eBay says: treat new buyers “with a little extra TLC”

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Last week eBay held their conference-cum-jamboree in the US which is billed as eBay Open. Rather like eBay Live! way back when, it’s where sellers and buyers gather to learn and celebrate their businesses and eBay. If you click on the link above you’ll find some videos (sadly unembeddable on here) including a keynote from eBay CEO Devin Wenig. Needless to say there is rather too much schmaltz for European sensibilities but it’s quite an interesting watch.

(As an aside, it’s worth noting that when Devin reminds the crowd of mostly sellers that they have managed to remove third-party listings across the eBay.com site gets a decent whoop of approval. There hasn’t been any noise as to whether that will be coming to the UK. It would surely be welcomed.)

One other talk was from Hal Lawton, who heads up the North American division of eBay’s business, and he was talking about the new buyers (who will likely also become sellers on some level). It’s worth noting that 14 million people became have joined up and become new active buyers and sellers over the period of 2015 to 2017.

Wth specific reference to zero-feedback buyers, Lawton told eBay Open: “How about we all make a commitment that as we see them, we reach out, we treat them with a little extra TLC, because they’re the heartbeat of the next 5 to 10 years of eBay.”

He also noted that sellers had remarked to him that dealing with the rookie buyers is often an “uncomfortable” experience. It seems correct to point out newbie buyers will fall into two categories. Those who are genuinely green and (a doubtless much smaller number) who are ne’er-do-wells starting up a new account

It doesn’t seem to us that, especially considering that buying is really very simple, that newbie buyers are a particular problem. And knowing sellers as we do, they will usually cheerfully help the genuinely befuddled and confused. It’s not a complaint that we do seem to hear often though, that newbies are a pain. But you’re at the coalface, are new buyers much of a problem?

12 Responses

  1. Be it New or old buyers, eBay need to support sellers! with buyers who don’t understand or from confusion
    Impact a sellers ability to trade,
    Till they do ,we treat new buyers with extreme caution

  2. Happy to treat new buyers well, however ebay don’t help. Typically example last week, customer purchased an item for £4.99 with free 2nd class post. Called up to say their item hadn’t arrived 2 days later as ebay said it would arrive and it was a birthday present. Why hadn’t we got tracking, why had it not arrived, please send another on a next day delivery!

    Zero chance of ever making money with stuff like this going on, every single day.

  3. new buyers can and often do need help. A simple phone call is the usual solution, but how to get your number to them…..

  4. very seldom do i have a 0 feedback confused buyer.
    regularly i have people with 100+ feedback tell me they dont know how ebay works.

  5. Its the buyers that know how ebay works that we have trouble with,
    Can you send a return shipping ticket,
    I have not received my item,
    The box was empty,
    We await your solution before we comment on your feedback profile,
    Were disappointed, We feel a partial refund would conclude this transaction ,
    Etc etc etc

    *****Awaits usual platitudes from Mr P****

  6. oh how i feel the pain stated here…. Im sick of what sellers can do for buyers, how about what ebay can do for their customers (SELLERS!).
    Just as my mind gets to grips with the flood of INR scammers, then they change tactics and now we are being bombarded with not as described etc to get free returns.
    You try to ask them what is wrong etc…. all you get is silence. So you message again… silence. Then it times out and they escalate it! now ok on occassion ebay have refunded out of their pocket rather than mine… but its just rewarding an obvious scammer. Silence means scammer 99.9% of the time.
    So where do i find the time to help all these new buyers ? Will they have the time to even listen, after all they didnt have the time to read all the help pages as to how to use ebay!? Nope, sorry im too busy filing UPI disputes, replying to questions about stuff that is clearly written in the description ( dont get me started on thsi!), dealing with scam inr, scam not as described, or just plain b.s…. it’s a miracle i get time to actually pack and post anything. The really bad thing is it seems to be getting worse each year.


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