Of shipping fees and brain peculiarities


You know how retailers, real as well and virtual, take advantage of the way our brain is wired to always see the price of R299 as two-hundred-something-rands, even though we know that R299 is actually about-three-hundred-rands.

Separating the selling price of items listed on bidorbuy from shipping fees has nothing to do with exploiting this brain peculiarity. The two have to stand apart due to basic bookkeeping logic, because bidorbuy charges sellers a success fee on the basis of the price of the items sold. Shipping charges do not come into the equation.

Still, this visual disconnection between selling price and shipping fees can play tricks on the brain, causing it to simply overlook the latter. That is why we always urge the buyers to check the shipping fees (see point # 4 of How to Buy for Beginners). That is also one of the reasons why we offer to sellers the shipping charges tool which, used correctly, will automatically add the shipping fees to the price of the item at the check-out.

Of course, by that time it is too late for you as a buyer to back out of a deal (without at least risking a neg next to your good name). So, be sure to do your maths and add the shipping charges before pressing the buy-now or bid button.

Another issue that may occasionally arise in connection with shipping fees is their cost. Most bidorbuy sellers scrupulously quote actual shipping fees, perhaps adding a small amount for handling and posting (about R5 to R15 would probably be considered reasonable for small to medium parcels.)

However, there have been instances of sellers overcharging on shipping. That is against bidorbuy rules. If you happen to see outrageously high shipping fees, do tell us about this by clicking on the Spot a Problem? Notify Community Watch! link, present in every listing.

And what if the seller does not specify shipping costs? Ask him or her question via the Ask the seller about this item link included in all listings. Again, do this before bidding or ordering the product in question.

Other resources highly recommended to buyers (and sellers too) are: