The eBay Buyer Cancellation process has changed. No longer can the seller cancel a sale claiming that it was at the request of the buyer but from now on if a buyer asks you to cancel an order, they’ll need to send you a cancellation request.
Once you receive their request, you’ll have three business days to approve or decline it. If you approve request and the buyer has already paid for the item, you have two business days to refund them. If you haven’t refunded them within 2 business days, they can file a claim through eBay Money Back Guarantee.
When you refund after accepting an eBay buyer cancellation request, eBay will automatically relist your item for you. If you don’t want your item to be relisted, simply uncheck the ‘Relist item after the cancellation’ box when issuing the refund.
This is great news for professional sellers who don’t like arbitrage drop shippers and really bad news for drop shippers who find an item that they have sold is no longer available or that their cost price has risen above their buy price.
Arbitrage sellers have a long history of scrapping product listings from retail sites across the Internet and listing them on eBay. There’s software to automate the entire process. Amazon is a common target as with a Prime account you can simply ship to any address that you choose for free – for arbitrage sellers who are serious they’ll even use Amazon Business Prime. For regular Amazon merchants it’s a right nuisance when their accounts are scraped and products advance sold before purchase by arbitrage sellers as the drop shipper does a poor job and the product sourced doesn’t exactly manage the product sold then a return or claim is likely to be forthcoming.
Why the eBay Buyer Cancellation change matters
So what is the change to the eBay buyer cancellation process and who will this impact arbitrage sellers? Previously, if an arbitrage seller was unable to fulfil an order they would send the consumer a very apologetic email explaining that the goods are temporarily out of stock and asking if they would like a refund rather than wait a long time for the order to be fulfilled. 99% of the time the consumer will be frustrated and reply demanding their money back which the arbitrager will be only too delighted to do. What the arbitrager was then able to do was cancel the sale on eBay using the “cancellation at the buyer’s request” option.
Now, the buyer has to request a cancellation which is slightly different to demanding a refund. The seller can’t select cancellation at the buyers request and it will be down to the buyer to state why they want a refund. The chances are high they they won’t give a reason such as item no longer required or changed my mind, and likely to state that the seller couldn’t fulfil the order. Get enough dings on your account and the impact on your account will soon start to take effect and not in a positive way.
For reputable sellers on eBay who generally only sell what they have in stock, this change will make little if any difference. It’s only when you make an error in your stock and can’t fulfil an order that you’ll have to cancel it and it’s likely you don’t claim it’s at the request of the buyer anyway and just take it on the chin.
It’s only those sellers who regularly cancel orders and claim the cancellations are at the buyers request, when in truth it’s down to running a crappy business model, that will be impacted. eBay don’t like cancelled orders and disapointed customers and it looks like they’ve done something about it.