I recently stumbled upon KickedOffeBay.com. Their logo looks like this:
So… some sort of unhinged woman kicking us which I figured was meant to represent seller frustration with the eBay platform. My first thought was that this was some kind of forum where sellers could vent their frustrations with eBay.
But to my surprise and amazement, it’s not a forum… it’s actually a marketplace with fixed price, want ads, classifieds and auctions that hopes to compete with eBay. But building your whole e-commerce platform around the fact that the sellers on your site were those that eBay suspended or kicked off the platform? That seemed like kind of a bold choice. I had many questions.
Since I’m all about alternative marketplaces, I asked site owner Jen Baldwin if she’d be kind enough answer a few of my questions via email. I promised I’d post her answers verbatim and unchanged which is why I didn’t make any corrections to spelling or grammar below.
Can you tell us a little about your new site, KickedOffeBay.com?
Kickedoffebay.com is a new auction site that doesn’t have rule after rule like ebay. We are more laid back and aren’t looking to control every aspect of every auction. You can buy, sell, trade items, make offers, post wanted ads, so there are many functions to the site. The biggest function is once you set up a online store, you can chose to list your auction as a auction and in your store all at the same time. Also why purchase a website and pay hosting fees when you can make your own store and you can give anyone out your store link, you can advertise your store thru google or any other advertisers. I also dont if you post auctions and list your own link for your own website, go ahead and advertise it. I know this is something ebay does not allow, you can’t mention your own website in your auctions, but on my site you are allowed.
What features do sellers get when they sign-up?
For signing up you get a $5 credit in your account. When signing up for a large store you get a free logo made for free. We are still working on marketing tools thru google.
What are the fees for selling on this platform like?
We offer free listings, however you can add features to your auctions, some are free and some cost. You are allowed 4 pictures for free and here is a list of extras.
- Xtra Images Upload Fee USD 1.00
- Highlighted Item Fee USD 0.10
- Home Page Featured Fee USD 0.25
- Category Featured Fee USD 0.25
- Additional Category Fee USD 1.00
- Media Upload Fee USD 2.00
The biggest challenge for any new marketplace is always, how will you attract buyers? How do you plan to encourage buyers to try out this new marketplace?
Just word of mouth, hopefully once we get more people interested and they see how many great features the site has they will have more confidence.
The title of your site is geared to a very specific niche… disgruntled former eBay sellers, specifically those “kicked-off” the marketplace against their will. Are you afraid that portraying your site that way will turn off potential buyers?
Seeing how many people have been kicked off of ebay, I think it will sell itself. Ebay is still very large but not near what it used to be.
You mentioned to me earlier that you yourself were kicked off eBay, specifically that you violated eBay polices which is what resulted in your being kicked off the platform. Can you give us more info about what you did that resulted in your suspension?
I listed a few things in wrong catagories and was given warnings and then I listed a handbag w/ the Gucci brand that I got at a garage sale, not knowing the difference, they took me completely off the website and banned me saying I had to have a receipt and proof if it was real.
How many years were you selling on eBay before your suspension? How big was your eBay business? What sort of things did you sell?
I was on ebay for about 6 years and my rating was over 250, that was where I got all my extra money for my family. I sold anything and everything I found. It was a fun business til I got it taken away.
Besides eBay, what other selling platforms have you used? Did any other poor ecommerce experiences lead to the creation of this new site?
I own 3 websites. www.sellbuytrade.info, www.sewingfinethingsandmore.com and now www.kickedoffebay.com and I really enjoy being in control over my own destiny with anyone saying…. you are doing this wrong and take this down, reword this. As a matter of fact, I dont even use paypal. Paypal and Ebay go hand in hand, if you do something wrong with one of them, you really cant use either service. I decided to get a credit card merchant account for all my sites and have been very happy and stress free.
I know firsthand that it’s actually not that hard to get reinstated on eBay even after multiple suspensions because I’ve done it for client accounts. Did you work with support to recover your account at all or did you just decide it was better to walk away?
Yes, I did try to work with them, possibly they are more leniant now, but at that time, they were so large that they really didnt care about working with me.
Earlier, you explained KickedOffeBay as “a carefree auction site you can come sell on without worry of rule after rule.” I have to confess, as a seller and buyer both, that sentence terrifies me. Surely you have some policies in place to protect sellers and buyers from scams and other transaction issues. Would you mind detailing some of the rules and policies that you have in place and why you think they are better then what eBay has? The biggest problem with the title of the site is that it seems to imply that you are welcoming the unsavory element that was so bad eBay kicked them out.
My only rule is dont rip someone off. You list a item you make sure you disclose if it is real for fake. Of course I will make people change their auctions to represent the item correctly if they are not doing so… but I won’t remove someone from the site unless there is some form of deceiving behavior. No one wants to get ripped off and basically these days, every credit card company, bank has a system in place to get you your money back if you dont receive your item. It is something I dont’ have to worrry about too much because they are taking care of it.
If you had to sum up the advantage to selling on KickedOffeBay over any other platform out there in a sentence, what would that be?
Kickedoffebay is a worry free auction site that genuinly cares about each person and is there to help make them successful sellers, buyers and traders.
So… what do you guys think? Is this site a viable alternative for former eBay sellers? Would you consider buying or selling on KickedOffeBay yourself?