eBay: No I don’t want to talk to you! #EUCatalyst

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At today’s eBay session at ChannelAdvisor Catalyst a titbit came up which at first sounds insignificant, but in reality could drastically improve the selling process for many sellers.

eBay let slip that in the next Seller Release they’re intending to give sellers the option to bar messages from buyers at checkout. This would be an “Opt Out” for sellers and if the option was selected the checkout comments box simply wouldn’t be available.

If you’re like most sellers (and me!) you’ve missed messages from buyer such as “Please ship to an alternative address, Please leave behind the shed, please knock loudly and wait ten minutes so that I can get to the door or please don’t send until next month as I’m about to go on holiday!

Quite frankly these messages are a nightmare for sellers to deal with. In a well oiled warehouse orders come in and are fulfilled in the minimum amount of time. If you’re using 3rd party software the messages might not even be visible in your vendors solution.

There should be no need for buyers to message the seller, and if they need to they can use alternative methods such as the contact form or simply pick up the telephone and talk to their seller. Messages which are at best poorly highlighted and at worst not visible serve to frustrate both buyers and seller.

The only thing eBay couldn’t confirm is what would happen if the buyer left a message in PayPal, but I for one will be turning off messages at checkout as soon as the feature is available.

Buy It, Select the correct shipping address and pay for it is all I want from a buyer. I’ll pick it, pack it and ship it and really don’t want nor have time to deal with specific delivery requirements. All they do is slow the delivery process down.

19 Responses

  1. eBay let slip that in the next Seller Release they’re intending to give buyers the option to bar messages from buyers at checkout.

    There should be no need for sellers to message the seller

    I would agree that buyers shouldn’t be speaking to buyers and sellers shouldn’t speak to sellers. Seriously though I disabled the ability for the buyers to leave me notes in PayPal years ago because of this very reason. Removing notes at checkout is a good idea. Otherwise you have 3 different ways for the buyer to message you.

  2. What a world!

    I actually like seeing a message come through – As they usually say “So pleased with the item” or “Thanks alot!”

    But then again, I like other human beings!
    And think the best way for everyone to get along is to have communications!
    Not just pickin it, packin it, shippin it!


  3. Reason number 4356 why I prefer to deal with small traders rather than faceless big box shifters who don’t want to communicate. With this and recent changes to the communication DSR, it’s clear which eBay seems to think is best. Sometimes being the ultimate cheapest and having to shift vast quantities to make the business viable, isn’t so clever long term as many have found out.

  4. Its not about faceless box shifting. When you get to a certain size selling hundreds of orders every day. It must be scalable, if a customer orders and completes the checkout and payment. It is their resposbility to put the correct address and take delivery of the item. We go over and above to try and accomodate customer demands regarding delivery and we appreciate people are busy. However we cannot change and amend every address and leave every item for someone where they want – thats what post boxes are for. If you order larger items you need to be there for delivery.

  5. I actually relied on this massively when I stared my business in 2010. As I was starting out and certainly couldn’t pay for a shop, I could not do multi-variation listings. So for 6 months I asked buyers to use to the add message feature and it worked really well for me.

    Now I turn over 9ka month and it really winds me up when I see messages about ‘please do this that or the other’ in a place where my fulfilment house will never see it.

    So now I’m glad it’s going, but others starting out might not be.

  6. I don’t even see messages. Orders are automatically printed and shipped off invoices.

  7. the only communication I need is a flaming big hammer to pound into the thick pillocks on ebay that if you read the description and look at the pictures there would be no need to ask bloody stupid questions, or ridiculous messages


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