In the news this week: the impact of the Autumn Budget for online sellers, and eBay’s policy turnaround on watermarked images.
UK Autumn Budget 2017
The Autumn Budget 2017 includes changes that will have an impact on small ecommerce business:
- From April 2018:
National Living Wage for those over 25 will increase from £7.50 to £7.83 per hour
National Minimum Wage will increase to 21 to 24 years: £7.83 per hour, 18 - 20 years: £5.90 per hour, 16-17 years: £4.20 per hour, Apprentices £3.70 per hour
- Tax-free personal allowance will rise with inflation to £11,850 from April 2018
- Business rates will rise by Consumer Price Index from April 2018 (two years earlier than planned). Business rates revaluations will take place every three years instead of every five.
- The government will also be looking into ways to reduce single-use plastics waste through tax and charges - this would likely affect the use of plastic packaging for shipping products.
Find out more about Autumn Budget 2017 here.
eBay watermark removal policy
eBay’s watermark removal policy, part of eBay’s Autumn 2017 Seller Release, is no longer going to be enforced after complaints from sellers. The change of policy was due to be enforced from 1 March 2018, with any listings still containing watermarked images being removed from eBay’s search results.
Many sellers protested against the change, because it meant that they would have to replace or edit thousands of images. In some cases, the seller no longer had access to the original images without watermarks and would need completely new product images. Sellers also raised concerns about their product images being copied.
eBay has now emailed sellers to inform them that the new policy won’t be enforced, it will be ‘in place as guidance only’. However, if you have already removed the watermark, or have plans in place to do so, then it’s still a good idea. If you want your images to be displayed in search engine results outside of eBay such as Google, then they can’t include watermarks.
Read the full email about changes to the watermark removal policy here.