eBay has come under more and more pressure in recent years, or rather it has come under pressure. Because the former auction platform fell behind Amazon. Now the company is reacting because in Germany the fees for private auctions are being abolished.
The online retailer eBay is undoubtedly a veteran of the Internet and once triggered a veritable boom in private sales. But this business has declined sharply in recent years, and eBay has also increasingly turned into a normal trading platform like Amazon. But business hasn’t been particularly good for years and now the company is reacting.
Change in business model
eBay announced a change in the business model that was radical by its standards: “From March 1, private sales will be completely free for us, both for sellers and buyers,” said Germany boss Oliver Klinck to the business newspaper.
Currently – so de facto still today – eBay receives a basic fee of 35 cents from private sellers. In addition, there is a commission of eleven percent, which is calculated on the total value of the transaction. However, this step only affects private individuals, for those who (partially) earn their livelihood via the platform, nothing will change for them. For commercial dealers, the previous commission regulations remain in place – and they account for around 80 percent of eBay sales.
This waiver of the commission is currently a pilot project, the trading company wants to test in Germany whether it can provide the impetus for the entire platform. In any case, eBay is “absolutely convinced” that this measure will “lead to significant and sustainable growth in Germany,” according to the Germany boss. In the short term, eBay expects a certain drop in sales, but this should have a positive effect in the medium term.