What's changed the most since you started selling online?

Herts, England - Not specified -
Kudos: 13,339
Joined: Jan 1, 2001
What's changed the most since you started selling online?
14 Aug 2015
What's the biggest change that's affected you since you started your business?

It could be something that's changed in ecommerce, or the wider worlds of business and technology.

Would love to hear what you think
Andy Geldman, Web Retailer
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Max Meadows, VA United States
Jax Music Supply
Kudos: 2,563
Joined: May 25, 2009
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
14 Aug 2015
First, I would say that the availability of online payments. The first few things I sold on eBay, I had to have the buyers mail me checks and/or money orders. This was in the late 1990s. I wasn't selling professionally then but often sold computer parts and things that I received for free or when I upgraded. When Paypal came around I thought it was great. Especially since I got paid $10 from then to open an account.

The other thing I would say has changed, even in the last 9 years or so that I have been selling professionally is that it is a lot less personal transactions. The sellers, at least on marketplaces, have no relationship to speak of with the customer. Customers expectations are much higher and are much quicker to anger. i would also say that fraud is more common - or at least I catch a lot more of it!
New Jersey United States
Kudos: 171
Joined: Jul 28, 2015
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
17 Aug 2015
Two major changes has changed the entire eCommerce industry.

One is competition and the second one is technology.

At the early ages, we only had one or two sites where we could sell online but overtime we got many options and we adopt the most suitable and throw out the most hatred. It kept advancing the system in favour of both, sellers and buyers. Recently it is the trend of owning the personal online store which gives immense freedom to sellers to sell as they want in their terms without any obstacles.

The second major change affected is the technology which gives great convenient to sell and buy online. Previously we had to sit in front of the computer and wait until we reach to our desktop to check mails and orders. But now we can do anything that we want while commute whether sending mails, checking status, updating products etc.
eCommerce Consultant
Australia Australia
Billy Bunter
Kudos: 43
Joined: Nov 22, 2014
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
18 Aug 2015
I know of someone who drop ships and sells over $ 100,000 per month using an affiliate type programme. They started the same time as I did just about 2 years ago. I sell my own items on eBay and I am lucky to sell $500 per month. As an older user it has taken me a long time to learn to use a computer and list just on ebay. The advantage is the young ones are so computer savvy. I say GO FOR IT the world is your oyster!!
United States United States
Kudos: 78
Joined: Jul 16, 2015
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
19 Aug 2015
I'm only selling online for about 5 years, and there was no major changes in the selling process since I started. However it became more difficult in the purchasing process. Many manufacturers / distributors are not welcoming Marketplace sellers (especially Amazon sellers), instead they're looking for a people with a mortar & brick store front. so running after good companies asking for a wholesale account is not an option anymore, instead you got to be more creative and either come up with your own products & ideas, or you can go to china and compete with your former suppliers...

[Last edited: 19 Aug 2015]
Manila Philippines
2nd Office
Kudos: 600
Joined: Aug 19, 2012
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
22 Aug 2015
1. Competition - When I first started selling, there weren't very many competitors and every year more competition started popping up. On eBay you would see a lot of fly by night sellers and they would be gone a few months later, because they were selling way too cheap and probably couldn't sustain their business.

I would have to stay today, the competition is more fierce since its a lot easier now to start an online store with all of the available resources available to the public.

2. Technology - When I first started I was using Turbo Lister, and then Blackthorne and then I was a Stone Edge user for a couple of years. Back in 2008 there weren't very many options available in terms of multi-channel software, just Channel Advisor and a few others that weren't worth the money. I know because I researched and trialed every one of them.

Now, there's a lot of different options available for every type of business and some work really well and are priced just right. Skubana, SureDone, SolidCommerce, Ecomdash, Plenty of Markets and M2EPro are some software's worth mentioning.

3. Marketplaces - eBay has lost its way, and isn't the power house it use to be. They've changed over the years and not the way I imagined they would. Hopefully they find their way again. Amazon on the other hand, has over powered eBay in almost every category and a lot of sellers I know have had a lot of great success on Amazon's platform. Back in the mid 2000's, I would have to say eBay was the marketplace for 3rd party sellers to be at, but that's no longer the case.

[Last edited: 22 Aug 2015]
eCommerce Staffing Solutions. Expand your team with us, so your current team can focus on innovation and save up to 70% off labor costs www.2ndoffice.co
United States United States
Kudos: 37
Joined: Aug 27, 2015
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
27 Aug 2015
So far I have sold mostly on eBay where I have been a hobby seller since 1994 or so. I took a 10 year break in there.

# 1 is consumer trust in on line use of credit cards. I would credit this to eBay and PayPal.

When I started selling on eBay (1994) #4it was common to accept money orders through the mail.as payment.

A sale might take a week or longer to complete especially if a buyer paid with a personal check and you waited for it to clear. (I always did)

Worst part of that is your bank charges you a penalty if someone else s check bounces.

Then PayPal came along and paid sellers a $5 bonus if you convinced a buyer to sing up. That was usually an easy five bucks.

#2 On eBay is competition. Well everywhere.

#3 Postage rates. I used to not worry too much about shipping costs vs. the size of the item I sold. Not today.

#4 Digital cameras. When I started in 1994 film was king, but slow and expensive.
I paid $400+ for my first digital camera which only held something like a 1.2 mega pixel image.
United States United States
Kudos: 18
Joined: Feb 11, 2016
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
11 Feb 2016
Oh boy, a lot! I have to agree with the previous poster's comments.

Expectations from customers or rather entitlement has become incredibly difficult to appease. Fraud, like entitlement which eBay increasingly allows as you become a larger seller is just something you have to live with. As you know you as a seller seldom (never) win disputes. I figure 15% of my sales are customers gaming the system. They know the loopholes in the system and they exploit them. EBay will tll you to report the buyer, which I do but it's really just a joke. With the multiple user names, checking out as a guest, there are ways around that.

The by far largest change on eBay was the fact that thy took away the seller's right to leave sometimes negative comments about buyers to alert other sellers in their fb.

Amazon Prime has really gotten buyers (self included, sometimes) spoiled to almost instant reception of their items.

Fees have grown to the point where eBay takes home more than I do, and the seller standards have become so draconian that I really think they are hell bent on getting rid of "little guys."

That's my take, and I do a considerable revenue. E-Commerce is not a job for me it has to be a lifestyle if you want to make $.
Ukraine Ukraine
Kudos: 42
Joined: Jan 31, 2016
Re: What's changed the most since you started selling online
15 Feb 2016
@Billy Bunter
What you sale? If it isn`t a secret?

Thompson & Holt