eBayer slaps $714 price tag on $630 in cash
Will Microsoft pay the difference?
In an attempt to game Microsoft's new Live Search Cashback program, an eBayer has put a $714 price tag on $630 in cash.
Here's the listing in all its glory:
Pay cash for cash
That's right, $630 in cash can be yours for $714. But if you access the page through a Live Search ad link that returns 35 per cent of the purchase price, you can make up the difference. And then some. So you make a profit, and so does the seller. At the expense of Microsoft and eBay.
That's the theory, anyway. It's unclear whether this actually works, and neither Microsoft nor eBay has responded to requests for comment.
Last month, in a desperate effort to shrink the Google gap, Microsoft began bribing people to use its third rate search engine. If you use Live Search ads to find and purchase certain items, Microsoft will return a portion of the purchase price. In some cases, this amounts to a 35 per cent savings.
The payments come straight from Microsoft's product-selling advertisers. So, if a partner like eBay posts an advertisement, the ad fee provides that cash back refund.
Well, in recent days, message board mavens at FatWallet.com have noticed a potential loophole in this setup. If an eBay listing offers cash, they say, both the seller and the buyer can make some extra dough. But it must be a "Buy Now" purchase - and payment must be made through PayPal.
At the very least, there's a cap on that extra dough. Microsoft limits cash back rewards to $250. That's why our swashbuckling eBay choose $714 as a purchase price. But some posters are claiming a 35 per cent return is no longer available on eBay listings. The norm now seems to be 10 per cent on eBay buys.
If this does work - the eBayer hasn't responded to us either - we're sure it won't work for long. The bigger question is how long Ballmer can afford cash back refunds on all those other sales. ®
What PayPal and E-Bay Needs....
Yahoo! Used! To! Have! An! Auction! Service! which was a fairly good competition to E-Bay. It was never nearly as big, but it got the job done and was comparable. They closed their doors on June 3, 07. There isn't anything to compete with E-Bay any more.
PayPal... I know of many good merchant account and credit card processing providers, but all of these are geared toward POS (Point of Sale, not Piece of S**t) sales, or geared toward you (the seller) entering the customer's credit card information into a virtual online terminal or via telehone. There isn't really anything that can compete for taking credit cards over the internet on your behalf, via their own secure and PCI-compliant servers, and delivering the funds to you easily. And integrating into a website as smoothly...
My $0.02 USD. If you do know of good, viable, thriving alternatives to The Duo, speak now!
...Gates, 'cause he knows all about competition
Not really worth the bother anymore...
It really has become intolerable on eBay, over the last 2-3 years. Selling stuff is a minefield, with the right to put negative feedback having been taken away. I only sell little bits of my old crap for a few quid, but you have to be careful to put so many caveats in your listings so your arse is covered when it inevitably goes belly up, just like a genuine business! If I wanted to run a business, I would. When you get turned over as a seller, you simply have to wait two weeks, raise a "got fecked over" call so at least you might stand a slim chance of getting your listing fees back, but no sale and lots of wasted time, messing about, just so you can empty your spare room.
Sorry, but in future I think most of my junk room tat will end up outside the local Age Concern shop or in the recycle bin, at least that way someone will appreciate it!
Oh goodness, Ebay. It was a lot more fun when it was the universal garage sale for old knick-knacks and most of the sellers and buyers were average people. Now it's hard driving power sellers offering overpriced "buy it now" deals on wide screen TV's and complaining buyers with more money than sense. Except for the genuine collectibles and curios (stamps, coins, old computers, memorabilia, etc.) almost all the stuff there can be found cheaper without much looking. How tiring it all is...........