EBay moves to restrict US payment methods

EBay moves to restrict US payment methods

After failing in its bid to force Australian customers to use PayPal, online auction house eBay is setting its sights on US users that pay by cheque and money order.

From October, cheques and money orders will no longer be allowed as payment methods on eBay in the US. Customers will have to pay via PayPal, credit or debit card, ProPay or payment upon pickup.

In the frequently asked questions (FAQ) section of its Web site, eBay says it is introducing the changes to "better meet buyer expectations for a consistent, more secure checkout experience".

This will benefit sellers by increasing customer confidence and "making payments faster and more reliable" claims eBay.

The site also makes clear its plans to eliminate third-party checkout services, saying it will work with providers to integrate them into eBay checkout in 2009.

"Ultimately, it's eBay's goal to have buyers always pay for their purchases within the secure confines of eBay", says the FAQ section. "Google's and Amazon's products and services compete with eBay on a number of levels, so we are not going to allow them on eBay."

The move to restrict payments options in the US comes after eBay had to abandon plans to force Australian customers to use PayPal. In July the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission moved to revoke a notification lodged by eBay about removing other payment methods from the site.

The watchdog's decision came after widespread opposition to eBay's plan, with the Australian Bankers Association and The Reserve Bank among those lodging submissions in an attempt to stop the rule change.

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