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How to avoid eBay.com fees on shipping charges

By Chris Dawson March 15, 2011 - 6:50 pm

There’s an interesting wrinkle in the change on eBay.com where fees will be charged on free shipping.

Lets suppose you offer a One-Day shipping service, a slower domestic service and International Shipping options. eBay’s change says that in this instance you’ll only ever be charged final value fees on the slower domestic shipping service.

Final Values Fees will be calculated on the shipping service paid by the buyer unless the buyer pays for a One-day or International shipping option. If a One-day service or International option is selected, the first domestic shipping service offered other than One-day will be used to calculate Final Value Fees. If there are no other domestic shipping services offered, fees will be calculated on One-day service or International service.

There are two important points here, firstly if you currently only offer a One-day shipping or International service you should consider adding an economy service to your shipping options. There’s no need to make it your first shipping option, let buyers downgrade if they really want to use a slower service. However just by offering it means that’s the service your shipping final value fees will be calculated on.

Secondly consider making your first domestic shipping service offered (other than your One-day shipping option) free. This will mean you’ll never be charged final value fees on your shipping costs as they’ll always be based on the free shipping option even if your buyers stick with the first option for One-day shipping or are based overseas.

  • Tekgems
    6 years ago

    Could I make first one local pickup? Buyers don’t read though so you have visibility issues in search when you make one day the first method listed.

    Save fvf but lose sales? Very possible.

    • 6 years ago

      Local Pick up is outside the normal postage options. It doesn’t appear in the postage drop down list but is a separate tick box so I’m guessing it doesn’t count.

  • BigPoppa
    6 years ago

    I have read the above 3 times and still I don’t understand it. I thought that fvf’s were not charged on postage.

    Are you saying that now they will be but only at the rate of the cheapest shipping option you offer?

    • 6 years ago

      This currently only applies to eBay.com. The fees there will change to include final value plus postage cost.

  • 6 years ago

    my read is simple.

    offer the cheapest, slowest method available, AND another option if you like.
    That lowers fees.

    OR charge a premium for items with better shipping… time will tell you that’s the right choice for some items.

    however,on ebay.ca, for instance… you have to fill in the size, weight for calculated domestic shipping… and check “free shipping” checkmark… so eBay does know what your shipping option IS…
    I hope this doesn’t lead to double-billing by eBay.

    Thus if I ship int’l, I’ll be charged on the ACTUAL domestic shipping calculator’s number, I would assume, as I do not offer FREE shipping int’l.

    I know that makes sense to me…. you?

  • JD
    6 years ago

    If a buyer buys 2 items from a seller who offers free shipping on all items except the first, will the seller be charged fvf on the postage that isn’t charged on the 2nd item?

    Looks like a dogs breakfast to me.

    • Caroline J
      6 years ago

      I’m interested in that as well – my best guess is that the shopping cart will take care of it, because the FVFs won’t be charged until the buyer goes through checkout, when all transactions from the same seller in that cart will be combined into one. If not, then it’s going to cost sellers to provide P&P discounts.

  • mark
    6 years ago

    This is just another fee increase for ebay sellers. Ebay is losing sellers and buyers to amazon and other sites because their fees are too high, so their solution to raise fees even higher doesn’t make long term sense. Taxing or adding fees to shipping costs will raise seller fvf fees more than the 1% ebay claims to be giving back. They’re throwing the sellers a bone and taking back a steak in return.

  • Jenny
    6 years ago

    FINAL VALUE FEE! Key word is VALUE. What VALUE does shipping have to ebay? Shipping is a service provided to SELLERS by a carrier (USPS, UPS, FEDEX, Etc.) to deliver their merchandise. Ebay has no right to charge a fee/tax on shipping costs. Their FINAL VALUE fees should be limited to the VALUE of the ITEM sold, period.
    .

  • northumbrian
    6 years ago

    we see ebay fees as a tax or a business cost
    we suck it up and try to trade, if profitable we continue with ebay ,if its not we dont use them

  • Old Hand
    6 years ago

    Big Sellers Get Special, Back-Room Pricing Deals. Today’s price increases — and make no mistake they are increases — are targeted at small sellers. You can bet that all the name-brand retailers who have special, back-room pricing deals — some of which I am told include zero listing fees of any kind, special placement in search results, and guaranteed sell through percentages — are not paying final value fees on shipping costs. eBay is unleveling the playing field again in a very big way. The worst part? We don’t even know how bad it is: The special, back-room pricing deals with big corporations are closely guarded secrets.

    http://venturebeat.com/2011/03/15/whats-up-with-ebay/

  • anthony colacicco
    6 years ago

    This guy does not know what he’s talking about, besides internationaL shipping charges which ebay will still tax you on because they will still use the domestic shipping cost even though you are not using it. Plus, even if your cheaper domestic shipping cost is free, you still will have to increase prices somewhere most likely the item to make up for the hike in FVF on TOTAl COST because you cannot have two bin prices for domestic and international iT’S A MONEY MAKING SCHEME FOR EBAY PERIOD AND THE BUYER WILL PAY MORE IN THE END YOU APPLE HEADS.

  • D. Arian
    6 years ago

    “IT’S A MONEY MAKING SCHEME FOR EBAY PERIOD AND THE BUYER WILL PAY MORE IN THE END YOU APPLE HEADS.”

    At first glance it looks as if sellers will simply increase their shipping fee, passing along eBay’s increase to buyers. But buyers will then likely lower their bids, keeping their total expenditure flat. The increase in shipping fee will be balanced by a decrease in bid price. In the end, buyers will pay the same, eBay will get its fee increase, and sellers will lose.

  • C. H.
    6 years ago

    From eBay itself:

    Sellers not subscribed to a Store:
    Auction-style Final Value Fees apply to the total amount of the sale (INCLUDING SHIPPING)

    Response:
    In other words, it doesn’t matter what option you’re offering. It is the total cost including shipping:
    Ex: Item sells for 24.99, SHI is 12.50, Final Value Fee is on total sale of $37.49 for a FVF of $3.38.

    Don’t like it, start charging a Handling Fee as a sort of ‘Buyer’s Premium’ like they do at real live in-person auctions.

    Also from eBay:
    Starting July 6, Fixed Price Final Value Fee rates reduced and applied to the total amount of sale (including shipping).

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