Why eBay adding FedEx option isn’t enough

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eBay.com have added FedEx shipping services to the list of supported couriers. Now you can choose FedEx Express and FedEx Ground from the pull down menu of shipping services when you list your item when you list your items on eBay.com.

Whilst it’s great that eBay are adding additional carriers to those already available on eBay giving buyers and sellers more choice on how they receive and ship there items simply adding FedEx doesn’t go far enough.

There are already options for “Other 24 hour courier”, “Other 48 hour courier” and “Other Courier 3 Days/5 Days/3-5 Days” on eBay. Adding a specified courier such as FedEx does two things: firstly it lets the buyer know exactly how their item will be delivered and secondly it enables you to enter the tracking numbers for those couriers into eBay.

Currently the tracking numbers entered into eBay aren’t automatically emailed to buyers, which is a massive failing on eBay’s part. However tracking numbers are at least displayed in a buyer’s My eBay showing them that the item has shipped.

What’s more important is defending Item Not Received claims, if you entered the tracking number within 24 hours of the shipment and importantly before the buyer opened a case for non-receipt, then eBay will consider protecting you against negative feedback and even judge a buyer claim in your favour, if the item is shown to be delivered.

This is especially important as opened and unresolved buyer protection cases are now counted against you in seller performance. You can lose Top Rated Seller status or even receive selling restrictions if too many buyer cases are opened. Any protection against seller performance strikes is invaluable and well worth the effort of entering tracking numbers into eBay.

On eBay.com they go even further, if you specify one day handling time, upload tracking information by the end of the next business day after the buyer’s payment clears, and eBay knows your package arrived within 4 business days then you’ll also get an automatic five star DSR for despatch time.

On eBay UK you can currently only enter tracking numbers for a small number of selected carriers – currently on the pull down list to add tracking numbers, there are only five carriers available in the UK. What would be better is a free text field to be enable you to add whichever courier you are using to dispatch your parcels. To make this user friendly an option could be added in eBay user preferences so that once you added the information it appeared in the pull down list for all future shipments.

Even with the five carriers currently included on eBay there are gaping holes. For instance Royal Mail Tracked is a product which has been available for a couple of years, and yet it still doesn’t appear in the list of postage options. Allowing users to add their own courier services would give sellers the ability to add Royal Mail Tracked manually.

This differs on eBay.com as you can add the carrier in a free text field which is perfect.

Why eBay have a feature which is invaluable for giving buyers reassurance that their items is posted and en route and yet not make the feature available in the UK just doesn’t make sense. Even worse failing to email buyers the tracking number for those that are currently available on eBay is ridiculous.

Adding FedEx is a small step in the right direction for providing tracking numbers on eBay. This year I’d like to see eBay UK open their marketplace up to allow tracking numbers from all carriers to be provided to buyers and lets see them start to include the tracking numbers on dispatch emails.

3 Responses

  1. I do not have time to put in all my tracking numbers. When will they develop an upload process from something like excel?

  2. I agree and you make good points as ever Chris but really what can business sellers do to effect even such simple but badly needed changes?
    The lack of RM Tracked as a dispatch option on eBay is simply a joke.
    If this bunch of clowns who run eBay UK had spent 5% of the time on real issues like this rather than designing a flawed DSR process the site would be all the better for it.
    pip pip

  3. This has been one of the ginormous eBay shipping & fulfillment fups for years. How long did it take to offer Flat Rate Priority options in PayPal shipping?

    Ludicrous and paranoid as the theory may be there is a large seller group who think that this is deliberate policy, set up the seller to fail so no discounts are given.

    Personally I believe eBay had an exclusive agreement with UPS and got a commission or kickback on every package shipped.

    The lack of meaningful shipping solution integration was one of the reasons I went to Endicia over six years ago. Another reason was the inability to print CBT labels which at the time comprised over 60% of my trade.

    How many more years before the domestic regional flat rate box rate is enabled for eBay sellers?

    It is not difficult to program a subroutine to notify the buyer. The code is open source!


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