|Tue May 22 2012 21:54:50|
eBay Sellers Bracing for New TRS Requirements
By: Ina Steiner
|eBay sellers are bracing for new Top Rated Seller requirements that go into effect in June. While many TRS sellers may be able to maintain their status, they may lose their TRS fee discounts - a hefty 20% off of FVF commission fees. Analysts are sure to love this, since it raises the bar (the burden is on sellers, not eBay), and may actually save eBay money net-net.|
Even though sellers will be evaluated on June 20th for the new requirement that they upload tracking info or a DC number on at least 90% of their shipments to U.S. buyers within stated handling time in order to maintain TRS status, eBay's dashboard showing sellers if they meet the new requirement won't be ready until next month.
Starting June 1, only those listings from Top-rated sellers that include 1-day handling and a 14-day or longer return policy with a money-back option will qualify for the greatest average boost in Best Match and 20% final value fee discount.
Also starting June 1, the annual sales requirement for Top-rated status will be lowered from $3,000 to $1,000 to expand eligibility to more sellers.
An eBay seller who sells personalized item wrote today for clarification about the new TRS tracking requirements. "I called eBay tonight because there are clearly issues with uploaded tracking number percentages on the dashboard," she wrote. "Mine should be at 100%, but it is close to 80%. FYI - It is clear to me eBay is considering product that has yet to ship in the numbers, even though the stated handling time has yet to pass. The rep told me they know there are issues, and they are working to correct them by June 20th."
But the reason she was writing to EcommerceBytes was to get clarification about another TRS requirement - one that specifies TRS sellers offer 1-day handling in order to get the 20% TRS fee discount.
"The rep told me that if I move my personalized (products) to specialty services, the new 1-day handling requirement does not apply, and I would still receive my 20% discount on personalized items," she wrote. "He said this is true if the listing is under real estate, vehicles, or specialty services."
The seller said she had researched the issue and couldn't find any reference to an exception in the specialty services area. "I have been all over the forums, searched your site, etc. I can't find this anywhere. Zack (the rep) repeated it 3 times. He said he was reading it directly from an internal eBay memo. When I told him I didn't believe it was common knowledge. He told me I could share it with anyone. Am I crazy? Is this is little known fact? Or, is the rep mistaken?"
I wrote to eBay spokesperson Johnna Hoff for clarification, specifically asking if the 90% tracking requirement to maintain TRS discounts and boost in Best Match covered all categories, or if there were some categories that were excluded from the policy.
Hoff referred me to the eBay TRS Update page on eBay's website along with the following statement:
"Any transactions offering freight shipping or when the buyer selects local pick-up as their delivery method will be excluded from the tracking uploaded requirement. Classified Ad format listings and Motors Vehicles listings are also excluded, as are any transactions that end in an unpaid item.
"Also, remember that TRS discounts will be at the item level starting in June. In other words, even though sellers may meet the new 90% tracking requirement (and other volume & performance criteria) to be Top-rated, the 20% FVF discount will only be applied to those listings from TRS that meet the new requirements (1 day handling & 14 day+ returns w/ money back option)."
Let us know how the new TRS requirements are impacting you and how you are coping!
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