We've advised in the past that there's often a free listing deal going at eBay if you're patient, but from July you won't have to hang around: the auction site is launching a Local Classifieds option that eliminates insertion fees in favour of a higher final value fee, as well as winding back its super-controversial requirement to always offer PayPal on a listing.
eBay Australia flagged that it was thinking about the Local Classified option for casual sellers earlier this year, so it isn't a complete surprise. Items in the format have to be listed for local pickup, and don't attract any listing fees. eBay says it will eventually automatically filter search results so you only see items from this format in your registered postcode area, but that won't happen immediately.
The trade-off? Rather than the current 5.25% final valuation fee, you'll pay 7.9% (capped at $49.95). Depending on the value of the item, that might actually cost you more than paying for a low-value insertion, but it does eliminate the risk of spending money up-front for something that might not sell.
On July 14, eBay Australia will also change its payments policy. While it will still be compulsory to offer at least one "secure payment method" even if you'd rather just take cash, you'll be able to use independent service Paymate (or a merchant credit card if you're a business), rather than having to use eBay-owned PayPal. As I've reported at APC, eBay maintains the change is designed to improve the checkout experience, but a fresh round of collar-feeling by the ACCC seems just as important a factor.
Fancy the idea of free listings? Prefer getting rid of your used goods elsewhere? Tell us in the comments.