eBay UK Spring Seller Release: Seller Protection

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The Seller Protection changes announced in today’s eBay UK Spring Seller Release are the start of changes rolling out over next year or so. eBay recognise that in their community of millions of buyers and sellers there are a few chancers that try it on and they’re going to start clamping down on them.

This was announced two days ago by Devin Wenig in a tweet

New Seller Protection from abusive buyers

eBay are introducing new measures to help find abusive buyers, prevent them from filing return requests (under certain circumstances) and, in some cases, suspend them. If eBay become aware of abusive buyer behaviour (hint… report them every time!), they will remove relevant feedback or defects from your seller profile.

“Furthermore, we’ve heard your feedback and we’ll be removing false “Item not received” or “Item not as described” claims from your Service Metrics where these are related to abusive buyer behaviour.”
– eBay UK Spring Seller Release

Reporting abusive buyers

The Report a Buyer page lets you tell eBay about buyers who’ve violated eBay policies. With new reason codes, you can now more clearly describe what the buyer is doing to help eBay investigate alleged policy violations and take actions to protect you.

Dumping arbitrage sellers in search

Sellers who use retailers or marketplaces to ship directly to buyers are in violation of eBay’s drop shipping policy. They will be lowered in search results and may face other sanctions. This will give sellers who own their own inventory or drop ship from wholesalers, greater search visibility.

Arbitrage sellers claim that they bring value to the marketplace supplying products otherwise not available. However there is a big difference to finding a product for sale from a merchant on another marketplace, marking it up and flogging it on eBay to having a proper relationship with a dropshipper. Arbitrage sellers cancel orders, give no buyer protection (e.g. buyers often don’t have their legal returns rights and product warranties and don’t even know who the real seller was!).

eBay have drawn a line in the sand and the chances are high that if you use arbitrage software to sell on eBay that they’ll dump your listings to the bottom of search.

Existing seller protection emphasised

eBay remind sellers that they continue to protect you in other ways too:

  • eBay may remove negative feedback and defects when they can see you’ve delivered on your promise (e.g. tracking shows an on-time delivery), or when we are satisfied that things have happened beyond your control, such as bad weather.
  • eBay enable you to offer, when appropriate, partial refunds for opened or used returned items when you offer free returns.

Coming this Summer….

This summer eBay will announce new seller protections that will be based on your track record and how you’ll be protected you when you have a track record of providing a great service to your buyers.

6 Responses

  1. Too little, too late. This is something they should have done years ago.

  2. Absolutely pointless announcement, nothing is going to change. Everything they say is “eBay may…” or “under certain circumstances”.

    Something we have seen an increase of this year is customers swearing directly at us without a care in the world. They know eBay couldn’t care less.

    Customers are treating return requests like a play ground and are happily telling us they’ve selected “wrong item sent” or “item not as described” just so they don’t have to pay postage. Does eBay do anything about this? No!

    Fed up of customer’s running a mock.

  3. Yes choke on this one people… what a joke, oh no if it were a joke it would be funny.
    I like the fact they are finally admitting there is an issue, but admitting it and doing something about it are totally different. Even in the highly unlikely situation where ebay sides with you, they often refund you etc out of their own pocket ( our fees) rather than make the buyer pay. So the buyer still gets away with it. Bit like when you challenge a return. Buyer still gets a free return, ebay refunds the seller and seller indirectly still pays through higher fees each year so ebay don’t loose out!
    If a buyer challenges the seller… a paypal hold is put on the money immediately. If a seller challenges a buyer…. bugger all happens.
    No refunds should be given until both parties agree and if they don’t then the appeals process should complete first before refunds etc are dished out.

  4. Can any one explain to me what extra seller protection we get against the abusive buyers? Either I am too thick to understand or there is nothing new. And I am not yet criticising I am honestly asking.

  5. Seller protection seems to be no different than previously.
    A lot of dubious buyers know how to play the game. I had one who left positive for everyone, but an abnormal amount of them stated ‘thank you for the refund’, so it was obvious what their game was, but they were playing it in such a way that it didn’t set off any silent triggers with eBay.

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