What about eBay Trading Assistants?

eBay used to have the largest and best-known Selling Assistance program. Founded in 2002, any seller in good standing could register as an eBay Trading Assistant (usually individuals working out of their homes), Listing Assistant (eBay Motors), or Trading Post (which later became Registered eBay Drop-Off locations when eBay started to run afoul of local auctioneering laws) and sell items for others on eBay. Some third-party franchises sprang up as Drop-Off locations, and many are still in business to this day. Though eBay shut the program down in 2013 and replaced it with the in-house eBay’s Sell For Me Valet service, the eBay Trading Assistant program was really just an unnecessary middleman for what was already a booming business relationship between sellers and those with something to sell.

If you’re a former eBay Trading Assistant feeling adrift without the stamp of legitimacy you got from having your service officially registered, I think you’ll find that you’ll ultimately prefer the freedom of running your services on your own terms. Now you owe no allegiance to any platform, and you don’t have to comply to anyone else’s terms or contracts, which frees you up to offer customers enticing features eBay would never have allowed like multi-channel selling, email marketing or even external webstores. And while you may miss some of the marketing benefits of being listed in the eBay directory, that was only a single promotional opportunity, and not even a very good one. In the end, getting the freedom to sell your own way without being shackled to the fees and policies of a single platform is well worth the loss of the directory.