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eBay Compensates Shoppers for Slow Delivery and SNADs

Several threads on its discussion boards reveal that eBay is giving away $5 in coupons to shoppers who experience delays in receiving their package, or experienced other problems with their orders.

One user who said she mostly sells on eBay received an email from eBay saying her package for an order she had placed with one of its sellers hadn’t arrived within the time expected and included a $5 promo code for her next purchase.

“Is this normal,” she asked, “and how does it get generated? From all I can see, the seller shipped on a timely basis and I’m patiently waiting, not inquiring or complaining. Probably wouldn’t even have given it any thought except for getting this email.”

Another buyer said they were aware of weather delays that might have caused their order to be delayed and said they had not communicated to the seller or to eBay, so were surprised to get the following email from eBay:

We are extremely sorry for the delayed delivery. We know how inconvenient it can be to wait for important packages, and appreciate your patience during this time.

Package still hasn’t arrived?

You can check the shipping status in the “Purchase history” section of My eBay. Most sellers enter a tracking number, so you should be able to click and see the package’s shipping status. And if your item doesn’t arrive, please know that virtually all purchases are covered by the eBay Money Bank (sic) Guarantee.

We’d like to make it up to you.

To apologize, we’re giving you $5 off your next eBay purchase. It’s our way of saying thanks for being so gracious about the missed delivery. Thank you in advance for your understanding and, as always, thank you for shopping on eBay.

The buyer was concerned about what the receipt of the letter might mean for their trading partner. “I wonder and I pray that eBay hasn’t dinged my seller for this. It is understandable about weather delays and I have no problem with that.”

Among the responses was a user who wrote, “eBay has historically monitored weather caused shipping delays and protects sellers during those times via announcements, etc. The $5 delay appreciation is a nice touch and guarantees the message gets your attention! Congratulations for being a great buyer with your concern!”

eBay has in the past given out coupons to shoppers who experienced problems with sellers. A buyer explained on a niche discussion board that he had had a problem with a Chinese seller and ultimately had to open a case, he received a refund from eBay along with a $5 coupon and a note that stated:

Thank you for letting us know about the issue with your recent eBay purchase. We contacted the seller on your behalf and are pleased to learn that you were able to work it out. Still, we apologize for the inconvenience and would like to give you a coupon for $5 off your next eBay purchase.

What do you think of eBay apology coupons?

Comment on the EcommerceBytes Blog.

Ina Steiner on EmailIna Steiner on LinkedinIna Steiner on Twitter
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.