In a survey question last week eBay asked sellers how they’d feel about the ability to offer a store credit instead of a monetary refund. The premise is that instead of giving a refund you could choose to offer a buyer a credit note which could only be spent in your own eBay shop.
This opens up some interesting questions – Firstly as a buyer if you were due a credit would you be happy accepting a credit which you could only spend with the same eBay seller?
Personally I buy loads on eBay but I’ve not particular preference for any particular sellers, in fact I buy such a diverse range of goods it’s highly unlikely I’ll buy from the same seller twice in a short space of time. The fact I’m unlikely to buy from a seller twice does of course make it even more attractive for a seller to offer me a store credit, but the truth is that for me I’d just prefer a refund that I could spend elsewhere on eBay.
What would however be even more interesting is would eBay allow us to give store credits even when a refund wasn’t due, and could we automate this process in the form of discount coupons? Companies like MyStoreCredit do a great job of re-marketing your eBay store to existing customers but what about potential new customers? If eBay created a store credit program it would be great to see this extended to enable sellers to use it for marketing purposes.
Most sellers with an eBay shop build up an email marketing list, store credits could potentially enable you to send discount vouchers for new stock to enable you to build up Best Match ranking. Equally you could use them to attract buyers to your end of line and slow moving stock in order to liquidate it. Plus of course if you’ve built up a large Twitter or Facebook following you could use social media to drive traffic to your store with coupons ready to spend.
I’m not that keen on receiving a store credit instead of a refund when one is due, but I love the idea of being able to issue coupons and discount vouchers to attract traffic to my eBay listings. If I was eBay I’d give sellers as many marketing tools as possible. Buyers like discount coupons, eBay should enable those sellers that wish to to offer them.