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Understanding E-commerce and Ebay Fees

Updated: Jun 22

Laptop with E-commerce word

E-commerce is the term for purchasing and selling of the products and services online. It includes many other types of transactions, such as digital marketing, electronic transactions, and online retail. Geographical restrictions have been removed by the rise of e-commerce,

giving consumers and companies access to a vast array of goods and services from the comfort of their homes. Online buying is now easier than ever because to the widespread use of smartphones and technological improvements, which have also contributed to the expansion of e-commerce.

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Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) vs. Aggregator E-Commerce Models


Under the direct-to-consumer (D2C) business model, companies offer their goods to customers directly instead of using traditional retail channels. With the help of this approach, businesses can establish direct connections with their audience and maintain complete control over the consumer experience.


Control Over Brand Image:

Direct interaction with customers allows businesses to create a consistent and strong brand identity. You control how your products are presented and marketed.

Higher Profit Margins:

By eliminating intermediaries, businesses can retain a larger share of the revenue. This can lead to higher profit margins compared to selling through third-party retailers.


Customer Relationships:

Direct engagement with customers helps build strong relationships and loyalty. Businesses can gather valuable feedback and insights to improve products and services.



Higher Operational Costs:

Managing a D2C operation involves costs related to warehousing, shipping, customer service, and marketing. These expenses can add up, especially for small businesses.


Complex Logistics:

Handling inventory, fulfillment, and returns can be challenging and require robust systems and processes to ensure efficiency and customer satisfaction.


Customer Acquisition Costs:

Building a customer base from scratch can be expensive. D2C businesses need to invest significantly in marketing and advertising to attract and retain customers.

Aggregator E-Commerce

A platform that unites several vendors or service providers to give customers with access to a large selection of goods and services is known as the aggregator model. The website serves as a middleman to make transactions between buyers and sellers easier.


Wide Reach and Customer Base:

Aggregators attract a large number of consumers looking for variety and convenience. This can lead to increased visibility and sales for businesses listed on the platform.

Lower Operational Burden:

Sellers benefit from the aggregator's infrastructure, including payment processing, customer service, and logistics support, reducing their operational responsibilities.


Aggregators provide a scalable platform for businesses to expand their reach without the need for significant upfront investment in technology and infrastructure.


Lower Profit Margins:

Aggregators charge commissions and fees for listing and selling products, which can reduce the overall profit margins for businesses.

Limited Brand Control:

Sellers have less control over how their products are presented and marketed on the aggregator's platform. This can dilute brand identity and customer experience.

Dependency on Platform Policies:

Sellers are subject to the aggregator's policies and changes, which can impact their business operations and profitability.

How Aggregator Business Model Works


Commission-Based Fees:

  • Commission-based fees involve charging sellers a percentage of each transaction made through the platform. This fee is typically calculated based on the total sale price of the item sold.



  • Amazon: Amazon charges sellers a referral fee for each product sold through their platform. The referral fee varies by product category and can range from 8% and 45% of the item's selling price. For example, if a seller sells a product for £100 in a category with a 15% referral fee, Amazon would deduct £15 as the referral fee, and the seller would receive £85.



Listing Fees:

  • Listing fees involve charging sellers a fee for listing their products or services on the platform. This fee may be one-time or recurring, depending on the duration of the listing.


  • Etsy: Etsy charges sellers a £0.16 listing fee for each product listed on their platform. Listings are active for four months or until the item is sold. If the item sells, Etsy also charges a 6.5% transaction fee on the total sale price (including shipping costs).



Transaction Fees:

  • Transaction fees involve imposing fees on sellers for each completed transaction, covering the cost of payment processing and transaction handling.



  • Fiverr: Fiverr charges sellers a service fee of 20% on each completed transaction. For example, if a seller sells a service for $100, Fiverr deducts a $20 service fee, and the seller receives $80.

Featured or Promotional Listing Fees:

  • Featured or promotional listing fees allow sellers to promote their listings prominently on the platform for increased visibility, usually for an additional fee.


  • Gumtree: Gumtree offers sellers the option to promote their listings as "Urgent" or "Featured" for a fee. Featured ads appear at the top of search results and receive greater visibility among potential buyers. 



Subscription Upgrades:

  • Subscription upgrades involve allowing sellers to upgrade their subscription plans to access premium features or benefits for an additional fee.



  • Shopify: Shopify offers various subscription plans for sellers, such as Basic, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify. Sellers can upgrade their subscription plan at any time to access more advanced features and capabilities, with corresponding increases in monthly fees.




Subscription-Based Fees:

  • Subscription-based fees involve offering sellers subscription plans or premium memberships, providing access to additional features, tools, or benefits for a recurring fee.


  • eBay: eBay offers several subscription plans for sellers, such as Basic, Featured, and Anchor Stores. Each plan comes with varying monthly subscription fees and provides different levels of benefits. For example, the Basic plan may have a lower monthly fee but fewer benefits, while the Anchor Store plan may have a higher monthly fee but include advanced selling tools and discounted fees.

Want To Understand E-Commerce Better?

We have made a fee calculator, you can download it for free!

Ebay Fee Calculator

Too Stressful? Grow Your Business Without the Stress.

Punchhole has you covered at all times. Using Square on Etsy and Paypal to sell goods on Amazon? Not a concern. Just connect to your preferred platform—Amazon, Square, Shopify, etc.

To enable you to view fees from platforms, warehouses, deliveries, and other sources as distinct lines with the appropriate tax categories, we translate their statements into clear and concise reports. Furthermore, we can support you with filing VAT if you sell outside the UK.


In the dynamic world of e-commerce, staying on top of your finances is crucial for success. With our specialized bookkeeping services, you can streamline your financial management processes, mitigate risks, and unlock growth opportunities. Let us be your trusted partner in navigating the complexities of e-commerce finance, so you can focus on what you do best—building and scaling your business. Contact us today to learn more about how we can empower your e-commerce venture.



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Click on the button to download.

We love to talk about anything and everything you would want to discuss about your e-commerce businesses and their accounting. Click on the button below to get in touch!


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