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Fri Apr 17 2009 10:15:50

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay announced changes this week that sellers are still reviewing to determine the effect on their businesses. In the UK, there were differences, including the announcement of a new returns process tied to transactions paid for with PayPal.

In the U.S., eBay is requiring sellers to have a return policy (announced last year). "We encourage you to accept returns, as this increases buyer satisfaction. However, you don't have to accept returns. You may specify "No Returns Accepted" as your return policy."

Originally the deadline for specifying a return policy in listings was March, it has been extended to June, according to this week's announcements. ("Return policy and handling time required for new listings and re-listings beginning June 15. Deadline for updating your Good ‘Til Cancelled listings extended to mid-September.")

In the UK this week, eBay announced a new returns process for managing customer returns on all items paid for with PayPal. Sellers will be able to track returns from a single place, refund payments and reclaim Final Value Fee (FVF). Buyers will see a "returns" link in My eBay, the item details page and the eBay Resolution Centre for all items on which sellers offer returns.

According to the announcement, PayPal payments can be refunded directly from within the case. Once a seller has refunded a buyer, eBay UK will automatically credit the commission fee to the seller's account. To qualify for a FVF refund, sellers need to refund at least 80 percent of the item price, excluding postage costs.

However, if a buyer asks for an exchange instead of a return, eBay UK recommended sellers process the return anyway and ask the buyer to buy the correct item from you. "That way, you have a record of the correct purchase and there is buyer and seller protection on the item," according to eBay's FAQ.

eBay UK wrote, "We highly recommend that you use the new application and review your processes and return policy to make sure that it complies with the law and that it offers a good service to customers. eBay will provide API support so that you can easily integrate the eBay returns management into your own tools. Please try it out an let us know what you think of the new process."

Buyers who want to return an item but didn't pay with PayPal will not be able to use the new process.

It's interesting to note that, according to eBay UK's help pages, business sellers in the UK are legally bound by the Distance Selling Regulations as outlined in eBay's Legal Guidance for Business Sellers policy page. "Businesses selling on eBay are legally required to offer buyers a "cooling off" period of 7 working days after receipt for all Buy It Now items with very few exceptions."

Would be interested to know how eBay North America sellers would feel about such a Returns Process here?




Comments (33) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Outraged

Fri Apr 17 10:36:26 2009

We don't care what ebay's policy is. OUR policy is NO returns for any reason & requesting a return will put the buyer on our blocked bidder/buyer list forever AND no feedback or Negative feedback left ie. Buyer doesnt read instructions, bad buyer.. We mark is positive as no negative icon is available but belive you me sellers will see it as a BIG negative and avoid these crummy buyers.
We take our business seriously unlike how ebay treats their customers - the sellers.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Dman

Fri Apr 17 10:38:38 2009

If Ebay would ever go to mandatory acceptance of returns, my market segment would surely see an increase in fraudulent activity.  Buyers, would simply use the return policy to allow them to rent or borrow the item for the cost of return postage (provided Ebay doesn’t make the seller pay this as well). Sellers would be stuck, the buyer says they want to return it, what’s a seller to do, Ebay it going to give them the money back regardless of what you say the motives are for the return.

Take a moment to think of the things you could use once and then not need again, a DVD or a CD, burn baby burn, a prom dress and other clothing. Plenty of other stuff if the buyers think long enough.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: jake

Fri Apr 17 10:49:04 2009

Going to be a massive pain for the average seller & ebay you will loose sellers with this policy ..our policy will stay the same we do not accept returns all sales are final (unless it is 100% our error)
Can't you just see all the clothes being returned due to buyers not reading size measurments or the blue not being blue enough etc etc etc
MADNESS

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: out-of-luck

Fri Apr 17 11:09:01 2009

I sell vintage clothing and my policy is no return.  I am a powerseller and in a sense, my return policy is meaningless.  If it is the wrong color, wrong size, etc.for my fickle buyer,  buyers just make up a reason to return it; an imaginary scuff, a rust spec that isn't there... you name it and the item comes back.  If I don't take it back I get a neg and lose the FVF discount... So, I no longer argue.  I have a publicly stated return policy of no returns, and if anyone does a return, I am pleasant but their name goes immediately on my blocked bidder list.  Who needs that kind of business!!!  I wonder how soon Ebay will decide we can no longer be able to block bidders!

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: ebay=penny stock

Fri Apr 17 11:36:03 2009

Most customers don't read past the picture. NO RETURNS HERE. BLOCK EM.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Joe

Fri Apr 17 11:36:14 2009

Well I just decided to update my returns policy to no returns...and while I am at it... I decided to block international sales also. It's becoming to much of a hassel and too many unknowns are lurking abroad...the eBay madness just keeps coming...

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Ebay dunderheads

Fri Apr 17 12:09:53 2009

Ebay is now like a 2 year old with a loaded pistol. Just when you think they've fired their last bullet BOOM they shoot you in the face again. The pinks assigned to this launch still can't even figure out whether or not Delivery conformation is tracking or not. Dolts.
I'd sooner just leave my car unlocked with the windows rolled down in the bronx
then trust Ebay to get anything right at this point.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Ebafia

Fri Apr 17 12:17:50 2009

Quote"Once a seller has refunded a buyer, eBay UK will automatically credit the commission fee to the seller's account. To qualify for a FVF refund, sellers need to refund at least 80 percent of the item price, excluding postage costs."

NOT IN THE USA, we will keep all your fees, crooked old Ebay!

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Karen

Fri Apr 17 12:56:00 2009

Ebaqy does give fvf credit for returns in the US.  You just have to file an item dispute stating that the item was returned.  And of course the buyer has to agree to it.  I have used it with no trouble.  But it is a pain to have to go to all that for your fvf to be returned.

I will be interested to see how this works.
Karen
Karen's Artistic Touches

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Fri Apr 17 13:46:32 2009

If ebay.com follows the British returns model, then charge a 20% restocking fee and file the fvf.

Buyers who return items and non paying buyers should NOT EVER BE ALLOWED TO LEAVE FEEDBACK!

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: unaware

Fri Apr 17 14:11:05 2009

RE: ebay=penny stock ''Most customers don't read past the picture. NO RETURNS HERE. BLOCK EM.''

I have to agree with this statement. I take a great deal of care in the information that I include in my listings and I try to anticipate every possible question someone might have about a item as well as including MANY photographs of my items BUT STILL a week does not go by that I don't get one or two questions from prospective buyers/bidders asking questions THAT ARE PLAINLY ANSWERED IN THE LISTING. I won't say most people don't read the listings but apparently enough of them do not as to make me wonder sometimes... it takes all of my self control not to answer these people with a smart a** answer and pointing out that the information they request IS ALREADY THERE FOR THE READING. But being the smart businessman that I am, I just answer the questions as they come and let it go..... BUT it sure would be nice if they just READ THE LISTING before they contacted me! Thanks for letting me vent.....  

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: ex-powerseller

Fri Apr 17 14:19:10 2009

@Karen, not in a SNAD return, "your partner" Ebay & Paypal keeps all the fees. You are charged 18% + .65 for the privilege of someone renting your item, ruining your item, or sending you back a rock

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Ebay's Illiterate buyers

Fri Apr 17 14:28:02 2009

Why should they have to read anything? PayBay will gladly refund YOUR money to them, but penalize you 18% for the privilege. Actual case: Sold a $125 Disney Store item for $24.99. It was a snowglobe/music box, still with the pricetag. It was noted that the Music box had been overwound, and the character's fingers were slightly damaged. The genius that bought the item complains immediately. "the fingers are damaged".
I C&P the text where it said that in listing. Next comeback: "The music box is broken" Well, DUH! I asked "DID YOU EVEN BOTHER TO READ THE ITEM DESCRIPTION???" answer: "No, I'm not good at that", then goes on to tell me , "I always get burned on Ebay, I'm trying to buy nice things for my kid, Everything I buy there is broken, I have too many insurance & Paypal claims, Wah Wah Wah you obviously didn't buy this new". NO KIDDING. I LOVE selling things I paid $125 for at a 80% discount & then paying 22% of that crumb to Paybay. I recommended she shop at the Disney store. Then she finally left me alone, I was sure I was going to get hosed for my shipping & fees & get back a totaled item, because I'm sure her packing would have been as good as her reading.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Ebay for dummies

Fri Apr 17 14:32:49 2009

@unaware:
I often answer these idiots "Please read the item description" I've had to do that so many times, it's a standard C&P in my word file.Had some genius ask me "How tall is the 14" figure?" I told then, "You answered your own question" I guess they are still trying to figure that one out.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Fri Apr 17 14:46:55 2009

Ebay's answer for potential customers who can't be bothered to read product descriptions is to use text bullets instead of paragraphs which one ebay 'customer service' rep said were "too hard" for some customers.

Perhaps the rep was right. Perhaps bullets would be good idea ;-)

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Patricia

Fri Apr 17 15:02:35 2009

From time to time I sell diabetic supplies that are accumulated from my own supplies.  They are sealed and of are not considered safe it opened.  NO WAY can I accept a return once I send it out!  Ebay has a stupid dime store mentality these days.  We are NOT all selling iPods!

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Chinese New Year

Fri Apr 17 15:03:08 2009

Ming, Ebay's brilliant CSR reps can't figure out the difference between Delivery Confirmation and Tracking either. I'm beginning to wonder who is more challenged on Ebay: the customers, the CSRs that can't explain Ebay policies, or the victims, the sellers, who are expected to behave like the Ox, and gladly welcome every rat on our back as we cross the river.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Clayton

Fri Apr 17 15:33:46 2009

Geez... so many complainers.  Maybe if you worked on your customer service instead of coming here to rant you wouldn't have this problem.  But thank you for interrupting good discussion to make sure that everyone in the world knows just how YOU were screwed by ebay.

Most people are good.  They buy stuff because they want it, not because they want to return it.  Serious guys, chill out... I feel like going into an angsty locker room reading these comments sometimes.

(Why can i say this?  Because I make BANK doing GOOD business with GOOD and REPEAT customers.)

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: booger

Fri Apr 17 17:21:40 2009

@Clayton:

You got it, man! Sure, there are some products that warrant a no-returns policy, just like stores will have that policy for things like underwear or cosmetics in opened packages.  But geez, with the way these people treat their customers, it's no wonder they can't make any money. Yes, a lot of buyers are morons. Accept it and move on accordingly. A little sugar can go a long way to soothing the savage buyer.

eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK   eBay's Product-Return Requirements in US and UK

by: Mitch Whiner, Lieworld

Fri Apr 17 21:07:49 2009

Clayton Herb, Tommy, Mitch, whatever your new fake lieworld name is, As long as Ebay is a haven for Non paying losers that waste  sellers time, Ebay will continue to be garbage.

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