Tired of getting gouged by sellers on the PayPal fee

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bill Balcziak, Mar 3, 2002.

  1. Bill Balcziak

    Bill Balcziak Supporting Actor

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    I think I've seen it all now. I tried to buy an item from somebody for about $12 and the seller insisted that I pay him a 3% surcharge (36 cents!) for the privilege of giving him immediate payment via PayPal.

    You'd think people would have come to grips with the notion that there is a cost to convenience, and that there is a benefit to buyer AND seller by having a nice, secure, simple payment method to use on these petty cash transactions. Instead, you get these unbelieveably small-minded people who try and gouge you for every last cent.

    In this case, I simply told the seller to forget it. I'd rather live without the item than support this way of thinking.
     
  2. John Nielsen

    John Nielsen Stunt Coordinator

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    I read somwhere that it was against the law, or at least paypal's rules, for a seller to add a surcharge because of a credit card sale.
     
  3. Bill Balcziak

    Bill Balcziak Supporting Actor

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    I believe it's also against HTF rules.

    EBay also bans the practice, but for me it's just an issue of goodwill. If somebody is buying something from me--and making the effort to pay me promptly and securely--I can't see the sense in beating him up over a 3% fee. As a buyer, it just leaves a bad taste in my mouth--like when a hotel surprises you with an "energy fee" at checkout.
     
  4. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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    I agree.
    Did he leave negative feedback on you?
    If so id give his name to both Ebay and Paypal!!
    ps- And leave him Negative Feedback [​IMG]
     
  5. Don Black

    Don Black Screenwriter

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    While it is against PayPal's rules (it's not against the law) to apply a surcharge to PayPal payments, it's not against the rules to apply such a surcharge uniformly. In the same way that credit card charges are factored into the price you pay at your local Best Buy, so too must PayPal costs be passed on to the consumer as well.
     
  6. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    There is nothing secure for the seller on Paypal, just as any remote credit card transaction is not secure. It is far more secure to get a cheque or money order in the mail and wait until it clears.

    As for charging extra, it is against Paypal's rules, but a number of companies do the exact same thing, though call it a cash discount.
     
  7. Kevin T

    Kevin T Screenwriter

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    i generally don't mind eating the 3% fee from paypal on all but the highest ticket items i've sold. usually, if the buyer insists on using paypal, i ask if they'll pay 1.5%. this is only for more expensive items. 36 cents isn't worth the trouble and bad blood to me. the buyer gets the convenience of paying with his credit card, i get the payment faster, and the whole process is expedited. normally people don't mind paying 1.5% more but some people still refuse...what can you do but deny their payment and demand a check / money order? i'm not that vendictive so i usually take the 3% hit. just one seller's prespective.

    kevin t
     
  8. Ron Eastman

    Ron Eastman Second Unit

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    PayPal provides a very convenient way to transfer money, both for the buyer and the seller. It's amazing how many people complain about the service charge. There are websites like PayPal Sucks whose entire purpose is to bash this service.
    Whenever you use a credit card to make a purchase, the retailer pays a service fee to Visa/Mastercard/Amex/Discover. This fee usually amounts to anywhere between 2-5% depending on the amount of transactions conducted by the business. PayPal handles a huge amount of transactions so I'm sure that they are paying Visa and Mastercard something near the lower end of the scale. The 3% that they pass on to the seller is a bargain, IMO, as the seller would probably have to pay much more for accepting credit cards through a more traditional means.
    Is it fair for PayPal to charge for the convenient service they provide? I think so. That's exactly what they are in business for, though the company has yet to turn a profit.
    I don't think it's too much to ask to have sellers simply figure the charge into the cost of doing business in this manner and adjust prices accordingly. Why would a seller quibble over 36-cents in a $12 transaction? Even worse, to quibble over $9 for a $300 transaction. I'm surprised that a seller would risk losing sales over such a small percentage.
    Whenever I see a seller attempting to charge a fee when a buyer uses PayPal for a transaction, I remind them of PayPal's Terms of Use, which they agreed to when they opened their account.
     
  9. MikeM

    MikeM Screenwriter

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  10. Don Black

    Don Black Screenwriter

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    PayPalSucks-type websites serve an important purpose which is to vent customer frustration as to the shady business practices of a publicly traded corporation ... much in the same way that PayPal employs multiple PR agencies to reinforce the notion that they are good company. Most people who complain on such websites have legitimite customer service problems that have fallen on deaf corporate ears at PayPal.

    Most large offline merchants pay the various credit card companies 1.5% of sales. Large online merchants pay roughly 2.5%. Any Tom, Dick, or Sally can get a merchant account from Cardservice International for 3% of sales (provided that they aren't complete credit delinquants). This is because a 3% fee provides the provider of such a service (Cardservice International or PayPal) with a hefty profit margin ... not just on the transaction but also on the float. To say that 3% is a bargain is hence very misleading.

    However, eBay members who try to charge additional PayPal fees after an auction closes are indeed wrong to do so and are breaking PayPal's rules. Those sellers that factor such a charge into the costs of S/H/I are doing it correctly. Buyers who object should shop elsewhere and stop complaining. If it was disclosed before they placed their bid, it's just sour grapes and well within the rights of the seller.

    As for the "strict" legalities that PayPal tries to impose on its customers .... well, PayPal itself is under investigation from numerous state banking officials, including California, New York, Idaho, and Louisiana who view the service as an unauthorized banking service.
     
  11. Aurel Savin

    Aurel Savin Supporting Actor

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    Well... Merchant Accounts for Internet or Catalog Companies have always charged a higher % service charge than to a regular retail operation.

    This is because of the much higher risk of fraud and chargebacks ... since the customer and card is NOT present and also there is NO signature.

    The seller and CC companies are at a higher risk with online transactions.
     

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