Question for any eBay experts out there

I just got my invoice from eBay for last month’s activity and I thought it seemed a little high based on what I remembered selling.

I looked into it and the invoice has two line items: 1. Final value fees. 2. Shipping Fees

When I purchase and print shipping labels through eBay, the fee for the postage is instantly charged to my PayPal account. What then, is the shipping fee on my invoice?

This seems like I am paying twice for shipping.

Additional info: I’ve noticed on my itemized activity that there is a final value shipping fee but it is usually a fraction of what the final value fee is. On my invoice this month, the shipping fee is 3-4 times what the final value fee is.

Thanks in advance to anyone that can offer some insight. I’ve spent some time searching the eBay help articles but haven’t found anything of use.

I haven’t had this issue with Ebay…yet. If you feel there is a mistake or are just curious start an online chat with one of their customer service reps. They should be able to itemize everything for you and if any mistakes were made fix it.

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Are you sure you’re not looking at final value fees on shipping?

If so, you’re not paying twice for shipping, but eBay charges the same final value fee rate on the cost of shipping. This was because people would take a $20 item and rather than sell it for $20 + $5 shipping they would sell it for 1 penny and $24.99 shipping to avoid paying final value fees.

eBay cracked down on that behavior by basically charging the final value fee on the sale price plus the cost of shipping (not what you paid to generate the label, but what you charged your customer for shipping and handling).

The fee should be 10% of the shipping cost. For example on most of my single comics I charge a flat fee of $4.50 (first class). Ebay charges me 45 cents in a final value fee for charging customers that amount…even if I only pay $3.50 when generating a label. Of course, then PayPal charges a percentage too (~3%).

Something worth noting, eBay offers discounted shipping. So if you don’t specify an amount they may collect more than what you pay for the label…for example they may collect $5.50 from the seller and keep 55 cents in fees, but I may only pay $3.50 for a label (discounted price).

Basically eBay’s discounted shipping is offsetting their final value fees on shipping and making the customer pay that difference, not so much you.

Hope that helps.

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I did notice the shipping value fee was a fraction of what the final value fee is. That’s why I’m confused at how high shipping fee on my invoice is compared to the final value fee. Specifically, my final value fees for the month are $17.50 and my shipping fees for the month are $53.00.

When I try to look at my itemized activity, it will only display Nov 1 thru Nov 7 which aren’t even included in this current invoice. I can’t get it to display the itemized activity for the time period referenced in this invoice.

Also, in looking at past invoices, they don’t even list a shipping fee until a couple months ago. Only the final value fees are noted. The only changes for me personally in the past few months is that I acquired the contents of a closing LCS so I started selling items other than comics (toys, statues, etc). So, I’ve gone from using media mail almost exclusively to occasionally using priority. Even if the shipping fee is 10% of the shipping cost, for it to rise to $50 in one month would mean that I used $500 worth of postage that month and there’s no way I came remotely close to that.

Anyway, thank you both for the help. I’m off work tomorrow and will have some time to call or chat with eBay. It’s possible that I should taking something else into account but am not.

That is strange. Unless eBay is not charging PayPal for your shipping, it should be just a final value fee for shipping. Sounds like you should call eBay and find out what is going on.

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That’s what I was thinking too.

When you create a shipping label, does it automatically deduct the cost from PayPal?

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Yes. When I create the label, the cost of the label is instantly deducted from my PayPal account.

I’m going to call them tomorrow and see what’s up.

I’ll be sure to report back what I find.

Thanks again!

You didn’t have any returns did you? I know you can see shipping fees show up when people return and you’re listing had returns accepted.

Also, remember, eBay gets their 10% from shipping too. That discount they give you is nice until you realize most of the time they’re just making it back by charging you 10% from the shipping costs. Yes, so if you spend $5.00 on shipping, they get their 50 cents from that as well…

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Well…I feel like a dummy.

Turns out that when you use FedEx as opposed to USPS, you don’t pay for the shipping up front. They wait until the FedEx package is safely delivered and then apply the shipping fee to your next invoice.

There were a few instances in the past month or so when it was cheaper to use FedEx for whatever reason.

I’m sure that this was explained in the fine print somewhere and I just missed it.

Thanks to everyone who tried to help and I’m sorry if I wasted anyone’s time.

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Ah yeah, I was going to mention that as well as I’ve done that before. Hehe…

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Good to know. i haven’t used Fed-Ex through Ebay yet.

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I take issue with EBay charging a FVF on shipping. They should only charge it if they see a huge difference in actual shipping and only on the difference. I used to not print labels online so it used to be a bigger deal to me. I just hope that discount covers them charging an unnecessary FVF. Something I noticed this month is those “free listings” aren’t free. If the items don’t sell you get recharged the insertion fees every month.

Yup, only free for the initial listing, that’s the gimmick, list a bunch of stuff and when they don’t sell, if you list as “indefinite” they’ll relist and then charge you.

What I hate is when they give you the “500 Free Listings” but only 3-4 days before it expires. There is no way for me as an individual to utilize 500 listings in 3 days…

Winced I opened my eBay account, I only had 1 500 listing offer lol.

First of all, eBay doesn’t have a staff to review every auction and make a decision case by case that the shipping charge is excessive.

Secondly, even if they automated it, how would you determine what is or Is not excessive? There’s likely no criteria that would be absolute (and people would still find ways to exploit it), therefore you’re back to either looking at items case by case or you’re dealing with a lot of complaints from sellers who get “caught” and really have legit reasons to charge what they charge.

THe best solution is what is put into place now. Sellers should know what size/weight an item will be to ship and enter it into the auction accurately. When the item sells you have the option to create the label through ebay and you’ll get a discount most likely reimbursing you for the difference in what you charged for shipping vice what you actually paid.

IF a seller chooses not to purchase the label through eBay, then he/she should make sure that 10% is baked into the shipping cost to the buyer.

It’s not perfect, but it works and you can easily work around or with it. You can’t please everyone…eBay has to do what’s best for their business. I think their solution is as fair as it can be for the price we pay.

This has been he norm since I believe April. It got me a few times, but I got smart.

I only use buy it now…they run for 30 days. I get 50 free listings per month, so if you list 40 comics per month and sell/list 10 more, then the relisting counts as one of your free listings.

If you have more than 50, then just keep track of them and cancel/end the listing before it expires. I usually look to see if there are offers and let those relist (as long as I have freebies left).

I’ll typically just list what I think will sell, and when I get those 500 free listings is when I’ll go back through my unsold items and relist them all. Just be sure to keep track of them and cancel them right before they expire.

That reminds me…gotta go check and see how many more freebies I have this month and if I need to cancel anything…!

I looked at my auctions. I have 29 more freebies and only 17 auctions expiring before the end of the month. That means I can add 12 more listings this month Without exceeding my freebie allotment before December 1st when it resets back to 50 freebies again.

Another thing…when a buy it now is relisted it defaults to having a OBO (or best offer), which is automatically set to 50% of your asking price.

If you don’t want lowball offers or don’t want OBOs then you have to manually remove it from each auction. Even if you edit the listing before relisting to remove it, it still shows up. You have to remove it after the listing is posted…so annoying. I’ve posted this quirk in the “likes and dislikes” comments a few times…

I’ve been annoyed by, and complained about, this in the past.

I’ve resorted to just playing their game. I set the offers so that the lowest offer allowed is what I actually want to sell it for and I set the advertised price slightly higher. I do this right from the get go, when I initially create the BIN, so that I don’t forget about it and get hammered all of a sudden with stupid offers.

Since they automatically populate shipping prices it would seem to be a simple thing. They know basically what it costs to ship everything simply factor in supplies and charge a fee for anything over that.

But a seller is charging for shipping and handling, supplies/materials, maybe it’s outsourced which also adds cost, etc…

I, personally, charge my own fixed amount based on such factors. I don’t go with the auto calculator.

Maybe if you select their auto calculator and didn’t deviate from the inputs originally provided (i.e., drop the weight after receiving payment) then they could waive the fee. Lots of ifs and standards would need to be satisfied.

Maybe attaining a certain seller status could unlock a certain benefit…