COMC Sellers! Huge Announcement!

Thank you for helping COMC grow from being a garage startup to making a tangible impact on the trading card industry.  COMC currently ships more single trading cards than any other company on the planet, and we could not have done this without such amazing support from all our sellers, buyers, employees, vendors, and partners.  I am incredibly proud of what we have built together and feel very fortunate to be on this journey with you.

Today we are making one of our biggest announcements ever, and we don’t take this lightly.  In fact, we have been pondering and refining these changes for nearly 5 years.

If you haven’t already watched the video above, I recommend doing so before reading the rest of this post.

What enabled COMC’s success? 

Several factors have made COMC’s service so popular, but one of the most significant factors is our Buy Now – Ship Later model. This is a key reason why we are considered the best website for set builders and player collectors.

While most sites have tried offering faster and faster shipping to attract more business, this strategy has resulted in average order sizes of less than 2 cards per package.

At COMC, we have invested in a model where you can sell cards to earn COMC Credit, or you can buy more credit, and then you use that credit to make offers, instantly purchase items, and eventually request a shipment. This Buy Now – Ship Later model has resulted in an average of 40 cards per package, saving COMC members millions of dollars on shipping, and allowing COMC to dominate the low-end portion of the trading card market.

Why change? 

Many sellers have expressed they would like to use our service for more of their mid-range and high-end items in addition to all their low-end ones.  The greatest cost when selling low-end items is shipping, but as you progress to more mid-range and high-end items, commission fees gradually surpass shipping costs, and eventually commission fees become the most significant costs.

A fee structure that can support both low-end and high-end items will be a huge win for our sellers and our buyers.

What is the goal? 

We want to welcome more mid-range and high-end items onto the COMC platform while also preserving our superiority with low-end items.

What is changing? 

We are reducing the overall commissions we collect by making the following changes.

  1. Our 20% Cash-Out Fee is being replaced with a 10% Cash-Out Fee and 5% Transaction Fee.
  2. Our 20% eBay/Amazon seller’s commission is being replaced with a much smaller buyer’s premium.
  3. A small Enhanced Security Fee will be assessed to items listed for $50 or more.

Cash-Out Fee Details

On January 1st, 2019 we will reduce our Cash-Out Fee to only 10%.  This will be available for all COMC Credit that was charged the 5% Transaction Fee.  With any Legacy COMC Credit you earned before the 5% Transaction Fee, you will have these choices.

  1. Spend it on cards and services
  2. Convert some or all Legacy COMC Credit to new COMC Credit by paying a 5% Conversion Fee
  3. Wait until January 1st, 2020 when we retire the concept of Legacy COMC Credit and give 10% cash-outs to any COMC Credit

No matter which option you choose, you will be better off than you are with today’s 20% cash-out.  That said, the best option is still to simply use the Legacy COMC Credit on COMC and avoid the cash-out and conversion fees all together.  When you use COMC Credit to consign items, make offers, buy items, request a shipment, or pay for any other COMC services, we will use up your Legacy COMC Credit first.  When you Cash-Out COMC Credit, we will use the new COMC Credit first.  We will always use the credit that is most advantageous for you.

Here are some example Cash-Out scenarios.

December 31st, 2018  January 1st, 2020 
$1,000 COMC Credit $1,000 COMC Credit
– $200 20% Cash-Out Fee – $100 10% Cash-Out Fee
$800 PayPal Deposit $900 PayPal Deposit
January 1st, 2019  July 1st, 2019 
$0 New COMC Credit $600 New COMC Credit
+ $1,000 Legacy COMC Credit + $400 Legacy COMC Credit
– $50 5% Conversion Fee – $20 5% Conversion Fee
$950 New COMC Credit $980 New COMC Credit
– $95 10% Cash-Out Fee – $98 10% Cash-Out Fee
$855 PayPal Deposit $882 PayPal Deposit

We will also reduce the cost of Blowout Cards gift certificates.  These details will be provided in a follow up blog post.

Transaction Fee Details 

Starting January 1st, 2019, we will charge a 5% transaction fee on all transactions that transfer store credit in exchange for items. This fee will be collected at the time of sale and is very similar to the 3% promotion fee charged when you run a standard sale promotion today.   Consequently, we will also reduce promotion fees so it is easier for you to run promotions and drive sales.  More details on the new promotion fees will be provided in a blog post coming soon.

Traditional Order vs Buy Now – Ship Later 

We classify all eBay, Amazon, and COMC Shopping Cart purchases as Traditional Orders.  These orders require immediate shipment as part of the payment contract.  We will make several changes to streamline these Traditional Order scenarios, which are really intended for the causal buyer that just wants to quickly add a few items to their cart and check out.  For example, we have offered “free shipping” on more expensive eBay listings by embedding the cost of shipping in the eBay price.  Also, eBay and Amazon require all orders to be mailed out within 1 business day.  So, we will simplify our shipping options and standardize across eBay, Amazon, and the COMC Shopping Cart, making it seamless for casual customers to very quickly purchase a few items.

In contrast, our COMC Credit scenario enables the Buy Now – Ship Later functionality.  This is designed for more serious collectors who frequently do both buying and selling.  With COMC Credit, the buying process is clearly differentiated from the shipping process, and shipping is optional.  It is very common for people to buy items and then resell them without ever taking physical possession of the items.  It is also common for people to buy items one day and not request a shipment for weeks, months, or even years, so we will continue to offer our low-cost, slower shipping options when placing shipment requests with COMC Credit.

Improved eBay & Amazon Selling Experience (Traditional Order Premium) 

Over the past several years, we have required sellers to factor the 20% eBay/Amazon commission into their asking prices, making it more difficult for sellers to set competitive asking prices for mid-range and high-end items when opted in to sell on eBay and Amazon.  We will replace this seller’s commission with a much smaller buyer’s premium that we refer to as the Traditional Order Premium.

The Traditional Oder Premium will be 10% + $5 for items with an asking price of $100+ COMC Credit and 15% for items with an asking price of less than $100 COMC Credit.  As a seller, you will no longer need to inflate your prices to cover the old 20% eBay/Amazon commission.  Instead, you will only need to factor in the 5% Transaction Fee and optional 10% Cash-Out Fee.  If you plan to buy other items with the COMC Credit you earn from selling, you can ignore the 10% Cash-Out Fee altogether.

Starting immediately after Cyber Monday, prices on COMC will reflect the Traditional Order Premium when you are not signed in.  Guest visitors to COMC can only use the COMC Shopping Cart to make purchases, and they will always be subject to the Traditional Order Premium.  As a COMC member, you will see the COMC Credit prices after signing in, and you will not be subject to the Traditional Order Premium when you use COMC Credit to make your purchases.

During December we will begin transitioning eBay and Amazon listings to reflect the Traditional Order Premium.  In the meantime, items will be listed on eBay and Amazon either because the seller opted in to covering the 20% commission or because we reflected the Traditional Order Premium in the listing’s price.  Until we update a listing, any sales form that listing will still be subject to the 20% eBay/Amazon commission.  Once a listing reflects the Traditional Order Premium, you will receive your full asking price when it sells.  After January 1st, 2019, your sales will also be subject to the 5% transaction fee.

Once all the eBay and Amazon listings have been updated, you will no longer need to opt in to selling on eBay and Amazon, and all items for sale on COMC will automatically be eligible for sale on eBay and Amazon.

Revenue from the Traditional Order Premium

The majority of the revenue we receive from the Traditional Order Premium will go towards covering eBay & Amazon fees, extra support costs and increased return rates from these platforms, PayPal and credit card fees, advertising to drive more traffic to COMC, and eventually, affiliate and referral programs (hint-hint), as well as the software development costs to build and maintain these systems. It is not easy being one of the largest sellers on both eBay and Amazon. We frequently push them to their limits.

Enhanced Security Fee Details 

We anticipate receiving a lot more high-end items as the result of these changes, and our $0.01/month Storage Fee does not sufficiently cover the expenses we incur when properly securing your $1,000 items.

On January 1st, 2019, we will introduce an Enhanced Security Fee for items with an asking price of $50 or more.  Low-end items will not be affected by this new fee.  The fee will be $0.01 per $1,000 of total asking price per day. This amounts to about $0.03 per month for a $100 item or $0.30 per month for a $1,000 item.

The fee will accrue daily but will only be charged monthly.  The first Enhanced Security Fee will be assessed on February 1st, 2019 and will be based on asking prices throughout the month of January.

This fee encourages more competitive asking prices for high-end items and should help clear out some of the inflated prices on COMC today.

We will add a filter to the Inventory Manager that makes it easy for you to find items that are subject to the Enhanced Security Fee so you can easily make price changes to minimize this fee.

Net Effect of Commission Changes 

When an eBay buyer spends $1,000 on one of your items, you will net 20% more cash.

COMC on eBay Today  COMC on eBay After Changes 
  • $1,000.00 List Price
  • $800.00 after 20% eBay Commission
  • $640.00 after 20% Cash-Out Fee
  • $1,000.00 Traditional Order Price
  • $904.54 COMC Credit Price
  • $859.31 After 5% Transaction Fee
  • $773.37 After 10% Cash-Out Fee

$773.37 is 20.8% more than $640.00.

If you want $1,000 cash in your pocket for an item that sells on eBay, you will be able to do that with 17% lower prices on eBay.

COMC on eBay Today  COMC on eBay After Changes
  • $1,562.50 List Price
  • $1,250.00 after 20% eBay Commission
  • $1,000.00 after 20% Cash-Out Fee
  • $1,291.56 Traditional Order Price
  • $1,169.60 COMC Credit Price
  • $1,111.12 After 5% Transaction Fee
  • $1,000.00 After 10% Cash-Out Fee

$1,291.56 is 17.3% less than $1,562.50.

Bulk Price Editor 

As a seller, you may want to make widespread changes to your asking prices to reflect the new fee structure.  We will release an updated version of the Bulk Price Editor to make that process easier for you.  Keep an eye out for a future blog post with more details.

Frequently Asked Questions 

If you have a question about these fee changes, please leave a comment, and we will update this post to answer as many questions as we can.

 

Thank you for joining us on this journey.  We strive to continually improve your collecting experience, and this is just one step of many to come.  Stay tuned for many feature announcements over the next few months and throughout 2019.

Tim Getsch
COMC Founder & CEO

143 thoughts on “COMC Sellers! Huge Announcement!

    • Yeah, they just jacked up their fees big time! That 5% that’s being glossed over is going to significantly cut back on the number of cards being submitted and available. That $20 card used to cost $0.30 to list and sell, now it’s going to cost you $1.30 because of the 5%. Fact is they don’t want cheap cards and they don’t want flippers.

      • Bill, thank you for your comment. For perspective, our average card currently sells for only $2. We recognize that flippers may need to adjust buying and selling strategies, but we expect to see more $20+ cards on the COMC market due to the net effect of all the fee changes, so there should be more opportunities to flip.

  1. As a seller, you’ve just increased my cost of doing business on your site dramatically. My fees increased and profits cut. Those 30,000+ cards I had ready to send in, not sure I’m going to bother.

    • Well, thank you for the challenge. It is our responsibility to provide compelling enough sales to justify the cost of selling on our platform. Ultimately, it is all about what you receive for your cards. We are currently designing and building a numbers of features and services that will help drive more sales for you. When you feel comfortable with our changes, we will welcome your cards.

  2. There’s more numbers here than I could ever comprehend so……

    Plain and simple, if I send in 100 low end cards, will it still run $30 to process?

  3. and from a low end buying perspective, when I buy a 1.00 card with COMC credit, my account will be reduced by 1.05
    thanks

  4. So if I sell a $2 card on COMC I now get $1.90 instead of $2 like I used to, but if the same $2 card sells on ebay/Amazon I now get $1.90 instead of the $1.60 I used to get? Also, I’m assuming the 25-cent charge tacked onto my listing price doesn’t change … so a buyer is still paying $2.25 for that $2 card? Do I have it all right?

      • FYP “Yes, Yes if buyer pays an extra .30, and No it’s $2.55. You don’t got it and neither do I.”

        Unless I’m reading the new fees wrong: “The Traditional Oder (sic) Premium will be 10% + $5 for items with an asking price of $100+ COMC Credit and 15% for items with an asking price of less than $100 COMC Credit.”

        So as applied to Dave’s example above: “if the same $2 card sells on ebay/Amazon I now get $1.90 instead of the $1.60 I used to get? Also, I’m assuming the 25-cent charge tacked onto my listing price doesn’t change … so a buyer is still paying $2.25 for that $2 card?” It seems in reality, the buyer would not be paying $2.25, but rather $2.55 (2+.3 TOP + .25).

        Hopefully, you’re right and I’m reading it wrong and there won’t be this increased cost to the buyer. If so, I apologize.

      • Today, COMC Credit asking price of $2 is listed as $2.25 to COMC Guests and eBay. eBay requires Rushed shipping, so that is $0.25 more. $2.50 is the total cost for eBay. And $1.60 goes to the COMC seller. After January 1st, a $2 asking price will net $1.90 for the seller. So, some sellers anticipate lowering their prices because they will net more than $1.60 with a $1.70 asking price. But to complete the analysis based on a $2 asking price… It will be listed as $2 for COMC flippers (same as today), $2.25 for COMC members in Simplified Shipping Mode (Same as today), and $2.80 after shipping for eBay, Amazon, and COMC guests. The 15% Traditional Order Premium only apples to the asking price. COMC members do way more business than COMC guests. We want to convert guests to members. When they start buying and selling, they keep coming back and the whole ecosystem grows. This is part of the network effect that improves the system for everyone.

  5. How will the 5% transaction fee work? Will it be added on to the price displayed to buyers or will it be added at checkout?

      • So you just encouraged everyone to raise prices by five percent… where is the lowering of processing fees? It’s getting so I might as well list directly on eBay instead

    • Hey Walter, great question! The 5% transaction fee is only charged to a seller at the time an item is purchased by a buyer. The seller pays the transaction fee, not the buyer, so buyers are not affected by this change.

  6. 1) This is ridiculously confusing. 2) From what I can tell, this does significant damage to flipping, where a buyer/seller could flip for a 10% premium and will now only getting a 5% premium. This means there will be less incentive for flippers, which means much, much fewer sales for the lower cost, savy seller I try to be. 3) I don’t want my Comc cards sold on eBay. I don’t want that market flooded with my cards (and not all comc cards either). You’re going to kill eBay for cards, which seems cool for you, but it is bad for the hobby. All this with one question: If a seller cannot opt out of you selling their cards on eBay, what are you doing to rectify? Will you allow sellers to get their cards sent back to them at no charge if you’re not letting us opt out of eBay? I don’t want my cards in that marketplace. Thank you.

    • Sorry for the confusion. Hopefully we clarify any of your questions. Yes, your concern about flipping is valid. This change will significantly affect flipping strategies that have very thin margins. You will want to adjust buying and pricing strategies. Regarding eBay, we already have 2 million listing on eBay. We don’t guarantee all items will go on eBay. They cap how many listing we can have each month. We analyze our sales data and predict which 2 million listing might give us the best additional sales. We don’t plan to do many more than the current 2 million or so listings. Our goal is to have a better selection with more competitive prices. Chances are your cheap items that you think might flood eBay wouldn’t make the cut anyhow. If you still want to block your items from selling on eBay, I am open to giving you that option.

      • Thanks for the response, Tim. I had thought ALL comc cards post to eBay and Amazon if a seller opted in…and assumed the same case for the new model. What % of cards on comc will be posted to these sites with the new model? And what factors are considered to make that call? Do you give preference to some sellers over others? Does the seller have any say which of their cards are offered? Done with Qs. Thanks.

      • eBay doesn’t allow duplicate listings so we make one listing per product and put 1-10 copies of that card in the corresponding listing. The more copies we have sold in the past year, the more copies will include in the listing. We use a combination of the lowest prices and newest items on COMC to determine which cards make the cut for a particular listing.
        eBay generally has about 40% of our selection and maybe 30% of all our items. We may allow sellers to promote items to ensure that they get listed on eBay, but we haven’t ironed out the details for that yet.

      • Hi, Tim. I read a comment here that I can’t find now, but I thought I read your post saying that you only post items on eBay that are multiple items of the same card to maximize your 2M auction limit. However, there are several comc items on eBay that are single cards (only one card available/no duplicates available). I just bought one! 🙂 Would you share more detail on how comc selects cards to post on eBay? I’ve gone from concern of flooding the eBay market with all comc cards to not understanding how exactly our cards are selected to be placed on eBay. This is helpful, so we know which cards will get the extra push…now at the same fee. Would you please clarify? Thank you!

      • No problem. First off, we periodically change the algorithm, but this is approximately what we are doing now.
        Most sports card categories on eBay support variation listing. So we are able to post multiple copies of a card to the same listing, but we have chosen not to list more than 10 copies of a card at one time. If we are at our self imposed cap of 10 and one or more sells, we automatically list more pretty quickly. For non-sports categories, unfortunately that is not supported, so we can only list one card at a time.
        So, which listings make it onto eBay?
        When a card is first put up for sale on COMC, we will try to give it 30 days of exposure on eBay. If a card was consigned with our select or premium services will will give the card an extra 30-60 more days of exposure on eBay. If there are 10 other copies of the card that are cheaper then the new card, the new card won’t get any exposure.
        If we have sold and shipped a card in the past few months, we will continue to list about as many copies of that card as we have recently sold (up to 10 copies) even if the copies are no longer freshly listed for sale.
        If we have sold enough cards of a particular player relative to the number of different cards a player has for sale, we will list at least one copy of every card we have of that player. The copy listed will be the cheapest copy we have in that case.
        Same thing for a set, a year, and even an attribute. For example, eBay recently gave us some extra listings, so we listed all rookie cards, and all cards from 1982…
        The algorithm morphs depending on the number of listing we get from eBay and the historical sales data we have. The better sell through rate we achieve, the more listings they give us. So we try to tune the algorithm to list the cards that are most likely to sell on eBay.
        Great question. We could probably do a whole blog post just about the nuances of the algorithm. It is actually quite complex.

      • Thanks for the answer on how cards are chosen for eBay. Essentially, it comes down to your comment: “So we try to tune the algorithm to list the cards that are most likely to sell on eBay.”

        Based on your algorithm, it would seem to behoove you and your sellers if you posted your own “COMC Hot List” more detailed beyond “current year cards” to know what should be sent in to comc. Consider it. You could fill a void left by Beckett with only minimal editorial as fewer folks subscribe there as they once did. 🙂 $$

  7. So just to expand on my post above – my sales so far this year are as follows — $2,672.38 through COMC directly, $583.72 through ebay/Amazon — so with the new fees I would lose $133.62 from my COMC sales (taking away 5%) and gaining back $109.45 on my ebay/Amazon sales (only losing 5% instead of 20%) — all in all, if these numbers are indicative of sales in the future, this switch is only costing me about $25 a year. I never cash out so saving on the cash out fees doesn’t help me, but unless the sales proportions change drastically, I won’t lose sleep over it.

    Now if they would just consider raising the storage fee threshold from $2.50 up to say $4 or $5 – I’ve got a bunch of cards that I would love to list at $3 or $4 but I’ve capped them at $2.50 so I’m not paying that extra storage fee – the money I’m losing on those sales outweighs any money this change is costing me (and going forward it will hurt COMC since they’re getting 5% on a smaller sale – what do you say Tim – any thoughts on that?

    • Thanks for the analysis and the suggestion. We are not planning to touch the storage fees at this moment. Once we get a better sense of the impact of the changes we are launching in 2019, we will evaluate the storage fees to see what makes sense.

  8. Awesome Tim, love the changes. I am all for getting more for the high end cards! And for ones sold on Ebay! The only thing missing for me to make COMC perfect is to be able to put cards up for auction on Comc/ebay, especially high end cards that are hard to know what price to put them at! Also one smaller thing i would love would be BGS grading-I miss that a lot! Otherwise keep up the great work! Thanks, a loyal COMC client!! 🙂

    • Lol! I think you will be really happy with the “new features and services” I alluded to. We are still waiting for BGS to get their processing times more reasonable. In the meantime we are testing out our integration with PSA and expect to launch that in the next few months.

      • Thank for your response Tim! PSA would be great too! Good news to hear! I look forward to hearing more, great job as always!

    • We will show an estimate of this fee on your dashboard along with a link to the items you have that are subject to the fee. We were planning to start showing this January 1st, but we could probably add that earlier. Maybe sometime in December.

  9. So basically this means that there’s going to be less cards listed and higher prices. That doesn’t help anyone. Why mess with success?

    I don’t really sell too much, just send in some duplicates from time to time. The majority of the cards I have for sale are under $1. I’m already getting about 30 cents per sale on average, and I’ve sold cards during sales for as little as 12 cents. Now I would get even less than that. Not cool. And it hurts COMC because every card I sell leads to another one bought…which doesn’t sound possible now because I will not be clearing the minimum listing fee now that you’re taking a SECOND fee. Simply put, the cash out stuff is nothing to me. I’m a collector. I buy cards and ship them. more than 1300 cards have been purchased by me on COMC since I joined. Therein lies the problem. The people who aren’t spending thousands mean nothing to you.

    I refuse to simply raise my prices…Why should I punish people who are really collecting because they love the hobby? Even though I’m going to be punished by everyone else raising their prices? Perhaps I need to go back to buying on SportLots. I preferred the format of COMC, but this is going to hurt people like me, collectors.

    • At the moment service isn’t designed for selling cards at $0.30 or less. Maybe some day. We have traditionally focused on the $1-$100 market. With this change we are opening up the door for the $1-$1,000+ market. The interesting thing is that it is actually way more expensive to support the sub $1 market than it is to support the $100+ market. We expect that it will take a multi-million dollar capital investment in order to get our processing fees low enough to enable the $0.10-$0.30 market. I am hopeful that we will be able to make this investment after we see dividends from the $100+ market. Until then, let me know if you find someone who wants to put a few million dollars towards infrastructure to help lower our costs.

  10. Have a question about “Once a listing reflects the Traditional Order Premium, you will receive your full asking price when it sells.”

    Will we be able to see which Ebay/Amazon items include the premium? I like the changes overall.

    • We are considering a new feature that gives you a link to your corresponding eBay listing from the inventory manager. This will only be available for the updated listings. Assuming we get this done, we should be able to give you a filter in the inventory manager that shows you which items are on eBay.

  11. Also, based on my calculations, you’ve made $457,821,875 just on a quarter a pop listing fees. I know some things are charged more than that to be listed. Is charging a second fee on a sale really needed? That’s not even taking into account the storage fees you charge every month. While I understand that you are in business to make money, it seems to me like you aren’t keeping in mind that there are other options out there, and sellers will move on to the next one that doesn’t cause them so much frustration. The sales on Ebay halved when they took away the ability to leave negative feedback for a buyer, and never recovered. That’s the route I see this taking. I hope I am wrong.

    • Please check your math. You are off by a couple orders of magnitude. Our processing fees are enough to cover our labor and supply costs, but we don’t make much off them. Our profit comes from commission fees. Our goal with the new structure is to welcome more high end items onto the platform so that we can reinvest those profits into services that will lower our costs and increase your sales. These changes should benefit the entire spectrum in the long run.

    • Sales on eBay didn’t drop 50% when they stopped letting sellers leave negative feedback. Sales actually went up because buyers felt more comfortable leaving honest feedback for sellers, because they could no longer retaliate. This resulted in more accurate feedback profiles for sellers, which forced them to up their game. The increased competition made eBay a better place to buy. No doubt it made life harder for sellers.

  12. I think these are very good changes.

    Have I got this right; right now if I have a card that I want to get $20 of COMC credit for so I price it at $25 set my auto-accept at 80% and that card shows as being for sale at $25 on the site and at $25 (plus whatever Amazon and Ebay do for embedded shipping charges) on Amazon and Ebay. In the future to get $20 of COMC credit I could price it at $21.05 with set auto-accept at 100% and the card shows as being for sale at $21.05 on the site and at $25 (plus embedded shipping) on Amazon and Ebay. If this is right my take away would be that prices on the site will be lower and the benefit for buyers to buy directly on COMC will be significantly greater.

    For someone who wants to buy cards off of ebay (assume $50 item) and have them shipped to COMC and listed there right now they have to pay 20% off the top for ebay charges and then another 20% to cash out. Under the new system they have to pay 5% off the top and then 10% to cash out. If I have this right it would certainly make the potential for “ebay flipping” greatly improved.

    As you have mentioned mid and higher priced cards benefit greatly under the proposed changes and hopefully that draws sellers with those types of cards to the site.

    Any chance you could do up a calculator that would provide the following: 1) Enter current price and it calculates what new price would need to be to wind up with same COMC credit assuming an Ebay/Amazon sale 2) Enter current price and it calculates what new price would need to be to wind up with the same Cashed out amount. Having this would be useful and give us all a better sense of how things change at various price levels.

    • You are very close the $21.05 item would get listed for $24.21. A little less than the $25 it is listed at today. Your understanding is exactly what we are aiming for. This should be a big win for people that are trying to sell to eBay. I love your calculator suggestion. I will see what I can put together.

      • Here’s the major issue I have…. I have only cashed out maybe two times. The money from my sales are used to buy cards I need either for myself or for people I trade with. Those are shipped to me, paying the shipping charges but no storage or transaction fee. What you’ve done for people like me is taken $ out of my pocket, leaving me with less to buy cards and have shipped.

        Here’s what people need to understand; that $10 card used to cost $0.30 to list and sell, now it cost $0.80. That $100 card that they want listed so badly, used to cost $0.30, now it’s $5.30 to list. That’s all because they’ve adding the 5% transaction fee.

        The cost of cards just got more expensive on COMC.. good luck with this mess!

        Sent from my iPhone

        >

      • To be clear, the initial processing fee is still only $0.30. The 5% transaction fee is taken out of the sale once that happens. Yes, you will need to factor that into your asking price if you never plan to cash-out. However, if you plan to cash-out, you can actually decrease your prices by at least 5%. Today it is about a 50-50 split. Some sellers will increase their prices, and some will decrease them. However, with high-end cards it is way more common for people cash-out, so we actually expect to see significantly more $100+ items at competitive prices on COMC because of these changes. If you never cash-out and instead just “trade-up”, these changes will be a good thing for you because you will have a better selection of items to trade up to when you use your COMC Credit from selling cheaper items.

      • Here are the facts, I average about $700 in sales per month. Your new 5% fee just took any $35 a month (on average) out of my pocket. That’s over $400 a year, $400 less I have to spend on your site.

      • So, you expect about $8,400 in sales in 2019, and you have a valid concern that you will only have about $8,000 left to spend on more cards.
        We have two goals for you in 2019.
        1.) increase your sales
        2.) offer you a better selection of cards at competitive prices
        What matters at the end of the day is your satisfaction with what we helped turn your inventory into. Whether that is more cards or more cash, we want to give you a good experience.

  13. Let me see if I have this small aspect of the huge announcement correct. As a valued COMC member that purchases numerous cards on the site both to re-list and for a personal collection, am I now to understand I will be forced to pay a 5% transaction fee upon the purchase of every card, and an additional 5% transaction fee on the sale of that same card?? 0% to 5% is a huge jump in cost. Every single $5.00 card you buy at the site now incorporates a $0.25 charge. My Dashboard page says I have purchased 5000+ items on the site over the last number of years. Want to guess what a 5% transaction fee on each of those purchases would have netted COMC and cost me? This in addition to rising ‘security’/storage fees on a monthly basis, and a still sizeable fee to cash-out any funds at the site. Not feeling all that valued.

    Make no mistake, this is a very substantial hike in fees across the board. COMC is fully aware they will receive a day or two torrent of negative reaction over implementing these fees; I’m sure they hope to weather the storm and move on. The only possibility to have COMC pay members even the slightest heed, is if we make our disappointment/dissatisfaction heard day, after day, after day, after day. That dissatisfaction can take many forms, it just needs to be sustained by an overwhelming number of users of the site.

    For example, COMC always tells us about the millions of cards stored with them. Why should these cards, for which listing/storage fees have been paid, be subject to this fee increase? These cards have been on the site, solicited for the site, with no warning whatsoever of the implementation of a 5% transaction fee for each and every sale. Feels as if the rules have been changed mid-race. Why couldn’t COMC have imposed these new costs on newly submitted stock; sellers would have been aware of the cost structure they were becoming involved with at COMC. I think it is obvious why COMC chose to move forward with a fee hike on the stock they were already holding.

    To their credit, COMC allows for this type of blog/sounding board. Now we have to use it. COMC is absolutely ready for a day or two of huffing and puffing, hoping to ride out some ruffled feathers. Urging all to keep up the comments, as COMC seems to have a long history of not soliciting the opinions and concerns of members when they roll out new pricing structures/fees. Think about all the relevant ways to COMC’s revenue stream that could be used to secure their attention.

    Finally, I think we all need to ponder the impact of the “Traditional Order Price” structure, and how it takes through the roof the cost to purchase cards for non-COMC members. How low will we have to set prices for the final price, after all the fees, will be competitive. After all, to a greater or lesser degree we are generally looking to sell our cards.

    • To be clear, the 5% transaction fee is always charged to the seller. Leaving a loophole open for legacy items would mean that we would not be able to offer a 10% cash out for credit earned from such a loophole. This would mean that we would continue to create new “legacy COMC credit” and we wouldn’t be able to retire the concept of legacy COMC credit as long as this loophole existed. I am open to discussing tweaks to the new model, but they need to be financially sound and robust. Another issue is that we will be releasing a ton of new selling formats like auctions, auto-decreasing prices, lots… none of these features would be available for loopholed legacy items. Again, I am open to the discussion, but I am concerned it will be way more complex than it is worth.

  14. Thanks for the site and glad your open to new ideas/change. Since I am mor a collector than seller, I am a little hesitant to send cards worth say $200 on up. Have you given thought to something like, l send you a high quality scan front and back of card. Along with selling price. If card. Sells let’s say for more than 200 dollars. I immediately ship card to you vis priority mail or better. At which time you guys process and approve sale providing customer with the card. All other fees would still apply or maybe be somewhat less to help offset priority mail shipping for one card.
    Example. I have a lot of cards. From 59’ to 1962 that I purchased in said years ( rose,mantle,etc). Many of these cards I would list well over $200. Thanks for considering this……uskers1

  15. All very complex. Some of this sounds vaguely familiar to my hotel and airlines rewards programs that make fundamental changes after everyone’s already signed on. Are the dates on the “scenarios” correct? One has a January 1, 2020 date. Some basic comments I’ve made to as many people as possible, whenever and wherever I can: How many Buyers know that a shipping charge has been added to every card before it can be listed? Not many! They are all paying for shipping twice. So, a $.80 card now becomes $1.05 and is now over-priced, **** When will non-sport and sports other than the 4 Major sports be indexed and promoted? **** Will there be a period where current Sellers can have a portion of their inventory returned to them upon request? Returned with no processing and actual shipping charges? **** COMC is the only company that I am aware of that does not capitalize and maximize itself on the list of its past customers and future customers. I see no/zero effort on your part to inform every eBay and Amazon customer that COMC.com includes millions of cards and every customer is welcome. Nothing is being done to drive these people to your site. You have, until very recently, their email addresses. You have their mailing addresses. You could include a card in every shipment notifying them and possibly offering a nominal discount. You can change your return mailing address to “COMC.com.” In most cases I hear from- in various forms- the companies I’ve dealt with directly through the Amazon site. I regularly receive emails from eBay Sellers. You seem to want to be more “commission based?” I can think of no better way for you to zoom to that goal than telling people who you are. I’ve sold on eBay since 2000. I owe eBay nothing. I’ve sold on Amazon almost as long and I owe them even less. Loyalty is earned not mandated. ****Amazon restricts the number of entries that can be listed in many of their categories. It makes very little sense to have 300 Aaron Judge Topps rookie cards listed. Limit this to 50 and the prices stay up and you make, along with the Seller, a higher commission.

    • Wow, there are a lot of questions here. I will see what I can do. I appreciate that this comes across as complex. We have tried to keep things simple, but frankly, there wasn’t a way to change our model to work for both low-end and high-end without introducing some complexity. We are listening to feedback and even tonight have already made some improvements based on this feedback. We can’t do everything, but we are trying to do the best we can to achieve our goal of welcoming high-end and still being the best site for low-end.
      Yes, the dates are correct. On January 1st, 2020, we will retire the concept of “legacy COMC Credit” and give 10% Cash-Outs for any COMC Credit.
      To clarify per-item S&H. The first $0.25 is for standard pick and pack labor and supply costs. The second $0.25 is only charged if you choose one of the rushed shipping options where we have to bump your order to the front of the line and get the order out the next business day. eBay & amazon require this service. On COMC you can choose one of our standard shipping options where you don’t have to pay the second $0.25. This is how shipping has worked for a couple years since we had to double our shipping team to keep up with eBay orders.
      I will pass that feedback about non-sports to our marketing team. Anything in particular you want promoted?
      We don’t have anything planned to return cards to sellers. Instead, we are in the process of building new functionality that will help you sell those cards. Assuming we are successful, you shouldn’t need to have us ship them back.
      Point taken in the marketing front. We can do a better job of marketing to COMC customers. Unfortunately, we cannot market COMC to eBay and Amazon users per their user agreements. We may however be able to market our corresponding eBay and Amazon stores to those customers. Again, great feedback for our marketing team.
      Regarding market restrictions, we have historically avoided artificially affecting the COMC marketplace. We let it do what it wants. It should eventually correct itself. At least that is the theory. Probably a larger topic for another time.

    • Everyone has a “user agreement.” Pretty unenforceable…kinda like a pre-nup contract. Change your return address on all shipments to: “COMC,com.” Non-sports and cards from sports other than the top 4 are promoted nowhere on your site. Boxing, Batman, Garbage Pail, tennis come to mind quickly. A few others: I don’t appreciate you taking my cards and adding $4 to the price and calling it “free shipping.” That’s not free shipping. Free Shipping is you- the Seller- picking up the shipping costs. Your most experienced employees should be assigned the “correction request” duties. This area is “woeful,” as is “Seller support.” Amazon is the worst. You are a coin flip with eBay. Another way to get quality items on your site and keep the costs down to Sellers and Buyers is to do away with the surcharge on card items that may be a fraction outside the ‘standard’ card sizes. I scan stuff here every day. If it fits on my scanner it makes no difference as to size. Eliminate the $.25 add on and you’ll sell more cards. Figure shipping after the Buyer has completed his order, not before. Thank you

      • The free shipping policy has been in place for more than a year. It was recommended by eBay in order to increase sales. Their research shows that people would rather pay $74 and get “free shipping” than play $70 and have to “waste” $4 on shipping. “Free shipping” is and always has been a psychological trick. Someone is always paying the shipping. For Amazon Prime, the seller pays the shipping. Amazon and eBay never pay for “free shipping” on third party sales. They just make it easier for buyers to pretend that they aren’t paying for something they perceive as waste.
        We have a team of about 10 people that identify trading cards and do correction requests, sometimes they need to get escalated, but generally we find that it is best to have people make their own corrections so that they can learn from theirs mistakes.
        I expect our support to be significantly better than eBay or Amazon. We are more than open to constructive feedback that can help us improve.
        Our scanning technique is extremely optimized and larger items do actually take longer, cost more for supplies, and take up more space. That is why we charge more for them.

  16. Quite simply, the changes are reasonable. However, there’s noticeable pushback from users who flip cards on the site.

    The 5 percent (5%) transaction fee should only be charged on the profit resulting from every on-site flip, which will protect flippers who use store credit to buy cards. This should alleviate the concerns regarding “thin margins” on flips. The transaction fee shouldn’t apply to the amount initially spent on a card.

    Users who flip many cards over time shouldn’t have this fee assessed on their investment, only the profit (similar to income tax).

    This would be a nice way to enter into a new COMC era that will allow the company and its users to continue enjoying the hobby.

    • This is a reasonable suggestion. However, to make the numbers work for us financially, we would either need to increase the transaction fee to 10% or increase the Cash-Out fee to 15%. On average every card sells twice and then ships out. With our new model we are essentially splitting the 20% Cash-Out fee across two transactions and one cash-out by going with the current 5% transaction and 10% cash-out model. This is an attempt to make it more fair for each party involved instead of putting 100% of the commission burden on the person who does the cash-out.

  17. I am a relatively new user to your site, but it seems to me like this new security storage charge will make it less likely for me to send in submissions that I will price at 50$ or higher. The market for these cards is much much smaller than lower cost cards. The price on these cards is less of a factor to a buyer. The challenge is having the right collector paired with the right card. After you do that, the price is somewhat secondary. So, these cards naturally will sit for much longer periods until the right buyer sees them (if ever). If you maybe put a fee cap on these cards if the don’t sell for some period of time, it might make it easier to take. Otherwise, sending in these cards is far too risky.

    • Thanks for your feedback. This is helpful as we consider additional models such as allowing people to maintain possession of their high-end items so that we don’t have to securely store them.
      With high-end cards there is a mix. Some cards have an established market and move fairly quickly. Others take a while. In the meantime, we have to properly secure and insure those cards. The more expensive the more costly the security procedures. In some cases we require dual custody, storage in a safe or vault, etc.

  18. Thank you for taking the time to reply to everyone, and congratulations on your success. I would, however, like someone to provide a reasonable response regarding your shipping. As it stands, if I have 900 cards on ePack that I transfer to shipping, which is done through YOUR company, it will cost $4.95 + (899 x 0.25) or $229.70. Does this seem like a reasonable shipping cost? A USPS flat rate box cost $13.65. You only need to look at selling prices on your site to see that an entire set of Compendium would cost 1/3 of that to buy. Why is there not a flat rate for shipping? Or at the very least, a tiered shipping program. I can ship my 250 pound self from Boston To Washington for less than that. I’ve shipped 150 pound product via UPS Red at my day job across the country for less than that. If I have any inclination to build a set through either your site or ePack, I have absolutely no incentive to do so, as the shipping is nearly 2-3 times the value of the set. Further to that, I have already paid ePack for my cards, so I own them, and your shipping costs amount to holding my cards hostage. I have attempted to address this with UD, and they say the issue resides completely with COMC. I understand that you run a business, and your objective is to make money, but a line needs to be drawn somewhere. You should be able to work with us collectors to find some reasonable middle ground.

    • Billy, thank you for the comment. Yes, we can do some optimizations for completed sets from ePack. Unfortunately, if you instead requested a shipment of 900 random cards that are spread all across our warehouses, it costs a lot more to package the order. We have a plan to reduce shipping specifically for the ePack complete set scenario, but we don’t expect to release that functionality until sometime in 2019.

  19. Hi Tim,

    I have been buying/selling on COMC since Jan 2012, I have never cashed out my store credit before. I have seen a lot of changes on the site and have always agreed with or understood them.

    To me the 5% transaction fee seems excessive. 2-3% seems more reasonable/fair in my opinion.

    Also why am I being forced to sell on eBay/amazon through your site? There should be no reason that this should not be optional still. As mentioned I have never cashed out, so if I sold a $10 card on COMC I got that same amount in store credit. Now if I sell that same card on COMC through and eBay buyer I now get $8.50. Not very beneficial unless their is a major uptick in sales which I do not think this will generate.

    I will definitely wait and see before overreacting but I will most likely have all my cards sent back to me in 2019 and either try to use my credit on purchases or just wait til 2020 and get a cash out.

    Sorry to say but I think the new changes only benefit COMC, even if a seller only wants to use the website to cash out your are still getting close to the current 20% with 10% + 5% + new security fees. You’re just packaging it better so it seems like this big win for sellers.

    Hope I am wrong but I don’t think I am. Thanks for your time Tim and your willingness to respond to everyone’s comments.

    Best regards,

    Justin

    • Justin, thank you for taking the time to leave a comment and thank you for using our service for nearly 7 years!
      We could have done 2-3%, but to make the model work financially for us, we would have had to keep the Cash-Out fee up at about 15%. This wouldn’t have had the same net impact on encouraging more high-end cards. It was definitely a balancing act between several different factors.
      You aren’t being forced to sell on eBay and Amazon. In fact, you can completely ignore eBay and Amazon. Your COMC Credit asking price is the only thing that matters. If an eBay or Amazon buyer wants your item, they will pay the buyer’s premium. Your $10 item will be listed at $11.50+shipping for eBay, Amazon, and the COMC guest. COMC members can still get it for $10 COMC Credit. In all cases, you will get $9.50 after the 5% transaction fee. That is why you can technically ignore eBay and Amazon.
      Today selling on eBay costs most people about 13% when you factor in eBay and credit card processing fees, and that doesn’t count any of the others expenses. Our new 5% + 10% actually nets COMC 14.5% for people that only cash-out. The goal is to package the fees such that we are a viable option when someone is considering where to sell their $100+ items.
      Thank you for having patience with us. I respect your approach. It is our job to built a set of offerings that will make you want to continue using our service long into the future.

      • Thanks for the response, I was thinking the 10% premium was coming from me as the seller for eBay/amazon so that makes me feel better about that. 5% is reasonable.

        As mentioned earlier I’ll be patient with the changes before I overreact. I’ve really enjoyed your site over the years and it is a big reason I got back in to collecting now as an adult.

        Good luck with the changes and hopefully sales increase and better deals will become available, part of the reason I have never cashed out is my interest in using that money on higher end vintage rookie cards.

        Thanks again for your responses to everyone.

        Justin

  20. Pingback: On Collecting: Weekly News Wrap-up (Week of Nov. 4) - Relic Scout

  21. Currently there only seems to be one seller whose cards get ratings of EX, EX-MT, NM etc. The best rating everybody else gets is blank, which ranges from VG to Mint. This other guy has a big advantage competition wise as my “NM” cards are hidden instead of identified with his NM cards. Also, his scans and grading, which I would guess are done by him and not COMC, are better with black backgrounds than the COMC scans. What gives with the special treatment?

    • DeansCards specializes in vintage cards. Outside of COMC, he has the largest selection of individually scanned cards, and he has a software development team that has built custom integration with us. So, we have been testing out a system where his inventory is replicated on COMC, and when cards sells, they send them to us in one big package every couple days, and we merge the cards with outgoing orders. The goal was to increase the selection of vintage cards available for our customers to select from without having to pay an extra postage fee to buy from a separate seller like every other website.
      While their specialty is vintage, we are learning from them, and hope to make adjustments to our service to at least bring our service up to their standards both for image quality and individual grades. At the moment we can’t do that without increasing our processing fee above $0.30 for vintage cards. Our team has been proposing some new strategies. We will see what we come up with.

  22. For clarity will there continue to be Advanced Reselling Mode and Simplified Shipping Mode in the Outgoing Offers section of Profile and Options.

  23. When will sellers see these new features, marketing, etc. that will increase sales? In 1 to 2 years? You said you would make improvements the last time you raised fees and did nothing. What kind of marketing will you do? The bulk editor has been down for almost 2 years. How much longer will it be down?

    What “new features and services”? Seems like a carrot with no promise or accountability on your end.

    • Bulk price editor will be released in December. We are increasing our advertising budget for Black Friday and plan to keep it increased going forward. We will be launching a variety of auction formats, auto-decreasing prices, saved searches with notifications and many more features in 2019.

      • Awesome features Tim! Cant wait for auctions! And By the way.. great job of handling all of these predictable, negative, selfish comments from people who do not have a clue what they are talking about! Please know that there are a lot of people like myself who love what u do! Cant wait for all of the new changes, keep up the great work!

      • Thanks for the support! To be fair, people are used to seeing fee changes coming from publicly traded companies that are purely focused on their bottom line. I understand the skepticism. COMC is different. We are built by collectors for collectors. This change is a very strategic step towards building a much better collecting experience. Once people see all the cool stuff we are building everything will become more clear.

      • Thank you Tim, James, & COMC team! I’ve been a seller since about the fall of 2010 and I am excited and love the new changes!!

        I’ve been asking something about cash out fees for years, so THANK YOU!

        I use COMC to sell and collect but mostly to sell. I think there are a lot of people overreacting as usual when you guys make an announcement (I’m usually one overreacting myself).

        I do believe when the dust settles and everyone realizes their time saved vs listing themselves along with the Fantastic changes you guys have made, a lot more sellers and buyers will be happier.

        I can read between the lines that in effect it helps COMC and everyone involved in the end, so helping your business be more profitable, sell more items, ship for less, in turn let’s you offer even more options in the near future to help make this experience even better for everyone.

        I have effectively ended my few thousand eBay listings between two accounts and am packing all I can as we speak to start sending you more items than I have in 5 years.

        Thanks again, I like every change and it all sounds very reasonable and exciting!!!!

        John

  24. Hi Tim – Thanks for taking the time to answer all these questions/concerns. I was a little confused as to how these changes will help increase the amount of higher end cards on the site. Wouldn’t sellers be more reluctant to list big $$ items since they will be hit with a 5% transaction fee?

    • Also – For sellers like myself who don’t cash out and therefore can’t/won’t take advantage of the lower 10% fee, is there any benefit to these new changes?

      • Yes, you will have a better selection of cards at competitive prices that you can “trade up” to. You also get more sales from eBay and Amazon without hanging to think about them. Additionally, the new fee structure is the basis for a ton of new stuff we are building. You will be able to run or bid on a variety of different auction formats, we will offer auto-decreasing prices, saved searches with notifications…. I am biting my tongue about all the rest of stuff that is coming, but let’s just say 2019 will be really amazing.

    • Most high-end cards are sold on eBay. Most of our customers that want to sell more high end cards primarily cash-out. With the new structure we will be collecting only 14.5% commissions after a 5% transaction fee and 10% cash-out. This is way better than our 20% cash-out and close enough to the ~13% ebay + PayPal fees that high-end sellers are used to.

  25. Have not used the site in almost 2 years though I keep an eye to see if common sense will ever come back. Things have only gotten worse and the prices for cards on the site continue to be ridiculous and a half. But it’s no wonder with a complicated fee structure nickel and dime and you to death . I’ve been in this business for a long time and have never seen a site once great slow i’ve been in this business for a long time and have never seen a site once so great slowly implolde itself. Not even when Beckett went down the tubes listening to Rob Veres did he screw that site as badly. COMC wins the Naxcom trophy of self destruction.

    • Glad you are still paying attention and cared enough to leave a comment. Many of the changes are directly geared towards fostering more competitive prices. For example, people don’t have to inflate their prices for eBay anymore, and they also get lower cash outs. Let me know what you think at the end of 2019.

  26. I love COMC and find it wonderful for set collecting. I understand trying to make changes as you’re growing and know that running a business is really expensive. I have historically used your site to buy items for my PC and I sell cards mostly to fund those purchases. I feel like the addition of the 5% fee is really problematic, especially for more expensive cards. This is going to significantly raise the cost of medium to high end cards across the site. If you are trying to remain competitive with the cost of cards on ebay, this is not going to help buyers or sellers to complete more transactions. I know you keep saying that it is similar to the cost of running a promotion, but I don’t run promotions; I expect that for my listing fee and storage fee, as well as the 25 cents per card I have purchased, COMC is making enough for sufficient marketing. When I think of how much I have spent on COMC over the years, I see why you would want 5% of every transaction in addition to all of the fees already charged per item (which is a minimum of 55 cents per transaction), it’s going to generate a ton of revenue for you. It just sucks as a consumer and contributes to a worse experience when using the site.

    • Troy, I am glad you have enjoyed our service, and I fully intend to continue making COMC your best option for set collecting. When looking at our existing business, the revenue from these changes will be roughly neural for us. The 5% transaction fee is just about the same as the 10% Cash-Out Fee that we are losing. The key is that the customers that primarily cash out have told us they would send us way more high-end items if we lower the total commissions collected. So, we anticipate a significant increase in high-end. This is consistent with what we are seeing sellers list on eBay. Our fee structure today has resulted in an average sale price of $2 per card. EBay’s average sale price is closer to $20 per card because they do a much higher percentage of high-end. By welcoming more of those items onto COMC, we should generate new revenue. Based on my calculations these changes will actually allow is to more than double our engineering team and bring you some amazing new features in 2019 that will make set building even better for you. Without these changes it would take several more years for us to implement these new features.

  27. So with cash out fees being lowered to 10%, what about gift certificates for blowout? Will that conversion fee be lowered as well?

  28. Will some of the Feature enhancements include being able to look at and accept offers from eBay( using ebay’s Best Offer Feature )?
    This would be especially beneficial on higher dollar items.

    • Assuming, eBay supports Best Offers with their multi-variation listing, I expect that we will support offers. If they don’t, it will be quite a bit more complicated and we would need to figure out some workaround.

  29. So you have to use Multi-Variation for all of the ebay Listings? There are tons of Cards on COMC where there are only one copy of each
    Can you not use just a regular listing for those?

    • That is an example of a workaround. Unfortunately, switching a listing from standard to multi-variation or vice versa eats up one of our allowed listings. So we always use multi-variation listings so that we can add and remove copies without using up more of our listing allotment. That said, if we have to do this for more expensive items, it might be a reasonable workaround.

      • This makes sense and is an example where SRP for higher end could make more sense. You could create an algorithm that looks at listed price and compares it with SRP. Using an obvious example, it could help decide whether to put 86-87 Fleer graded Jordans on eBay, depending on how far from SRP the seller has listed the card.

      • Hopefully multi variation allows for this. I have thought about this many times.

        It would definitely help move cards at a faster pace!

  30. Pingback: COMC Announces New Commission Structure – Emicam Sportscards & Collectibles

  31. These changes are great! As a flipper, I will need to modify my strategy, but there are always good deals to be had if you know which cards typically sell well. Also, these changes will cause COMC to become more widely used than it currently is. The reason for this is simple. Right now many users inflate their prices to factor in the 20% eBay. When they do this, they lose out on many internal COMC buyers. Now, they won’t be doing this, and in fact, they may even lower prices in order to stay competitive and make sure they can get some eBay sales since the eBay buyers will be paying a premium. Overall, the COMC concept is amazing and one of a kind. Tim, keep up the great work! Also, you mentioned lot sales. If we were able to create lots to sell, it would be so much fun! It would also enhance the flipping aspect as you can try and find items that would sell better as a lot than individually.

    • Nope. I run sales on comc of 50% off of my ebay listed price with their promotions manager and can’t give cards away with onsite sales. My prices are reasonable without the 50% off. COMC’s “internal” market is tiny compared to ebay.

      • Dustin, please recheck your numbers. For 2018 your account has gotten 80% of its sales from COMC Credit and less than 8% from eBay. This is consistent with your pricing and promotion strategy.

    • This will cost you at most 5%. However, you should get a better selection of cards to buy from because of the increase of items from people that primarily cash-out. Also, you should be able to find great deals when we release auctions, auto-decreasing prices, and several other new features.

  32. Congrats COMC!

    I am thankful for your services you have brought to me and fellow members. Your concept and commitments to the sports card hobby and the community is graceful. Keep it up!

    Question though…. about the Beckett Grading Service option you had earlier. Would we see the service come back as an option again? If so, I think a minimum book value on any grading entries should be in place, to exhaust workload and enhance opportunity for everyone. Appreciation will be great!

    Thanks,

    Braden

  33. Wanted to take a few days to think about this before commenting since I know the natural knee-jerk reaction is to resist change. After a few days of considering it, I still think it will hurt the common sellers like me. The cards I send in are mostly worth a couple of bucks and when I do sell one, I usually keep that money on the site to either pay for shipping, processing fees, buy a card, or get Blowout credit — rarely do I cash out anymore. Now I’ll have to either raise my prices some (and hurt potential sales) or get less of a cut from the profit of my sales. So there’s no benefit to me… unless there’s something I’m not considering.

    My biggest questions are is anything changing with the relationship with Upper Deck E-Pack? And any foreseeable changes to the Challenges?

    Thanks!

    • You will get a better rate on your Blowout credit just like with cash-outs. Those details will be announced later, but the most significant piece that you are missing is all of the new functionality coming in 2019. As a buyer, I think you will be very pleased.
      We are planning an option to be able to spend your COMC Credit on ePack, similar to Blowout Cards.
      We do have some changes planned for challenges eventually, but I am not sure how soon we will get to them.

  34. I think the changes are great, and a long time coming. As predominantly a flipper, they will hurt me a little personally, but looking at the big picture, I think it will really make comc more appealing, competitive and sustainable across the hobby. The only thing that would make it not viable for existing sellers would be charging storage on cards 75c and under, the changers announced here either improve or can be worked around.

  35. Ok question? I understand the 5% no big deal. If I want to make $2.00 on the sale of a card I will have to list the card for $2.10 but if that card sells on eBay the eBay buyer will be charged 15% buyers premium is that right?

  36. Why are you mentioning the cash out fee on almost every comment? I couldn’t care less about cashing out. Why this is revealed now and not at the start of 2018 so I could asses my losses. Changing rules in the middle of the race is disrespectful and disgusting.

    • While you may not care about cashing out, half of all sales on COMC are cashed out on average. So, it is a major issue for many other members. I respect your frustration with not having more time to assess how this will affect you. We want to make the transition as smooth as possible for you. Please let me know if there are any tools, analysis or data that might help you with this transition. For example, we will be releasing the bulk price editor so that sellers can easily increase or decrease many or all of their asking prices very quickly.

  37. COMC is a place to find low end cards…
    That’s what collectors say when they ask where to move their unwanted low end cards ($5.00 and under).

    More people know about Ebay than Check Out My Cards.
    I have a website and a couple hundred repeat customers…
    I sell on Ebay and I tell those new people about my website with a business card in their package of cards..
    Why would you list cards on amazon or Ebay ? You wouldn’t need to if people knew about COMC
    But you do and do not even mention your website in the package?
    You can put your advertising right on the envelope or package like ebay does..
    Buyers may think COMC is just another seller on ebay… Never going to your site.

    Thats what you will need to get the buyers to buy on COMC

    About the Cashout….
    I try to sell on COMC and would prefer to buy cards to sell on ebay rather than cash out, but cards are higher than they are on ebay, so I end up cashing out
    So If I don’t buy any cards and don’t cash out until I get say $500, COMC doesn’t make a penny on my sales, you make it with the 25¢ shipping fee from buyers..
    and for the seller that just cashes out, they save 5% This is the main reason for the change…

    • As the largest seller of trading cards on eBay by number of sales and total number of listings, we strive to follow the eBay user agreement by the letter. That said, we can and will start doing a better job of marketing to all our customers, even if that is simply reminding our eBay customers of our eBay store.

      • That is why you will not be a stand alone site in the card world… You need ebay to help sell your cards because people do not know you and because of that, comc sellers have to raise their prices to sell on comc on ebay…

      • We shall see. We currently do more business on COMC than we do on eBay, and our sales are growing at a faster rate than eBay’s trading card sales. We have been successfully growing our eBay and COMC sales while honoring their user agreement.

      • Maybe you should print COMC.COM on all of your materials that you ship with. Even just some well placed stickers or logos on the mailing supplies might do some good – as long as it doesn’t make eBay grumpy.

  38. Hi Tim! If I do not want my higher priced cards subjected to a 300% increase in monthly storage fees, would you support sending cards, that I select, back to me without any fees?

    • Let’s see how things actually play out with all our new features. We are considering an option where you can take back possession of expensive items but still keep them for sale. This would help you manage you storage, insurance, and security costs on your own, but you would be on the hook to send the cards back in when they sell.

  39. Hi Tim, I have 2 questions. How are you going to take out 5% when tons of cards are under 20 cents. For example, say a card sells for 10 cents, would you still take out. If you just take out a penny that would be 10%. My other question is: If I run a sale are you still getting 3% on every sale + the 5%. That seems pretty steep. Thanks

    • We plan to charge fractions of a penny for the 5%. We don’t want you to have to think about pricing based on where the pennies will round. We will explain more details as we get closer.

      Regarding promotions, we will be lowering the promotion fees. That announcement will come in December.

  40. Hi Tim, I have 2 questions: 1st is what if I sold a card for less than 20 cents how would the 5% fee work? For example, my card sells for 10 cents, do I still owe a fee because even if you take out a penny, it comes out to 10%. My other question is: When I run sales are you still taking out 3% plus the 5%. That seems pretty steep. Thanks

    • We plan to charge fractions of a penny for the 5%. We don’t want you to have to think about pricing based on where the pennies will round. We will explain more details as we get closer.
      Regarding promotions, we will be lowering the promotion fees. That announcement will come in December.

  41. I was at the Sport Card Expo in Toronto on Saturday, and I couldn’t believe all of the people talking badly about COMC. I’ve been a COMC user for over 5 years, and never heard a bad thing before. After getting a chance to read about the upcoming changes, every terrible word I heard is deserved.

    I spoke to a COMC representative at The Expo, and the only valid point he had about the upcoming changes is that COMC doesn’t make money from flippers unless they elect to cash out. Look, I get it. If someone was using your site to buy and sell cards, wouldn’t you want a piece of the action? However, just because I get it, doesn’t mean I agree with it. A 5% transaction fee seems excessive, and I don’t need to hear the old “well then we would need to change the cash out fee to 15%”. If there was a problem with the current structure of the cash out feature, then something would be changed, however the only problem is that COMC is not making enough from its users.

    Here’s what Mr. Getsch and COMC as a whole is forgetting: With all due respect, COMC would have never achieved it’s goal of disrupting the trading card industry without it’s customers. Plain and simple. You would still be in your garage if it weren’t for the thousands of people who have used and supported COMC over the years. You can do all of the damage control on here that you’d like Tim, but you know deep down inside that my point is certainly valid; the customers have been great to COMC.

    Now to turn around and start taking 5% of all transactions – that’s a gutless move. There’s no reason for it aside from greed. Say what you want to try and make it seem otherwise, but it boils down to greed.

    For what it’s worth, I think COMC users should have had some sort of say in what was to be done. Judging by the replies above, and what I heard in person, there was likely a better way to do things than just spring it on people – especially with less than 2 months to “adjust buying and selling strategies”. Furthermore, there should still be the option to opt into or out of selling on eBay. If I wanted to sell on that platform, I wouldn’t use COMC.

    What I do not understand is, why am I going to bring my future business/send future cards to COMC? When I was chatting with people at the Sport Card Expo, they said they had hundreds of cards ready to send to COMC, but now won’t bother. Why am I going to bother sending my base cards anymore? Or my low end inserts? ect. The domino effect this will have is that less people will be using COMC to finish their sets. The average package size of 40 cards isn’t going to increase, ect. Unless COMC has some sort of advanced projections, the low end side of things is going to take a hit,

    If COMC is “dominating the low end portion of the trading card market” (your words from your video) why change things? If business is so great, then why am I going to have to pay 5% of transactions moving forward? I understand the desire to transition from low end to higher end, but common sense would suggest that someone is not going to be willing to give up 5% more (ie the transaction fee) than they had to before for their high end items.

    That’s my 2 cents on things, but wait, do you want a 5% transaction fee of my $0.02?

    • I respect your perspective. However, this is simply not the case. If I were greedy, I wouldn’t have offset the 5% with a 50% reduction in cash-out fees. Today, about half of the time people cash-out. This new structure is only better for COMC when it brings in more high-end items. Otherwise, we will see roughly the same net revenue. Our goal is to significantly improve the collecting experience. This is going to take a lot of software development. The revenue to cover these expenses will come from increased high-end usage on comc, but the benefits will be felt by all scenarios. While the new structure forces some strategies to change, we expect to still be the best platform for anyone to sells low-end cards.
      We know this change will take some adjustments. In the short term we may feel some growing pains, but in the long run, this will be a good thing for the hobby.

  42. Hello Tim,
    First off I would like to say thanks for taking the time to answer all them questions, pretty awesome of you shows what kind of person you are. 2nd as many people probably know I’m what they call a flipper. I love the hobby so much that I buy almost any card just to buy it lol. I’m not sure how long i have been a seller on comc, but I have enjoyed most every moment of it. I dont really comment too much, or send too many cards in, or cash out all that much. I just buy and relist cards because it’s fun. Increased fees are never fun but these seem par for the course. I’m sure this was covered already and I’m srry if so, but all I really want to know, is there ever going to be auctions on comc?? Its all I have really wanted for probably 3 years now. I hope this new 5% fee at sale doesn’t hurt me so bad as I’m a seller/flipper who is really a collector at heart and every card I sell really just buys a card to add to my online collection. Thanks to everyone at comc and again Tim I have enjoyed my time with you guys.

    • Thanks for your comment. I am glad we have built something you enjoy, and we look forward to making it even better.
      Yes, we are working on our auctioneer license and we have much of the technology already built. We are hoping to launch several different auction formats through out 2019. It should be an exciting year.

  43. Pingback: Changes In Store For COMC.com - Puck Junk

  44. Hi Tim. Thank you for taking the time to answer all these questions about the fee updates. It’s very helpful and I feel like I understand them well at this point.

    Off topic, but I know this has been discussed in the past and wanted to hear your thoughts. Do you ever foresee the ability to sell complete sets on COMC? I know that presents challenges since condition can vary from card to card and you probably couldn’t provide a scan of every card. Maybe just factory sealed sets. Additionally, does your credit conversion deal with Blowout Cards preclude you from allowing “wax” box sales on the site? This is one thing I’d love to see in the future if it’s possible.

    • We have always said that we would be more inclined to offer factory sealed sets before hand collated sets. We would likely need to make a technological breakthrough in order to support hand collated sets cost effectively. That said, I doubt we will get to this in 2019.

      Yes, we will be reducing the cost of Blowout gift certificates. That will be announced in December.

      I am very hesitant to offer consignment services for wax. It is too easy for it to be searched. If we did anything, it would likely need to come to us in factory sealed cases. That said, I expect we will offer features that let you buy wax from card shops and group breakers long before we seriously consider consignment of wax.

  45. The idea of a shipping fee(s) being added to the price of my card on ebay or amazon, and listed as ‘free shipping’ seems to be deceit and not something I’m comfortable with. Please give me the option to opt out of selling on other sites, or, maybe, opt out of this practice.

    • While we plan to no longer require sellers to opt-in to sell one eBay and Amazon, I am open to still letting sellers opt-out.

      The “free shipping” practice with more expensive items has been in place on eBay for more than a year, and it has been very successful. Because of nuances of eBay, we have to set the same shipping policy for every copy of a card in a listing. So we base it on the cheapest card in the listing.

      Ultimately, the presentation of the fees is all psychological. We could have gone with a slightly modified formula for the Traditional Order Premium and said “COMC covers the shipping”. Mathematically it’s all equivalent. We choose to go our current route to give us more control over experimenting with different shipping models and promotions without having to make changes to the commission structure.

      When immediate shipment is required, it is very rare for people to buy multiple expensive cards from the same seller on the same day. Remember, the eBay and Amazon average order size is only 2 cards.

      Amazon Prime charges sellers that use Fulfillment by Amazon for shipping, so sellers have to factor that into their price. eBay an Amazon both asked us to bake the cost of shipping into the price of our more expensive items because the data shows that buyers would rather pay $74 and get free shipping than pay $70 and have to pay $4 for shipping. When you look at low priced items, even Amazon Prime doesn’t offer free shipping unless you meet some total price threshold.

      Traditional orders must be shipped immediately, so every site has some tactic for dealing with customers not wanting to pay shipping. We will likely experiment with a few different models for eBay, Amazon and COMC guest orders. For COMC members, we let buyers control their experience because we don’t require immediate shipment. Offering unlimited flat rate shipping for purchased items of any price works really well when people are allowed to shop for week, months and even years. We simply have a very different model with different need and optimizations on COMC.

  46. Tim,

    Has there been any progress on setting up an affiliate program? I’m guessing any such program would be aimed at getting new buyers/sellers on the site so you’re not paying some card blog commission on sales from existing COMC members that would have bought the cards either way – I could see a lot of abuse and ebates-style kickbacks if commissions were offered on all transactions.

    Also, just out of curiosity: if two or more sellers have the same (and lowest) price for a card listed on eBay/Amazon as one copy sells, how do you determine which seller’s card is the one that is considered sold?

    Thanks and great job on the changes.

    Brad

    • An affiliate program is pretty high on our priority list. I expect we will launch something in 2019. We will design it so that it cannot be gamed. I would love it to show you what was purchased because of the traffic you directed to us. I believe Amazon does something very similar.

      On eBay we show people the actual cards as variations of the same listing. So, eBay buyers pick which one they want. If we need to use a tiebreaker to determine which copy gets listed, we choose the lower Item ID.

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