It’s time to get your calculators out again. eBay have published a handy comparison chart along with a revised fees structure in their Autumn Seller Release.

At first glance eBay’s terms seem highly favourable over Amazon’s significantly higher final value fees but there are a number of things a seller must take into consideration before planning their listing strategy.

Image via eBay – http://sellerupdate.ebay.co.uk/autumn2013/fee-changes

The newly published eBay final value fees do not include any listing fees or eBay shop subscription fees. Unless you have an eBay Anchor Shop (currently charged at £249 per month) you will be paying anything between £0.05 and £0.40 per listing on eBay compared with free listings on Amazon.

eBay sellers are also to be charged a final value fee on postage costs bringing it in line with Amazon who also charge an “administration” fee on delivery. According to eBay, for sellers of large, bulky items this may increase the cost of selling on the marketplace. eBay recommends you shop around if you want to bring fulfillment costs down.

At SellerExpress we highly recommend sellers spread their risk over multiple marketplaces (we’d also include Rakuten Play alongside eBay and Amazon).

There is of course a difference between eBay and Amazon shoppers and some items may be better sellers on one marketplace than the other. If you are paying listing fees on eBay it may be worth taking the time to check what is selling and what is not and only listing your best-selling items. Amazon’s free listing policy makes it a no-brainer to list your entire catalogue. However, sellers who do find extra margin to play on eBay may be restricted on offering cheaper prices by Amazon’s price parity requirements which state you cannot list items at a higher price on Amazon than elsewhere on the web. Selling online can sometimes seem a little bit of a juggling act.

It is vital in the online environment that sellers understand their cost of sale if they are to balance competitiveness with profitability.

And it is not just the seller fees that impact on profits. A savvy seller needs to understand every cost in their business from staffing and technology costs (SellerExpress do not charge a percentage fee on sales), warehousing down to even the most basic items like cleaning materials and even loo rolls.

How does the eBay autumn release affect your business? Share your comments below.

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