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Did anyone notice that ebay, in all their wit and wisdom, are apparently requiring Free Shipping for a whole lot of items on the UK site, i.e. books, cds, dvds, small electronics and clothing.

The last time they tried such a test was Paypal or Electronic funds only on the Australian site. The Australian government put a stop to that but ebay instituted it stateside and we are all living with that.

If they end up with Free Shipping in the US with the September roll-out, I will end up having to close down. I can't make even the slightest profit on an auction style listing if I have to ship clothing for free.
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, I will end up having to close down. I can't make even the slightest profit on an auction style listing if I have to ship clothing for free.

Maybe not. Your price is set only by competition, and remember your competitors are in the same boat as you. Everyone will end up raising prices by the exact amount that you used in the shipping price to make a profit.
""Officials will begin enforcing these rules in mid-July.

Additionally, June 15 is the date when eBay U.K.'s free shipping mandate will take effect. Sellers listing items on, such as video games, mobile phones, consumer electronics, computing, photography and clothing, will be required to offer free shipping as a first option to domestic buyers. ""

Holy Smoke, how can they mandate that?? And I wonder what they mean by 'first option'?
I know what you are saying...I was freaking out thinking it was also for the us and I would have to change my is the ebay info

From 15th June sellers listing in selected categories in Video Games, Mobile & Home Phones, Consumer Electronics, Computing, Photography, and Clothes, Shoes & Accessories will be required to offer free P&P as their first domestic postage option.

Why is eBay making this change?
Excessive P&P costs are cited as a major reason for buyers spending less on eBay. Free P&P is increasingly standard on online shopping sites, and offering the same on eBay contributes to a higher rate of successful sales. To ensure
eBay remains a dynamic marketplace, we’ll be introducing the requirement to offer free P&P for listings in selected categories (see below).

How will this benefit me?
Shoppers are more likely to buy your items if the P&P is free, as buyers are increasingly used to seeing free P&P offered while shopping online.

How will eBay help keep prices fair for me and my customers?
We understand that sellers might be concerned that they'll have to absorb the cost of P&P so we’ll be offering Final Value Fee promotions and other incentives from time to time. From 6th April to 30th June, eBay Shop owners will qualify for a 20% Final Value Fee discount when they offer free P&P in the categories listed above. (Terms & conditions apply.) Sellers should also bear in mind that the requirement to offer free postage & packaging applies only to the first domestic P&P option. Further chargeable shipping services can be offered in addition.
Why are you requiring free P&P in the selected categories?
The categories we've selected are extremely competitive in the UK with online retailers increasingly offering free delivery. We believe this is the market price for P&P for those categories in the UK.
In which categories do I have to offer free P&P?
Your first domestic postage option must be free for these categories:

Clothes, Shoes & Accessories:
Women’s accessories
Men’s accessories
Boys’ accessories
Girls’ accessories
Clothing & Shoe care

Video Games:
Internet Game Accessories
Merchandise / Books

Mobile & Home Phones:
Bluetooth Accessories
Mobile Phone Accessories
Mobile Phone Batteries
Mobile Phone Cases & Pouches
Mobile Phone Chargers
Mobile Phone Data Cables
Mobile Phone Fascias
Multimedia Cards / Memory
Sim Cards

Consumer Electronics:
Batteries & Battery chargers
MP3 Player Accessories
TV Accessories

Books & Manuals
Laptop Accessories
PDA Accessories
Printer Ink & Cartridges
Printer Paper & Accessories

Books, Manuals, & Magazines
Camcorder Accessories
Digital Camera Accessories
Digital Camera Batteries
Digital Camera Chargers
Digital Camera Memory Cards
Digital Memory Card Readers
Film Camera Accessories
Wow! Can't believe ebay is doing this to our UK friends. Most sellers are just everyday people, we can't compete with online retailers if they offer free shipping etc.

Ebay just keeps digging themselves a bigger hole to crawl in.

If ebay wants to give free shipping to OUR buyers, THEN ebay should pay to ship it!

How crazy is that!
What is going on over there? Are they on Drugs?

Everyday sellers cannot afford to do this. I know if they even think of this in the US, alot of sellers will just not sell in those cats.

Again looks like they just want the small sellers out!

So Sorry UK...I feel for you!
I want offer free shipping because I ship per pound. I sell things that weight up to 30 to 40 pounds sometimes and the item cost them 9.99. If I made that free shipping then I would have to figure just the amount and add it to my total of 9.99. If that is what our buyers want then that is what we will have to do. so far I try to express my shipping and how it is figured. I do offer shipping discount which helps the buyer when they buy more than one thing. This has worked great for me for it brings down the shipping and people are happy.
I have sold a good number of items this year but I have noticed that my profit amount isn't going up like last year. I am trying to see what is happening and keeping a close watch on it. I keep a copy of each Invoice and know the amount it should be.
I wish that we all could find a new place to list that would promote us as well as Ebay and I would switch right away. I don't like giving all my profit away either, but I must say I have made a little this year. I have started to trying harder, but free shipping I can't do.
The whole free shipping thing is another ebay con which as usual they claim will lead to 'an improved buyer experience'
They have just forced me into it with one of my items and they hit me in the pocket twice.
Adding the shipping into the price means I have to pay a higher listing fee plus the FVF is now payable on a higher price so I am effectively paying 10% FVF on the shipping as well as the item price.

One Wall St analyst has recently upgraded ebay shares on the basis that their free shipping (scam) policy will suck in more and more money as it is expanded in the future.

Says it all really but is only what we should expect from a parasite.
Well, ebay has finally figured out how to kill a free market, by forcing every seller to offer "free" shipping.

Starting in September, ebay is eliminating the shipping insurance option. Sellers will now be responsible for insuring items, which in itself isn't so bad, as far as the philosophy goes, but many sellers will account for the additional expense by adding a handling fee on to their shipping cost.

eBay, however, has figured out a way to punish those sellers, by creating a "Top Seller" status. A "Top Seller" status will "boost" items in the "best match" item search. Any seller not rated as a "Top Seller" will have their items buried in the back pages. This will leave many Power Sellers at the back of the bus, so to speak. They are also going to eliminate the Power Seller icon from all listings.

Top Seller status' little secret is in the DSR's. Any seller who has more than 2 low star ratings in either of the 4 DSR categories, will not qualify for "Top Seller". A low star rating is considered as any rating of either 1 or 2 stars.

I am a SILVER power seller, who charges actual shipping cost with a $1 handling fee for supplies, like bubble wrap, tape, printer paper, packing peanuts and printer ink. I checked my status to see if I qualify for "Top Seller" and was shocked to see I have had 6 low star ratings, over the past 300+ feedbacks, all in "Shipping & Handling Charges".

What number do you think that will go to once I start adding shipping insurance to the shipping cost?

So, now I have to offer "free" shipping, if I ever want any buyers to see what I am selling, and start my items at a higher insertion price....wait....that means a higher eBay insertion fee...well that is certainly a coincidence.

My hats off to you eBay. You truly have figured out how to screw your customers, and squeeze a few more pennies out of those who have turned to you to help them put food on their table in this horrible economy.

I guess there truly is no such thing as "FREE".
I'm from the UK, and like many others am puzzled by this change. A few months ago, Ebay UK introduced zero insertion fees for any auction listing with start price up to £0.99, for private sellers. Final Values fees went up a bit.

I quote: "We’re continuing our commitment to moving the cost of selling on and away from front end fees so that the majority of fees are paid only when you successfully sell an item."

Now the free shippings seems to contradict this strategy, as a £0.99 start price is ruled out in these categories, unless a seller fancies a bit of a gamble!!
Originally posted by watrocket:
I do not get what they have against offering insurance? What am I missing?

I've been away for the past month and a half and return to listing and find so many changes! I agree with Teh Funnay that Ebay has found a new way to scam its sellers. It is not a seller's responsibility to insure an item and to not be able to offer it to the customer as an option is ridiculous. If I purchase something online from any major retailer, insurance is an option for me (the buyer). Why should eBay be any different!!??!! So now, if we don't automatically insure everything we ship, we stand to face more negative feedback on anything that gets broken or lost in shipment. I cannot afford to insure all I ship. Many of my items are $9.99 or less and after cost of inventory, ebay fees, PayPal fees, profit is minimal now...if I have to pay insurance cost, forget it, it's not worth the effort. I'm about ready to just quit!

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