Value Added Resource Week In Review 5-28-23

Liz Morton
Liz Morton


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Welcome to the Value Added Resource ecommerce news week in review!

eBay News

Just days after ChatGPT powered description generator was added to the mobile app listing flow, it has been quietly removed without explanation.

Was this premature launch just a smoke screen to placate investors?

eBay ChatGPT AI Feature Fails, Removed Days After Launch
eBay’s ChatGPT AI description generator not ready for prime time & pulled from production just days after launch.

eBay is testing new search experiences including Quick View, which allows buyers to skip the listing page with description and head straight to checkout, as well as a horizontal scrolling module to feature Newly Listed and Trending Items.

eBay Tests Search Quick View & Scrolling Newly Listed & Trending Modules
eBay testing search changes including Quick View & horizontal scrolling module for Newly Listed items.

Memorial Day Weekend got off to a rough start for eBay sellers as inventory system snafu randomly increased quantities and relisted sold items causing mass out of stock cancellations.

eBay Glitch Increases Quantities & Relists Sold Items 5-27-23
Sellers report eBay’s systems have gone berserk, randomly increasing inventory quantities & relisting sold items.

While sellers impacted by that glitch are busy selling items they don't have in stock, another glitch is preventing others from creating or revising listings for items they do have in stock.

eBay Sellers Unable To Create, Revise Or Sell Similar Listings 5-27-23
eBay sellers unable to create, revise or sell similar as listing form buffers & fails to load.

eBay announced the dates for the eBay Open seller conference with small eBay Studio events in Phoenix, Atlanta, Chicago, and Philadelphia September 25 and the main virtual event online September 26-28.

Staff from eBat will be on hand at the live studio events, but presumably CEO Jamie Iannone will not be there in person to answer tough questions about all the technical issues on the site like his predecessor, Devin Wenig, faced in 2018.

eBay Open 2023 Online & In Person September 25-28
eBay Open 2023 September 25-28 will once again be a hybrid event with in person eBay Studios & online presentations.

Iannone's "tech-led reimagination of the platform" continues to disappoint as the core infrastructure of the site struggles to maintain reliable performance.

Other major problems just this week include

Buyers not being able to pay for auctions:

eBay Buyers Can’t Pay For Auction Wins, No Pay Now Button
eBay buyers can’t pay for auctions they have won, saying the “pay now” button is missing or not functioning.

eBay automatically generating hundreds of business and shipping policies and applying them to listings without any input from sellers:

eBay Glitch Creates Business Policy Mayhem
Sellers report eBay automatically creates new business policies on listings. Is eBay International Shipping program to blame?

Terapeak Product Research being non-functional for almost an entire day:

eBay Terapeak Product Research Not Working 5-24-23
eBay sellers report Terapeak Product Research tool is not functioning, page is stuck in perpetual loading state.

And multiple sellers reported problems with fine jewelry being sold for well below the advertised price with no explanation.

eBay Seller Shocked By Price Dropping Glitch
eBay seller shocked when fine jewelry sold for $229.49 instead of the $637.49 price that should have been charged.

If your business hasn't been negatively impacted by the technical issues (and you are willing to abide by a non-disparagement clause in the T&C), eBay wants you to Share Your Success to win a chance at a $200 eBay gift card!

However, once again eBay is running this sweepstakes exclusively on their Facebook page as they continue the questionable business strategy of directing their seller customers to a competing site for support and special events.

eBay Wants Sellers To Share Their Success On Facebook To Win Sweepstakes
eBay once again shuffles sellers to competing marketplace for Facebook exclusive Share Your Success sweepstakes.

Speaking of special events, if you're in the Atlanta area, head on over to eBay's Renew My Ride event this weekend to learn all about the eBay Motors Guaranteed Fit program.

eBay Motors Plans Memorial Day Weekend Renew My Ride Event
eBay is promoting Guaranteed Fit program for car parts with Memorial Day weekend Renew My Ride event in Atlanta.

Other Ecommerce News

Amazon sellers were put through the wringer this week receiving warnings about account deactivation as glitches prevented them from completing identity verification required by the INFORM Consumers Act.

Amazon INFORM Act Glitch Causes Account Deactivation Panic
Amazon sellers panic as INFORM Act verification goes awry, putting accounts at risk for deactivation.

Etsy sellers experienced a week long glitch that caused multiple pages of items not to be displayed in their shops.

Etsy Shop Display Glitch Missing Items & Pages
Etsy users report problems with how items are displayed in shops with items & pages jumping around or missing.

Fanatics acquired PWCC trading card and collectibles marketplace, along with their vault operations - should eBay be scared?

Fanatics Acquires PWCC Trading Card & Collectibles Marketplace
Fanatics acquires PWCC, strengthens position in sports cards & collectibles - should eBay be scared?

Walmart aims to cut down on late shipments and delayed deliveries by shortening the automatic cancellation window from 6 days to 4 days, effective June 6th.

Walmart Shortens Auto-Cancellation Time To 4 Days
Walmart aims to cut down on late shipments and delayed deliveries with changes to Automatic Cancellation Policy.

UPDATES

More sellers report receiving returns from eBay's jewelry authentication program partner GIA that appear to violate federal law and USPS policies on the misuse of free shipping supplies.

Misuse of USPS Supplies in eBay’s Jewelry Authentication Program Raises Alarms
Seller raises alarm about shocking misuse of free USPS supplies by eBay Authenticity Guaranteed for jewelry.

And finally, some sellers say they are seeing the "Other" shipping service option restored on Etsy, though it's not clear if that means Etsy has reversed course completely on this issue.

Etsy Removes “Other” Shipping Service Option
Etsy sellers frustrated with unannounced change removing “other” shipping service option when listing items on the site.

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Week In Review

Liz Morton Twitter

Liz Morton is a seasoned ecommerce pro with 17 years of experience in online sales & marketplaces, providing expert commentary, analysis & news about eBay, Amazon, Etsy & more at Value Added Resource!