U.K. Web buyers and sellers can now use a local version of the PayPal Inc. payment service, with links to local delivery companies and a seller protection service included.
PayPal, an eBay Inc. company based in Mountain View, Calif., launched the U.K. version of its service Thursday. The U.K. is PayPal’s biggest market outside the U.S., and the company felt that buyers would be more comfortable with recognizably local services, U.K. Country Manager Scott Braunstein said Friday.
“We felt that people are trusting us with their money, and it’s important to make them feel safe and secure. I don’t know that seeing the word ‘center’ spelled with an ‘er’ is a big deal but we wanted to instill confidence,” he said.
The shipment tracking system in PayPal UK now links to the Royal Mail Group PLC’s Parcelforce service, Braunstein said.
PayPal’s Seller Protection service was previously only available in the U.S. but has now been extended to the U.K. The service protects a seller against “chargebacks,” where a buyer recalls a payment made on their credit card, the company said in a statement.
To qualify for the protection, a seller has to have a bank account verified by PayPal, has to ship goods to the buyer’s registered address in a “timely” fashion, and has to retain proof of sending the goods being sold, Braunstein said.
Scott Cumming runs a scuba diving business, Divefun Scuba, in his spare time from his home in Bedfordshire, England, and accepts PayPal payments at his Web site. But Cumming said he did not see much need for a local site.
“We don’t use it a lot, most people pay by check, (but some) people use it when they book trips,” Cumming said. “But having a U.K. site, I don’t know if there’s much point. The Web’s pretty much worldwide.” Cumming is aware of the risk of credit-card chargebacks, but he said those hadn’t been a problem for him.
This U.K. site is PayPal’s first international Web site, the company said in a statement, and is part of a plan to expand the service in Europe. Last month the company set up a European headquarters in Dublin to provide customer service, fraud prevention and operational support for European members, it said.