Why you need to update your SMP auto emails

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There have recently been several changes to the emails that eBay send buyers so it’s time for Selling Manager Pro (SMP) subscribers to review their automation preferences. Many of the emails which SMP can automatically send on your behalf are now being duplicated by eBay. At the same time it’s worth reviewing automated feedback options.

There are three sets of emails that buyers receive when purchasing an item. Some emails buyers can opt not to receive, but most are either compulsory or automatically sent on behalf of the seller through SMP.

Seller can edit the emails sent through , in addition SMP subscribers can opt to send automated emails as well as adding a note to the compulsory emails sent by eBay.

Marketing Tools

End of Auction Email: eBay automatically send an email to winning bidders and you can customise this email with your Shop Logo and a personal message. Buyer can turn this email off, but in reality very few do. The few that do discover their eBay Communication Preferences to stop winning bidder emails are generally the most experienced buyers and they don’t generally need any hand holding from sellers. They’ll buy, they’ll pay, they’ll wait for their purchase to arrive.

Invoice: For those buyers who don’t complete checkout the seller can click to send an invoice. This invoice can also be customised with your Shop Logo and a personal message. This email can’t be turned off by buyers so they should always receive it.

Compulsory emails eBay sends for you

Order Confirmation: This is the email sent when a buyer completes checkout. Most of the time it’ll be because they’ve paid with PayPal, but for the few buyers using cheques, postal orders or other off-eBay payment methods it’ll mean they’ve notified you how they intend to make payment. This email can be customised by SMP subscribers with your Shop Logo and a personal message.

Order Update: If you don’t already you’re going to start needing to mark your emails as despatched. Once you do eBay will send an order update email to let your buyer know their item is on it’s way. This email can be customised by SMP subscribers with your Shop Logo and a personal message.

If you previously sent an automated Dispatch email this has been replaced by the new Order Update email

Payment Reminder: If you don’t mark items as paid, eBay will start sending your buyers payment reminders 48 hours after the item is won. You can’t stop this email and you can’t edit it, not even through SMP.

Optional SMP automated emails

Winning Buyer Notification: The winning buyer notification email should be switched off for most SMP users. It largely duplicates the end of auction email in marketing preferences (which you can customise). The only time you might want to justify keeping this email turned on is to request details for custom made items for those few users who turn the end of auction emails off.

Payment Received: There’s very little justification for keeping this email turned on. The vast majority of eBay payments are with PayPal, and buyers will receive the Order Confirmation email as well as a payment confirmation from PayPal. Sending three emails is just overkill! You can of course manually send this email for buyers that pay by alternative payment methods if you wish.

Don’t forget as soon as you mark an item as dispatched the buyer will receive the Order Update email to let them know their item is on it’s way, so consider combining any payment received information into that email.

Feedback Reminder: If you have this automated email turned on please turn it off, especially if you only leave feedback on receipt of feedback. Buyers hate being hassled for feedback and it’s worth remembering that eBay themselves also send out feedback reminders on your behalf.

If a buyer wishes to leave you feedback they will, but don’t forget a buyer that doesn’t leave feedback or doesn’t rate your DSRs is counted as a high DSR when eBay calculate your Top Seller Rating qualification.

If you’re not yet convinced, below is a real feedback left for a seller who had automated feedback reminders turned on:

Negative Feedback: As you canceled this order & then sent 3 emails asking for feedback here it is

Automated positive feedback for buyers

There are two options for automating feedback:

  1. Buyer has paid for this item
  2. Buyer has paid for this item and left me positive feedback

This is probably the most contentious of all automation preferences but (and it’s only my opinion), if you’re going to leave automated feedback leave it on receipt of payment.

I know eBay still has the option for leaving reciprocal feedback, but in general buyers don’t like it. I’m convinced that buyers like sellers to leave feedback first and you can no longer leave a negative for a buyer anyway. I’m also of the opinion that leaving feedback first is likely to encourage buyers to leave better feedback than they might otherwise, after all it’s hard to neg someone who’s already left you a positive.

If you’re using SMP automation for emails or feedback differently to the suggestions above, let us know which options you use and why in comments below.

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