|Sat Apr 9 2011 11:04:35|
eBay Prevents Sellers from Encouraging 5-Star Feedback
By: Ina Steiner
eBay is preventing sellers from making certain statements about feedback in their listings or encouraging buyers to leave 5-star DSRs feedback ratings. Pop-up messages began appearing yesterday when some sellers tried to relist items. eBay's message states:
A listing can't include statements that may discourage buyers from leaving honest Feedback. You also can't mention the possible penalties for not meeting eBay's seller performance standards
For example, you can't say things like:
"If I receive more than a few detailed seller ratings (DSRs) of less than 5, eBay will penalize me."
“Why would you want to give Negative or Neutral anyway? ”
"eBay holds me to a standard well above 4 stars so only leave 5 stars."
"4 stars will get me suspended, so please only leave 5 stars."
"Feedback will be left for you once your positive feedback has been left”
If your listing includes this kind of information, please edit it before posting it on eBay. Otherwise, this could prevent you from achieving Top-rated seller status or could get you removed from the program
For more info, see selling practices policy.
One seller who encountered the message yesterday told me her listings include a statement that she strives for complete customer satisfaction and asks buyers to contact her should there be any problems. She asks them to give her the opportunity to provide 5 star service, and mentions the importance of eBay's Detailed Seller Ratings.
"I have always felt this was a good way to let the customer know that I am reasonable and willing to work with them. Now eBay is taking that away too! I wondered what your readers thought of this and the fact that eBay practically beats the buyer into leaving negative or neutral feedback and also mentions how they should rate us on our DSR'S as it is anonymous and that they should let us know the areas we need for improvement.
"This is another move by eBay to interfere with the buyer/seller relationship. Before you know it, we won't even have the option of leaving feedback for our buyers, as eBay will either make it mandatory or will set an automatic system up."
Another seller referred to the new restriction as part of eBay's continuing effort to rid itself of small dealers.
eBay's feedback system is very different from a few years ago. It has taken away sellers' ability to leave negative or neutral feedback ratings for buyers, and introduced a system in which buyers leave anonymous Detailed Seller Ratings for sellers.
Sellers feel pressured to obtain five stars, since it affects their visibility in search, their ability to receive fee discounts, and even their ability to sell on the site. Some sellers have sued eBay over DSR ratings, arguing that eBay's five-star rating system is "misleading," since buyers view a rating of three as average and a rating of four as good, but eBay requires sellers to maintain a DSR average of 4.3 to freely operate on eBay.
If you've encountered the pop-up box, let us know. Do your listings discourage buyers from leaving honest Feedback, or do they encourage sellers to work out problems with you before leaving feedback?