Online merchants were happy to hear the U.S. Postal Service would be providing free insurance on Priority Mail beginning July 28th, but lingering questions remained about how much insurance coverage they were qualified to receive. The answer for eBay sellers is, it depends.
The USPS is extending domestic Priority Mail either $50 or $100 insurance for loss, damage, and missing merchandise. Retail and Commercial Base customers will receive the $50 free insurance - that includes customers walking into a post office or using USPS.com. High-volume Commercial Plus customers will receive $100 free insurance.
Merchants who use services from online postage services will receive $50 in free insurance for domestic Priority Mail unless they've specifically been approved for Commercial Plus pricing from the USPS, in which case they would receive the $100 free insurance.
As for merchants using PayPal to print their shipping labels, a spokesperson for PayPal said the insurance is company neutral. "This means that a seller purchasing USPS labels on eBay and PayPal will receive the same coverage regardless of where
they are purchasing."
However, eBay explained how it handles online postage a little differently. eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore told EcommerceBytes that Top Rated Sellers would receive the Commercial Plus coverage of $100 when using eBay's shipping label program.
"eTRS sellers, as well as sellers who have more than 2,500 transactions a month and are not eTRS sellers, will receive $100 of coverage for Priority Mail," he said. "At this time, all others will receive $50 of coverage."
The new insurance coverage comes as the USPS rebrands Express Mail to Priority Mail Express - see more information in Five Things to Know about USPS Changes to Priority Mail .
About the author:
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org .