Fulfilled by eBay

Is this to take on Amazon?

                                                                              Amazon and eBay are probably two of the most well-known marketplaces in the world, so it is no surprise that the competition between them is fierce. There is also the looming threat of huge companies like Google making moves towards the eCommerce space to contend with. Google recently updated their shopping features to gain a larger slice of the pie. So what can eBay do to get sellers to either stay on or return to their platform? Well, one of their major plans for 2020 suggests it could be fulfillment. Amazon have an incredibly successful fulfillment service across the world, and after eBay successfully launched one in Germany and one in Australia this year, they are launching it in the US in 2020.


                                                                              What is fulfillment?

                                                                              If you were to think about ecommerce as three people, fulfillment would be the middleman. It is usually described as a set of logistics used by the seller to ensure that the product is packaged and delivered to the buyer within reasonable time. There are plenty of third-party services that offer fulfillment, but it is usually easier for sellers to be able to use a fulfillment service that is already attached to the marketplace they use. Amazon have one of the most advanced fulfillment networks in the world. Sellers can store their products in one of the many fulfillment centres and amazon staff pick, package and send the item for delivery. Not only does this save the seller time, but this usually means that the item is received more quickly by the buyer too.



                                                                              (eBay are rolling out their “Managed Delivery” to the US. Image source: eBay)

                                                                              What will eBay’s fulfillment service in the US look like?

                                                                              “Managed Delivery”, eBay’s fulfillment service will be rolled out to the US in 2020. Although they already have some tools, like the Global Shipping Programme which helps sellers with things like customs forms, and Click and Collect which allows delivery to a secure location chosen by the seller, this is the first foray of them into fulfillment in the US market. One key difference between eBay’s managed delivery and Amazon’s FBA service is that eBay will not have their own distribution centres. They will work in partnership with third-party distribution centres and allow sellers to ship to key locations across the country.

                                                                              What are eBay promising as part of their Managed Delivery service?

                                                                              As they can use Germany and Australia as a successful template, eBay are able to promise features such as:
                                                                              - Customer service and seller protection
                                                                              - End to end fulfillment
                                                                              - 3 day guaranteed delivery 
                                                                              - Outsourcing of all logistics

                                                                              How can sellers qualify for Managed Delivery?

                                                                              Like any other fulfillment service, eBay ask sellers for a few things before they can qualify:
                                                                              - The seller needs to be able to split their inventory across 2 locations as minimum
                                                                              - Items must be suitable for fulfillment so no perishables etc
                                                                              - Maximum inventory turnover time is 3 months