eBay Australia’s Increased Fees Explained

eBay Australia’s Increased Fees Explained

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.

Picture: Fernando Leon/Getty Images

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.)

What’s Changing

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.



  • I once loved Ebay, it was the place to sell off your unwanted stuff. These days it is more geared towards the retail business’s pushing it’s original ideals to the side. I’ve sold a few items, even shelling out the $100 fee at times (I get it, it’s a business they need to make money), but upping it to $250 twelve months later? That’s a fair gouge.

    I’ve tried Gumtree, but I’d love to see an article on sites not affiliated with Ebay and weighing them up against each other.

  • craigslist.org is the recognised leader for local person-to-person deals in America — there’s no reason to bother with anything else if you’re in a major city in the US, unless you’re selling a niche item that will bring enough of a higher price if marketed nationally that it’s worth the hassle of postage, ebay fees, etc., to spruik it somewhere else other than “CL”. CL does not charge for most listings. I’ve found a job, a unit, a pushbike, transit passes (companies give them to staff for free, who then turn around and sell them for half price), computers, furniture, a camera lens, volunteer opportunities…. all sorts of things… on craigslist. Last I checked, they had categories for Australian cities, but very few posts.

  • I wonder how soon phrases like “eBaying someone” or “Paypalling someone” will enter our language to mean ripping off or stealing. eBay and their bank Paypal are just thieves.

    • Right on Karlston.
      At least Ned Kelly had the decency to wear a mask when he robbed you.
      Ebay are so greedy.
      As no doubt you know they outsourced Australia ebay Helplines and Safety and Trust to the philippines and believe me, from my experience with them, they are completely hopeless.

      • “At least Ned Kelly had the decency to wear a mask when he robbed you.”

        What? Ned Kelly took people’s stuff at gun point. The great thing about eBay and PayPal is that if you don’t like them, you don’t have to use them.

  • If its pickup or the buyer trusts me I just confirm the purchase.
    Cancel the auction and then do it privately.
    Avoiding paying the money grabbers at Ebay.

  • I just received an email today from Ebay here in the USA, it is the same. I don’t really see how anyone makes any money on eBay, unless they have access a lot of funds and can buy extremely cheap at walmart purchasing prices.

    I sell a few things here and there for money so I can pay for my college education. When I sell a $10 USD item, eBay now will get 10% of the total purchase, including the SHIPPING that people pay me to ship an item, then because eBay owns paypal, they require customers to buy using paypal, and then they take another 5.9% in fees.

    Ebay takes lets just say 16% and from $10, they take $1.59 USD and I get $8.41

    Now, I am only selling $10 items. I cannot image someone who sells cars, computers or other items that costs thousands of dollars, they take huge losses.

    eBay is really the only auction site left, they purchased all the other sites, I do not see how they can be so hard up for cash.

    • eBay must have been watching the software companies “justifying” their high Australian costs. When the answer boiled down to “because we can” eBay must have decided “we can do that, too”.

  • Whilst they may boast the largest unique monthly visitor rate their fees can make or break a sale. For people looking to sell their items, online marketplace sites like mamalogue allow for free unlimited listings. So you cannot go wrong. http://mamalogue.com.au

  • The fees that eBay charge are OTT. Then there are the PayPal fees on top.
    Gone are the days of a 99cent starting price listing.
    I have noticed that most sellers are now starting at a high price and offering Buy-It-Now options along side for a few dollars more.
    This is because sellers don’t want to sell something for half or less than half it’s value.
    It’s such a shame that eBay have gone in this direction.
    It is mainly for businesses now, and not the average citizen trying to clear out the store room.
    Gumtree is ok, not not safe.
    We neen a new auction site… Sooner rather than later.

  • Just letting you all know ebay will not be having all the market to themselves anymore.
    There is a new auction site soon being launched in Sydney followed by one in every major
    city across Australia, these sites are focused on live and Local and Australian only with no
    international sellers.
    Users can list for free and sell anything up to $100 for free also, the fees after a $100 sale are very minimal, the sites have online stores for only $5 per week, all these sites will come under
    Auction it, Sydney, Melbourne, perth, and so on, I hope people get on board with these site as they are launched, there will also be a site to cover all of Australia, called auctionitaustralia
    You can see the Sydney site in test mode now, auctionitsydney.com

  • Ebay has lost its mojo. It is no longer a place where you can sell your items for anything close to what they are worth unless someone is looking for something specific and is prepared to pay what is fair and reasonable. I am selling some things at present, originals, new with tags for half of the original RRP and all get is 50+ people watching and messages saying ” if you don’t sell let me know ” and I’ll give you virtually nothing. The fees are taking this piss and PayPal is like a gun being held at your head. All is left to is to pull the trigger. If the fees get any higher as stated I hope everyone boycotts eBay and it dies a slow death. Greed. That’s all it is.

  • Years ago New Zealand created an alternative to ebay called Trade Me which was launched in 1999. It’s really taken off in New Zealand and is very successful. Only Kiwis can register on this site & Australia can too but if memory serves me well you must have an New Zealand bank account to register. If you go onto Ebay NZ it doesn’t exist as you only find listings from different countries other than NZ. Trade Me fees are reasonable. There should have been an Aussie owned trade me the same time as NZ before Ebay became too successful.
    There are other sites such as Quicksales and Ebid with free unlimited listing fees. The problem is I find that there are more sellers on these sites than there are buyers as you could be taking a life time to sell your stuff. I’ve seen other online auction sites come and go but none could match up to Ebay as they are still the dominant player…..for now. If Ebay don’t want the casual and private used sellers why don’t they say so and stop wasting people’s time and money.
    david63, I’ll be looking out for these sites u mentioned. Thank you.

  • I sent an email to ebay condemning their 200% increase in fees. That is just for listing.
    Ask your boss for a 200% increase in your pay and the men in white coats will come to take you away.
    Nothing but greedy bloody thieves.

  • A little but true story of their thieving cohorts Paypal.
    A buyer bought some rare stamps at a very expensive price.
    He paid for registered post of course.
    When his package arrived it contained 3 sheets of blank paper.
    When the buyer made a complaint to Paypal their answer was that the sender had proof of postage and wanted nothing to do with him.
    It is now in the hands of the Police.

  • With ebay making major changes in fees, charging more from the sellers and putting a restriction on the minimum resolutions required to upload the product’s photo.. I believe the best would be to look for an alternative which is best in the competition and which allows you to keep all your earning to yourself and not share it. Where sellers can:
    1. Create Free listings
    2. No Transaction Fees
    3. Auto sync with ebay..carry all your listings from ebay along with the ratings and feedbacks in just a click.
    4. Free integration with Google products (which auto populates the product description form for you, saving your precious time) and Google Shopping (which tells anyone who search on google to buy a product that it is available on our website, which by the way we pay for and provide you the service absolutely free)
    5. Payment option like Paypal and Amazon for the most secure transactions
    6. which does not allow you to leave a feedback for a cancelled transaction
    7. a platform that not only list your products but also organise your customers and market your product in your network
    8. a platform where you are just not dependent on ratings but also can leverage your social and professional profiles using log in through facebook, linkedin or google accounts
    9. A platform that allows you to know the counterparty and build trust on the basis of work profile, school, college and other such dimensions.
    10.Unlike ebay it has just one website (not different website for every country) so you can sell products worldwide and buy awesome products from across the globe as well
    11. Unlike Ebay you can upload any resolution image and do not need only high resolution images to upload
    12. Last but not the least it is absolutely free

    And so the website that gives you all this is http://www.truegether.com

    We have released our beta version and the new website with all these points said above will be launched soon in June, 2013.

    We request all the sellers to list their product and leave us a feedback to help us improve more and give you a splendid experience of selling online.

  • I have sold successfully on eBay for 7 years worldwide.
    To recover some of the eBay and PayPal costs to me I have simply added 12.5% to my minimum price as a starting point.
    Items sold in Australia alone can vary in postage costs enormously. A $14.00 parcel cost close to Melbourne can be $55.00 in Western Australia.
    I have found that customers want to know what the postage costs are before they bid. This postage cost is on all my listings.
    I believe most customers know and accept postage costs for their locations. (never had a complaint)
    I am not sure how I will change or add to my listing to recoup my additional fees.
    Maybe eBay can add to it’s software to automatically update the postage amount and add the additional fee’s to suit the buyers location.
    Any practical idea’s out there?
    Wow what a mess!!!

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