eBay.DE puts S+H limits in certain categories – I scratch my head.

May 30, 2008

Marketplaces ChannelAdvisor By ChannelAdvisor

I haven’t seen this blogged anywhere else (maybe because it’s in German – A consipracy by eBay to keep it quiet? –kidding–).

The post is here for you German speakers in the house.  For the rest of us, here’s a summation/translation that was done by one of the talented multilingual folks at ChannelAdvisor:

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eBay Germany is starting a
new policy. From June 15 a seller cannot list any items again with shipping
costs higher than what eBay has determined to be a reasonable rate in certain
categories.

eBay is starting this for 2 main reasons:

  1. eBay asked buyers about shipping and for the categories to where this new
    policy applies, buyers said that shipping costs were unreasonable high.

  2. eBay sellers get low rating for S&H DSR in those specific categories.

(You can look at the post to see the long list of categories and prices)

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As we’ve all learned in the eBay ecosystem, eBay has been testing things in AU/IT/DE/UK and then taking the ideas that are the winners and then spreading them to every country, so this is one to keep an eye on.

It does raise some interesting questions that I’m not sure eBay has thought through:

  • CBT – What if I’m in the UK and listing on eBay.DE – is it fair that I have to charge the same S+H price as a native?  What about the US?
  • Some of these are crazy.  For example, in the B+I category for wholesale lots, they are saying 8 euros is the max.  Ummm, ok. What if I have two PALLETS of computer monitors for sale and my true shipping cost is 70 euro?  Do I put 8 euro and increase the cost of my products by 62 euro?  Is this the best buyer experience?
  • If you asked me as a buyer which shipping and handling is too high, I’d of course being a cheapskate tell you, well, all of them of course!  Sure I’d love free shipping on everything.
  • What’s eBay going to do when everyone lives by this rule and the S+H cost DSR is still too low?  Why even rate on S+H cost for these categories?  eBay has essentially set the price so shouldn’t they be rated on it and not the seller?
  • Which came first: The chicken or the egg? (just checking that you’re paying attention)

One thing I do know, if this policy comes to the US on top of all the other stuff sellers are dealing with, it’s not going to be too popular, in fact the word kerfuffle comes to mind.