New Fee Structure March 2021

Timothy C. on Swappa
Timothy C.
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I got the email about the new fee structure in March 2022. I don’t know what 3% per party means. Is there a faq in this that provides more detail?

Will Verduzco on Swappa
Swappa Staff

Hey Timothy, thank you for reaching out about our upcoming fee change!

As you are already aware, Swappa is transitioning to a split fee structure early next month, where buyers and sellers each pay 3%.

This new system is much simpler than our previous tiered fee approach. Instead of having to reference our old fee table, buyers and sellers will now pay a fixed percentage (3%) of the seller's asking price.

Here's an example

If a seller lists an item with an Ask Price of $100. The listing shows up as $103 in order to account for the 3% buyer fee.

Once the buyer pays $103, a 3% seller fee is deducted from the original Ask Price, alongside PayPal’s transaction fee of 3.49% + $0.49 per transaction.

In other words, an item listed with an Ask Price of $100 can be purchased for $103 (plus tax if required in the buyer's state) -- and the seller will take home $92.92.

Swappa Fees are lower than the competition

Our new fees aren't just simpler; they're also lower than the competition. eBay charges 12.55% + $0.30 for every item sold, and OfferUp charges 12.9% per transaction.

If you're selling a $500 phone, you'll save about $15 in fees by selling on Swappa. And if you're selling something more expensive like a $1000 laptop, you'll save about $30!

And unlike those other marketplaces, you actually get something in return at Swappa. Swappa fees enable listing verification, state-of-the-art fraud prevention, and real 24/7/365 support. This means that whether you’re a buyer or seller, you’ll have a better experience at Swappa.

Visit the Swappa Blog to learn more: Swappa Fees are Changing

Timothy C. on Swappa
Timothy C.

Ok. So, if I list for $100, the actual price the seller sees is $103. Then they buy for $103 + 3% + sales tax. Is that correct?

Will Verduzco on Swappa
Swappa Staff

Yep! So if a seller sets an "Ask Price" of $100 when creating a listing, the listing price the buyer sees is $103. When the buyer goes to purchase the item, they would then pay $103 + sales tax (if applicable in their state).

Timothy C. on Swappa
Timothy C.

Ok. But this is not really what you are representing, the seller is paying 6% out of their listing price, where today that is just 5%. Today, I list at 100, the seller pays $105, and I get !00 - the paypal fees. In the new model, the buyer would pay $103 and I would get $97 minus the paypal fees.

Ricky Y. on Swappa
Ricky Y.

So this sounds like the fees are nearly 10% the total price, then.

Buyer pays Swappa 3%, seller pays swappa 3%, then seller pays PayPal 3.45% + $0.49.

Timothy C. on Swappa
Timothy C.

Ricky Y. is right. Because when we are thinking about our listing price, we never say "my price is $100, so I will list at $103". What we do instead is say, "the buyer fee is $3, so I'll list at $97." Customer pays $100, Swappa now takes 6% and paypal takes their fees.

Yes - about 10%.

Will Verduzco on Swappa
Swappa Staff

Ricky, you are completely right that the total fees are close to 9.5%. As you mentioned, this is broken down into a 3% buyer fee (added to the Ask Price during the listing creation process), a 3% seller fee (deducted from the Ask Price when an item sells), and a 3.45%+$0.49 PayPal fee.

And going back to Timothy's example: Under the old fee structure, if a seller set an Ask Price of $100, the buyer was responsible for paying the entire $5 sale fee and the listing would show up as $105.

We believe it's fairer for buyers and sellers to split the fee -- and we've also received requests for a simpler fee structure without jumps at arbitrary price points.

So under the new fee system:

  • Ask price is set to $100
  • Buyer pays $3 when the listing is purchased for $103
  • Seller pays $3 deducted from the $100 ask price
  • PayPal charges the seller their standard 3.49% + $0.49 transaction fee

Hope this sheds a little bit of light on the upcoming changes!

Ricky Y. on Swappa
Ricky Y.

Seems much more simple, you're right about that.

All in all, it seems completely fair in my eyes.

Thanks for being detailed in your explanation, as well as being transparent with upcoming changes.

Timothy C. on Swappa
Timothy C.

So if I hear you right. The buyer side of the fee will not be added to the listing price like it is today. It will be applied at the time of purchase?

Will Verduzco on Swappa
Swappa Staff

So under the current tiered fee system, the buyer fee (sale fee) is added to the seller's Ask Price in order to create a Listing Price that buyers see when they shop on Swappa.

The timing of the buyer fee doesn't change when we implement our new fee structure, as the buyer fee is still incorporated into the visible listing price. The only new component is the seller fee, which is deducted from the Ask Price, alongside the PayPal Fee, when calculating the seller payout.

I realize that the difference between the buyer fee and the seller fee is rather subtle, and ultimately both result in a difference between what the buyer pays and what the seller receives. However, I can assure you that it will be clearer once the changes are rolled out, as we are making both fees abundantly clear during the listing creation process -- as well as their impact to your bottom line as a seller.

And as mentioned earlier, our fees are still considerably lower than the competition (check out our blog post for some concrete examples) -- and you still get more in return, such as real people reviewing listings before they go live to prevent scams and junk devices, IMEI checks to make sure that devices aren't reported lost/stolen or on any sort of carrier blocklist, and real 24/7/365 support with average support response times measured in minutes not hours.

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