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Christian Eede
13 October 2023, 12:51

Discogs' new fees are pushing sellers away, report finds

Sellers say their sales have significantly dropped in 2023

Discogs' new fees are pushing sellers away, report finds

A number of Discogs sellers believe that new fees and restrictions on the platform have caused their sales to shrink significantly in 2023, according to a new report.

The Verge spoke to a number of regular sellers and record labels who use the platform, and most of them reported similar issues following Discogs' decision in May to increase its selling fee from 8% to 9% of the cost of an item. It marked the first such increase in a decade, and more significantly, the same fee was added to shipping costs for the first time.

Those who regularly sell records worldwide, and therefore charge higher shipping fees, have been worst hit, with one seller who operates without a brick-and-mortar shop but employs four people saying sales had shrunk by half in the last year. Before that, Discogs sales brought the company an extra €20,000 in each month. That same seller now plans to move away from using Discogs, and build a website for the company instead.

When making the increase earlier this year, Discogs suggested that sellers increase their prices by a percentage, but this took no account of a struggling worldwide economic situation that means such increases may price buyers out. The company also suggested that sellers could not charge shipping fees at all.

One seller based in Connecticut told The Verge: "I've made my living with this company for the past decade. It's just the frustration that you have no control over what they're doing, and it doesn't even make any sense. In their communication, it was beyond insulting the way they framed it. Like, 'Oh, you can just not charge for shipping'. The sudden fee increase was a huge, huge blow to a lot of people."

Earlier this year, UK label Timehri developed an AI digging tool to be used on Discogs.