New eBay payments experience coming to the UK this summer

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eBay have just announced the United Kingdom will be the third country to offer the new eBay payments experience. Following trial rollouts in the US and the Germany, eBay UK will be rolling out the new eBay payments experience starting this summer so this announcement is a very early heads up to expect changes in the payments space in the near future. In the early trials, eBay has already processed $2 billion in GMV for almost 25,000 sellers saving them, they say, $10 million in fees as of the end of Q4 2019.

“We’re creating a modern managed marketplace. Taking control of the payments process on our platform is a key component of our strategy to enhance the eBay experience by breaking down barriers and removing complexities for our customers. We’ve seen great success in the US. and Germany and we’re thrilled to expand to the UK”
– Alyssa Cutright, VP of Global Payments, eBay

History of eBay Payments

eBay say that the roll out will offer buyers flexibility and choice in payment methods, and give sellers an easier way to manage their businesses. Frankly it’s bizarre that eBay haven’t had an integrated payments solution of their own – just about every other ecommerce platform in the world does. eBay missed the boat twice, once with BillPoint which few will remember and then with PayPal.

BillPoint was eBay owned and a fantastic service but apart from notable relatively high adoption in the UK wasn’t a worldwide success. PayPal was an upstart that internationally was adopted by eBay buyers and sellers to such an extent that eBay was virtually forced to buy the company. But, under the leadership of Meg Whitman PayPal was never integrated into eBay as eBay Payments and then when activist investors came calling under John Donahoe it was too easy to separate and strip off ‘to create investor value’. Now, the PayPal divorce agreement is due to expire this July giving eBay the freedom to rapidly expand the eBay new payments experience and, as one of the biggest eBay territories in the world naturally the UK is top of their list for a speedy roll out.

The good news is that the UK are not the Guinea Pigs – that was the US and Germany. Early lessons were learned, early problems (like not accepting PayPal from Day 1 in the new eBay payments experience) have been fixed, and we are being given several months notice in order to prepare. (Whilst eBay haven’t announced a date for the roll out to start, they’ve said ‘Summer’ and we know the operating agreement doesn’t expire until July so there’s four or five months yet to go).

Things to look forward to in the new eBay payments experience

There are many reasons to look forward to eBay payments for both sellers and buyers. For instance, under the current PayPal regime, it’s too easy for buyers to triple dip on refund attempts – once with eBay, then with PayPal and if that fails with their credit card provider. That will come to a stop as eBay will be a one-stop-shop under the new eBay payments experience.

Buyers experience the same type of problems, for instance I know of a case where an eBay account was hacked and purchase made and after eBay secured the account PayPal refused a refund as the consumer’s PayPal account hadn’t been compromised but eBay couldn’t refund as they never received the funds. The never ending game of ping pong between eBay and PayPal will stop as eBay will be responsible for the the sale and the money.

Something that should please both buyers and sellers is that there will be no more eCheques, frustrating when a buyer accidentally pays via eCheque and equally for the seller who is left wondering when it will clear and they can ship the item they just sold.

In the UK, eBay plans to offer buyers a variety of payment options, including credit card, Google Pay and PayPal. Apple Pay will also be available as a payment option on iPhone and iPad. The plus point as a seller is that you don’t have to worry how a buyer pays, it will all end up in your bank account.

“By starting to manage payments in the U.K. this year, we’re taking another step to deliver improvements for our customers. We know that sellers and buyers expect smooth and seamless transactions, and this new payments experience is designed to offer exactly that. In the coming months, we will make the transition as smooth as possible for sellers so they can take advantage of this important update quickly.”
– Rob Hattrell, VP, eBay UK

Questions about the new eBay payments experience

Although the move to the new eBay payments experience won’t start until summer, eBay have said that they expect to have transitioned a majority of UK business sellers by the end of 2020 and a majority of its marketplace customers in 2021.

We know you’ll have questions so feel free to ask them in comments below. Although we don’t have answers yet, we know you’ll be wanting details from eBay on everything from fees and what it’s going to cost (and how much the savings for most sellers will be) to what features will be supported such as selling through eBay for Charity, the Global Shipping Progam (and in general cross border trade) and what to do if you have an outstanding PayPal working capital loan. There are at least five months to find out the details, so watch this space.

If you are an eBay business seller and interested in being one of the first to move to the new eBay payments experience you can express your interest here.

43 Responses

  1. Some queries for eBay:

    Q1: Is eBay going have their own version of the PayPal Tiered Rate for the UK business sellers, from day 1?

    (Given the business sellers are getting the transitions first this will be very relevant. The US rate of one-off fee + 2.7% can be near 2x PayPal’s own 1.3-2.9% revenue dependent “Tiered Tate” – this is assuming that the final valuation fees stay the same).

    Q2. eBay has said that “they expect to have transitioned a majority of UK business sellers by the end of 2020”, this strongly implies this is going to be a mandatory change by the end of 2020 – whether we / our customers like it. Is this the case here?

    (This would be an alarmingly aggressive timeline with so little detail, assuming a July pilot rollout is post the GMV cap removal; surely only mandate if the rates are comparable to the tiered / have GSP support).

    Q3. Will the global shipping (GSP) be enabled from day 1 of the UK launch?

    (For many business sellers, GSP could account to a significant amount of their revenue, sometimes upto 1/3 for some sellers. If GSP isn’t compatible with eBay’s Managed Payment & we’re being mandated into Managed Payment in a rush (without a choice), some sellers will be made worse off. )

    Q4: Will the early users have a promotional period in terms of the rates?

    (As learned from the BillPoint / New Coke case study, people are adverse to change & used to PayPal. We as sellers, would be essentially selling a new Payment system to our customers, who have been using PayPal for nearly 15 years. There is a commercial cost to this transition inertia)

    Q5: Would the future site-wide promotion no longer support PayPal post the launch at any point? (presumably no plan for this until mainstream consumer usage in 2021?)

    Q6. Should the sellers expect a wholesale change to eBay’s final valuation fee structure? (not expecting an answer for this)

    (Some marketplaces combine final value and transaction – but this shift would majorly disrupt many sellers who price & source based on the pricing structure & takes time to re-adjust to new pricing).

    Q7. Could we have some reassurance, that after introducing the new Google Pay / Apple Pay – it won’t restrict the ability of the sellers to sell in any categories, compared to today? (especially in the electronic category; not expecting an answer for this)

    (The fear is that when eBay’s Managed payment is introduced, eBay could restrict some used electronics from being used, e.g. used iPhone. When Apple allowed Amazon to sell their new Apple devices – there was a simultaneous quid pro quo change, that restricts the used iPhone resell by the 3rd parties non-Apple authorised resellers. Apple would rather you buy a new one. The cost/terms attached to become an authorised Apple reseller is often unaffordable/unacceptable for most small sellers. It disrupted/damaged some small electronics stores’ core business. It would be good to know that eBay’s on the Sellers’ side, whilst enabling new features such as Apple Pay, would still let the business sellers sell what we could after Managed Payment- provide that it’s within the terms, whether it’s iPhone, or other stuff. )

    Q7B. If those new payment methods may narrow the item categories sellers could participate in, would the seller be able to opt-out from Apple Pay / Google Pay support, in order to retain the original allowance? (not expecting an answer).

  2. Are they still proposing to rip sellers off by charging a transaction fee on EACH item in a multiple order.

    This would significantly and unfairly increase payment fees for multiple items of low value.

    Ebay needs to be crystal clear about this NOW, so sellers can decide whether to follow those “help” links and close their accounts.

  3. Sellers like myself regularly have orders for say 50 low value items, payment fees on each item would kill that business.

    Equally PayPal offer a special merchant rate of 5p + 5% for sellers like myself who get many low value orders of under £5 and often as low as £1 – £2 delivered. Removing such a special merchant rate would also kill that business.

  4. I depend on PayPal’s IPN to keep my website inventory up-to-date and in sync with eBay. I hope eBay intend to have a similar sale notification instrument.

    In addition, virtually all my items are less than £3, and typically my sales are four/eight/twelve items (buy 3 get 1 free). A transaction fee on each item (instead of each transaction), will only put the prices up for my customers.

    eBay … forever moving the goalposts.

  5. QUESTION – there was a mention of ebay sending separate payments for each individual transaction to seller bank account. Is this going to be how it is set up??
    (going to be very expensive as will have to pay Bank transaction fee for each payment Or find a new bank which we definitely do not want to do)

  6. one massive point is missing.

    they say we will send payments directly to your bank.

    when is this sent?

    is it after every purchase.
    Is it after a few purchases.
    Is it at the end of the day.
    Is it at the end of a week.
    Is it after 2 weeks.
    Is it monthly.

    How the hell do they think they can suddenly turn off the payment feed from Paypal and then hold our money until they have earned enough interest off it. We ban from paypal for free every 2 days. You can bet your life it wont be fast.

    They cannot leave anything alone.
    the whole story reads like they have done it for you and me not themselves.

    I will await Alans reply over how good it will be.

  7. All the inevitable questions aside, one thing is certain: I will not miss having to deal with PayPal!

  8. This is being run by Adyen right? They run the Etsy payment service which I much prefer. So hopefully they will disburse in a lump sum the following afternoon to drop into your bank account a few hours later. I love the fact that Etsy deduct the fees from the pot at the same time so I do hope they will follow suit with this, so much easier and much more straightforward instead of paying a massive fee bill. My bigger concern will be losing GSP – we love using that.

  9. How return deadlines will change after this transition? Ebay has 30 days, Paypal force 180 days. Does anyone know how this works in the US or Germany where they have already rolled out this new system?

  10. This is probably a good idea — there are many advantages to integrating payments: better checkout, removing double-jeopardy in resolutions, a fee-grab from Paypal etc. However, payments — and in particular cash-flow — are mission-critical to most businesses so the downside of getting this wrong is very high. Indeed — the last thing that eBay needs right now is sellers taking their collective foot off the gas in terms of investing in new stock to sell on the platform and capacity to list and fulfil it.

    For me I have a lot more tolerance for “get it wrong and fix it” around a lot of the additional pieces — fees, resolutions, reporting etc. But if this interferes with cashflow then it could be disastrous.

    So this mustn’t be launched until it’s at least no worse than the current Paypal solution (a common benchmark for tech changes — make it no worse at first and then improve features once stable and live). The problem with that is both that Paypal is a 99% great solution already and that it’s a hard target to hit first time.

    So actually the vagueness of the deadline is a good thing: I’d hate for eBay to back themselves into a corner and say that it will be launched on August 1st regardless of whether it is ready or not. If they have the humility and honesty to really hold themselves to the standard rather than the deadline, that would be a major step forward. Of course the ultimate test of standard is making it voluntary to move across: if they truly have built a better (no worse!) product then sellers will flock to it in their droves. Only if it is a disaster that is launched too early then it will require a mandate.

  11. Shopify is similar, they pay a lump sum into your bank account a day or two later and the fees are less than paypal.

  12. What about people who rely on the money flowing through PayPal to get PayPal Working Capital?

    Will eBay roll out something similar, or will this facility ultimately go the way of the Dodo?

    I appreciate, based on the questions above, this probably isn’t the most pressing matter. But working with PayPal to get funds on the go is extremely useful to a lot of people.

  13. we have been invited to express an interest
    we are happy to jump in and give it a go,
    as its happening anyhow ,
    sticking your head in the sand wont make it go away

  14. I am a private seller / buyer although several year ago ebay unilaterally decided I was a business .I use my ebay sales of items I dont need to fund purchases from ebay by building up a fund within paypal. Without this fund I will not have the money put aside to buy from ebay so ebay sellers will loose out to the sum of several £000s a year.
    I can see no suggestion that it will be possible to build up a fund within ebay and , even so, if it was possible how secure would my money be?

  15. Personaly I hate that Paypal force 180 days refund. They absolutely disregard how a product is returned back or if it has missing parts.
    They provide a platform to take the sellers’ money in 1 second. They just answer “consumers law”. So for me as a seller 14 or 30 days dispute resolution timeline is much better than Paypal’s 180. Consumers law still applies us but Paypal takes away the FREEDOM that we could actually use and enforce our TOS. As long as we have to use Paypal we can throw our TOS in the bin. What we get in exchange? Paypal fill their stomach with OUR fees. We stopped using Paypal on our website and we use Stripe instead.
    I hope these changes by Ebay wont mean that ” their dear customer” can just open a return within 180 days. Of course… We received this email from Ebay but they dont think that we should know details. They just try to fool people that “how good thats gonna be for you guys”.

  16. I got an email about this today and find a few things confusing regarding exactly how it will work. Specifically, will we be paid into our banks for each individual transaction, or will there be a threshold or a monthly date that payment is sent?

  17. Am sure it will be an experience.
    I got there express an interest, and normally I would just go ahead they will force it on you anyway, and PayPal are robbers on one hand will not be missed from that point of view, but you can a least access your cash. Every other market am on has a similar payment process and it can keep you waiting all the time.
    I want to see the FEEs it is that simple, in many case it will be cheaper they claim well that long survey they sent out the other week with all the options did not make anything look cheaper and in some cases more expensive, and some of it was down right confusing.
    What about Private sellers like the Wifes, is she going to be having to have this, cant see her being bothered with it, she sells anything (rare these days) it is normally spent 5 minutes later, it could take a lot of cash out of eBay from the casual sellers point of view, and these tend to be a lot of the people actually who still bother buying things on eBay and not just going straight to Amazon.

  18. You would normally associate the words “ebay” and “experience” with negative thoughts of site hacks, checkout problems, outages, technical glitches, VAT avoidance, unhelpful Philippines customer services representatives and more problem customers than most other market places combined.

    “The all singing all dancing new Ebay sales experience”…….. headline news on yesterday’s soiled newspaper already residing firmly in the local chip shop bin.

    Sellers don’t hold your breath- this isn’t something to benefit us, just another money grab by a dying platform wrestling with its past and struggling for its very future.

  19. Question. I have two PayPal’s set up as my stock is split into two category’s.
    PayPal 1 receives payments for batch 1 stock, this also then refunds and deals with its own refunds.

    Then PayPal 2 does the same for batch 2.

    Can payments be made into two bank accounts to keep this the same process ??

  20. How do international sales work? Exchange rates? Frequency of processing etc. at present have multiple Paypal currency accounts and can release when required when rate is favourable. Uncertain how it will work now…

  21. I have been in managed payments for months. Absolutely no problems.

    There was a couple of posts months ago about some seller’s payments taking longer than expected to be sent and processed into their bank accounts. The issue was part eBay’s fault and part the payment routing processor’s fault. I personally had no problems during this brief snafu and my payouts were sent daily (except Sunday) by eBay and were credited to my bank account in 2 days.
    Just found this comment on the forum – which might answer the question about scheduling payments (comment dated 15th Jan 2020. hopefully this is true.
    Those of us in managed payments received a recent correspondence recapping the past year and informing us of future enhancements that should be instituted soon. The ability to pay for eBay shipping labels and fees with the funds being deducted before the sale amount moves to payouts is highly anticipated. The ability to designate your payout schedule from every day Monday – Saturday to weekly, semi-weekly, etc. will help many sellers with bookkeeping. The increased seller protections within managed payments is something I have had first hand experience with. — “””

  22. i assume the new ebay system will intergrate with all standalone accounting software that sellers use like paypal currently offer?

    eg i use freeagent. i have a paypal api setup within and freeagent downloads my sales overnight and thus everything that needs to be accounted for sales-wise gets done automatically within freeagent. works seemlessly with paypal. hope ebay have plans to have something in place at launch

  23. I network with international sellers who have already been using ebay managed payments. Everything seems to have worked fine and ebay have worked hard to ensure seamless integration. I think its easy to be anxious about such things but I genuinely believe this will be relatively seamless.

  24. I do not know what line Carl is reading there is absolutely no mention of how frequent the payments to your bank will be.
    The use of various payments is also sketchy.
    If a buyer uses Paypal is it directly to my Paypal or a Paypal payment to eBay who then pay me in the bank.

    Also where will paypal be taking their fees from once its introduced.

    This is like receiving a letter from your bank saying

    Dear Sir

    Just a quick heads up everything is changing.


    The lack of clarity on so many fronts, makes me feel this will be rolled out with more issues and glitches than their usual upgrades and updates. But then again its eBay we are talking about i cannot remember the last time they rolled out anything new that was useful and worked straight out of the box.

  25. Just read Alans post (good ol eBay)

    well if it is so successful elsewhere why is there no clarity they must know what it works like and how everything works in these successful countries . Or are they still tweeking it.

  26. No it was not difficult to understand it was difficult to spot they did not put it in capitals like you. Unfortunately they wrote in small writing buried in amongst the usual bulked out crap of blowing smoke up their own backsides. Plus when we get all these we are going to do messages from eBay they dull the mind.

    Yet again they do not explain who is actually taking what fees from where.
    Are eBay taking Paypals fees and then passing them on to us obviously at a higher rate than they get. Will they accept cards and payments from overseas in any currency and then pile the exchange rate onto us without us having a choice.

    Dont tell me its clearly explained somewhere.


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