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eBay fulfilment program to be cheaper than FBA
eBay announced a new Managed Delivery eBay fulfilment program in Germany launching with 70 eBay sellers in mid 2020 and fully launched in September of that year. This followed a pilot test in the US which was then shut down. Now it appears that eBay have got the model right as at their eBay Connect Developer Conference this week, they’ve announced that eBay Fulfilment program will launch in the UK imminently, Australia and Italy later this year and in the US at some point in 2022.
eBay told developers that the eBay fulfilment program is ideally suited for sellers and especially importers who want to outsource their storage and fulfilment operations to increase cost savings or increase the standard of the delivery experience they can offer customers.
eBay Fulfilment Program Features
- Seller protection for delivery related issues
- 2-Day delivery in the UK and Germany with late order cut off times
- Competitive pricing (Cheaper than Amazon FBA multi-channel)
Will you like it?
The reason you might like the eBay fulfilment program is when selling overseas, especially post Brexit and post the 1st of July this year when VAT and customs changes make shipping into the EU more onerous. If you forward deploy inventory into eBay in Germany, then you can easily fulfil orders to Germany customers trouble free and only have to worry about customs and import duty when your goods arrive into the country rather than on each and every shipment.
The reason you might not like eBay fulfilment is that the same is true for overseas sellers targeting the UK. Sellers from Germany, the US, China and indeed anywhere around the world will be able to ship to eBay in bulk and then fulfil orders within the UK just as fast as you can from your domestic operations.
eBay have a joint partnership with Orange Connex who in 2018 launched SpeedPAK which offers as a new shipping programme through eBay geared towards cross-border selling and ecommerce sellers based in China. In 2018 this was shipping at a distance but with eBay Fulfilment it will pivot to ship in bulk, fulfil from the UK, Germany and other countries as the program rolls out.
Should you use it?
We’ve not seen costs yet, but as eBay have told developers that the cost will be lower than Amazon FBA multi-channel, it’s a good indicator that this will be attractively priced. As with all external fulfilment, it will be most suited for goods where you have high inventory levels with similarly high sell through rates. There’s no point you having stock tied up in an eBay warehouse that’s not selling and equally the fulfilment house won’t want to be your long term storage depot with products gathering dust for years.
Will the eBay Fulfilment program be something for your business? Hard to tell before we see the exact terms on offer. But if you do want to target countries like Germany, Australia and the US and wish to have a local fulfilment partner to handle your eBay orders, it’s hard to see how anyone would integrate more closely with the platform and provide the local levels of service required than eBay themselves.
Do we have any indication when eBay Fulfilment is likely to launch for us all in the UK?
I am getting ready to stop selling on eBay as Amazon FBA is doing more than 8x our total eBay sales in much less time and so it is not worth our while keeping a packing operation running for eBay, and all the customer support required for items not delivered/late, whereas eBay Fulfilment, if good, could solve this and keep us going on eBay.
As with everything eBay touches – it will be a gigantic mess – and it won’t be cheaper – like MP cheaper than PayPal.