eBay UK Seller Release: New Returns Experience

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From 16 September 2015, eBay will introducing a for all sellers, combining the features of the existing returns request process and eBay managed returns.

At the same time, they are introducing a number of customisation options so that you can set up returns to suit your business and adding more options to the reasons you can use to let us know if you have a problem with a buyer.

Customisation options

Basic Automation

You’ll be able to create simple rules based on attributes such as item price and the return reason the buyer gives. For instance if an item was broken in transit and your sale price was only a couple of quid, it’s unlikely that you’ll want to bother getting it returned. However for a £50 item when the buyer simply changes their mind you’ll definitely want to get the product back for resale!

  • Send a refund: let the buyer keep the item and automatically send a refund based on the price and the return reason.
  • Approve a return: automatically approve a return based on the price and the return reason.
  • RMA number: let eBay know whether you’d like to include (RMA) number to each return label.

Advanced Automation

Advanced Automation will enable you create your own rules. You’ll be able to automatically approve a return or refund based on one or more factors including price, return reason, category and/or an item’s presence in a list of your creation.

Return ReasonsUpdated Return Reasons and Report a Problem

eBay are updating the reasons a buyer can select when sending items back. By revising existing reasons and adding new ones, buyers can be more specific when requesting a return.

This could save you time and money by making sure we have the correct reason code when charging for postage and evaluating your standard, as well as reducing the number of contacts you get from buyers.

Report a problemeBay are also introducing new ‘Report a problem with the buyer’ reasons saying it will make it easier for them to support you if something goes wrong.

Use your own returns labels

For those who believe eBay could have negotiated a lot harder on the managed returns postage rates, you will be able to upload your own returns labels. eBay will take care of automatically uploading any relevant tracking information on the return. That means you can pick the return carrier and service that suits you at the price you negotiate and both you and your buyer will still be able to track the return without leaving the site.

Bear in mind however that if you set any automation rules this will override the option to use your own return label and eBay will automatically produce one and potentially bill you for it if the buyer selects a seller fault return option.

Mobile After-Sales experience

From the end of October 2015 the eBay iOS and Android apps will be upgraded to mirror the desktop experience giving you mobile access to the same after-sales features available on a desktop.

Features to be added will include the updated returns experience, integrated tracking and order cancellation.

For the future eBay aim to add the features to mobile apps at the same time as they’re available on the desktop site so that you can manage your business on the move. Eventually they aim to add the features to the eBay mobile website, but in the meantime download the eBay app if you haven’t already.

5 Responses

  1. I have a couple of questions that I cannot find the answer to. Alan said to look at the FAQ but there is only 3 (Which don’t answer)

    1. A buyer states an item is not as described – will eBay still charge me or expect me to upload a returns label?

    2. I stopped offering Special delivery on eBay ( I do on my website and redirect people there), even though I get many emails asking for it, purely because, UK Consumer Law states I can refund customers price + basic postage (i.e I don’t have to refund for upgrades) Will it now be possible to refund just the price + standard postage on eBay?

    I saw on the US seller release you can edit the returns price (for restocking fees – I know not legal here) but wondering if we can refund minus the special delivery upgrade?

    3. Are eBay going to take action on reports now? It someone keeps claiming SNAD for free postage this needs to be stopped. Let them take the seller to court if they feel they are so right.

    Other than that it seems like a good update. In theory. Everything eBay says is great, in theory. We just hope the CS agents use a bit of common sense.

  2. It still looks fundamentally flawed. The customer is encouraged to start a return even though all they may want is a replacement item. 50% of our returns are exchanges. I can’t believe exchanges were not factored into the original returns system and has still been overlooked.

    Subsequently our money is temporarily debited from our account (why?) and on an exchange the return then remains open for ages because we can’t close it. We then get a bunch of emails “asking has the product been returned?” Yes, but….

    Designed by someone that has never run a retail business. A bunch of interesting metrics for eBay, just a pain in the arse for us.

  3. I would like to know, how do Ebay determine the price of return postage, if there is a return where the seller refunds return postage as well? Items’ postage prices vary enormously. Do they just charge the seller’s original postage twice? Can someone clarify this please? Thanks!


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