eBay’s User Agreement Updates, The End of Amazon Prime’s Ad Free Videos and More News
Hey there folks, the end of September is here, and it looks like our favorite eCommerce markets were just waiting to surprise us with more updates and controversial news.
This week we’re covering eBay, Amazon, FedEx and more. But before we dive in, make sure to check out what happened last week — you don’t want to be behind on all the important stuff that’s been circling around us recently!
With all that said, let’s dive right in.
Today’s news is 1756 words and takes 6 ½ minutes to read.
Will eBay User Agreement Updates Worsen Seller’s Experience?
eBay is marking the start of something new in a series of noteworthy changes to its User Agreement. The Agreement will take effect on October 28, 2023, and there’s more to these updates than meets the eye.
Among the key shifts is a newfound transparency regarding generative AI tools and content on the platform.
In essence, eBay is now explicitly stating that sellers can use AI tools to create listings, ensuring users are aware of this technological wizardry behind some product listings. This move aligns with eBay’s ongoing commitment to clarity and user-friendly services.
International sellers and buyers will also find some tweaks in eBay’s approach to global transactions.
eBay is streamlining the process for opting items out of international shipping, giving sellers greater control over where their products end up. Moreover, the Global Shipping Program is out, and eBay International Shipping (EIS) is in, offering parcel processing and customs clearance services. The changes here aim to enhance user experience and ease of use on the global marketplace.
Overall, eBay is leaving no stone unturned in its quest to refine user interactions, even using the AI-driven recommendations for a more personalized shopping journey.
Additionally, eBay’s arbitration terms have evolved, offering a means to resolve disputes exclusively through arbitration, with exemptions for small claims court matters. These changes reflect eBay’s dedication to staying up-to-date with the evolving eCommerce landscape, while ensuring users understand their rights and responsibilities.
In summary, eBay’s latest User Agreement updates signify a proactive approach to creating a safer, more transparent, and user-focused online marketplace.
What it means for eBay’s sellers
The upcoming updates to eBay’s User Agreement signify pivotal changes for eCommerce sellers.
These include a shift in responsibility, requiring sellers to correct errors made using AI tools, translation, and image editing, thereby demanding increased diligence.
eBay’s ability to use customer-generated content for developing new offerings holds the potential for enhanced, personalized user experiences, emphasizing the importance of data privacy.
Check out our top eBay tools and services to enhance your online store.
Big Retailer News
The End of Amazon Prime’s Ad Free Videos?
In an ever-expanding digital landscape, the line between paid and ad-supported content is blurring.
Traditionally, if a service was free, it earned money from ads, while paid services offered an ad-free experience. However, this distinction is undergoing a transformation.
The allure of monetizing both through user subscriptions and advertisers’ dollars has proven too tempting to resist for many online platforms, including streaming services.
Amazon Prime Video, a perk included with Amazon’s premium Prime Membership, has recently joined the ranks of streaming services that now display ads.
This decision comes 17 years after its initial launch, and it introduces an ad-supported version alongside a pricier ad-free option for subscribers.
Amazon plans to keep the ad frequency lower than its competitors and offers the ad-free tier for just $2.99 more annually, bringing the total to $166 per year. However, this shift challenges the essence of a premium subscription that once provided a pristine ad-free viewing experience.
The move by Amazon highlights a broader industry trend of leveraging established customer bases to boost revenue. While Amazon aims to invest in content with these ads, history shows that once the ads begin, the incentive to increase profits often leads to price hikes on the ad-free tier.
This shift signifies a significant change for Amazon, shifting its focus from Prime Video as a premium benefit to a means of generating additional revenue. As the digital landscape evolves, it raises questions about the future of subscription-based services and the balance between user experience and profit generation.
What does it mean for eCommerce sellers?
The introduction of ads on Amazon Prime Video signifies a shift towards additional revenue generation and presents both opportunities and challenges for eCommerce sellers.
This move opens new advertising avenues, allowing sellers to reach a diverse audience, but also intensifies competition and potentially raises advertising costs.
Sellers need to be mindful of user experience, as negative perceptions of ads can impact brand image. Changes in consumer behavior, potential price hikes, and shifts in subscription rates could also influence the advertising landscape.
Check out our articles on marketing and advertising for your eCommerce store.
How to Earn ‘Etsy’s Pick’ Badge
Etsy sellers looking to shine during the upcoming holiday season are eager to learn how to earn Etsy’s coveted “Etsy’s Pick” badge, and the platform has shared some insider tips. The badge, which signifies that Etsy’s merchandisers or “style experts” chose an item serves as a stamp of quality and uniqueness.
Etsy’s selection process focuses on factors like quality, reliability, and style, ensuring that buyers can confidently discover the best the platform has to offer.
To increase their chances of getting featured, sellers should emphasize level up their photography skills, improve shop visibility, provide an excellent customer experience, ensure smooth shipping, avoid policy violations, and strive for 5-star reviews.
For sellers eager to make their mark on Etsy, telling their story is another essential tip. A well-crafted About section can help shops get noticed for potential features. Staying active on social media and linking to their Etsy shop in their bio can also enhance their chances of getting selected.
With the holiday shopping season fast approaching, sellers can see this as an opportunity to make their products and shops stand out on Etsy’s bustling marketplace.
So, as sellers gear up for the festive rush, Etsy’s tips offer valuable insights into how to earn that sought-after Etsy’s Pick badge and attract more buyers.
Check out the Etsy fee calculator for a smoother Etsy seller experience.
Also in the News
- Face Swapping AI Side Hustle. Medium.
- Amazon’s Just Walk Out Technology implemented by University of California San Diego. Retail Tech Innovation Hub.
International Retailer News
FedEx Europe Innovative Delivery Experience
FedEx is getting ready to revolutionize the final mile delivery experience in Europe with its innovative Picture Proof of Delivery (PPOD) feature.
Targeted at express residential deliveries where signatures are not necessary, PPOD offers customers choosing the ‘no-signature-required’ option an extra layer of convenience.
Upon delivery, it provides them with a photo of the exact location where the delivery man left their package. This information is accessible via the FedEx website and mobile app.
The enhancement is part of FedEx’s digital innovation efforts to boost customer confidence and loyalty in an era where eCommerce is booming.
The projection for the European eCommerce market is growing at a substantial rate, supposedly reaching $902 billion by 2027. Alongside this amount, the number of deliveries is also set to rise. Customer expectations have evolved, and real-time tracking has become a crucial factor in enhancing satisfaction.
A recent survey found that 87.4% of online shoppers appreciate real-time order tracking, and 59.3% believe it positively impacts brand loyalty.
FedEx’s PPOD aligns with this shift in consumer preferences, offering a simple yet effective solution to meet the growing demands of online shoppers.
FedEx’s commitment to supporting eCommerce growth is evident through recent collaborations and upgrades, including partnerships with E-Shop World and enhancements to the FedEx Ship Manager application.
While PPOD initially targets residential customers in Europe, it is likely to extend its benefits to business customers in the future. This innovative feature is a game-changer in the competitive delivery industry, and it won’t be long before other couriers follow suit, providing businesses and consumers alike with an added sense of security and convenience.
For eCommerce sellers
The initiative is not just a step towards meeting evolving customer expectations, but also a strategic move likely to set a new industry standard. It provides both eCommerce sellers and consumers with additional security and convenience in the delivery process.
For more information on better shipping practices, check out our shipping and fulfillment tools and services.
Europe and China’s Energy Transition Feuds
As Valdis Dombrovskis, Europe’s trade commissioner, engages in trade negotiations with Chinese counterparts, it’s essential to consider a few key facts.
China’s significant role in global manufacturing, driven by its vast consumer base, means that competition from Chinese companies is a reality that no economy can escape.
While there is acceptance in China’s dominance in certain exports, concerns arise about sensitive dependencies that could impact economic, health, or military security, necessitating multilateral solutions.
Important to note here, is that China leads in critical technologies essential for future industries, with a focus on electric vehicles and clean energy. While European concerns about Chinese competition in the electric vehicle market are valid, addressing the root of the issue—investing in education and research—should be a global endeavor, not just a European one.
Europe’s reliance on China for rare earths, batteries, and essential metals highlights its vulnerability, and as China’s market and long-term planning continue to thrive, the competitive threat will grow.
While the EU has responded with concerns over subsidies, the approach’s effectiveness remains uncertain.
Diplomatic efforts, such as Dombrovskis’ negotiations and upcoming EU-China meetings, will play a crucial role in addressing these complex challenges and ensuring Europe’s economic resilience.
In a world increasingly focused on climate change, the urgency of transitioning away from fossil fuels is evident. However, with the current reality in mind, diplomatic efforts and long-term strategies will be essential to navigate the competitive landscape and secure Europe’s economic future.
For eCommerce sellers
For eCommerce sellers, the ongoing trade negotiations between Valdis Dombrovskis and Chinese counterparts have implications for competition, supply chain dependencies, and market access.
eCommerce sellers must be attentive to the outcomes of these negotiations, as they could impact the availability and cost of goods, particularly those involving critical technologies and essential materials like rare earths and batteries, where China holds significant influence.
Check out our article on online marketplaces in China.
Also in the News
- Financial supervision in Asian economies. SCMP.
- H&M on Shopee in Singapore and Malaysia. Inside Retail.
Various dates: Amazon advertising’s global webinar program continues with 20+ webinars scheduled, covering Amazon Prime Day preparation, sponsored products,sponsored brands, reporting, optimization, and other tips. Learn more: Amazon.
For US sellers
October 5: The 15 Minute Breakdown. Learn more: Tinuiti.
For UK sellers
Various dates: Amazon advertising’s global webinar program continues with 20+ webinars scheduled, covering Amazon Prime Day preparation, sponsored products, sponsored brands, reporting, optimization, and other tips. Learn more: Amazon.