore when paypal is used.

  6. This will be VERY interesting.

    Paypal will now have real competition – which means that they will actually have to offer a product that buyers and sellers on eBay CHOOSE to use.

    Whilst I make no pretence that Paypal will become a shining light overnight, they are certainly going to have to get their act together on a number of issues or they are going to suffer!

    Personally, I am ambivalent about Paypal as a service. I use it, but I keep an eye on things. If it’s service levels improve, then I will feel happier about staying where I am already set up – but I will be looking at what the alternatives have to offer.

    And if someone has a good deal going, well then ….


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