Why no eBay Plus badge in UK and US?

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eBay Australia have opened up eBay Plus badge eligibility to include non-returnable items (opens in excel). Now, more inventory is eBay Plus eligible which means more sellers can potentially join the programme.

Listings of items such as swimwear, perfumes, dental care products and more qualify for an eBay Plus badge without requiring sellers to offer returns. As long as you meet the rest of the eBay Plus criteria, these listings will automatically receive an eBay Plus badge. That’s the only good news we currently have to share from the eBay Plus programme.

Counting the losses from eBay Plus

eBay Plus is offered to buyers as a subscription service, with perks including exclusive offers, free express delivery to metro areas, and free returns in return for a AUS$4.99 monthly subscription which comes with an AUS$5 monthly voucher meaning subscribers are already up a cent! eBay Plus is only available in Australia and Germany and one can’t help wondering if it’s more of a pain to eBay than it’s worth – otherwise why hasn’t it rolled out to more country sites?

Indeed, eBay appear to have realised that sellers are creaming it a bit too much as from the 23rd of July they are changing the eBay Plus express postage contribution in Australia. It’ll now be paid per transaction, rather than per item as they’ve at last cottoned on to the face that multiple items are normally shipped in a single package when ordered together.

eBay Plus sellers receive up to $4.00 back for items over $15.00 and up to $2.50 for items between $9.90 and $14.99, intended to help them with the upgrade cost from standard to express postage. From the 23rd, eBay will only credit one express postage contribution when selling multiples of the same SKU with a maximum of two contributions if a customer buys different SKUs.

Growth isn’t in eBay’s plans

eBay say that to keep providing sellers with the express postage contribution, they need to make sure it’s sustainable and being used correctly. Translation…. eBay are losing money hand over fist whenever items with the eBay Plus badge are sold and need to stem the losses.

Seriously…. one purchase a month and eBay are into loss making territory – more than two purchases a month and eBay are funding sellers shipping with only a potential uplift in sales to cover the costs. Is it any wonder that eBay Plus hasn’t rolled out to more countries?

eBay are not in the business of growth so they’re not interested in increasing GMV. eBay’s stated aim is to accept flat (or contracting) sales and extract more revenue from sellers for the business they already have. Investment to grow sales isn’t in their current business plan.

While other marketplaces (Amazon, Walmart etc) continue to roll out and expand membership schemes, designed to drive growth regardless of the short term cost, eBay just aren’t interested in expanding the business and it would take a significant mindset shift from the executive team and the board for this to change.

3 Responses

  1. were full time, long term ,high volume, high value sellers, using ebay ONLY !
    we never buy from ebay !
    yet our internet purchase is always on amazon using prime
    if ebay is wanting to survive never mind groth
    they need to have a amazon prime type option

  2. “Growth isn’t in eBay’s plans”

    So in other words there plan is to rinse sellers with even higher fees. Which is going to accelerate the downward spiral of sellers and buyers leaving the platform.

    RIP eBay

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