A significant story ignored by American media outlets; Google funneled more than $30 billion out of the pockets of millions of Americans, handing their livelihoods directly to the Chinese government, and the “great recession” is now a “great depression” for a fair majority of small American families who relied on eBay for their survival.
Over the fourth of July holiday weekend, I intended to create a youtube video for personal monetization in an attempt to supplement my failing eBay business. The saying, “Those who can’t, teach” applies here. It was supposed to be a SEO, Cassini search and A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) oriented video but the more I researched, the more the direction of my video veered further and further off course as I learned why so many eBay sellers lost pretty close to everything; their businesses, their homes, their marriages, their ability to survive. Why did it happen? What was the cause of it all? The answer is senseless!
Someone at Google made the decision to remove our listings from their search engine, ensuring that we would never see a sale for the next 5 years to come. The manual deletion of eBay by Google was done by a human being.
As a rule, all other search engines crawl Google and post their results in their own search engines. Since eBay wasn’t included in Google searches, eBay wasn’t included in any search.
eBay Corporation acknowledged it may have lost up to $200 million in revenue, but what has never been mentioned in any of the articles I read during my research is that eBay only generates an average of 15% of its profits from the actual sales of its vendors, the small American seller. This means the damage done to eBay Corporation was dust bunnies under the bed in comparison to the utter devastation done to its vendors.
On paper the losses incurred by the individuals who make up the small American selling population is somewhere in the range of $3 billion. When you add the cost of lost revenue; sales that didn’t happen on inventory that sat on the shelves beyond its expiration date, overhead losses and the balancing act of losing their livelihoods, their homes, their cars, and their ability to even pay basic living costs as a result from the feud between eBay and Google , the numbers extend far above $30 billion. Ebay did not take the brunt of the “manual deletion”. As with all of the big bank bailouts and the fortune 500 free rides, again, it was the people who bared the burden of bad leadership and bad decisions.
For the duration of the time eBay was removed from the worlds search engines, at no time did eBay ever attempt to off set or counter balance the loss in sales traffic or revenue. There was no television advertising, no newspaper ads, no magazine ads, not even a silly Weird Al Yankovich style social campaign. American eBay sellers were literally snuffed out while John Donahoe was handed a $130 million severance package and Devin Wenig took the helm. eBay, under Devin Wenig’s leadership, plastered Chinese government-owned products all over its front pages and at the top of every “best match” and “lowest price” search result. eBay shoppers worldwide were directed and redirected to shop China at a time when American businesses were most vulnerable.
It wasn’t until 2015, four years after the fact that eBay began to roll out corrections of the issues that caused Google to take action, and six years until we saw one commercial on one single TV channel… for less than a week. Unfortunately for today’s small businesses the unethical and manipulative behavior continues within eBay’s own search mechanism. Government owned manufacturing plants in China continue to spam, flood and dominate eBay’s search engines with toxic, cheap manufacturer direct to consumer products, and eBay continues to suppress small American vendor listings because, “it’s what the public wants”.
Is it? Is it really what the public wants?
I’m pretty sure the only reason anybody ever bought what appears to be a $800.00 dress for $1.00 was because they didn’t have the appropriate finances to buy a proper dress. Common sense might tell you one thing, but need usually dictates everything else.
As you can see, the direction of my video quickly turned away from eBay search engine optimization. The goal was to introduce eBayers to the many webmaster tools Google offers because so many are unaware of it. For a brief moment I even became a Google cheerleader but after uncovering the truth and living a life of utter financial devastation as a result of the feud between eBay and Google, I’m having a hard time cheering either of them.
The end of this video sprite was supposed to segway into an exploration of Google webmaster tools for struggling eBay sellers, especially the home based businesses, but I just couldn’t do it, not with a clear conscience. It’s safe to say that at this moment, I have no love for Google. I’m so angry about what I’ve learned that I decided to scrap the video and share what remains.
What happened to the small eBay vendor can never be changed and most will never be able to recover. We watched the downfall of one of the worlds greatest and most influential community based sites without ever actually knowing the story behind it.
Googles’ actions against eBay may not have been a deliberate punch in the gut for eBay based businesses, many of which are single women, women with special needs children and sole proprietorships created at a time when jobs are scarce, I find myself struggling with forgiveness equally as much as I continue to struggle financially.
Millions of eBay sellers were rallying to have Donald J. Trump elected into office under the false belief that it was inequality of trade deals being the root cause of our destruction when the reality of it all is that it was Google, Devin Wenig and eBay all along.
Spread the word. Maybe they’ll grow a conscience and right the wrong.
I’m not holding my breath.
- This article was originally indexed into Google search engines upon it’s publish date. Within two weeks it was manually deleted from Google search results along with any search result pointing to any part of this entire blog. It has since been resubmitted and reindexed, seemingly staying within search.
- Google has since manually removed all of my individual eBay listings from their search results, punishing me above and beyond the damage that’s already been done, for having the audacity to speak about it. I will continue to submit them, we’ll see how it goes and I will continue to keep my footnotes updated.
- Any current or future Google class action representatives have my full cooperation and may contact me directly at any time.
10/06/2017 – As promised I am back with an update.
Google manually deleted my eBay product listings as a result of this article. Example: “Mansfield brown Skirt Suit” is not found in Google search or any image search, in spite of the listing being active for approximately three months. None of my eBay listings currently appear in Google. By refining the search by using the exact title of my product listing, “Mansfield Skirt Suit Brown Blazer size 8 Pencil Skirt”, search results show similar products, however mine has been omitted.
An even bigger issue which was brought to my attention by a peer of mine is that Devin Wenig and eBay has re-birthed the very same manipulative practices that got eBay manually deleted from Google in 2011. In 2017, eBay has openly been redirecting eBay shoppers away from American businesses and abusing keywords for the purpose of manipulating search results within Google search results:
Pictured below is a product listing for Pampers Swaddlers Diapers, initially brought to eBay by a small American business. Ebay, replaced the sellers photo with a completely unrelated product, a card game, which is a listing based in China. Take notice of the word, “refurbished“. The term, “refurbished” is not an option where diapers are concerned. Either they are “New” or they are “handmade”. The term “refurbished” is being used to force Googles’ index bots to pick up these product listings by way of keyword spam.
What’s even more disturbing is the American who created the actual listing has a proven track record of excellent customer service and has earned the identifiers of “Top Rated Seller” with 100% positive feedback and 5 star ratings across the board. On the other hand, the China based seller eBay is redirecting the shoppers to has a less than stellar record of customer service, is not a “Top Rated Seller”, has a 99% positive feedback rating and only has a 3 star rating in communication and in quality of product. I have highlighted in red the points of interest.
If anyone has inside knowledge of what eBay is gaining by suppressing American businesses and redirecting shoppers to China, please comment below. It is quite possibly the most baffling manipulation I have ever seen.
If you are interested in reading the reaction of American eBay sellers, here is a direct link to the conversation they are having at the eBay community message boards.