Postage, despatch and return option changes

No primary category set

eBay have today given advance notice of changes that sellers need to make to their listing templates by October. The intent of the changes is to give better visibility of important information to buyers and was first revealed on the Developers Blog last June.

From October eBay will highlight to buyers when they should expect to receive their item based on the sellers despatch time and the estimated delivery time of the chosen shipping option. From next year sellers will be required to enter a despatch time but I’d recommend sellers add it to their auctions by October if possible.

Hopefully this will improve the despatch time DSR if buyers have a cleared expectation of the time to receive their items but I can already see problems where the carrier takes longer than normal to deliver an item. If no transit time is specified (e.g. for “Seller’s Standard Rate”), then eBay will indicate the despatch time only.

There will also be a change to the returns section of listings. From October every seller will have to indicate if they accept returns, but the option to specify within 7, 14 or 30 days of receipt will be removed. Sellers will have to edit their returns policy on every listing to indicate how long buyers have to return an item.

Business sellers already have to offer returns for at least 14 days from the buyer receiving the item even though the law specifies 7 working days as the minimum.

It seems a backwards step that a clearly defined returns time will not be presented to buyers – they’ll now have to read through sellers returns policies to find this information.

If you want an easy method to edit your listings I highly recommend Bulk Reviser from Comsulting which enables you to edit returns and shipping information.

11 Responses

  1. They may need to fix the Turbo bug that does not allow me to enter a returns policy…

  2. Just another way to encourage buyers to mark down sellers. I don’t imagine eBay will be including a warning to buyers to ALWAYS mark according to the date on the parcel, instead of assuming if eBay says it should arrrive Tuesday and it arrives Wednesday that the seller is at fault. It is already the DSR that even the best sellers have least control over, and this will just make it worse.

  3. Bunchy –
    Where is the handling time box?
    Very well hidden in Turbo Lister. At the bottom of the Postage Options section is another button marked ‘postage options’; click that, and at the bottom of the first tab is a drop-down for ‘domestic handling time’.

    On the SYI form, look under Domestic Shipping for
    Additional options
    You haven’t selected insurance or handling time options for your listing.
    Below this is a link “change”, which allows you to specify dispatch time.

  4. 6# Sue, so ebay means “dispatch time” is Handling Time (from the “Give buyers P&P details” of the syi form)?

  5. So what about cheques?

    I’m happy to quote a 1-2 day dispatch time for a Paypal payment. But if I get a large cheque, I’m going to clear it first.

    The handling time dropdown in TL, makes no allowance for circumstances like that.

  6. … and eBay have no incentive to discourage the use of cheques instead of PayPal, do they???

  7. agree with 4. At the moment Royal Mail first class is showing as 1 day, Royal Mail themselves state 1-2 days for delivery (hopefully) but that it can take longer. I can only see this is a way of over promising and under delivering and am now considering changing to seller standard rate which I believe won’t specify an expected delivery time.

    I only finished going through all my listings a short while ago for the last round of forced changes.. I’m so glad that ebay have now dictated I need to do it all again 🙁 (and my TL crashed with the last round of updates and I haven’t been able to get it to work since either)


Pile ou Face success in lost package lucky dips

Pile ou Face success in lost package lucky dips

Amazon Consumer Electronics shortened Returns window

Amazon Consumer Electronics shortened Returns window

Strategising Returns: Balancing Policies and Customer Experience

Strategising Returns: Balancing Policies and Customer Experience

Online Sellers Face Returns Headache in Post-Holiday Period

Online Sellers Face Returns Headache in Post-Holiday Period

Half of shoppers loyal to retailers with free returns

Half of shoppers loyal to retailers with free returns

ChannelX Guide...

Featured in this article from the ChannelX Guide – companies that can help you grow and manage your business.


Take a look through a selection of the latest articles on ChannelX

Register for Newsletter

Receive 5 newsletters per week

Gain access to all research

Be notified of upcoming events and webinars