eBay Australia is changing its fees yet again from May 1, pushing up insertion costs for cheaper items and increasing its final value charges. Here's what will change.
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The changes come almost exactly a year after eBay's last major fee adjustment. The newest fee shifts continue an ongoing trend whereby eBay cuts listing fees but takes a larger chunk of the final sale. The fee alterations also follow the longstanding trend whereby eBay is encouraging professional sellers rather than casual listings. (eBay is also adjusting its Store prices, but that's not our focus here.)
The one major benefit of the new structure is an increase in the number of items you can list as a casual seller without paying an insertion fee. Previously, this was set at 30; now it's 40.
However, there's a big trade-off for those extra free listings. The final value fee percentage is going up from 7.9% to 9.9%. On a $50 sale, that means eBay will claim $4.95, where previously it would have grabbed $3.95. In 2011, the final value fee percentage was 5.25 per cent, so it has almost doubled in just two years.
eBay has also increased the maximum value of the final value fee to $250, up from $100. Under the old system, that meant your final value fee topped out when you sold an item for around $1266. Under the new system, that same $1266 item will cost you $125.33, and the fee doesn't max out to $250 until your item hits $2525. (Cars continue to have a fixed final value fee, but that has also gone up from $45 to $60.)
If you do list more than 40 items, you'll also pay more, especially for cheaper items. eBay now has just two levels of insertion fees: $1.50 for items with a starting price under $100, and $3.50 for more than $100. The previous system also offered a $0.50 insertion fee for sub-$20 items, which is how a lot of us tend to price our old junk when selling on eBay.
eBay remains the largest local second-hand market by far, so I imagine many sellers will put up with the increased pricing when it's time for a virtual garage sale. If you want a completely free listing, you can opt for eBay-owned Gumtree as an alternative. However, that site also has some fee tricks of its own.