Dear users,

Beginning with the current billing cycle, we're making a change that will affect all users on paid monthly plans. Those on one of our prepaid 1-, 2- or 3-year plans or our Free Tools plan will not be affected.

In order to accommodate a move to a pay-in-advance model, this billing cycle will serve as a transition period. That means your next invoice, which will be created in early June, will include charges from both May and your monthly plan fees for June.

Moving forward, invoicing will continue to happen during the first week of each month, but will only include monthly plan fees for the same month. Incidental charges (such as those for image hosting overages and Auctiva Shipping Insurance) will still be billed on the invoice following their occurrence. For example, an invoice created in early September would include Sept. monthly plan charges and any incidental charges accrued in August.

This change is aimed at reducing confusion that arises relating to billing and invoicing, particularly when users change their plan or account type.

Should any of you need an extra month to transition, we're allowing you to postpone the change until the invoice created in early July. To do so, log into your account and select this option on your Billing Settings Page. You can find this page via the "My Payment Method" link under the My Account tab.

Thank you for your understanding during this transition period.

Kevin Kinell
V.P. — Auctiva
Original Post
Hello Community,

As Kevin Kinell posted yesterday, those of you on either our Basic, Unlimited or Premium plans, will notice a charge for June's monthly plan fees on your next invoice.

The typical user on the Unlimited plan will see both a $9.95 charge for May and a $9.95 charge for June's monthly plan fees on their next invoice. Although this invoice will include two monthly plan charges, you will not be charged twice for the same period of service. But we do need to have an invoice that includes 2 month's worth of monthly plan charges (one in arrears and one in advance) in order to transition to pay-in-advance.

Over the past year, since we began charging for some of our services, we’ve monitored very closely Customer Support cases related to billing. We've been surprised by how many users believe they have been paying in advance all the time, even though we've strived to make our Billing Terms and invoices as clear as possible. Some users transitioning to different plans were particularly perplexed or surprised to learn we had been billing in arrears all along. Clearly they were used to online services billing in advance.

Moving forward, this adjustment will reduce confusion around our billing policy and bring us in line with how many online services bill their users, like services for online DVD rental, VoIP phone, Web hosting or even online store subscriptions often do.

Nevertheless, we understand that some of you may be on tight budgets, and would appreciate a little more time to transition. We're doing two things to accommodate those of you in this category.

First, we're delaying June charging until the second week of June. Invoices will be created around the 3rd of June, but we will not begin processing charges until the 8th.

Second, we've created an "opt out" system of sorts that will postpone the transition for an additional month. For users who select this option, the invoice you receive in June will include only May charges, and the invoice you receive in July will include both June and July charges.

Plan changes will be handled the same way they always have: Plan upgrades become effective immediately and result in a prorated charge for the initial month on the new plan (to be charged on the next invoice). Plan downgrades will take effect on the 1st of the following month.

To get the word out about this change, we're updating our billing policy, placing alerts on your Account Dashboard and several billing-related pages, and creating an info page that users on a paid plan will see after logging in. Should you need to access this information in the future, please visit

We hope our efforts to clearly communicate this adjustment and the additional time provided will make it as easy as possible for you. If you have any questions, I encourage you to contact Customer Support. I want to reiterate Kevin's appreciation of your understanding during this transition period.

Tony Maxey
Senior Product Manager
Well I got to tell you that i'm disappointed in all this. There is no reason to go to a "pay ahead" system as we have a cc number on file and I see no benefit to pay a month ahead. I don't even have a cc listed on e-bay for monthly billing.
Now I'm not one of those that want something for nothing but paying in advance is just not right and if that is the stance of this then I will be looking for a different host for my site. One that has phone service that I can call in and talk to a live person and a site that will not log me out every 10 min. I might even find one that will record my payments right. I find myself thinking more and more that I'm dealing with e-bay here... All I can say is what happened to you guys.. I sure am disappointed.
Doug Mullens
This isn't a big deal for me at all. When I rented an apartment, they actually made me pay the rent up front, rather than let me live there for free and pay at the end of the month. Most companies are moving to this structure because they are tired of getting stiffed by deadbeats who use services and then disappear when the bill comes. The auction listing service I used to use before here changed to a "bill in advance" structure last year, and no one freaked out about it. I left for other reasons Mad
The rationale for us shifting to pay in advance is really just as simple as what Kevin said in his post is aimed at "reducing confusion that arises relating to billing and invoicing, particularly when users change their plan or account type."

Once we are shifted over to advance billing, if someone wants to cancel, if they do the cancellation close to the end of the month then they will have used up the service they have already paid for and it all works out very neat and tidy.

However, if someone feels they have no choice but to cancel partway through the month, they can contact support and request a refund prorated for the unused time remaining in the month. Our terms of service that people consent to when they sign up don't obligate us to give refund for the month someone cancels in, but as a matter of practice, we try to accommodate people.
I don't buy the logic. I doubt anyone has ever been confused about paying in advance or arrears. This screams financial difficulty. It is just another in a long line of disappointments from Auctiva. First it was beginning to charge, then it was pay for support, if you want live chat or a real live person, then it was a multitude of errors with each update. What's next pay per transaction on sold items? Very disapponted. Frown

This is a change to our billing procedure only; it is NOT a change to our pricing structure.

We have a team of developers dedicated to this product who are rapidly developing and rolling out new features and functionality for We release new functionality on the Auctiva site every 4 - 6 weeks. We are planning a site update later this month which will include both support for eBay's new item conditions and support for parts compatibility listings for eBay Motors. We have a great deal more planned for this year. Those actions are consistent with our commitment to our customers and indicative of our health as a company.

Yes, as Kevin Kinell posted earlier in this thread, there really has been a tremendous amount of customer confusion caused by our billing in arrears. Most--by a considerable margin--of the support cases we are receiving that are linked to this change are because the filer didn't understand that they where only just now being billed for the month of May.
What a nice, tidy sum for you! You're doubling your income for this month huh? Another way to get more money from us, just like greedbay. What next? Huh? No wonder more and more are leaving and going to other auctions sites. It's just a matter of time.....And POOF! You'll be gone.
I agree with the above poster. This comes at an especially bad time for me. If possible, I'd like an "opt out" and delay until July as well.

Also - I received no email concerning this (I save ALL Auctiva emails), saw no splash page with the info (I'm on the site every day), and only learned about it this morning when I checked my invoice to see when the PayPal withdrawal would take place to make sure I'd leave the $9.95 in there.
The opt-out box for the billing change has now been removed from the site as we are now well into June (7th).

We did try hard to give everyone notice: we created this thread on the forums on May 20, and we sent emails and began running a 'splash' page to alert people signing on. If you missed all that, we are sorry, but we don't know how it happened.

If you need assistance with your account I suggest you contact support and they will see what they can do to help you.
Im glad Auctiva went to this billing. Its much easier to know I am paid ahead.

For those using Paypal as payment wouldnt it be easier to just keep enough in the auctiva account each month to cover the bill

I do and have never had any drawn from my paypal account.

I fully understand why Auctiva went to the pay before plan. Ebay does this also with out store subscriptions. Its not uncommon and actually rare for a company to bill you after the fact and not before.
auctiva = always inconveniencing their customers for their own convenience

just like ebay

just like paypal

auctiva is such a rip off, chargine $10 a month for EACH ebay account, i guess their programmer arent up to date with technology that can provide the services inkfrog can

auctiva gets worse everyday, nothing changes, no improvements

but they still try to play it off like they care about you , but in fact, they are just playing the same game as ebay and paypal ,

I frankly have no problem with this pay ahead, and we do need to realize that most companies just "do it" without giving an opt-out notice at all. I feel auctiva did care enough to give the opt-out. Most companies are "take it or leave it"

I did at one time head over to frogsville and sent 3 emails to them asking questions that were ones a newbie would ask and have to really dig to find. Each one had a curt response that only sent me to a link of which two did not answer question I asked. cancelling with them was also a 3 step process at the time which was an email hassle (may have changed now)

NOW. . NO. . don't get me wrong auctiva is NOT perfect by any means. I am sure they will tell you I have battled bunches with them. I have been hot and bothered numerous times. They have also sent stupid answers and at times I have sent stupid responses and at times I did not send enough info. for them to really work with. I learned details and persistence are very important.

No.. I do not like paying $10.00 a month, noone likes paying for something they got free before. HOwever, would re-evaluate for sure if went higher - especially until the economy picks up and things sell more.

Just my thoughts. ..
i do not have a problem paying my bill each time,but they said that they informed every one of the change,not true some did not receive the infomation,or they wood not have received so much email on this matter,some times ther site works great and at orther times not so good,it is getting harder for a small seller to make any money with the fees auctiva,ebay and paypal charge not to forget the cost of mailing the purchase out.but when you the only games in town,you pay or leave.
the big red dog.. I am sure some did not get emails, that is always the case in mass mailings I think. I actually found mine in spam folder with some other important info. from ebay buyers.

I actually got email, saw in forums and I believe when i logged in I got note mentioning it for a few log ins. Of course, I know lots of people do not read forums and a lot do not log in daily or even weekly.

I fully sympathize with all of the fees and thinking about them makes my stomach ache, however, to me this is smallest I get and I got this service free for years.

Peter T. . If auctiva could do this free for many years, I would think with all ebayers paying now they could make it ok without going out. I sure hope so.

I feel we are being raped by ebay and paypal for sure. Wish there was a biggie like ebay. I do think auctiva gets blamed a lot for ebay fees and paypal fees.

No . . I do not work for auctiva nor am I their "goodwill ambassador"

I have expected HATE mail from them before I got soooo mad.

I do know right now they are best gig I have found in town for the money.

I do think for sellers who list only a few things a month auctiva may not be the best way to go.

I'm planning on dumping Auctiva as soon as possible and going back to INK FROG. I regularly check my Auctiva emails (I even read them) and got absolutely zero from them about this. I expect these so-called emails were the PHANTOM variety since Auctiva had to know people would dump their service if they knew they'd be charged IN ADVANCE OF SERVICES RENDERED. The only recourse is to do a chargeback and that would involve a lot of dancing around with the bank, since there are different rules regarding regular monthly billing of your bank account as opposed to one-shot bills. My bank has always been really good at helping me get my money back for unauthorized charges, so it won't hurt to discuss this with them.
I would guess if it was the other way around and auctiva gave you a month of service and you all of a sudden closed your account and they couldnt get there money then that would be ok?

Most know that have done chargebacks on ebay via Paypal. If Paypal denies and you use a CC you can call the CC and they almost always get Paypal to give the money back.

Charging ahead of time for a small amount like 2.99, 9.99, 19,99 , 29.99 is reasonable and very uderstandable.
The joke's on her. The toad pond started charging in advance when Auctiva stopped being free. At the time I was on the fence Auctiva/Toadpond. When the toads wouldn't let me log into my account 2 days before the end of the month without paying in advance for next month I hopted out. The toads can and did lock up my account and the toads can do it again to anyone there. I like to control my own bleak destiny.
Laura.. it is my understanding that if you want to cancel auctiva will pro-rate and refund you. Have you asked them? I am not sure where I saw this, but I would sure ask. If you do not ask they have no way of knowing you want to cancel and get your fee back.

Frankly, IF I were you, I would do what I did before bailing.

I signed up for Froggies, then sent them 3 questions with details to what I was asking, that I knew answers to, but knew that a newbie would not know. They sent me no "real" answers and sent links.. 2 of which were not associated with my question at all. One they did respond to but response was very brief and really did not answer my question.

It also took me 3 or more emails to get account cancelled.

I would test them for sure before jumping ship.

Yes, I have had auctiva be vague on questions too.. but have found through experience to be very detailed in my questions. . very detailed. I have also learned clear cookies, etc., ALWAYS first and write that in note, for awhile that was cure to all! (ha)

Just food for thought.

YOU are 100% RIGHT on last summer. I, like most of us, were in a total RAGE mode. Confused Even thinking about that now makes me furious, all the time wasted worrying and figuring out where best place to go was. Many days, wasted!! Now.. that would for sure have done me in.

Auctiva.. don't ever do that to us again!!! Smile

Not Phantom at all I got 2 as I have 2 accounts. They are not doing anything different than IF and most of the rest have been doing a lot longer.

If you think IF is better then move on. I wasted lots of money and time on IF/BISI to find out that it wasn't any greener over there.

While the people on the IF side were nice they had as many problems as Auctiva and Tomas was pretty clear that the store side was always going to be limited.
I also never received an email or any splash screen. I only found out today when I logged into my Paypal to check my balance & noticed the double-charge.

To be honest I don't see how many, if any, could be confused by the old billing method. Especially since that's the way eBay bills you. Although, i'm sure they'd bill ahead if they could.

I really used to enjoy selling things on eBay years ago, but anymore it sucks!
The new system is no different than ebays. All store subscriptions are billed ahead of time. Same as auctivas set fee plan.
Any charges on ebay from listing and final value are billed at the end of the 30 day cycle.
Same with auctiva. Any overages on images are billed on the next billing cycle.
Very simple process
I do not use Auctiva enough to pay their monthly charge. My beef is that I need to upgrage to a higher payment if I want to speak to cust service live. that is a rip off.

I also received no emails or any other type of communication about this change. funny how they billed me for May than credited it back just to take it out again in June.
P'd off
I am disabled and canont work. I get very little money each month and can't afford all these changes.
Email can and does get diverted to spam filters or deleted by ISPs. If you didn't see the email, you should check your spam folder. I got the email 5x (once for each of my accounts). If you don't bother to log in to the boards where it has been posted since May 20, how is Auctiva responsible for that? They made the information available in a variety of places with quite a bit of advance notice - if you didn't happen to see it, I don't think they can be blamed for that.

Almost all monthly services with a set monthly fee (i.e., Netflix, Ebay stores, online gaming, etc) bill a month in advance. This is a one-time thing, then it's on the new schedule. In addition, if you've got an AucCom store, they've continued to postpone the date when they will begin charging for it - don't think you can complain about that!
Hi- if this makes those who feel this is unfair, or do not have the budget to pay feel better.

All C______ hit the fan in May 2009, when auctiva decided to start charging a HUGE fee and I really mean ENORMOUS!!! Or Gy-Normous (if that is a word) Mine was going to be between $150-200 PLUS hosting fees and I am not a huge seller by any means. If you think I am smoking weed and crazy, pls. refer to forums of May 2009. *(though I don't smoke weed (or pot as my kids say I should not say as it shows my age) but I am crazy in lots of ways)

Now.. that was something to get furious about, and people did. This is a small amount of money and it is a one time hit.

Thankfully, they decided that was in not in anyone's best interest, as people were dropping like flies. The forums went mad, the notes to auctiva I am sure went off the charts. I am surprised their site did not crash and burn.

I thought at the time that huge amount was put out there so everyone would go NUTS and then they would say.. oh, psyche.. .it is only $____
and it be reasonable so people would then be happy because it was sooo much less. but what do I know? (Ok.. don't tell me. . because it is not much)
I do agree lots of items go into spam, matter of fact I found about 6 ebay notes in spam this week. . so continually check there now. I have also found auctiva notes in there. Some would spam others would go regular.. no real reasoning.

Hopefully, we will all get past this and on to bigger fish.

It is a one time shot.
Now auctiva.. don't go raising your fees.. or all C___ will hit the fan again Smile


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