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I'm sure many of you out there have spent a fair bit of your internet time browsing somewhere such as eBay for unnecessary products to spend your hard earned cash on. Well, here's an alternative that in my view at least, is better than eBay...
I'm sure you're all aware of the concept of Amazon.co.uk and the service it provides, allowing you to buy any kind of electrical goods/DVD/CD amongst the greater selection of goods it now sells. But you can also sell things on Amazon, and buy material from third-parties rather than just through Amazon...that's where it's Marketplace comes in.
When clicking on a product, take a DVD for example, you will be given the price, but also an option to buy "Used & New", which will take you to third party sellers which are not associated with Amazon, just merely members of the site. Anyone can sell on the website as long as the product is listed, all you need to do is sign up for a Sellers Account, rather than just use your normal Buying Account. This is straightforward, but does require to submit card details to enable payment.
That's where Amazon and eBay differ dramatically. Whereas in eBay you rely heavily on the buyer sending money, be it via Paypal or cheque, on Amazon the purchaser simply carries out buying the product like any normal transaction on Amazon, so they pay Amazon directly so you know the money has been removed from their account safely and correctly, and you then 'request' payment when you wish to transfer the fees to your own bank account. A new seller on the Marketplace scene will have to wait approximately 28 days before request their first payment from their account, but this is due to security reasons to ensure there's no scam afoot. After that, you can request one payment per day, and will receive the funds into your account within 5 to 7 working days.
Once a product has been sold, you'll be notified by email and then by definition you have 2 working days to send the item. I've only sold DVDs and CDs on Amazon, so I've never needed anything more than a jiffy bag to send my item and know it would be secure, but for larger items that you're looking to sell you'll need to make sure they are securely packaged as the buyer can complain to Amazon if they feel this has not be achieved.
Amazon make money of this scheme by deducting a portion of the sold price from the final fee. Again, this differs from eBay as they take a portion from the price when you first list it on the website, which runs the risk of if you don't it then you'll lose money. But Amazon only take their share as and when you sell it. They also account from postage and packaging on their sales so that is included in the final sale total, hence why you can find an awful lot of items such as old books and CDs going for just 1p on Amazon...the seller will get up to £2.75 in postage and packaging allowance from Amazon.
I've been using Amazon and buying and selling from their Marketplace for several years now and never once felt let down by the service. There's a rating system which ensures you know you're buying from someone you can trust, and the product descriptions often confirm to you that you know what you're buying before you pay for it.
For those completely unaware of this concept, hopefully I've shed a little bit of light on the subject. Often you can find the product you're after a lot cheaper in the Marketplace compared to the standard Amazon price, which is usually cheap itself. You will expect the product to be slightly second-hand, or indeed some sellers do sell brand new, but if you're not worried about a little bit of wear and tear, then I'd certainly recommend this...and recommend it more than eBay.
Very well reviewed - I've picked up a few books second-hand that my local shop found were out of print. It's great for decluttering too. I agree with you on the ways in which it's better than eBay, too.
Annallon 23.08.2009 18:32
Their seller account is still takes ina high %! x Good review nayway! X