eBay has announced plans to launch its own fulfillment service called Managed Delivery, which will provide end-to-end packaging and deliveries to its sellers. The e-commerce giant plans to launch Managed Delivery in the US next year using a network of third-party partners to supply warehousing, packing, and delivery services using eBay’s technology platform. eBay says that its sellers send 1.5 million packages every day in the US, and Reuters reports that around 40 to 50 percent of items listed on its site will qualify to use the new plan.
The launch of Managed Delivery marks a big change for eBay, which has tended to take a hands-off approach to how sellers deliver their products. However, this approach has led to inconsistencies in its service. The new fulfillment platform should help solve this problem, but it brings eBay into much closer competition with Amazon. However, while the Seattle-based company owns and operates its own network of warehouses, eBay plans to pay third-party suppliers to provide them.
eBay says that Managed Delivery will aim to deliver packages in two to three days, according to Bloomberg, and that it will simplify and lower the cost to sellers of getting products into the hands of their customers. It also says that customers will benefit from faster and more reliable deliveries. Along with making its platform more attractive to sellers and buyers, eBay will also benefit from the increased brand awareness that comes with millions of packages being transported in packaging bearing the company’s logo.
Bloomberg quotes one seller involved in a trial of eBay’s fulfillment service who said that eBay charged him $3.99 to send a package from California to New Jersey, compared to the $3.09 he spent before, which didn’t include the cost of packaging supplies. However, more important was the fact that he saved the time he usually spent packaging his products by outsourcing the work to eBay. “I can focus on running my business and adding products rather than packing boxes all day,” he said.