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eBay

American multinational e-commerce corporation

This article is about the international corporation. For the song by "Weird Al" Yankovic, see eBay (song).

EBay logo.svg

Logo since 2012

EBay Silicon Valley Headquarters in Willow Glen, San Jose, California 1938.jpg

Headquarters in the Willow Glen district
of San Jose, California in 2021

FormerlyAuctionWeb (1995–1997)
TypePublic

Traded as

Nasdaq: EBAY
NASDAQ-100 Component
S&P 500 Component
IndustryE-commerce
FoundedSeptember 3, 1995; 26 years ago (1995-09-03)
FounderPierre Omidyar
HeadquartersSan Jose, California, U.S.
37°17′43″N121°55′34″W / 37.2952°N 121.9260°W / 37.2952; -121.9260

Area served

Worldwide

Key people

ServicesOnline shopping
RevenueIncreaseUS$10.8 billion(2019)[1]

Operating income

IncreaseUS$2.321 billion(2019)[1]

Net income

DecreaseUS$1.792 billion(2019)[1]
Total assetsDecreaseUS$18.174 billion(2019)[1]
Total equityDecreaseUS$2.87 billion(2019)[1]

Number of employees

~13,300 (December 2019)[1]
SubsidiariesAuction Co., iBazar, GittiGidiyor, G-Market, Half.com, Qoo10.jp
Websitewww.ebay.com

eBay Inc. (EE-bay) is an American multinationale-commerce corporation based in San Jose, California, that facilitates consumer-to-consumer and business-to-consumer sales through its website. eBay was founded by Pierre Omidyar in 1995, and became a notable success story of the dot-com bubble. eBay is a multibillion-dollar business with operations in about 32 countries, as of 2019.[1][2] The company manages the eBay website, an online auction and shopping website in which people and businesses buy and sell a wide variety of goods and services worldwide. The website is free to use for buyers, but sellers are charged fees for listing items after a limited number of free listings, and again when those items are sold.[3]

In addition to eBay's original auction-style sales, the website has evolved and expanded to include: instant "Buy It Now" shopping; shopping by Universal Product Code, ISBN, or other kind of SKU number (via Half.com, which was shut down in 2017); and other services. eBay previously offered online money transfers as part of its services (via PayPal,[4] which was a wholly owned subsidiary of eBay from 2002 to 2015);[5] online classified advertisements (via Kijiji, or eBay Classifieds Group); and online event ticket trading (via StubHub).

History

1990s

The AuctionWeb was founded in California on September 3, 1995, by French-born Iranian-American computer programmer Pierre Omidyar as part of a larger personal site.[6] One of the first items sold on AuctionWeb was a broken laser pointer for $14.83. Astonished, Omidyar contacted the winning bidder to ask if he understood that the laser pointer was broken; the buyer explained: "I'm a collector of broken laser pointers."[7][8] It soon became the first online auction site allowing person-to-person transactions, and its popularity boomed.[9]

Reportedly, eBay was simply a hobby for Omidyar until his Internet service provider informed him he would need to upgrade to a business account due to his high website traffic. The monthly price increase from $30 to $250 prompted him to start charging eBay users, who did not object.[citation needed] Chris Agarpao was eBay's first additional employee to process mailed check payments.[10]

Jeffrey Skoll was hired as the first new president of the company in early 1996. In November 1996, the E-Commerce platform entered into its first third-party licensing deal, with a company called Electronic Travel Auction, to use SmartMarket Technology to sell plane tickets and other travel products. Growth was phenomenal: from 250,000 auctions during all of 1996 to 200,000 in January 1997 alone.[11][6][verification needed]

The company officially changed the name of its service from AuctionWeb to eBay in September 1997, after Echo Bay Technology Group, Omidyar's consulting firm. The domain name echobay.com was already taken by a gold mining company,[12] so Omidyar shortened it to eBay.com.[13] In 1997 the company received $6.7 million in funding from the venture capital firm Benchmark Capital.

The frequently repeated story that eBay was founded to help Omidyar's fiancée trade Pez candy dispensers was fabricated in 1997 by public relations manager Mary Lou Song to give the media a human-interest story more appealing than Omidyar's original vision of a "perfect market".[15][6] The Pez dispenser myth generated enormous publicity and led to explosive early growth among toy collectors.

The leader in the toy category quickly became Beanie Babies manufactured by Ty, Inc., the most difficult toys to find in retail stores. As collectors internationally were trying to complete their collection of Beanie Babies, Ty set up the first business-to-consumer Web site, a secondary-market online trading post where people could trade their Beanie Babies. However, it was overwhelmed with unsortable listings, creating an urgent demand for a more efficient online trading system.[17] Beanie Babies quickly became the dominant product on eBay, accounting for 10% of all listings in 1997, as collectors thronged eBay's user-friendly interface to search for specific Beanie Babies.

Meg Whitman was hired by the board as eBay president and CEO in March 1998. At the time, the company had 30 employees,[18] half a million users and revenues of $4.7 million in the United States.[19]

On September 21, 1998, eBay went public.[20] In the risk factors section of the annual report filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission in 1998, Omidyar notes eBay's dependence on the continued strength of the Beanie Babies market.[21] After eBay went public, both Omidyar and Skoll became instant billionaires: eBay's target of $18 per share was all but ignored as the price went to $53.50 on the first day of trading.[22]

2000s

As the company expanded product categories beyond collectibles into almost any saleable item, business grew quickly.[7] In 2000, eBay had 12 million registered users and a cyberinventory of more than 4.5 million items on sale on any given day.[23] In 2001, eBay had the largest userbase of any e-commerce site.[9] In February 2002 the company purchased iBazar, a similar European auction web site founded in 1998,[24] and then bought PayPal on October 3, 2002.[25]

By early 2008 the company had expanded worldwide, counting hundreds of millions of registered users as well as 15,000 employees and revenues of almost $7.7 billion. After nearly ten years at eBay, Whitman decided to enter politics. On January 23, 2008, the company announced that Whitman would step down on March 31, 2008, and John Donahoe was selected to become president and CEO.[citation needed] Whitman remained on the board of directors and continued to advise Donahoe through 2008. In late 2009 eBay completed the sale of Skype for $2.75 billion, but still owned 30% equity in the company.[26]

2010s

In 2012, eBay was charged by the United States Department of Justice with entering into non-solicitation agreements with other technology companies involving their highly skilled employees.[27]

On September 30, 2014, eBay announced it would spin off PayPal into a separate publicly traded company, a demand made nine months prior by activist hedge fund magnate Carl Icahn. The spinoff completed on July 18, 2015. eBay's then chief executive, John Donahoe, stepped down from that role.[28][29][30] Flipkart and eBay entered into a strategic partnership in 2017 under which eBay Inc acquired a 5.44% stake in Flipkart in exchange for its eBay India business for $211 Mn and a $514 Mn cash investment. As part of the partnership, Flipkart decided to use the eBay's platform for global outsourcing.[31]

On January 31, 2018, eBay announced that they would replace PayPal as its primary payments provider with Netherlands-based start-up Adyen. The transition was set to be completed by 2021, but PayPal would remain an acceptable payment option on the site until further notice.[32]

On September 21, 2018, it was reported that eBay would install a security fence around the perimeter of its San Jose headquarters in response to the YouTube headquarters shooting earlier that year.[33]

On July 31, 2019, the company acquired a 5.59 percent stake in Paytm Mall.[34]

On September 25, 2019, it was announced that Devin Wenig would be stepping down as eBay's CEO, and that Scott Schenkel, senior vice president and chief financial officer since 2015, had been appointed as the interim CEO.[35]

2020s

On April 13, 2020, it was announced that Jamie Iannone would become the CEO on April 27.[36] On June 15, 2020, eBay stated that[37] that five employees were terminated in September after a law enforcement notification in August because of a possibly criminal case of harassment of journalists perpetrated by some of the terminated employees.[38][39][40] Six former employees were charged with Aggressive Cyberstalking. [41]

In July 2020, Adevinta announced to acquire eBay Classifieds Group.[42] The deal closed on June 25.[43]

Corporate affairs

Board of directors

As of October 2019 the board of directors was as follows:[44]

  • Thomas J. Tierney, co-founder of the Bridgespan Group, Chairman of eBay since March 2003
  • Fred D. Anderson, former managing director of Elevation Partners, director of eBay since July 2003
  • Anthony Bates, CEO of Genesys
  • Adriane M. Brown, advisor at Intellectual Ventures, LLC
  • Diana Farrell, CEO of JPMorgan Chase Institute
  • Logan Green, CEO of Lyft
  • Bonnie Hammer, Chairman, NBC Universal
  • Kathleen Mitic, CEO of Sitch, Inc.
  • Matt Murphy, CEO of Marvell Technology Group
  • Paul Pressler, Partner at Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLC
  • Bob Swan, CEO of Intel Corporation
  • Perry Traquina, CEO of Wellington Management Company
Former board members
  • Pierre Omidyar, director since 1996 and chairman of eBay from May 1996 to May 2015. In 2020, it was announced that he will be leaving the board, however, will still hold the director emeritus title. Additionally, he could still potentially attend board meetings if invited, but won't have the right to vote.[45]
  • Jesse Cohn, Head of U.S. Equity Activism at Elliott Management Corporation. He joined the board in 2019 and left the next year.[45]

Logo

In September 2012, eBay introduced a new logo using a thinnner variation of the Univers typeface,[46] installed on the website on October 10, 2012. It replaced the thicker Univers logo that had been used since eBay's inception in 1995. An all red eBay logo with the same type set was also introduced to be used temporarily for various holidays.

Profit and transactions

eBay generates revenue by a complex system of fees for services, listing product features, and a final value fee for sales proceeds by sellers. As of 2019 the US-based eBay.com charges $0.35 as an insertion fee for a basic listing without any adornments. The final value fee is 10-12% of the total amount of the sale, which is the price of the item plus shipping charges.[47] Reduced final value fees are available to business registered customers. Other eBay websites follow a similar fee structure, but with different cost charges.

Under US law before 2018, a state cannot require sellers located outside the state to collect a sales tax, which made making purchases on eBay more attractive to American buyers. Sellers that operate as a business do follow state tax regulations on eBay transactions.[48][49] Since 2018, changes to tax law in the United States force eBay (and other large marketplaces) to collect sales tax on any eBay purchase shipped to certain states.[50]

The company's business strategy includes increasing international trade.[51][52] eBay has already expanded to over two dozen countries, including China and India. Strategic international expansion has failed in Taiwan and Japan, where Yahoo! had a head start, and New Zealand, where Trade Me is the dominant online auction website. eBay also notably failed in China due to competition from local rival Taobao.[53] eBay entered the Chinese market in 2002 and shut down its Chinese site in 2007.[54] In India, eBay's operations came to a halt[55] after it sold off its India operations[56] to country's largest ecommerce company Flipkart, in the latter's $1.4Bn fundraise, where eBay was a participant.

In its Q1 2008 results, total payment volume via PayPal increased 17%, but of the eBay auction site it was up 61%.[57]

For most listing categories, eBay sellers are permitted to offer a variety of payment systems such as Escrow.com,[58]PayPal, Paymate, Propay, and Skrill.[59] Propay and Skrill were banned effective September 27, 2015, citing low usage.[60]

Escrow.com is eBay's approved escrow site. The transactions processed through Escrow.com largely are in relation to eBay Motors; however, they are not restricted to this type of listing.[58]

eBay runs an affiliate program under the name eBay Partner Network.[61] eBay affiliate marketers were originally paid a percentage of the eBay seller's transaction fees, with commissions ranging from 50% to 75% of the fees paid for an item purchased. In October 2009, eBay changed to an affiliate payout system that it calls Quality Click Pricing, in which affiliates are paid an amount determined by an undisclosed algorithm. The total earnings amount is then divided by the number of clicks the affiliate sent to eBay and is reported as Earnings Per Click, or EPC. In October 2013, ePN launched a new pricing model. The new model is more transparent and is based on category-level base commission rates with bonuses available for referring new and reactivated buyers.[62]

On April 18, 2012, eBay reported a 29% Q1 revenue increase to $3.3 billion compared to their Q1 in 2011. Net income was reported to be at $570 million for the quarter.[63]

For the fiscal year 2017, eBay reported losses of US$1.016 billion, with annual revenue of US$9.567 billion, an increase of 6.6% over the previous fiscal cycle. eBay's shares traded at over $35 per share, and its market capitalization was valued at over US$27.2 billion in October 2018.

Year Revenue
in mil. USD$
Net income
in mil. USD$
Total Assets
in mil. USD$
Price per Share
in USD$
Employees
2005[64]4,552 1,082 11,789 15.65
2006[65]5,970 1,126 13,494 13.00
2007[66]7,672 348 15,366 13.25
2008[67]8,541 1,779 15,592 9.58
2009[68]8,727 2,389 18,408 7.29
2010[69]9,156 1,801 22,004 9.68
2011[70]11,652 3,229 27,320 12.28
2012[71]14,072 2,609 37,074 16.61
2013[72]16,047 2,856 41,488 21.03 33,500
2014[73]8,790 46 45,132 21.01 34,600
2015[74]8,592 1,725 17,755 25.00 11,600
2016[75]8,979 7,266 23,847 27.08 12,600
2017[76]9,567 −1,016 25,981 35.06 14,100
2018[77]10,746 2,530 22,819 34.31 14,000
2019[78]10,800 1,792 18,174 35.50 13,300

Environmental record

On May 8, 2008, eBay announced the opening of its newest building on the company's North Campus in San Jose, which is the first structure in the city to be built from the ground up to LEED Gold standards.[79] The building, the first the company had built in its 13-year existence, uses an array of 3,248 solar panels, spanning 60,000 square feet (5,600 m2), and providing 650 kilowatts of power to eBay's campus.[80] The array can supply 15–18% of the company's total energy requirements, reducing the amount of greenhouse gases that would be produced to create that energy by other means.[80]SolarCity, the company responsible for designing the array, estimates that the solar panels installed on eBay's campus will prevent 37 million pounds of carbon dioxide from being released into the environment as a result of replaced power production over the next three decades. Creating an equivalent impact to remove the same amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere would require planting 322 acres (1.30 km2) of trees.

The design of the building also incorporates other elements to reduce its impact on the environment. The building is equipped with a lighting system that detects natural ambient light sources and automatically dims artificial lighting to save 39% of the power usually required to light an office building. eBay's newest building also reduces demand on local water supplies by incorporating an eco-friendly irrigation system, and low-flow showerheads and faucets. Even during construction, more than 75% of the waste from construction was recycled. eBay also runs buses between San Francisco and the San Jose campus to reduce the number of commuting vehicles.[79] In 2014, eBay and several other Oregon businesses signed the Oregon Business Climate Declaration to promote local job growth and slow carbon pollution.[81]

Acquisitions

Main article: List of acquisitions by eBay

PayPal

On October 3, 2002, PayPal became a wholly owned subsidiary of eBay.[82] Its corporate headquarters were sited in San Jose, California,[83] United States at eBay's North First Street satellite office campus. On September 30, 2014, eBay Inc. announced the divestiture of PayPal as an independent company, which was completed on July 20, 2015.[84]

Craigslist

In the summer of 2004, eBay acknowledged that it had acquired 25% of classified listings website Craigslist. Former Craigslist executive Phillip Knowlton was the seller, and he insisted that his former employer was aware of his plans to divest his holdings. Initially, eBay assured Craigslist that eBay would not ask Craigslist to change the way it did business.

In March 2005, eBay launched the classifieds service Kijiji. In April 2008, eBay sued Craigslist to "safeguard its four-year financial investment", claiming that in January 2008, Craigslist took actions that "unfairly diluted eBay's economic interest by more than 10%".[85] Craigslist countersued in May 2008 "to remedy the substantial and ongoing harm to fair competition" that Craigslist claimed was constituted by eBay's actions as a Craigslist shareholder.[86] In September 2010, Delaware Judge William Chandler ruled that the actions of Craigslist were unlawful and that the actions were taken by Craigslist founders Jim Buckmaster and Craig Newmark had "breached their fiduciary duty of loyalty", and restored eBay's stake in the company to 28.4% from a diluted level of 24.85%.[87] However, the judge dismissed eBay's objection to a staggered board provision, citing that Craigslist has the right to protect its own trade secrets.[88][89] eBay spokesman Michael Jacobson stated "We are very pleased that the court gave eBay what it sought from the lawsuit."[87]

Skype

In October 2005, eBay Inc. acquired Skype Technologies,[90] developer of the SkypeVoIP and Instant messaging service, significantly expanding its customer base to more than 480 million registered users worldwide. eBay later sold a majority stake in Skype in November 2009, while retaining a minority investment.[91] This eventually led to the sale of the entire Skype business to Microsoft for $8.5 billion in May 2011.[92]

StubHub

StubHub's acquisition by eBay was announced in January 2007 for a reported $310 million.[93][94][95] According to CNN Money, 2007 was a very successful year for the company, handling five million individual transactions, more than in the previous six years combined of its history.[96] Staffing at StubHub had increased to 350 workers by the time of the sale.[95] Eight months after the acquisition, StubHub reached an exclusive agreement with Major League Baseball (MLB).[96] They get a piece of the 25% in commissions StubHub earns on either end of a sale. Ticketmaster filed a lawsuit against StubHub and eBay in 2007, alleging "intentional interference" with Ticketmaster's contractual rights.[97] In November 2019, eBay agreed to sell StubHub to Viagogo for $4.05 billion in cash;[98] the sale was completed in February 2020.[99]

Qoo10.jp

In April 2018, eBay acquired the Japanese division of Qoo10, a market place driven by Giosis and having the 4th GMV in Japan, for a reported $573 million.[100] With the close of the transaction, eBay also has relinquished its investment in Giosis’ non-Japanese businesses. This acquisition expands eBay's footprint in Japan, one of the largest e-commerce markets in the world. eBay made an initial investment in Giosis Pte. Ltd. in 2010. Since then, Giosis has established dynamic marketplace businesses across Asia. eBay's Japan business, including Giosis’ Japan business, will report into Jooman Park, senior vice president of eBay's Asia Pacific region.[101]

Use for data analysis

eBay is a publicly visible market which has attracted interest from economists, who have used it to analyze aspects of buying and selling behavior, auction formats, etc., comparing them with previous theoretical and empirical findings.

Computer information systems researchers have also shown interest in eBay. Michael Goul, Chairman of the Computer Information Systems department of the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, published an academic case based on eBay's big data management and use in which he discusses how eBay is a data-driven company that processes 50 petabytes of data a day.[102]

eBay uses a system that allows different departments in the company to check out data from their data mart into sandboxes for analysis. According to Goul, eBay has already experienced significant business successes through its data analytics. eBay employs 5,000 data analysts to enable data-driven decision making.[102]

Third party

In 2006 the accounting software company Intuit launched a web-based donation tracking service called ItsDeductible. The service uses data from eBay to help users assign a market value to the items they donate.[103]

Visual search

In July 2017 eBay released an image search capability allowing users to find listings on the site that match an item depicted in a photo, using artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies.[104]

GCHQ

UK's GCHQ has a suite of tools for monitoring target use of eBay, named ELATE.[105]

Items

Millions of collectibles, decor, appliances, computers, furnishings, equipment, domain names,[106] vehicles, and other miscellaneous items are listed, bought, or sold daily on eBay. In 2006, eBay launched its Business & Industrial category, breaking into the industrial surplus business. Generally, anything can be auctioned on the site as long as it is not illegal and does not violate the eBay Prohibited and Restricted Items policy.[107] Services and intangibles can be sold, too. Large international companies, such as IBM, sell their newest products and offer services on eBay using competitive auctions and fixed-priced storefronts. Separate eBay sites such as eBay US and eBay UK allow the users to trade using the local currency. Software developers can create applications that integrate with eBay through the eBay API by joining the eBay Developers Program.[108] In June 2005, there were more than 15,000 members in the eBay Developers Program, comprising a broad range of companies creating software applications to support eBay buyers and sellers as well as eBay Affiliates.

Numerous government and police agencies[109] around the world now use eBay as well as traditional auctions to dispose of seized and confiscated goods.

Controversy has arisen over certain items put up for bid. For instance, in late 1999 a man offered one of his kidneys for auction on eBay, attempting to profit from the potentially lucrative (and, in the United States, illegal) market for transplantable human organs.[110]

eBay North First Street satellite office campus (home to PayPal)

Beginning in August 2007, eBay required listings in "Video Games" and "Health & Beauty" to accept its payment system PayPal and sellers could only accept PayPal for payments in the category "Video Games: Consoles".[111] Starting January 10, 2008, eBay said sellers can only accept PayPal as payment for the categories "Computing > Software", "Consumer Electronics > MP3 Players", "Wholesale & Job Lots > Mobile & Home Phones", and "Business, Office & Industrial > Industrial Supply / MRO".[112] eBay announced that starting in March 2008, eBay had added to this requirement that all sellers with fewer than 100 feedbacks must offer PayPal and no merchant account may be used as an alternative.[113][114] This is in addition to the requirement that all sellers from the United Kingdom have to offer PayPal.[115]

Further, and as noted below, it was a requirement to offer PayPal on all listings in Australia and the UK. In response to concerns expressed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, however, eBay has since removed the policy on the eBay.com.au website requiring sellers to offer PayPal as a payment option.

eBay Office in Toronto, Canada

On April 24, 2006, eBay opened its new eBay Express site, which was designed to work like a standard Internet shopping site for consumers with United States addresses.[116] Before it closed in 2008, selected eBay items were mirrored on eBay Express, where buyers used a traditional digital shopping cart to purchase from multiple sellers.[117] The UK version was launched to eBay members in mid-October 2006, but on January 29, 2008, eBay announced its intention to close the site.[118] The German version, eBay Express Germany,[119] was also opened in 2006 and closed in 2008.

At the 2008 eBay Developer's Conference, eBay announced the Selling Manager Applications program (SM Apps).[120] The program allows approved developers to integrate their applications directly into the eBay.com interface.[121] The applications created by developers are available for subscription by eBay members who also subscribe to Selling Manager.

eBay maintains a number of specialty sites including the discussion boards, groups, answer center, chat rooms, and reviews and guides. eBay's mobile offerings include SMS alerts, a WAP site, Java ME clients, and mobile applications for Windows Phone, Android OS, and Apple iPhone.

The initiative Choice in eCommerce was founded on May 8, 2013, by several online retailers in Berlin, Germany.[122][123][124][125][126][127][128][129][130] The cause was, in the view of the initiative, sales bans and online restrictions by individual manufacturers. The dealers felt cut off from their main sales channel and thus deprived them the opportunity to use online platforms like Amazon, eBay, or Rakuten in a competitive market for the benefit of their customers.

Unusual items

Main article: Unusual eBay listings

Many unusual items have been placed for sale on eBay, including at least two previously undiscovered species, including the Coelopleurus exquisitussea urchin.[131][132]

Prohibited or restricted items

In its earliest days, eBay was nearly unregulated. However, as the site grew, it became necessary to restrict or prohibit auctions for various items. Note that some of the restrictions relate to eBay.com (the US site), while other restrictions apply to specific European sites (such as Nazi paraphernalia). Regional laws and regulations may apply to the seller or the buyer. Generally, if the sale or ownership of an item is regulated or prohibited by one or more states, eBay will not permit its listing. Among the hundred or so banned or restricted categories:

  • Tobacco (tobacco-related items and collectibles are accepted.)[133]
  • Alcohol (alcohol-related collectibles, including sealed containers, as well as some wine sales by licensed sellers are allowed, some sites such as ebay.com.au allow licensed liquor sales)[134] (eBay announced September 21, 2012, it will begin removing listings for beer and liquor from its site after a story was aired on ABC series 20/20.)[135]
  • Drugs and drug paraphernalia[136]
  • Items that "promote or glorify hatred, violence, racial, sexual, or religious intolerance, or promote organizations with such views". This includes Nazi paraphernalia, although there are exceptions to this rule for Nazi items such as stamps, letters, and envelopes displaying Nazi postmarks (must comply with the currency and stamp policy)
  • Items depicting the Confederate battle flag.[137]
  • Bootleg recordings[138]
  • Firearms and ammunition (as of January 1, 1999),[139] including any parts that could be used to assemble a firearm as well as (as of July 30, 2007) any firearm part that is required for the firing of a gun, including bullet slugs, brass casings and shells, slides, cylinders, magazines, firing pins, trigger assemblies, etc. Various types of knives are also forbidden.
  • Police and emergency service vehicular warning equipment such as red or blue lights and sirens (antique or collectible items are exempt)
  • Intentionally soiled underwear (see Panty fetishism) and dirty used clothing[140]
  • Forged, illegal, stolen, or confidential documents, which include passports, Social Security cards, drivers licenses, voter registration cards, birth certificates, school documents, medical records, financial information, government license plates, or government classified information documents. Any item that is used to modify documents is also restricted.[141]
  • Human body parts, organs, and remains (with an exception for skeletons and skulls for scientific study, provided they are not Native American in origin)[142]
  • Live animals (with certain exceptions)[143]
  • Certain copyrighted works or trademarked items[144]
  • Lottery tickets, sweepstakes tickets, or any other gambling items.[145]
  • Military hardware such as working weapons or explosives with the exception of demilitarizedvehicles.
  • Any object of Iranian, Cuban, Syrian or North Korean origin.[146]
  • Enriched uranium, plutonium, and other fissile material.
  • Certain categories of sexually oriented material, which must be listed in the "Adult Only" category,[147] notwithstanding certain items prohibited:[147]
  • Virtual items from massively multiplayer online games, restrictions that vary by country[148][149]
  • Ivory products[143]
  • Knives, other than some cutlery, are prohibited in the UK following the criminal importation into the UK (by BBC Watchdog researchers) of several knives that were already illegal to own or import under existing UK legislation. The ban also includes empty leather knife scabbards if they are listed under the category of "knives" on one of the eBay sites[150]
  • Fortune-telling and witchcraft-related services[151]
  • Souls, ghosts, and other "items whose existence cannot be verified" are prohibited.[152][153][154]
  • Surgical masks, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, and other products associated with COVID-19 pandemic in order to stop price gouging [155][156]
  • Many other items are either wholly prohibited or restricted in some manner.[157]

Bidding

Auction-style listings

Main article: Proxy bid

Bidding on eBay (old or new)'s auction-style listing is called proxy bidding and is essentially equivalent to a Vickrey auction (sealed-bid), with the following exceptions.

  • The winning bidder pays the second-highest bid plus one bid increment amount (that is, some small predefined amount relative to the bid size), instead of simply the highest bid. However, since the bid increment amounts are relatively insignificant compared to the bid size, they are not considered from a strategic standpoint.[158]
  • The highest bidder's bid is sealed, as in a Vickrey auction, but the current winning bid (second highest plus one increment) is displayed throughout the auction to allow price discovery.[159]
  • Because eBay's auction-style listings are sealed-bid, it is usually to all bidders' advantage that bids are made only at the very end of the auction (except for an initial minimum bid, that cancels out a "Buy It Now" option, or prevents the seller from ending the listing early). Early bids will usually not increase the bidder's chance of winning the auction, and will often raise the item's final price (winning bid) for the eventual winner.
  • eBay also allows sellers to offer a "Buy it Now" price that will end the auction immediately. The Buy It Now price is available until someone bids on the item, or until the reserve price is met. When the Buy It Now option disappears, the auction-style listing proceeds normally.[160]

Seller ratings

In 2008, eBay implemented a system of seller ratings with four categories. Buyers are asked to rate the seller in each of these categories with a score of one to five, with five being the highest rating. Unlike the overall feedback rating, these ratings are anonymous; neither sellers nor other users learn how individual buyers rated the seller. The listings of sellers with a rating of 4.3 or below in any of the four rating categories appear lower in search results. Power Sellers are required to have scores in each category above 4.5.[161][162][163][164][165]

In a reversal of roles, on January 24, 2010, Auctionbytes.com held an open survey in which sellers could rate eBay, as well as competing auction and marketplace sites.[166] In the survey, users were asked to rank 15 sites based on five criteria: profitability, customer service, communication, ease of use, and recommendation.

eBay was ranked 13th,[167] after other large sites such as Amazon and Craigslist, as well as lesser-known selling sites such as Atomic Mall, eCRATER, and Ruby Lane. In individual category rankings, eBay was rated the worst of all the 15 sites on customer service and communication, and average on ease of use. Some respondents stated they would have given eBay a rating of 10, three to five years ago. eBay was rated twelfth out of fifteen in the Recommended Selling Venue category.

Charity auctions

Using MissionFish as an arbiter, eBay allows sellers to donate a portion of their auction proceeds to a charity of the seller's choice.[168] The program is called eBay Giving Works in the US, and eBay for Charity[169] in the UK. eBay provides a partial refund of seller fees for items sold through charity auctions.[170] As of March 4, 2010, $154 million has been raised for US nonprofits by the eBay Community since eBay Giving Works began in 2003.[171]

Some high-profile charity auctions have been advertised on the eBay home page.[172] As of June 2010, the highest successful bid on a single item for charity was for the annual "Power Lunch"[173] with investor Warren Buffett at the famous Smith & Wollensky Steakhouse in New York. The winning bid was $2.63 million with all of the proceeds going to the Glide Foundation. The winning bidder was not made public, but was able to bring up to seven friends to the lunch. In 2012, a higher bid, of $3.46 million, also going to the Glide Foundation, won a lunch with Buffet.[174] In 2016 an anonymous bidder won a $3.45 million lunch with Warren Buffett and the money raised from the auction was given to Glide Foundation.[175]

The previous highest successful bid on a single item for charity was for a letter[176] sent to Mark P. Mays, CEO of Clear Channel (parent company of Premiere Radio Networks the production company that produces The Rush Limbaugh Show and Glenn Beck Program) by Senator Harry Reid and forty other Democratic senators, complaining about comments made by conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh. The winning bid was $2,100,100, with all of the proceeds going to the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation, benefiting the education of children of men and women who have died serving in the armed forces. The winning bid was matched by Limbaugh in his largest charity donation to date.[177]

In 2007; eBay Canada partnered with Montreal-based digital branding agency CloudRaker to develop a campaign to raise money for Sainte-Justine children's hospital in Montreal. They aligned themselves with Internet phenomenon Têtes à claques to create an eBay auction based on popular T-A-C character Uncle Tom, an infomercial host who pitches absurd products. eBay and CloudRaker reproduced Uncle Tom's imaginary products, The Body Toner Fly Swatter, The Willi Waller Potato Peeler, and the LCD Shovel and sold them online. In six weeks, they raised $15,000 for Hôpital St-Justine with one fly swatter, one potato peeler, and one shovel, a world record. The Body Toner Fly Swatter sold for $8,600, the Willi Waller Potato Peeler sold for $3,550, and the LCD Shovel sold for $2,146.21.

Shipping

During auction setup, eBay provides shipping-method choices to sellers: ordinary mail, express mail, and/or courier service. The seller may choose to offer only one shipping method to buyers, or the seller may offer buyers a choice of options.

Very-low-value items shipped directly from China are sometimes shipped by surface mail (seamail), which is inexpensive but takes one to two months.[178] If the buyer is in a hurry, he or she might be able to pay an extra fee to upgrade to second-class Surface Air Lifted shipping or to first-class airmail shipping.

Since 2012, eBay has been enlisting sellers into its "Global Shipping Program". If a seller uses the program, non-domestic buyers pay a fee to Pitney Bowes. The seller sends the item to a Pitney Bowes facility in the US (or the UK), which then forwards it to the buyer, taking care of all international shipping requirements. The program is claimed to enhance the product selection available to international buyers.[179]

Controversies and criticism

Main article: Criticism of eBay

Common eBay criticisms involve the policy of requiring the use of PayPal for payments and concerns over fraud, forgeries and intellectual property violations in auction items.[citation needed] There are also issues of how negative feedback after an auction can offset the benefits of using eBay as a trading platform.[citation needed] eBay has been criticized for not paying UK taxes: the Sunday Times reported in October 2012 that eBay paid only £1.2m in tax on sales of over £800m.[180]

2014 security breach

On May 21, 2014, the company revealed that the consumer database of usernames, passwords, phone numbers, and physical addresses had been breached between late February and early March. Users were advised to change their passwords; to expedite this, a "change password" feature was added to profiles of users who had not yet done so. The Syrian Electronic Army took responsibility for the attack. The SEA said that even though the hack revealed millions of users' banking details to them, they would not misuse the data. They had replaced the front pages of the websites with their own logo, called "Defacing" in technical terms. The hack caused eBay's share price to crash in intra-day trade as a result of the breach of security.[181][182][183][184]

Stalking scandal

Main article: eBay stalking scandal

A cyberstalking and harassment campaign conducted in 2019 against an online newsletter led to charges made public in 2020 against seven members of eBay's global security team, as well as arrests of two of those charged. Wenig, the company's CEO at the time of the harassment campaign, has not been not charged.[185][186][187][188]

See also

References

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Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EBay

Ebay tracking

What is eBay?

One of the first marketplace eCommerce platforms, eBay was created in California in 1995. Today, it is a multinational e-commerce marketplace that connects buyers with sellers, with a wide range of products listed ranging from clothing, toys accessories, furniture, shoes, office equipment and cleaning products to software, electrical devices, televisions, gaming consoles and celebrity merchandise. Sellers can be individuals or businesses and the popular eBay feedback and ratings system gives consumers confidence in the online products.

The platform was also one of the first marketplaces who introduced new ways to sell products online, including silent auction where sellers can bid on items against other users. It also introduced the ability to set a maximum price, allowing users to let eBay facilitate bidding for them. This means the customer is getting them the best possible price for the product while being protected from spending beyond their means.

This type of sale is additional to the standard direct consumer to consumer, business to consumer or business to business sales.

Which couriers ship from eBay?

eBay does not have any in house logistics or deliver any parcels themselves, therefore all of the goods ordered through the marketplace platform will be delivered by external carriers. Usually the seller should inform the buyer as to which courier they are using and of the estimated delivery time.

The most commonly couriers for deliveries on eBay are, if you choose US Standard Shipping within mainland USA, are:

However, if you wish to ship internationally, the shipping process could include one or more couriers as your parcel progresses from country to country. Furthermore, the choice of courier will depend on the size and weight of your parcel and also the orders final destination. To track your parcel, even if it is an international shipment that may pass through a number of couriers, buyers just need to enter their tracking ID number on the Ship24 website to find out the current status and location of their parcel or package.

All registered parcels sent via any of the couriers above can be tracked using the Ship24 website. However, buyers should be aware that post that is not registered cannot be tracked.

How do I track my eBay package?

Tracking online your eBay order is very easy, first you need to obtain the tracking number provided by the seller or on the eBay page. If you have not received a tracking number or code, you should either contact the seller, check the order confirmation section on the eBay website or check out the order confirmation email which should be sent to your inbox when you have completed you purchase).

Once you have your eBay tracking number, you can use it to track your eBay parcel with Ship24. Tracking your eBay parcel with Ship24 will give you real time updates on the status and location of your package. Ship24 is connected with over 700 couriers and postal services meaning that is can simultaneously search hundreds of carriers and to get you the latest tracking information regarding your order.

If a buyer is having an issue tracking their product, they should first make sure that they have entered the correct tracking number.
Sometimes there can be some confusion between various other numbers and codes you receive with your purchase, such as the order number or the final bill. These are separate codes can do not help you track you eBay parcel. Make sure you have obtained your eBay tracking number from the seller, and entered it correctly, in order to track your eBay package.

If you have not received the tracking ID or it cannot be found, buyers need to contact the seller because it could mean that there may be a mistake on the number provided or that the package has not been handled by the courier yet.

Buyers should note that sometimes it can take 2 to 3 days to receive tracking information due to a number of factors, including delay in processing, the seller has not posted it yet, the package has not been picked up, or other unforeseen circumstances.

Where do I track my eBay parcel?

To track your eBay parcel, simply enter your tracking code on the Ship24 website to get real-time status and location updates on your eBay package. When you enter your eBay tracking number in the search bar of Ship24, you may receive information/updates that are similar to the following.

  • Pick-up Successful - This means that the seller has packaged the parcel and it has been received by the courier
  • Dispatching from the origin center - This means that the order is being dispatched from the first processing station
  • Arrived at the destination country - This means that the package or parcel has arrived in the same country as its final destination
  • Arrived at the nearby center - This means that the order is one step closer to its destination and is at a nearby processing center
  • Out for Delivery - This means that the parcel is currently in transit for final delivery

Where is my eBay parcel?

To know exactly where your eBay order is, you will need a comprehensive tracking system that will scan hundreds of couriers simultaneously in order to find the exact status and location of your package. Ship24 has that capability and works with over 10,000 shops and couriers internationally meaning it can track down your eBay parcel instantly.

All you need to do is provide the tracking number on the website, click enter and boom! All of your parcel details, including previous handlers and the various locations your package has traveled through, will be on your screen.

The Ship24 system will quickly be able to decipher the courier, whether local or international, that your parcel is with, meaning it can give you the most up to date information as soon as you enter your eBay tracking number.

Check that the tracking number format (that varies according to the shipping option selected) First thing. If you still have any concern regarding the eBay shipment, do not hesitate to contact the seller from the Ebay page or on eBay support pages to find more information about your order delivery issue.

What are eBay shipping methods?

eBay shipping methods depend on the seller's location and the size and weight of the package. Usually, when the products are shipped from the United Kingdom or from the United States, the GSP (Global Shipping Program) created by eBay is used by the sellers and the packages are sent with Pitney Bowes (an American global technology company known for its mailing equipment). Whereas sellers located in China often use couriers such as China Post or again China EMS ePacket services.

All of these couriers use a variety of shipping methods including air, rail, road and sea, all which have an impact on the delivery time of the product. Generally, the faster modes of shipping, such as via aircraft, are more expensive. Orders sent via road or sea can take the longest. Although, if the final destination always plays a part, with rural destinations also extending delivery timeframes. The seller should provide an estimated delivery time for the buyer upon purchase.

eBay orders generally involve many different couriers and this is why Ship24 is useful to allow buyers to track their parcels without having to enter their tracking number on to multiple courier websites. Instead, they can enter the code soley on Ship24 regardless of which courier is handling the eBay parcel and get instant information on its whereabouts.

What is the eBay Global Shipping Program (GSP)?

The GSP (Global Shipping Program) allows the sellers to grow their business market around the world, making international shipping easier and more convenient for both consumers and sellers. When a seller signs up for GSP and an eligible article sells abroad, the seller simply just has to ship it to eBay's Global Shipping Center in Kentucky and the GSP will then take care of every step until the article reaches the buyer.

Indeed, once the package gets shipped and recieved, the Global Shipping Program takes care of the entire process moving forward.
Here are some reasons why sellers choose GSP:

  • The tracking method: GSP uses registered shipping, which means once users recieve a tracking number they can use Ship24 to get end-to-end tracking capability and be fully informed about the progress of the order. It is really easy to track the eBay package on Ship24 when the shipping method used is the GSP.
  • The Protection: If your parcel gets damaged or lost, the program protects both the seller and the buyer.
  • The Delivery time: The GPS method takes less time to deliver parcels internationally.
  • The Global Shipping Program helps identify whether the parcel can be shipped or not in the international market.

How much does it cost to ship with eBay?

eBay does not deliver parcels itself, instead it uses courier companies. Therefore, the cost of shipping will vary between different couriers. It will also depend on the size of the package or parcel and its final destination.

However, if your eBay parcel is shipped with eBay's Global Shipping Program, all orders will be sent with USPS Priority International mail. The lowest price for an international package is about $35 US. Also, eBay charges a flat customs fee on all items regardless of the recipient country.

If the parcel weight is less than 4 lbs the best option (not offered by GSP) is to use First Class International. If the item is valuable by shipping directly the sender can add an insurance from a third-party service, such as WorldPost or ShipSurance.

Both options (GSP and direct shipping) are good for cross-border shipping. GSP remains a popular option.

Buys can find information about the cost of shipping desired items on the sellers listing. Here, they will be able to view the seller's shipping options, including any express shipping services or combined shipping discounts. They should also be able to see whether tracking is available on the options presented.

Combined shipping is where buyers who are purchasing multiple items from the same seller ask the seller to combine their order in to one shipment, both saving money on multiple shipping options as well as making it easier to track one single order.

How do I get free shipping on eBay?

Some sellers offer free shipping on their products. To find this, when you are searching for an item, click on the "Free Shipping" filter on the left side of your search results page. This will mean all of the items in your search results will be free shipping. If items are local to you, you may also be able to opt for "local pickup". This should be organised between you and the seller before the purchase is made.

Note: Once you have purchased an item, the seller will not be able to increase or decrease the shipping rates without asking your permission to do so. If the seller makes a change that you don't agree with, and you cannot resolve the issue directly, then eBay will be able to help through the support section of their website.

How do I track my GSP eBay parcel?

When your order is sent with the GSP (Global Shipping Program), the tracking number will begin by "UPAA" or "UPBE" and followed by numbers like this: UPAAB000000123456789.

You can use any Global Shipping Program tracking number on the Ship24 website to track your order along its entire route using Ship24.
Buyers should note that if the seller sends directly (without using the GSP program), the tracking numbers may have another format.

Can I track my eBay parcel if it is sent directly?

The alternative for sellers to the eBay Global Shipping Program (GSP) is to ship the order directly. As long as the mail is registered by the seller, the parcel can still be tracked on the Ship24 website. Ship24's powerful tracking system is connected with multiple international and local couriers, allowing it to find the latest information on your parcel whether it is posted directly or through the GSP system.

The reason why some sellers prefer not to ship an order through the Global Shipping Program because of the associated costs. If sellers want to ship directly, they first need to check the dimension sizes, weight restrictions and potential customs rules for the item they intend to ship, depending on the destination.

Did you know? Although most countries will have similar policies in place regarding shipping rules, some may surprise you. For instance, some countries limit the shipment of second-hand products. In Italy, it is illegal to import second-hand leather goods, so both buyers and sellers should be aware of restrictions in the countries they wish to send their order too.

Sours: https://www.ship24.com
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How to Shop eBay Like A Pro

Posted by MyUS

The popular auction website eBay has become something of a sensation. Founded in 1995, it is an online community of people in over 30 countries buying and selling things online in a bidding process. There have been several protective features added over the years like PayPal to ensure a safe payment process for purchasers. By using MyUS.com, you’re also ensured safe international shipping too!

So, how do you use it? Ebay has millions of items listed on its site for purchase including collectibles, décor, appliances, computers, furnishings, equipment, domain names, vehicles, jewelry, apparel, shoes and more. Basically if there is something you want, there is a very good chance you’ll find it on eBay. You can also find your item new or used in a range of prices. However, there are a few safeguards that you will want to utilize to make sure you get the item you paid for.

After you open your account with eBay, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the various tools offered. The three most important are: User Feedback, Security Center and Bidding Histories. User Feedback is listed next to a Seller’s information. This allows previous buyers to comment on their buying experience with this seller. Comments can range from “great service and quick response time” to “products were of poor quality” and more. They will also have a Ranking listed based on the comments received. It will either state a Positive ranking or Negative ranking. Be advised, the buyer may also comment on you as a seller to say whether you were a “prompt payer” or “problematic buyer.”

The Security Center is a service that allows eBay to monitor its users. They record the user’s IP address to determine whether users are using multiple names in order to manipulate auction prices. Its purpose is to make sure everyone is playing by the rules. The Bidding History shows which auctions a bidder has bid so that everything is public knowledge.

Now that you know how to protect yourself, it’s time to shop the US eBay! Simply decide what you want by typing it into the search field. Find the best match and price for your needs. Do a little research on the seller and what other people are selling the item for. If there’s a brand-name watch that you like that normally sells in stores for $500 and someone is selling it “brand-new” for only $50, you will want to use your security checkpoints above since this offer may be too good to be true.

After you have the item you want at the price you want, it’s time to Bid. Put in the maximum amount you will pay for an item and wait to hear if you won it. Check back often to see how the auction is going. You’ll be notified if someone outbids you so you’ll know where you stand. Otherwise, some sellers offer a “Buy it Now” features which allows you to do just that at the price currently listed.

To make things even easier, download the MyUS Shopping extension to shop eBay faster. Collect all your items in the MyUS cart and checkout only once! All of your international shipping costs will be UPFRONT in your total costs.

Good luck on your bidding!

Sours: https://www.myus.com/blog/how-to-shop-ebay-from-outside-the-us/

Chapter 4 Determining What To Sell on eBay To Make Money

eBay connects millions of buyers and sellers around the world. It also can be a great way to make money — whether you are working from home with very little investment or you’re a reseller who sells large quantities of products.

Why Sell on eBay?

There are 182 million eBay buyers worldwide. 

It’s one of the largest global online marketplaces, featuring approximately 1.3 billion product listings on any given day. 

Who is Selling on eBay?

There are a few different types of eBay sellers. You’ve got your newbies or amateur resellers, who sell a few items at a fixed price, and then you have PowerSellers. PowerSellers are professional sellers who spend a lot of time purchasing items, packaging products, shipping and receiving goods, and managing auctions. 

For example: eBay Ellen — an amateur reseller — has a lot of clothing. She’s a fashionista who goes through trendy clothes quickly. To make extra cash, she turns to her closet and sells her gently used designer threads under a fixed-price listing.

Video Game Vince is a gamer and comic book collector — and a PowerSeller. He scours the internet for comic book collectibles and video game action figures to resell. He has a thriving business on eBay dedicated to reselling exclusives and hard-to-find gaming/comic book merchandise. 

Whether you’re a newbie or a PowerSeller, you can flourish in this time of growth of the secondhand economy, getting your products in front of a global audience with eBay.

What Should You Sell On eBay?

Three categories that sell particularly well on eBay are: 

  • Auto parts, 
  • Used goods, and
  • Closeouts.

While some eBay sellers focus on a niche product, others follow the trends to sell what is popular at the moment. This will require a bit of research on your part. 

Find out what’s trending.

One way to find out what’s hot in the marketplace is to see what is trending on eBay. You can use this tool from eBay to see what buyers are searching for. 

Another resource for researching seasonal trends and historical data is Google Trends. You can use it to help gauge consumer demand and determine the best time to list and sell your product.

For example, let’s say your business sells snowboards and snowboard accessories. Type in “snowboard” on Google Trends, and you’ll see a spike in web search volume in late November through early December. 

Price your products.

Once you’ve determined what you want to sell, you’ll need to do your research and price your items competitively. You can use the eBay appraisal tool to determine the value or trending price of a particular item in a specific category. 

eBay Selling Format

When eBay first launched in 1995, it was a true peer-to-peer marketplace built on auctions. As it evolved, however, eBay introduced an alternative to the auction with its “buy it now” feature. There are pros and cons to each selling method — the one that will work best for you is highly dependent upon your individual business.

Auction-style selling.

eBay rose to fame on its auction-style sales. You run a traditional auction for a specified number of days. At the start of the auction, you list an opening bid, and then buyers will bid up from the opening price. When the auction comes to an end, the highest bidder wins. 

This type of selling works great for someone like Video Game Vince because he deals in unique, collectible items. Passionate fans of the comic book genre will feverishly bid up the pricing, allowing Vince to pocket a nice profit.

Pro tip: Set a reserve price — or, the lowest price you are willing to accept for the item. That gives you the control to ensure you don’t sell the item until you can get the amount you believe it is worth.

Fixed-price listings.

Also known as the “Buy It Now” method of selling, this enables the seller to declare a fixed price for an item. eBay shoppers know the exact price up front and can buy it immediately — no bidding necessary. This style of selling is efficient and convenient, as there is no haggling or waiting for an auction to end.

Developing Product Descriptions for eBay 

On eBay, shoppers search for products using keywords. You can optimize your product description by making sure to include relevant keywords and product identifiers.

Write detailed product descriptions that include these attributes:

  • Brand (“Nike”).
  • Style or model (“Air Zoom Pegasus”). 
  • Model number (“Galaxy S10”).
  • Color (“Black”).
  • Size (“Men’s size 12,” “extra wide,” or “Women’s 8”).

It is imperative that you structure your product attributes similarly to the words and phrases users are typing into their eBay searches. For example, instead of your product title being “Converse Chuck Taylor Shoes,” a more optimized title would be “Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Shoes, Size 9 White.” 

You should also be very transparent about any product defects the item may have, and disclose any issues or flaws related to the product. 

Additional information to mention:

  • What are the item dimensions?
  • Does it require batteries and are they included?
  • What accessories are included?

Product identifiers.

Using product identifiers in your listings can help increase your item visibility, which in turn will help optimize sales.

When buyers look for items on search engines like Google or Bing, those search engines look for specific data called product identifiers. eBay requires product identifiers when you list branded products in new or refurbished condition in certain categories like consumer electronics and health and beauty. You can find a comprehensive list of categories here.

Product identifiers are made up of three elements:

  • Brand.
  • Manufacturer Part Number (MPN).
  • Global Trade Item Number (GTIN). A GTIN can include the Universal Product Code (UPC), European Article Number (EAN), Japanese Article Number (JAN), or International Standard Book Number (ISBN).

eBay uses product identifiers to help buyers quickly find items during a search. When you include product identifiers in your listings, your product will be eligible for higher search visibility — on eBay as well as outside search engines. 

It will also be eligible for special price alerts (e.g., when your listings are priced below the trending price) and included in more deals and promotions. 

Adding product identifiers is highly recommended to maximize your potential on eBay through better product placement and better SEO data for search engines.

Product attribute guidelines and best practices.

Product attributes define the relevant and important facts about a product — such as brand, style, size, and color. You can often find product attributes listed as product “specs,” or specifications. 

eBay defines a set of item specifics for each category. Product attributes are created by mapping the product specs to the item specifics of the eBay category.

Providing a very detailed set of item specifics will create a complete set of structured data that allows the search engine to locate and filter products. This improves the relevance of search results to what users are typing in their search queries. 

Product dimensions.

If applicable, include the dimensions of the item in the attributes. The product dimensions should specify the size of the actual product, not the packaging size.

Multi-packs and bundled products.

Here are some important details to remember when creating the attribute list for a multi-pack or manufacturer-created bundle:

  • The attributes for a bundled product should include the product identifier(s) assigned by the manufacturer to the bundle.
  • Attributes for the bundled product should use the manufacturer’s GTIN number for the bundle. Don’t use the GTIN of the base product or any of the products within the bundle.
  • The attributes for a multi-pack must include the product identifier(s) assigned to the multi-pack by the manufacturer.
  • The attributes of a multi-pack must specify the GTIN of the specific multi-pack being described.

Product variants.

Another tip is to include product variants on one page instead of multiple. We’ve seen that eBay is starting to group products by GTIN, so this will be increasingly more important in your set-up.

Managing Your Product Listings

Once you’ve decided to jump into the eBay marketplace, how should you manage your product listings? 

You could use spreadsheets if you only have a half-dozen items listed, like eBay Ellen. However, if you have hundreds, thousands, or even millions of products, a spreadsheet will be too complicated, unwieldy, and inadequate. 

A feed management platform, used in conjunction with an ecommerce platform like BigCommerce, can make your listings much more manageable. 

Would-be eBay merchants often ask: “Can I take my existing product feed on Google Shopping and use it on eBay?” If your products are listed on an ecommerce platform like BigCommerce, feed management platforms can take the existing product feed, put it into the correct format and export it to eBay. 

Managing Your eBay Orders

It’s critical that you manage your orders carefully and monitor your inventory. You never want to be in a position where you are listing out-of-stock items on your site. 

With feed management platforms, orders are updated and synced to your online store. It’s important to keep everything in sync with the shortest lag-times possible, especially if you have low inventory of an item selling across multiple marketplaces. 

Here’s an example of how feed management platforms can help:

A client needed help with managing orders for two marketplaces: eBay and Amazon. 

This client had multiple products that were low in stock, and they wanted to avoid running into an oversold situation — which can get sellers suspended from eBay. Feedonomics was able to solve this problem by intelligently controlling inventory on multiple channels. 

eBay Best Practices

The best practices listed here are much the same as best practices you should follow on any marketplace, as well as on your ecommerce site. But they will be particularly important on eBay, as you’ll need to differentiate yourself from competitors also selling on the channel.

Here are some general tips, with more information to follow:

  • Ship within the expected timeframe.
  • Process your orders in a timely manner.
  • Respond to customer questions promptly.
  • Ensure that you follow the return policy listed on eBay.

High-quality photography.

Take high-resolution photos against a plain white background to make the products stand out. Make sure the lighting is sufficient to feature the item and its relevant details. 

Try taking shots of the product from different angles, and get some close-up shots as well to highlight details. Don’t use props — that will only distract your shoppers.

Fast, low-cost shipping.

Cost and speed are top of mind for eBay buyers. Over the years, buyers’ expectations have increased, and they are more frequently looking for free shipping. 

Fun fact: 71% of products purchased through the eBay marketplace are shipped for free.

Offer competitive shipping prices (low-cost or free shipping is best) to appeal to more buyers and increase your chances of a sale.  

Free returns.

eBay offers five different return policy options for you to choose from:

  • No returns accepted.
  • 30-day buyer-paid returns.
  • 30-day free returns.
  • 60-day buyer-paid returns.
  • 60-day free returns.

It goes without saying that the most attractive return policy for the eBay buyer is free returns.

Strong customer service.

The reviews are in — literally and figuratively! The best way to avoid bad eBay reviews is to maintain good standing with your customers by having customer service. 

Conclusion

To maximize your ecommerce store’s potential on eBay, you have to do the research, put in the work, and be patient

There is nothing quite like eBay, which offers the diversity and the breadth of unique products, giving sellers the opportunity to sell products that you wouldn’t see in any other marketplace. 

Is eBay the right fit for you?

Sours: https://www.bigcommerce.com/blog/selling-on-ebay-for-beginners/

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