We should be pretty grateful here in the UK that Royal Mail recovered rapidly from the Coronavirus pandemic impact and, with the exception of some sporadic local issues, is back to pretty much business as normal across large parts of the country. Yes, there are localised delays and they are still not collecting signatures due to social distancing, but it’s nothing compared with USPS delays in the US.
The US have failed to get a grip on the pandemic, although their deaths per million head of population are less than the UK (508 vs 688), their new infections are still being measured in the 10s of 1000s. eBay report that the USPS continues to be strained, and we realize the burden this puts on our sellers. Delivery and scan delays persist, and eBay are monitoring not only the USPS delays but also ongoing negotiations in Washington.
The situation with USPS delays is so dire in the US that eBay have announced that they are actively looking for affordable alternatives which can offer a more reliable delivery service for their American sellers and buyers.
“We are continually monitoring shipping developments and USPS delays. We are working on other affordable, more reliable delivery options for sellers. Stay tuned for important developments in this area in the coming weeks.”
– Marni Levine, VP of Seller Operations and Engagement, eBay
eBay steps to address USPS delays
eBay are automatically extending estimated delivery dates as necessary to give buyers a more reasonable expectation of when their items will arrive. They recommend that you don’t extend your handling time as the eBay extended estimates should give you enough buffer, and additional handling days could lead to the appearance of your items shipping slower than they actually are.
Last month, eBay announced seller protections against shipping defects through to the 31st of August and they will continue to extend these protections as long as strains on carriers affect delivery dates.
“Item not received” cases
If a buyer opens an “item not received” case, and you provided valid tracking and shipped the item within your promised handling time, eBay will wait to evaluate the case until after the extended estimated delivery date.
- eBay will recognize that you uploaded valid tracking and met your handling time commitment, and you can still qualify as a Top Rated Seller.
- If the item shows up late because of a carrier delay, eBay will remove the shipping defect for late shipment.
- If the item is delivered after the extended estimated delivery date, eBay will remove shipping-related negative or neutral feedback on your behalf.