Trial Payment Flow Makes eBay Middleman

Company hopes program will improve trust among buyers.

by staff writer
- Sep 22, 2011

A new pilot program being tested on eBay's German and Austrian sites makes the company the middleman in marketplace transactions.

With the program, eBay processes payments from shoppers and then forwards that money to sellers after merchants have shipped their items, according to reports.

This means buyers won't pay sellers directly, as they have in the past. Instead, when buyers purchase something, eBay will request a payment. Once eBay receives the payment, the company will notify sellers, so they can ship out their items. Once sellers ship, eBay releases funds to them.

The payment flow is similar to Amazon's. However, when merchants sell on Amazon, the site deducts seller fees before releasing funds to merchants. With eBay's pilot program, the company collects seller fees separately and does not deduct fees from the amount buyers pay.

All newly registered sellers will be included in the pilot program. eBay spokeswoman Maike Fuest tells reporters that shoppers are sometimes hesitant to buy from someone they don't know, especially if they're buying from a new seller. But the pilot program could help ease concerns.

With the new payment flow, merchants can accept PayPal, Moneybookers, bank transfers, and credit and debit card payments. eBay will pay sellers through PayPal payments or bank transfers, according to reports. There are currently no plans to expand the pilot program to other eBay sites.

About the Author

Auctiva staff writers constantly monitor trends and best practices of those selling on eBay and elsewhere online. They attend relevant training seminars and trade shows and regularly discuss the market with PowerSellers and other market experts.

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