eBay’s 2017 UK Retail Report

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eBay’s 2017 UK Retail Report is out and it’s well worth spending some time browsing.

There are some amazing numbers in the report – for instance it reveals that 5.5 million parcels have now been shipped via eBay’s Global Shipping Program. If you’re not using GSP then it may well be time to consider doing so as it’s matured and obviously popular with buyers.

Whilst the US, France, Italy, Germany and Australia are the top five destinations UK eBay sellers export to, the report reveals that the average number of markets a sellers ships to is twenty. Sales to other locations may be a little sparser but they all add up so if you’re not offering shipping to as many countries as possible then you could be missing out on a slice of margin.

eBay’s 2017 UK Retail Report also gives some retail insights such as ten of the UK’s most wanted items over the past year and the five top products exported by British sellers. The top ten most wanted items in the UK also have graphs to show you which months demand was highest as well as a break down of popular search terms by month of the year. Through search, eBay have unveiled an entirely new list of consumer wants – the things they know shoppers are looking to buy even before they commit to spending. This allows eBay to identify what the really big trends of the year were. Fidget spinners and air conditioning units are both new entries this year.

It’s also increasingly obvious that shoppers watch TV with their phones in hand. eBay’s 2017 UK Retail Report reveals the top ten influencing programs and films of the year (with La La Land, Star Wars and Suicide Squad leading the pack) and they know that BBC dramas like Taboo and Sherlock are also big influencers.

There are a ton of other interesting insights in the report, so when it’s time for your morning coffee break have a browse through to pick up the data points that are relevant to your business.

22 Responses

  1. eBay’s GSP……….I have only experienced this as a buyer…….predominantly from US sellers.

    I have found it to very expensive for the buyer, takes longer and the tracking is all over the place as its handed from the seller to USPS to WN to 13ten to Yodel and it finally gets to me.

    As a seller, I am far happier using RM’s Small Parcel service for UK and International or eBay’s Shutl offering in the UK (mainly to get good UPS prices) or Interparcel so I can access discounted ParcelForce services within UK and discounted UPS services worldwide

  2. 5.5m parcels
    royal mail have not handled ,
    as a seller its poor tracking or non existing tracking
    pathetic insurance was the deal breaker for us,
    global shipping only for us
    we were tired of inadequate cover , false claims from buyers ,
    buyers buying 20 items then holding you to ransom for combined shipping discount

  3. Would much rather use GPS and let ebay/GPS pick up the cover for any mistakes or cost of postage if a buyer wants to return an item. Yes may take a few more days to get there but they are full tracked and only have to worry about the item getting to the GPS centre.

    For all those that complain that ebay won’t make it thou the end of the year or is finished. They seem to be doing a good job with this programme.

  4. Its just a shame that Pitney Bowes seem to be the ones making the biggest profit from the GSP. I believe thats the only reason GSP is more expensive than normal Royal Mail International business rates. Pitney Bowes processes the GSP parcels and take their cut. Not my favourite company. I have heard sellers accusing Ebay of making profits on the GSP – I don’t think thats the case (other than the normal listing and seller fees) Pitney Bowes seem to be adding 15%.

    I would be interested to know anyones thoughts if they know for sure why GSP is more expensive than Royal Mail International business rates and any insight in Pitney Bowes involvement.

    Couldn’t Ebay look at matching Royal Mail International rates?

  5. @tyler
    ‘I can’t see that Ebay pay them that much out of what we pay them so the money has to come from somewhere’
    The buyer pays, typically rather more than for most sellers international shipping charges. To non-EU countries the buyer also pays up-front for all charges for customs clearance, taxes and duties.
    If you look at items from US on UK site you will see GSP ‘all inclusive’ prices on items from sellers enrolled in the scheme.

  6. @tyler
    If you look at eBay item 272889986040 on the UK site you will see (by clicking into the listing):
    Price $299.99, shipping to UK $24.50 and ‘import charges’ (to be confirmed at checkout) $85.68.
    (Item may be available cheaper in the UK or elsewhere in the world – no claims made either way!!)

  7. The GSP effectively increases the postage cost by 33% for the buyer. Not a great move if you are stuck with enforced IPR, as the postage can not be combined for multiple items. It’s was overseas trade killer for me.

    It would be nice to offer GSP alongside other postal services but it’s all or nothing with eBay….simply because they stick 30% extra on the price it actually costs if we use international signed delivery. They don’t care about us offering our customers choices anymore as long as they get their 10%.

    eBay are slowly removing choices.

  8. I can only see GSP as a win/win for sellers, like myself, who don’t already offer sales outside the UK.

    The cost of my postage is the same as UK rates and I don’t have to worry about dealing with overseas postal services & returns etc.

    The potential is increased sales with few problems at no extra cost.

    Buyers have a choice, they are given the upfront costs prior to paying for the items.

    We do currently sell to a few overseas buyers, but they make their own arrangements, we post the item to an international forwarding address in the UK that they have set up.

  9. GSP has been pretty much the only thing ebay has tried in recent times that has been a winner. And here’s the point some of you are missing:

    It wasn’t really designed for those sellers who are happy dealing with and shipping directly to international buyers. It was designed for those who were not, who had entirely dropped international sales on the grounds they were too much effort and risk for the reward.

    The GSP has made dealing with international buyers just like dealing with UK buyers. We’ve not had a single lost item or claim made under it. The time and effort that has gone into processing GSP orders is no different to any other UK order. That’s why they’ve handled 5.5 million parcels.

    If it takes a few days longer to arrive, or costs the buyer a little more (which is debatable depending on parcel weight/size/destination), I am fine with that. The pros heavily outweigh the cons.

  10. A French Ebay buyer (supplied through Global Shipping) recently opened a Returns Request saying parts of the kit were missing from his order.

    I disputed this with Ebay Resolutions as I could prove that everything was in the large kit by the exact shipping weight (to the nearest gram) supplied to me by the carrier.

    Ebay Resolutions closed the Return down in my favour, without penalty to me.

    However, the French buyer wins ultimately without having to return anything. Ebay have refunded him the full amount he paid (£83). So he gets his money back in full, plus they said that he can keep the kit – unbelievable.

    I presume GSP Insurance covered this, but it appears to be a loop hole where foreign buyers can get ‘freebies’.

    So I suggest that if other sellers experience similar false claims from foreign buyers and the seller can prove things from their side, to not accept the return and to appeal.

  11. The biggest problem I have with the GSP is that it will randomly decide not to ship certain items to certain countries, you know, little out of the way places that no-ones ever heard of like the US of A – which pretty much takes the ‘Global’ out of ‘Global Shipping Program. It’s supposed to tell you when it does this but in my experience it never does – which means the first you hear of it is some irate would be bidder complaining they can’t bid. I reckon using the GSP on a recent sale cost me about £50 in lost US bids.


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