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EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2830 - June 20, 2012 - ISSN 1539-5065    2 of 4

eBay Delays Controversial Tracking Requirement

By Julia Wilkinson
EcommerceBytes.com
June 20, 2012




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eBay delayed its requirement that Top Rated Seller upload tracking within their stated handling time on 90% or more of U.S. transactions to June 1st, sparing sellers set to be evaluated on June 20th.

In an announcement posted on Tuesday, June 19, eBay's Vice President of Seller Development Michael Jones said, "Since we announced updates to the eBay Top-rated seller criteria in February, many Top-rated sellers have said they need more time to meet the new requirement to upload tracking within handling time on 90% or more of US transactions. We've heard your concerns and want to give sellers more time to make the needed changes."

The change was also posted to as a "News Flash!" to the Top Rated Seller program News page and was emailed to Top Rated Sellers as well.

EBay will now begin counting tracking for achieving Top-rated status as of June 1 (and not May 1 as originally announced). "The July evaluation will look at transactions from June 1 to June 30 to determine if you meet the standard," read the announcement.

Sellers who use eBay to print their shipping labels have the tracking number automatically added, but other sellers who use alternate shipping methods must upload the information themselves manually or use a third-party automated tool to do so.

"While eBay is claiming they are delaying the start due to seller concerns, I believe the delay is more a reflection of the number of sellers who have found that eBay's system is not able to accurately pick up tracking information for evaluation," said one seller.

"Personally, every item I sell is processed the same day payment is received, and shipped the next day," he said. However, he said he found that "compliance as displayed on the dashboard pop up changes almost daily, despite 100% compliance on my part."

"I am betting this delay and the claim of listening to sellers is nothing more than a cover-up by eBay to hide the fact they have not fixed the bugs in yet another defective automated program," he added.

EcommerceBytes has documented seller reports that eBay's dashboard has not reflected their correct tracking percentages, such as this May 22nd EcommerceBytes Blog post.

A seller in another discussion forum speculated, "That tells me how many (sellers) are not meeting the requirement."

The new policy has been controversial particularly among sellers of very low-priced items such as postcards, stamps, decals and artwork who use First Class mail Letter because they cannot use delivery confirmation and would be forced to significantly raise their shipping costs (to equal or greater than the price of their items, in many cases) in order to ship with tracking.

About the Author
Julia Wilkinson is the author of "The eBay Price Guide" (No Starch Press, 2006) and "eBay Top 100 Simplified Tips & Tricks" (Wiley, 2004-6). Her free "Yard Salers" newsletter is at available at YardSalers.net where you will also find her latest ebook, Flip It Again.

About the author:

Julia Wilkinson is the author of "The eBay Price Guide" (No Starch Press, 2006) and "eBay Top 100 Simplified Tips & Tricks" (Wiley, 2004-6). Her free "Yard Salers" newsletter is at available at YardSalers.net where you will also find her latest ebook, Flip It Again.

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