May 23rd Amazon is going to essentially eliminate baseball cards, all trading cards, if they are not “professionally” graded by a few favored selected grading companies, trading cards that are only case enclosed slabbed graded for lots of money will be sold. Trading cards will be far less affordable and available to middle to low income customers and mostly only affordable to upper income collectors or from sold from a finite amount of vendors.
We speak in defense of not only our company but for the many long-term good trading card dealers, small business owners, affected by this rash decision. A lot of long time good vendors are going to be put out of business on May 23rd and Amazon is going to lose so many middle to low-income customers who buy our products at a lower affordability cost. Even as I write this posting I’m selling the same products that will be eliminated all weekend, why will May 23rd make unsigned trading cards suddenly illegal, the companies that originally sell them Topps Panini Fleer Donruss etc license all these cards. Is Amazon blaming long-term vendors for the small amount of fraudsters selling fake Michael Jordan rookie cards, they are easy enough to find and eliminate. You don’t close all the stores in the mall because one store sold a knock off. Amazon dominates the trading card search engines and other platforms for these trading cards just cant compete, so we sell on Amazon or we are done. Amazon may not even understand how they are ending trading cards on Amazon but that’s what will happen May 23rd. Trading card dealers like us who sell thousands of cards a year will be out of business because we cant afford to sell graded slabbed trading cards, it costs too much for the process to us dealers and makes no sense for those cards under $10 that most of us sell. Maybe it isn’t worth Amazons time to sell cards under $1 due to storage and saturation, combined with a low profit on those sales, that’s understandable. So allow listing of trading cards of more than $1 a card and under $19 ungraded. This way no one is getting ripped of for the rare $50 fake Michael Jordan card. If Amazon does not want 500 listings for a 1989 topps card of some non hall of famer eliminating cards under $1 will solve most of that. Bottom line, professionally graded slabbed trading cards and autographed items are an entirely different product from ungraded trading cards, graded slabbed trading cards sell to a limited group of the public.
I send this message to Topps Panini and the other trading card companies. If people don’t have market places like this to trade and sell cards, and see the value of cards go up and down in value, then the industry will badly lose fans, buyers, and customers. What value are cards if you cant sell it down the road or watch the price grow. Not all cards are grading slab worthy. You’re severely limiting your customer base and hurting the industry.
As for my company and my years of experience in the trading card industry. We dont sell any “Professionally” graded cards in our over 200,000 listings We ship out 300 or so cards a week from Amazon Sales. 99% of the customers buying our trading cards are gift buyers or nostalgic fans, not hardcore collectors looking for expensive graded cards. Our price parameters are mostly $6 or less for old and new unsigned trading cards. We cant afford slabbed grading costs on these cards, and even if we could, the cost would make the price point of these currently very good selling cards unsellable and add a cost to the customer they don’t need or want to pay. Our company has been good vendors of non graded non autographed trading cards on Amazon for the last 8 plus years. We shipped hundreds of non autographed trading cards a month for those years with very few problems or negatives. That’s thousands of satisfied customers, and many many return customers. We vendors should have long since proven our integrity to Amazon, not be kicked out of business for doing nothing wrong on a policy change based on a few bad actors that could easily be found and eliminated or lack of industry understanding. We have worked very hard long late hours to scan all these trading cards and write up the descriptions, 1000s of hours, it isn’t easy. We have been a good partner to Amazon and its customers and there is no one in the Amazon memorabilia division even willing to talk to us after 800,000 plus sales? (We have asked a few times)
We please hope Amazon reviews and reverses its trading card elimination policy disaster for May 23rd, this makes no sense and we hope after taking a step back Amazon doesn’t blanket eliminate non professionally graded non autographed trading cards and allows a non graded trading card category. We are thankful to Amazon for allowing us to sell together all these years but please don’t treat your loyal vendors, who helped build your billion dollar company, like nothing and throw us all away like trash, look at our history with your company and this policy decision before you put us all out of business May 23rd. Good Luck all Jim AW