The Ebay Rag Mag

October 6, 2008

The eBay Powerseller Experience: Sales down 40%

eBay through the eyes of a Powerseller

powerhousemusical  (30440 ) View Listings  
“My sales down 40% in the last 2 weeks for the first time in years…That is major when you do our volume. Anyone else? Seems like ebay policy changes every week and bugs are worse than ever. What’s next?”

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2dxzeus  (11064 ) View Listings    
“Do what most sellers are doing (such as myself) and change venues.”

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eBay powersellers world wide are expressing an increased dissatisfaction with it’s new CEO John Donoahoe and the series of changes instituded since his inception as the head of eBay and are starting to call for his resignation if not his firing.

Since Donahoes inception twenty of eBays top 100 sellers have decided to shut down and vacate the site in search of better alternatives which includes Amazon, Overstock, Yahoo stores and the creation of their own venues.  Hundreds of other large sellers are screaming, “help my account has been restricted” for reasons that eBay refuses to discuss with its sellers and are being forced to leave the site.

As I read the eBay Powerseller message board from day to day the outlook begins to look more bleak.  Sellers are now holding back on purchasing new inventory due to fear that eBays declining market and the deteriorating value of their product on eBay may put them out of business.  They are angered by the Best Match search engine tool that seems to bury their products in favor corporate sites such as BUY.com who is not held to the same buyer satisfaction standards as the rest of eBays’ selling population, nor are they being held to the same fee structure.

The smaller seller who is footing the bill for eBays’ “Diamond Level Deal” is more than just feeling the pinch, they are drowning.

The PESA/ECMTA Position Paper states, “During the past few years, that economic balance has shifted dramatically to the disadvantage of merchants. In our opinion, eBay still does not recognize that their excessive extraction of value in the form of fees and other monetization techniques has resulted in dramatic underinvestment on improving the marketplace. Declining buyer activity also has a direct result on average selling prices and conversion rates on the platform. Thus the lower margins in conjunction with rising eBay fees, results in eBay taking more value while leaving less for merchants.”

While the majority of eBays changes have been focused on it’s sellers and less towards it’s buyers and increased buying activity, eBay powersellers are becoming more and more disenchanted with not only their selling experience but the over-all experience, it’s time to start focusing on the root of the problem which is repeated poor decision making from eBays top executive offices.

eBay has effected the world economy and has encouraged trade accross the internet for more than 10 years now.  In the past, that effect has been a positive one.  Current times are changing fast.  The world economy is in crisis, people are losing their homes, their jobs and their life savings.   Many of those people have depended on their eBay income to create a balance between their losses in the stock market, to help finance their mortgage, to put their children through college, to keep the lights on.  Unfortunately, that balance is no longer reliable.  There is no balance period.  eBay has become a volitile venue for it’s sellers.  These are scary times which are calling for some reassuring measures.

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