In our ecommerce news roundup this week eBay has delayed expanding its product identifier requirements in Australia and Ireland, and Etsy has updated its shopping cart to allow multi-shop checkout. We’ve also got details about email scams targeting online sellers, and HMRC’s new Connect system.
eBay delays product identifiers in Australia and Ireland
In the last week, eBay has delayed the implementation of new product identifier requirements, first in Australia and then in Ireland. Product identifiers were going to become mandatory across many categories, on all of eBay’s sites, from February 2017.
In the announcement on eBay Ireland, they’ve said that the new catalogue portal will be available from Spring 2017 and new product identifier options such as Amazon, Google and seller-created can be used from Summer 2017. The enforcement of product identifiers and removal of the ‘Does not apply’ option is being delayed until 2018. It also states that this change is due to seller feedback that they needed more time to prepare for the changes.
At the moment these delays have only been announced for eBay in Australia and Ireland, but it but it seems likely that they could be extended to eBay’s other sites. Read the full announcement from eBay here.
Update 201/01/2017: Tamebay is reporting that the mandatory product identifier requirements will be delayed for all eBay sites. Read more here.
Etsy multi-shop checkout
Etsy has updated its shopping cart to allow customers to pay for items from multiple shops together, as long as those shops have Direct Checkout enabled. Until now shoppers have had to pay for items from each Etsy shop separately.
Buyers will now be able to add items from different Etsy shops to their cart, see the price for each item as well as any shipping costs and options, and a total cost for their purchase. They can then checkout with one payment. After they’ve paid for their items, buyers will receive an email from each Etsy shop that they’ve purchased from, and will still be able to contact sellers and leave reviews.
If you don’t have Direct Checkout enabled for your Etsy shop your items will appear further down the checkout page in a separate section. Shops with Direct Checkout are automatically eligible for multi-shop checkout.
Learn more about Etsy’s multi-shop checkout here.
Email scams targeting eBay and Amazon sellers
Over the past week, two email scams have come to light, one targeting eBay sellers and the other Amazon. The eBay email, titled ‘eBay Money Back Guarantee Urgent Changes Notice’, is quite obviously suspicious because it asks sellers to print and complete a form and then fax it. However, even opening the form in the email may put you at risk.
Another phishing email targeting Amazon users is slightly harder to spot. The email is titled: “Seller Communication Centre – Changes Notice”. It asks you to click on a link in the email and provide personal details. If you receive a suspicious email from either eBay or Amazon, delete it - don’t click on any links, and don’t provide any personal information or log in details. Read the full Amazon email here.
HMRC launch Connect
With the deadline for online self-assessment tax returns at the end of January, HMRC has launched their Connect system, which identifies people that aren’t paying enough tax. The system is able to check a number of different sources to determine your income, and whether this matches what you declare to HMRC. Specifically for online sellers, it will be able to check online marketplaces like eBay, web browsing and email records, as well as Visa and MasterCard transactions.
Find out more about the new Connect system here.