22% Drop in personalised items due to eBay policies

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One eBay seller reports that they have seen a 22% drop in sales on a particular product since eBay insisted that active content be removed from listings. The reason for this is that they had a widget to gather personalised information for products embedded in their listings and with the ban, this is no longer possible.

Marketplace seller Andrew Dodd of You Personalise points out that this isn’t a problem specific to eBay, but also impacts the ease of selling on Amazon.co.uk. It’s not the lack of Active Content which is the problem per se, but the failure of marketplaces to build a product fit for purpose for selling personalised items.

Andrew points to his Amazon.com listings where products can be listed giving the ability for customers to enter there personalisation details at the point of purchase. Amazon.com makes this very easy, but why in that case is the feature not also available to merchants and buyers on Amazon.co.uk?

Smaller marketplaces such as the UK’s gift specialist marketplace NotOnTheHighStreet and craft market Etsy have the ability to enter personalised information as do relative newcomers such as Yumbles the food marketplace. It doesn’t appear that the feature should be overly hard to achieve given that the global personalized gifts market size is set to reach $31.63 Billion by 2021 and a YouGov survey put the size of the personlised gift market in the UK at over £1 Billion back in 2015.

Amazon and eBay appear to be the two marketplaces lagging behind and of course it’s not just text personalisation that’s required – sellers are also struggling with the ban on exchanging contact information making it harder to receive high quality image files for printed goods.

With Christmas just two months away, this is the key time of year for sales of personalised gifts. If you sell custom made items are you seeing a drop in sales since the Active Content ban and eBay’s stringent tightening of their links policy blocking the easy exchange of contact information? Are sales simply migrating to marketplaces other than eBay UK and Amazon UK to sites that do have personalisation tools in place?

3 Responses

  1. Are eBay and Amazon not aware that under online selling laws in the EU and the UK a seller must display “PROMINENTLY” and provide all methods of contact before during and after a transaction.
    This must also be available for any period after to cover warranty information so in some cases that is 3 years yet eBay say 120 days (but do not state that in their new policy it just says you can communicate your contact details after you have transacted with the person again rather ambiguous and not enforceable by UK law as no time limit is stated) after a transaction which falls short of any warranty period.

    Our sales have dropped by 14% on last year on standard products and many friends are showing the same trends. Unfortunately eBay seem to be clutching at straws and destroying their the actual basis of the site which got them to where they are now. Soon they will be left with just the huge companies. Who they seem to allow to have their logo all over there listings just type in the word ARGOS. Surely everyone knows who they are without needing a link.

  2. Mark you details are still there, they don’t need to be in every description box for every item. Go look on any business website and you won’t find them splashed across the description of every item. They are usually in the contact us option near the top or bottom of the page. I think some sellers on here think the first thing a customer on here should read is their contact info.

  3. Let’s face it Ebay is shit and is getting shittier day by day.

    I sell a product with a list of colour options. Ebay insists that I sell THAT particular product in a correctly specified category BUT I then find “variations are not allowed in this category”

    Back to the beginning: Ebay is shit!


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