eBay have launched an eat all you can “Amazon Prime” style shipping program in Latin America. The idea is that you pay an annual fee and can purchase unlimited items on eBay.com, have them shipped to a holding address in Florida or Texas and eBay’s partner will then ship the package on to you for free.
The scheme operates in three countries (that we’re aware of), Chile, Mexico and Columbia. Priced at US$99 per year, there’s currently a promotion at US$49. You can also pay extra for packages over 3kg or choose to opt for a pay as you go plan paying for each package on an ad hoc basis.
eBay say that the Chile program, live since early April, has shown positive results to date: Customers enrolled in the program are purchasing 50% more items, and purchasing more expensive items.
What it means for you as a seller on eBay.com, is that you may find yourself shipping to a US address but that package is then forwarded on the the buyer. This is nothing new it can be considered an extension of eBay’s Global Shipping Program plus there are many third party companies offering forwarding addresses specifically for marketplace cross border purchases. You may well already have shipped to such as service and never even realised it and all eBay have done is officially partner with three forwarders and add in an annual payment plan similar to Amazon Prime.
Wendy Jones, VP of eBay global expansion and cross-border trade explains why the program exists: “eBay customers in Latin America tell us shipping is one of the biggest hurdles for them when purchasing on eBay, and our new international shipping membership programs aim to deliver a significantly improved option, we continue to invest in innovative new approaches to solve some of the pain points inherent in global commerce, including faster, more reliable and more cost-effective shipping choices”.