Well, I’m not sure anyone is still interested in this topic, but since I owned Glacier Bay DVD, I thought I would jump in and explain why I no longer sell on eBay or anywhere else for that matter.
You might ask why I waited 8 months to speak up, well I’ve been observing eBay over these past 8 months and I’ve come to the realization that they are a ship without a rudder, and it is affecting a group of people that I care a great deal about: EBay Sellers. So I thought I would lend my voice to the discussion. I have a unique perspective on eBay, and since I no longer sell online I can speak freely.
When I shutdown Glacier Bay I was number 2 in total feedback with 265,950 unique positives and 539,703 total positives, but I was also seriously in debt. We had been losing money since March of 2004, and I had to make a decision. Do I keep trying to make this work or is my business model so broken I’ll never be able to turn it around. I made the decision to shut it down, which was a very painful process for me, my employees, my vendors and for some of my customers. If you were affected by the failure of Glacier Bay DVD I sincerely apologize for the trouble it may have caused.
Let me be clear, in speaking out now about eBay issues, I do not blame eBay for my business failings. I made the decisions or neglected the issues that caused Glacier Bay’s demise. I ignored the competition, I didn’t adapt to the changes in the marketplace, and I didn’t cut overhead when I should have. The reason I am adding my voice to the discussion on eBay now is because I believe it can still be a fantastic “venue” for small businesses and hobbyists, and I don’t want you to go through what I did. I also want to give something back to the community of eBay sellers that are truly some of the best people in the world.
In the coming weeks I will be writing down my views of the problems facing eBay today. I invite you to challenge my positions, provide a different perspective and help move the discussion forward. If we make cogent, concise, well-reasoned arguments, maybe eBay will actually listen (yeah, right). Unfortunately, I believe the only constituents they are listening to currently are Investors.
Why should you care what I say in regards to eBay? Maybe you shouldn’t, but if you care about your business on eBay I can help you avoid some of the mistakes I made. I walked the “hallowed halls” of the eBay corporate office. I dined with top executives, including Meg Whitman-she is actually a very nice person. For a time I was the shining star of eBay. I sold over $15 million dollars worth of DVDs and CDs over 5 years on eBay. My business failed, but I hope I can help other sellers avoid the pain of failure that I have experienced.
Until recently, I never once read an eBay message board. I have been doing that a lot lately, and the passion I see in what I read had a great deal to do with my speaking out. Sure, there is a great deal of speculation, sure there is great anger but there are also great ideas and great passion for everything eBay. I’ve learned new things about: Lurkers, Trolls, Cheerleaders, and “The Tiny Mob” I want to be part of the discussion. EBay has not yet fallen off the cliff in regards to sellers, but they are teetering on the edge.
I look forward to discussing these issues and more in the coming months. As my friends from Down Under are fond of saying Ã¢Â?Â¦
By the way here is a great article on the state of eBay.