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BackyardBullion

**February/March 2018** Group order from GoldSilver.be

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Really shocked at that. It's not like many customers are going to be affected, and their profits are hardly going to skyrocket over the course of a year. Seems pretty mean to me, and a very poor response to your emails imho BYB.

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12 minutes ago, kimchi said:

Really shocked at that. It's not like many customers are going to be affected, and their profits are hardly going to skyrocket over the course of a year. Seems pretty mean to me, and a very poor response to your emails imho BYB.

My sentiments exactly.

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33 minutes ago, BackyardBullion said:

My sentiments exactly.

You have been very, very polite and businesslike as always BYB...

All that time you put in for the forum members that earns THEM thousands of Euros...well their business must be doing very well indeed if they can afford to give the impression that custom is not appreciated...and not just any custom (I'm of the opinion that any customer, no matter how small, is as important as any other) - they're particularly targeting big spenders! Madness!

OK sometimes there are unforeseen extra costs that have to be passed on to customers, or the boss makes a decision that adversely affects customers, but there's a way to explain these things so that customers understand and still feel valued, and that email is pretty much the exact opposite of it.

Shocking.

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@BackyardBullion

i have never been part of this order but as i understand it this is not a group order.

The member choses a 'coin' and contacts BYB. BYB then orders the coin and the member pays BYB.

So who buys the coin from GS.be?

BYB buys the coin.

Do members buy coins from GS.be? - No. They do not place the order and they do not pay GS.be. The contract is between GS.be and BYB.

Unless the member makes the offer to GS.be via the website which GS.be then accepts, the member does not legally buy the coin.

This is not a group order, these orders come from one person and as such are entitled to free shipping as advertised on the website.

There is the issue of VAT. Legally One could argue BYB is selling the coins to members. Now as it is the coins GS.be sell are 'second hand,' - Yes they are legally second hand and this is how they are able to sell them 'VAT free', so these coins are sold second hand by BYB (also VAT free).

We could argue that BYB is acting as a broker or agent but whatever we argue the only face GS.be sees, the only finger on the trigger, the only account that credits them is BYB's.

This is not a group order.

Edited by sixgun

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37 minutes ago, sixgun said:

This is not a group order, these orders come from one person and as such are entitled to free shipping as advertised on the website.

I am not sure gs.be are going on about group orders but combined orders - where eg I order 1 coin this week and another one next week and say please send them together to save on the shipping.  If they are going to say we charge the shipping based on each order and then add it up to get a total cost then what is the point of a combined order?  They are only shipping once not twice.

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I thought I would look at the gs.be website and I see it says this about shipping.  Interesting - if my first order is very small and the shipping costs therefore low  I wonder how they would react.  Clearly we need to get our acts together and make sure the first order is over 5000 euro!!

Delivery costs:

Free shipping for orders value 5k and above.

Several orders can be combined. Shipping and handling costs are paid on first order only.
 

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35 minutes ago, sixgun said:

@BackyardBullion

i have never been part of this order but as i understand it this is not a group order.

The member choses a 'coin' and contacts BYB. BYB then orders the coin and the member pays BYB.

So who buys the coin from GS.be?

BYB buys the coin.

Do members buy coins from GS.be? - No. They do not place the order and they do not pay GS.be. The contract is between GS.be and BYB.

Unless the member makes the offer to GS.be via the website which GS.be then accepts, the member does not legally buy the coin.

This is not a group order, these orders come from one person and as such are entitled to free shipping as advertised on the website.

There is the issue of VAT. Legally One could argue BYB is selling the coins to members. Now as it is the coins GS.be sell are 'second hand,' - Yes they are legally second hand and this is how they are able to sell them 'VAT free', so these coins are sold second hand by BYB (also VAT free).

We could argue that BYB is acting as a broker or agent but whatever we argue the only face GS.be sees, the only finger on the trigger, the only account that credits them is BYB's.

This is not a group order.

Thanks for the input @sixgun

You are absolutely right - from GS.be perspective they only deal with me. Liability is with me and not with you guys ordering via me, hence the disclaimer in this thread. 

From a VAT and business perspective I am operating as an Agent and passing on these coins to you guys. It does not count towards my VATable turnover. 

So, as to the decision from GS.be to not allow free shipping on combined orders totalling over 5000 EUROs (other than when placed in one order totalling 5000+) I think this is a double standard and certainly looking at their response, "The boss says it is too much time and work, and narrow margins" just screams greed and a lack of customer awareness. 

Now, some of you might ask, why such a fuss over 18 EUROS that will be split between 20+ people. Well - it is the principal here. 

Compare - European Mint offered a HUGE discount on their shipping. it was 100 EUROs and the total cost should have been 168 EUROs. A 68 Euro hit on their own margins for a "group" order. Beyond that they also did numerous price matches for their silver. Margins are always tight as a bullion dealer but the EU mint gave away probably over 100 Euros in discount.

In my opinion GS.be are banking on their status as THE cheapest dealer in Europe and that people will use them regardless. 

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Just now, Seasider said:

I thought I would look at the gs.be website and I see it says this about shipping.  Interesting - if my first order is very small and the shipping costs therefore low  I wonder how they would react.  Clearly we need to get our acts together and make sure the first order is over 5000 euro!!

Delivery costs:

Free shipping for orders value 5k and above.

Several orders can be combined. Shipping and handling costs are paid on first order only.
 

Their shipping costs wording is VERY ambiguous. In my opinion it can be interpreted as ONLY orders of 5k and above get free shipping. Also, it can read that you can combine several orders to get this.

But they will not allow it. 

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22 minutes ago, BackyardBullion said:

From a VAT and business perspective I am operating as an Agent and passing on these coins to you guys. It does not count towards my VATable turnover.

BYB you are not an agent.

Quote

An Agent is one [BYB] who agrees and is authorised to act on behalf of another [Silver Forum Member], a principal, to legally bind an individual [Silver Forum Member] in particular business transactions with third parties [GS.be] pursuant to an agency relationship.

BUT the Silver Forum Members are not contracted with GS.be, BYB is contracted.

Using the legal definition BYB is not an agent. BYB is the contracting party.

As far as the shipping charges are concerned it reads that the first order has to be 5000€ to be entitled to free shipping. This is not practical. That it is a group order has nothing to do with it. This is not a group order. If it were a group order you would send them a list of names and orders. There is only ever one name and that is BYB.

Edited by sixgun

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4 minutes ago, BackyardBullion said:

In my opinion GS.be are banking on their status as THE cheapest dealer in Europe and that people will use them regardless. 

I have to note their range too, they seem to stock everything, while others miss popular ranges so cost isn't the only consideration.  Only the cheapest in practice because they are a one stop shop and you dont pick up multiple shipping fees.  Making an issue of delivery on a 5k order seems very odd.

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51 minutes ago, Martlet said:

I have to note their range too, they seem to stock everything, while others miss popular ranges so cost isn't the only consideration.  Only the cheapest in practice because they are a one stop shop and you dont pick up multiple shipping fees.  Making an issue of delivery on a 5k order seems very odd.

I think the issue is not that we are very annoyed at having to pay 18 euros out of 5000 for delivery. It is the fact that they have changed their policies for the reason, "The boss says it is too much time and work, and narrow margins". 

The doubling of standards is what I think gets most people all wound up.

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1 minute ago, BackyardBullion said:

I think the issue is not that we are very annoyed at having to pay 18 euros out of 5000 for delivery. It is the fact that they have changed their policies for the reason, "The boss says it is too much time and work, and narrow margins". 

The doubling of standards is what I think gets most people all wound up.

That is what i meant, them making an issue of this is odd.

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Please make sure that the fun is not taken out of the massive success that the BYB Group Order has been.

I see this as quite straightforward.  A member goes out of his way to facilitate an order and due to poor communication and tardy response to his emails feels that his business is not valued, the change of policy seems to correlate well to this particular order.

If I were the supplying business I would much rather have a Euro 5K order than a smaller order (or maybe no order at all).  So it would seem strange that they could end up with a smaller order and a Euro 18 postal cost contribution  with no buyer incentive to increase beyond the value of the smaller order.

The Boss may end up with more time, less work and less margin.

 

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5 minutes ago, whitesands1 said:

Please make sure that the fun is not taken out of the massive success that the BYB Group Order has been.

I see this as quite straightforward.  A member goes out of his way to facilitate an order and due to poor communication and tardy response to his emails feels that his business is not valued, the change of policy seems to correlate well to this particular order.

If I were the supplying business I would much rather have a Euro 5K order than a smaller order (or maybe no order at all).  So it would seem strange that they could end up with a smaller order and a Euro 18 postal cost contribution  with no buyer incentive to increase beyond the value of the smaller order.

The Boss may end up with more time, less work and less margin.

 

I still enjoy doing these orders. 

But more and more I worry about GS.be and these orders. Last time, €10,000 order kept me awake for a few nights waiting for delivery.

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2 hours ago, sixgun said:

BYB you are not an agent.

In honour of Christmas past and for the benefit of any VATman who may be reading this I shall respond by saying "Oh yes he is".  All together now.:)

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2 hours ago, BackyardBullion said:

Their shipping costs wording is VERY ambiguous. In my opinion it can be interpreted as ONLY orders of 5k and above get free shipping. Also, it can read that you can combine several orders to get this.

But they will not allow it. 

Yes indeed, Their wording is open to interpretation at the moment. And they are now saying the free shipping is only a single order that hits 5k. Rather than combined orders that eventually hit the 5k.

Did you ever indicate to them that you were an agent making combined orders for multiple people? Or it's all for you, as far as they are aware?

The way i see it, if this was your very first go at submitting combined orders which eventually met the 5k figure, then you would have no leg to stand on when they inform you this is not how they interpret the free shipping element. Because, as your first time doing it, they are now clarifying this is how they interpret the terms of shipping. Fair enough.

BUT this is not your first combined order. And by granting you the free shipping before, they have already set the precedent for how they will interpret it for all YOUR orders. Precedent is a very powerful argument on your side. In effect, they have changed their already established terms for you, without first notifying you of a change (or changed the wording of the terms on their site between your last orders and this one). Had they told you of their intent to change the precedent you had, you may have decided not to begin another combined order. And this really is the argument you should be pressing on them.

I don't know if order cancellation and refund is something you even want to consider, given the fact you are acting for many and have already received payments (quite a headache to do so). But i agree it isn't the nominal amount involved but rather the principle. I will often take actions that are more trouble for me in the end, but i do it anyway out of principle.

I would certainly first of all make your case as above, and end it with subtly floating the signal that because of the precedent they already set with you, you would be within your rights to reconsider the current order if they insist on imposing this change. You don't need to follow through with cancelling, of course, (which is why i say subtly) but it would be interesting to see the response when you make your precedent argument clear.

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15 minutes ago, Seasider said:

In honour of Christmas past and for the benefit of any VATman who may be reading this I shall respond by saying "Oh yes he is".  All together now.:)

BYB is not an agent but he is acting in a process where VAT has already been paid by GS.be.

The way GS.be and the German dealers do it, is the silver is imported into Germany from outside the EU. It is sold tax free but as it enters the EU into Germany the German customs charge the old rate of VAT for silver which was 8% (+/- 1% as i cannot remember which it is). Normally a dealer would reclaim the VAT and then charge the customer VAT except the dealers would have to charge customers the going rate for VAT in Germany which is 19%.  They don't reclaim the VAT which makes the dealer the end of the chain. They then sell the coins second hand and in these circumstances there is no VAT on the silver just the dealer profits.

It all works b/c German customs is charging this lower rate of VAT. It is an anomaly but we benefit.

So BYB is not an agent but he is selling second VAT paid hand coins.

@swAgger

i don't think the shipping is ambiguous. The first order must be 5000€ for free shipping. BYB is making multiple orders which GS.be is holding until BYB says send. The only way to get the free shipping is to make the first order 5000€ or more. This is not practical i suspect. If the price of the coins was very stable it would be but as they are constantly on the move getting 5000€ of orders all together is just not practical.

Either the 18€ is paid or he stops using GS.be and uses another dealer. GS.be offers good prices and a wide choice so i expect people will want to use them and chip in a euro for postage.

Edited by sixgun

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3 hours ago, BackyardBullion said:

Their shipping costs wording is VERY ambiguous. In my opinion it can be interpreted as ONLY orders of 5k and above get free shipping. Also, it can read that you can combine several orders to get this.

But they will not allow it. 

You are right it is ambiguous though I doubt I would be very clear if I was writing in French or Flemish.  Anyway if you wanted to press it you may want to say to them that the use of the plural (orderS) suggests that you can combine orders to get to the 5000 mark for free shipping - if they meant that only a single order of 5000 or more would qualify then they should have left the s off.  Still you have better or more creative things to do with your time.

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9 minutes ago, sixgun said:

i don't think the shipping is ambiguous. The first order must be 5000€ for free shipping.

But it is ambiguous, otherwise he wouldn't have gotten the free shipping for the previous order?

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23 minutes ago, swAgger said:

But it is ambiguous, otherwise he wouldn't have gotten the free shipping for the previous order?

GS.be have not been applying the terms on their own website. It is there - first order must be 5000€ for free shipping. BYB is making multiple orders which GS.be is holding until BYB says send. i don't know how many orders are stacked up but it will be dozens of separate orders none of which is 5000€.

It is free shipping with first orders over 5000€, not total value of the box containing dozens of orders.

What GS.be has done is bad form b/c they were giving The Silver Forum members preferential treatment and now they have withdrawn it, perhaps out of spite for using European Mint.

11 minutes ago, Thelonerangershorse said:

Surely the only end result is a much greater bias towards the Europeanmint next time, kinda shooting themselves in the foot for C18

Absolutely - this is bad business - bad customer relations - if ever it works out to use European Mint then BYB ought to use them.

Edited by sixgun

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