Among the changes being announced Wednesday [8/20/08] is a new pricing plan for sellers who offer fixed-price items in eBay’s “Buy It Now” format. Starting in mid-September, sellers will pay only 35 cents to list an item for 30 days, a reduction of about 70 percent in upfront fees. EBay also announced that it would no longer allow most customers to pay by check or cash, a change aimed at curbing fraud. Users will need to pay with a credit card or through eBay’s PayPal online payment service.
Direct competition between eBay and Amazon is nothing new. Amazon tried to capitalize on eBay’s success by launching its own auction business in 1999, but by 2001 it had scaled back its auction efforts.