Posts Tagged ‘ebay’
eBay have come under fire recently- not just for charging ever-higher fees, both directly and through eBay-owned Paypal, but also for charging final value fees on the cost of postage. As if that wasn’t expensive enough. But alongside the added costs, are eBay actually trying to develop a better service for eBay shoppers as well?
The new partnership with Argos will allow shoppers to ‘click and collect’ their eBay purchases from a local Argos store, instead of waiting for a while-you-were-out card from the postman and queueing on a Saturday morning at the sorting office. With 740 stores, and many of them open after office hours, this could be a far more convenient way of getting your internet crap really important purchase home.
But before you get too excited, the scheme is initially being run as a trial, for six months (so we get Christmas in), in 150 Argos stores and with just 50 as-yet unnamed eBay sellers. It is in no way a direct response to the surprisingly successful Amazon Lockers programme.
Devin Wenig, president of eBay said “We know from our data and our experience around the world, consumers love choice and this will given them an entirely new option for thousands of items that previously could not be delivered in this way,”
“This is a snippet of what is going to happen all around the world,” he added, mysteriously.
While some might ponder why Argos would want to get into bed with a company who is potentially stealing some of their business, MD John Walden pooh-poohed this idea, suggesting they were a natural partner in this venture as they invented (“pioneered”) the click and collect (or as they like to call it, check and reserve) idea in 2000, and it now forms 33% of their business. He also revealed that Argos is looking forward to the “opportunity for increased customer footfall.”
As well as this announcement, eBay also revealed plans to test a one-hour delivery service in London some time in 2014, but had no other details as yet. However, those in the know might surmise a UK-copy of the US ‘eBay Now’ programme available in New York and San Francisco which allows products bought through eBay from ToysRUs, Urban Outfitters, The Home Depot and some local stores to be delivered within about 60 minutes of ordering for a $5 charge.
Still, once all these new services come online, perhaps eBay will decide to put its fees up. Again.
When eBay first burst into our lives in the late 90s, we all thought it was the answer to our clutter prayers. The premise was simple- now you could get rid of tat you didn’t want anymore and someone would actually pay you for it. It was also a great way to declutter, provided you didn’t start buying other people’s tat at the same time.
Last week, eBay announced another change to their seller fees, which will make selling on eBay even more expensive. So will this be a nail in the coffin of the massive eBay machine, or will people still cough up regardless?
The new changes, which come into force on 4 September will see eBay charging its final value fees (FVF) including postage, instead of the item value alone. For private sellers this amount is normally around 10% on the final selling value of the item, and for business sellers it ranges from 5-12%, but is 10% as standard. Besides being another way to squeeze even more fees out of sellers, eBay might claim to be doing this to stop people profiting out of inflated postage costs.
While this may have been possible, and even prevalent some years ago, with postage costs increasing massively over the last few years, and specifically the huge increases to Royal Mail parcel costs earlier this year, when this is coupled with eBay imposed maxima on the amount of postage that can be charged on an item, sellers would be hard pressed to make much of a turn on postage these days anyway. Not that eBay is charging on the profit- the FVF will apply to the whole postage cost, most or all of which will presumably be spent on postage.
But what can sellers do? For most people who sell occasionally on eBay, the effect will not be so great as for traders who attempt to make a living using eBay as an online shop venue. But the proliferation of selling sites on Facebook might mean that sellers are willing to accept a slightly lower price in order to keep 100% of the sales value. Even if you do have to deal with actual people.
On the same date, and presumably aimed at placating smaller business sellers, eBay are increasing the amount of ‘free’ fixed-price listing fees (a smaller fee paid on listing the item) for basic shop owners, up to 200 from 20 per month, saving up to £20 a month based on 10p listing fees. Basic shops cost £19.99 a month.
And don’t forget, you have also been paying Paypal fees on the final value including postage for years. Some sellers are surprised at just how little they end up with in their pocket at the end of the day.
But will this be enough to turn people away from eBay? Many online sellers have given up when faced with eBay fees, but for many more, the costs may be high, but the practicality of a standalone online shop in a sea of millions of websites may be too high. Sellers said they would boycott eBay after the sellers’ right to negative feedback was revoked, but so far eBay still seems to be surviving. Perhaps this latest change is just an added inflationary cost of surviving these days.
Outsider artists are difficult to find, but when you do, they’re to be treasured. Why? Well, in the case of this particular artist, they’ve decided to paint children’s TV weed, Orville the Duck, with the face of child-botherer, Gary Glitter.
And it gets weirder.
The artist says: “painting is 24″x45″ painted on hardboard, framed in pine, with real teeth, and drilled out eyes (you can fill these holes with l.e.d. lights or raisins)”
Real teeth! Raisin eyes!
And there’ll be more from the grotesque gallery. The artist continues: ”i am having a big spring clear out – so i’ll be putting up loads more of my paintings on ebay every day, so do please come back and check out other original paintings i am selling.”
It is currently going for just over a fiver on eBay. Click here if you want to buy it.
Small third party traders who use Amazon to shift their secondhand books/vacuum cleaners/novelty Lionel ‘Rich Tea’ mugs, are fuming with the mega retailer, who is hiking its selling fees from 7% to 12% after Easter.
The price rises are causing much distress, but so powerful is Amazon that the smaller traders feel powerless to defend themselves. One UK trader said that he was worried the fees would destroy his small business, but there was no arguing with the might of the online company, which last year boasted worldwide sales of $21.3bn.
Amazon is becoming something of a retail Godzilla, chomping up the high street and destroying businesses. They’re also, of course, sidestepping paying tax in Britain by registering all their UK sales in Luxembourg. (Which is what Godzilla would have done too, if he knew anything about accountancy.)
But small third party traders make up an important part of Amazon’s success, with 2 million traders using the network worldwide.
So will this price rise cause small retailers move back to ebay instead, or are we all Amazon’s bitches now?
Elengo -who I like to imagine as a dark handsome type in a fedora carrying a guitar case in the desert – doesn’t exist on the UK Electoral roll, but he’s still managed to con people who have been selling festival tickets online.
The scam is as follows: Elengo snaps up your gig tickets using PayPal. Some time later, he/it/them orders a ‘chargeback’ on the payment, which is the facility you can use to get your money back if your goods don’t arrive or are unsatisfactory.
After a BBC Wales documentary exposed the scam, they got a reply from someone claiming to be Elengo, who complained that he received the tickets and it was PayPal’s fault. The plot thickens…
With dozens of victims taking to the Internet to complain about the fraud, PayPal has since closed Elengo’s account. But don’t be surprised if he springs up in another guise. If Stelios Shufflebottom or Regina Felangi contacts you wanting to buy Glastonbury tickets, report it to the eBay police, OK?
Last week it was Starbucks, today it’s eBay and Ikea that are wriggling under the ‘fair tax spotlight’ – a spotlight that we’ve just made up, although it seems like it might be a pretty harsh spotlight, and not the kind that someone might sing a ballad beneath. Of course, we’ve already had Starbucks quivering under the spotlight, as it has paid no UK tax in the past three years in spite of the fact that it’s chalked up £1.2 billion in sales in that period. Hmmm…
Now it’s emerged that eBay channels payments through Luxembourg and Switzerland and manages to avoid paying as much as £50 million in tax while it does so. Ikea avoids some UK tax by sending payments abroad to a sister payment, which it calls a ‘franchise fee’. Hmmm…
In a Sunday Times report, it was revealed that eBay had paid little more than £1m in corporation tax even though it had racked up sales of around £800m a year. As for Starbucks, on Saturday, the taxpayer was footing the bill for the police to protect London branches of Starbucks which had been threatened by marchers on the demonstration against government cuts. Now there’s ironic.
Additionally, it looks as though Amazon is only paying 3% VAT to Luxembourg on ebooks while insisting that publishers knock the UK VAT rate of 20% off cost price, ramping up its profits even more. Classy – and of course Amazon have got form when it comes to dodging its UK tax responsibilities.
So, what about you lot? Do you give a toss about what companies get up to with their accounts as long as they’re illegal? Why should a company pay more to the HMRC if they don’t have to? Social responsibility – what’s all that about? Or are you in favour of boycotting these scoundrels unless they get their act together and stop acting like slippery eels?
Still haven’t bought yourself a copy of 50 Shades Of Grey? Why not treat yourself to a special version of it – one that’s been, erm, well-thumbed by Samantha, Allison and Sona, three self-styled ‘MILFY Brooklyn Babes’, who are flogging it on eBay to the highest-bidding pervert.
“Passed from one friend to another, we each made our way through the tantalising first installment in the Fifty Shades trilogy,” they declare, without going into any more detail, which may or may not be a blessing for all of us.
The trio describe themselves as, “(three) tragically hip mothers and best friends. We share everything from clothes to babysitting duties, so naturally we all had our way with this book. We each tremendously enjoyed reading this single copy of Fifty Shades of Grey. We want you, dear bidder, to enjoy this book as much as we did.” You can interpret that any way you want.
There’s six days left to stake your claim, but you’ll have to beat the current high bid of $145.50 (£90).
Anyone fancy getting a fiver off something on eBay before 10pm tonight? Course you do.
If you’re paying with Paypal, use the coupon code COUPONFROMEBAY at checkout and receive £5 off your eBay.co.uk purchase (excluding P&P).
There’sno minimum spend but you have to use the code in one transaction. We’ve just tried it and it works. We bought one of these. £1.99 after the voucher.
Nice eh? Thanks to avid HotUKDeals members dapp and pantheruncia…
Hola amigos! This post has nothing to do with consumer law or sweat stained leotards I am afraid. However…it does offer you a free £5 voucher to spend at eBay as long as you checkout with PayPal!
So, what are you waiting for? Get on over here to check out the HotUKDeals thread and buy yourself something that you would not have purchased if you had to part with some actual money. Feels good, doesn’t it.
Thanks to msesaver001 over at HotUKDeals.
**Deal is no more – 50,000 transactions has now been reached**
Got a spare $5,000 lying around? If so, the bad news is that you’ve just missed out on the chance to invest it in a unique historical artifact that has just been sold in that prestigious international auction house, eBay.
Take a closer look – it’s a three-year-old chicken McNugget that supposedly looks like George Washington.
Rebekah Speight is the lucky lady who found the tasty miracle, storing it in her freezer until the time was right to try and flog it for as much cash as possible. Rebekah sold the McNugget as part of an attempt to raise $15,000 and send 50 children to summer church camp in Sioux City.
Her listing for the chewy artefact said: “By bidding on this rare President George Washington Chicken McNugget…not only will you have an opportunity to be the new owner of this rare find, but you will be investing in the lives of children.”
We’re almost in tears here, and we haven’t even had the privilege of smelling or licking it.
PayPal, who made the shortlist in our Worst Companies of 2011, have been showing a wilful disregard for common sense again, this time getting someone to smash up a violin that survived WWII.
A vendor sold an old French violin to a buyer who disputed the label on the instrument. This isn’t uncommon in the violin market. However, instead of understanding what a label dispute means in the violin world, PayPal “made the buyer DESTROY the violin” as they deemed the violin to be “counterfeit”.
Is there such thing as a pretend violin? Either way, it appears that PayPal don’t have any problem with destroying instruments that have been “examined and authenticated by a top luthier prior to its sale.”
Of course, if you were a sneak, you could exploit PayPal’s system by buying a cheap, tatty violin, crying ‘fake’, smash it up at their behest and then make off with the expensive one complete with a refund. That’d invariably work with clothes and bags too, so well done PayPal.
Following your frenzied vote-casting, we’ve whittled our way down to the eight worst companies in the UK over the past year. They are (in no particular order) eBay, TalkTalk, Vodafone, Santander, Tesco, Yodel, BT and Groupon. Now it’s time for four more of them to be eliminated.
Here’s the first two quarter-final showdowns – first up we have nightmare courier firm Yodel paired with supermarket giants Tesco. Then comes the online auction fiasco that it eBay, coupled with diabolical daily deal vendors Groupon. You’ve got until the end of Thursday to make your decision, and the other two quarter-finals will be here later this afternoon.
Meanwhile, catch up with all the voting to date here.