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Tue Feb 28 2012 11:34:28

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

By: Julia Wilkinson

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eBay just came out with their 2012 Spring Seller Update, and as always there is bound to be much discussion. There is some good news in this Seller Update but also some things that, from my perspective as a seller, are worrisome.

Pictures: eBay will offer free image hosting starting July 2nd. I use eBay image hosting and often use multiple pictures for my one-of-a-kind items, so that will help my bottom line.

However, starting this fall, all listings will be required to have at least one picture, and "additional quality standards for pictures will also be in effect." Uh-oh. "Additional quality standards" is a worrisome statement. In general, I don't think the "at least one picture" requirement will be a problem for most sellers; almost anything on eBay has at least one picture. The one which may impact some sellers is that when listing a used item, stock photos may no longer be used as the primary item photo for the listing (with the exception of Books, Movies, Music, and Video Game categories).

I don't think this will be a huge problem for sellers, as buyers of pre-owned items don't like surprises. However, it will make for extra work for sellers who use stock photos a lot for used items; and if you compare it to Amazon's model, it's tougher, because sellers of used books and other media frequently just type a description of whatever flaws there are, and piggyback on photos other sellers have provided or stock photos. This is one thing that makes selling on Amazon, from my perspective, so much easier.

Top-Rated Seller Program: 1 or Same-Day Handling Time and 14-Day Minimum Return Policy

Starting June 1, only those listings from Top-rated sellers that include these two services --  "1-day or same-day handling time, and a 14-day or longer return policy with a money-back option, will earn the 20% final value fee discount and the highest average boost in Best Match."

A one-day or less handling time is a pretty tight window (compare it to Amazon's requirement that items be shipped within two business days), but I would be interested in how eBay is going to calculate that one-day window. Will it be from the hour or rounded up? If a buyer orders something at 8 p.m. one night, does that mean the seller better have that thing ready to go for the mail carrier by the time he gets there the next day? (Bearing in mind, I am never sure what time my mailman is going to show up)?

The 14-day minimum return policy has many sellers of items such as clothing concerned. They worry the buyer will use this policy as a free "rental" period; wearing the item and then asking to return it after.

A Very Good Feedback Change: This one was really needed, and I think this is one of the most positive things to come out of this Update: "Feedback for unpaid items: Feedback left by a buyer with an unpaid item recorded for the transaction will be automatically removed from your record."

Great...thank you, eBay, and some might add, it's about time!

Feedback and Detailed Seller Ratings (DSRs): "Beginning in April, eBay will give sellers an automatic 5-star DSR for Communication for transactions in which there is no communication between the seller and the buyer" - if the seller both specifies same-day or 1-day handling time, and uploads tracking information by the end of the next business day.

At first glance rewarding "no communication between the seller and the buyer" sounds counter-intuitive. But the assumption is, if all goes smoothly in a transaction, the seller ships on time, and automated notices go out, there should be no further communication needed.

In theory, I don't have a problem with this, but I'm concerned how this will play out in practice. Here's just one example: a buyer of a recent item of mine took longer than two days to pay, but before I was about to contact her with a reminder, she sent me a series of eBay messages to say that she was in fact going to pay, just needed a few more days; also, PayPal did not have her most current address, and could she send it to me, etc. I told her fine; she then paid within the window she'd promised and I got her new address via eBay message. This doesn't happen with every transaction, but sometimes buyers and sellers need to communicate things to each other outside the realm of "this item has shipped."

You can get more information about the specific Spring Seller changes in today's EcommerceBytes NewsFlash.

What is your take on the eBay Spring Seller Update? Do you think it's good, bad, or both, and why? Which changes will impact you the most, and why?

Comments (19) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue Feb 28 12:22:47 2012

"I would be interested in how eBay is going to calculate that one-day window."

Once again eBay announces a policy change which is ambiguous in nature. By leaving out the specifics of when the clock starts ticking, eBay is able to selectively apply their ambiguous standards in which ever way benefits them and not the seller.

The concept that sellers should depend on eBay automated communications shows just how out of touch eBay management is with reality.

eBay automated messages do not go out as they should 100% of the time. Were sellers to rely on eBay's glitch filled automatic messaging system, they could be leaving themselves open to buyer dissatisfaction on the many occasions where eBay fails to send messages on time or fails to send them at all.

Experienced sellers will simply change their messaging process and communicate with their buyers outside the eBay messaging system. This will have many benefits for sellers and may come back to bite eBay in the butt.

First, when sellers use their own email client to send messages to buyers, it is easier to add the buyers email address into a mailing list or client managed address book for future use. Once sellers have buyer addresses at their finger tips, it will be easier for sellers to communicate any message they wish, including promotional materials that point eBay buyers to the sellers items on venues other than eBay.

As these messages will be transmitted outside the eBay messaging system, sellers will escape the character limits eBay places on messages.

With longer messaging capabilities, sellers will be free to include any content they wish in emails which is currently prohibited by eBay including links to the sellers own website, or to stores open on other venues.

The ironic part of this is when sellers go outside of eBay's messaging system to communicate with buyers and promote their non eBay listings, eBay management will award them 5 Stars in Communication DSR's for doing so.

The extra effort to message buyers outside eBay's system, combined with the freedom to self promote non eBay businesses and get 5 Stars as a reward is both a win - win for sellers, and a lose - lose for eBay.

That this self defeating policy is issued by eBay's management should come as no surprise; eBay has been their own worst enemy with regard to establishing short sighted policy that will eventually work to drive down sales.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: Digmen1 This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Tue Feb 28 14:39:33 2012

This one day shipping gives customers unrealistic delivery times.
They will be expecting their items the next day.
This is just not practical.

I have bought from B&M websites and sometimes have to wait a week.

Sellers are going to get pinged for "late" delivery.

Just another example of ebay trying to make everyone into an online store.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 16:54:23 2012

This update like all the others that preceeded it, is nothing more then a pretty bow on a cow patty.

As usual, it puts all the onus on the seller - do more for less - an maybe we will reward you... maybe.

Because ''buyers expect'' (what ever that means)(aka its code for - we read and's policies and we see we can copy them and get away with it) things - eBay mandates sellers do them - without discussion with anyone. Please eBay - host a seller open house here in NYC where 60% of your sellers are - and hear from them about the garbage you put us through.

Pictures - no more stock pictures. Well maybe we would feel better about it and work on posting better pics if you wouldnt sic VERO on us 24/7 and have our back(s) in case of an issue. As well - who exactly told you that having a border or text with manufactorer name and model ''takes away from the buying experience''? (hint they copied it frm Amazon!). Personally I take all my own shots if the makers I represent dont allow - but I differenciate myself by comming up with creative ways to post pics - borders, text, multiple colors and more! I get only one shot at seperating myself from the pack - why take it away from me?

Returns .... a business center, a return center, a BS center ..... JD - Im not Macys. I cant afford to let ''your customers'' (they are his when he wants them to be and then they are ours when they are ''bad'') rip me off. Let ''YOUR'' buyers do some homework before they buy something. I sell only NEW items - use GOOGLE - its your friend. Know what it is and what it does BEFORE you buy it. I cant return items that arent defective (buyers remorse), that are missing parts (and dont say restocking fee as that means sellers will just get neg'd for that policy) or come back in bad condition.

Id like to see JD have to deal with this nonesence ... but I guess I should be glad they didnt roll out the worse plans now ... (like integrating the paypal hold into your eBay account ala Amazon and only release to you the amounts THEY want when THEY want.

eBay gets worse for sellers, and If I were Amazon, I would send JD a big bunch of flowers - he's the best thing that ever happened to Amazon.

The best line out of the whole thing was how few returns there are on eBay ... I want what HES smokin!

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue Feb 28 16:57:12 2012

As to eBay's new policy that they will remove feedback left after Unpaid Item cases have been opened...

There is a simpler answer to removing feedback after an UPI, simply link the opened UPI case back to the item transaction in eBay and prevent the feedback from being left in the first place. That would be a simpler solution which would require less wasted time for both sellers and eBay's support staff.

eBay's past refusal to remove feedback left after UPI's reflects the same logic that was behind their thinking that neutral feedback was the same as negative feedback. It was quite some time before eBay saw how wrongheaded that policy was and their decision to reverse course to correct bad policy.

To be fair, now that eBay finally agrees that buyers who have not paid for an item should not be able to leave feedback for that transaction, eBay should apply that retroactively and remove all past feedback which was left after a UPI case.

Of course they will not do the fair and honest thing by sellers and retroactively remove feedback left after UPI because it opens another can of worms created by their horrendous policy. Sellers who lost their TRS because of such feedback would have the expectation of having their status retroactively restored as well, and that would entitle sellers to retroactive refunds for lost discounts.

No way eBay will go back and right past wrongs if it is going to cost them money.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: Ron This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 19:39:15 2012

One day handling?  This is really anti-small seller.
Think about it.  Like most small sellers, we time our auctions to end once a week, all on the same evening.  I could offer 1 day handling if everyone paid immediately, however, usually, I have people pay either immediately or one, two, three and sometimes four or five days later or never.  What this means is that I would be running to the post office every day just to accommodate late payers.
I really don't think that these people have any clue over at eBay.  Or maybe they do - they'll certainly be saving a lot of 20% FVF discounts.
It's really ironic that eBay's strength was always the diversity and volume of its small sellers.  The more that they institute policies favouring large sellers, the worse that the eBay marketplace performs in terms of growth.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: DrStrangegoods This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 20:26:10 2012

1 Day handling time as defined by eBay Admin and posted on their discussion boards:

''After a buyer has paid for an item (and payment has cleared), you will have until 11:59:59 pm Pacific Time the following business day to upload tracking to validate that you provided one-day handling. Weekends and holidays are not counted as business days.''

Full post:

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: DrStrangegoods This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 20:30:50 2012

Also of interest someone asked if they would have to go back and edit their pictures of items currently listed. eBay admin pink reply:

''You items will not be removed this June, but starting this fall, new, revised, and relisted listings with pictures uploaded to the eBay picture hosting service will need to meet the new picture requirements.''

Full post:

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: Duke This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 28 20:36:39 2012

Communication between a buyer and a seller most certainly does NOT mean there is a a problem.  Buyers communicate for many positive reasons as well.

Here are four examples:
1.  Buyers often message me wish lists after they purchase an item to see if I have a specific item that hasn't been listed yet.

2.  They email specific packing and shipping instructions to ensure the safety of their item.

3.  They send a thank you for letting them know their item is shipping.  

4.  They email me to thank me for packing their item safely, to say how happy they are with the item, or some sort of thank you/compliment upon receiving the item.

My DSRs in communication were poor (3s and 4s) when I didn't email buyers after they paid.  Once I started emailing them, thanking them for paying and telling them when their item was shipping, my Communication DSRs jumped to 5s.

I mean, this makes no sense at all...communicate less with buyers?  Robust communication with my buyers has helped to build trust and relationships which translate into more sales.  All of which puts money in eBay's pocket...

All in all, it is garbage that communication = a problem.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

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

Tue Feb 28 23:55:50 2012

When The Ho began his seller extermination program in 2008, ebafia made some horrendously bad policy changes such as deadbeat buyers being able to leave feedback and neutrals counting as negatives.

Such duplicities served two purposes -- one immediate and one long term.

First in the short term they eliminated sellers and discounts.

Secondly, ebay knew at the time these changes would be reversed at some point in the future JUST SO THEY COULD LATER CLAIM they listen to sellers and "care" about them -- a shrewd, cynical strategy brought to you by the sociopaths who run Seller Experience.

Once more, ebay releases deliberately murky double secret policies that will be interpreted one way for the noisy sellers and quite another way for the sellers ebafia wants to keep.

In short, Donahoe just released a few more milliliters of Cyklon B into the "noisy" seller compound.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: TrentDep

Wed Feb 29 07:51:38 2012

Sorry, but I don't see how the auto 5 star for communication is a problem...

1)  It's a presumptive thing - that does not mean you cannot receive a 5 star rating if you choose to communicate with your buyer, but that it will be up to the buyer, as opposed to automatic.

2) Probably 90% of my communication with buyers is not through Ebay messaging, but rather - is through the email address that is included in every Paypal payment notification.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: TrentDep

Wed Feb 29 08:06:32 2012

With that said...

The one day ''upload tracking '' qualification for the FVF discount makes no sense... It has been my experience that the vast majority of large sellers do not meet this requirement - assuming that Ebay is counter small seller / pro large, I don't see how this helps that cause.

And of course there is a huge question as to how Ebay will track this requirement.  One can preview how one is doing in regard to the TSR program new requirements through their dashboard.  Mine shows a ''success'' rate ( ''You must have uploaded tracking within your stated handling time on at least 90% of completed transactions with US buyers during the past three months.'') of 63% - 21 of 33 transactions...

Huh... Considering that with exactly one exception, I purchased a USPS Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope through Paypal, using the Ebay transaction link, and did so in under 12 hours, I have some serious reservations...

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: Nan
Web Site

Wed Feb 29 10:44:04 2012

Does anybody know when that Customs Disclaimer will be added to the buyer checkout?
The one that starts: International Buyers – Please Note: Import duties, taxes, and charges are not included in the item price or shipping cost. These charges are the buyer's responsibility....

(I hate adding that to all of my listings and will be glad when I can remove it.)

From the checklist here:

SOUNDS like it is already in place, but (of course) the Help section still says I have to add the text block in order to be covered.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: Nan
Web Site

Wed Feb 29 13:55:15 2012

Chiming in on the 'one day tracking' upload requirement:

Useless.  Easily manipulated.

Here's why.  I recently purchased several auto parts from different sellers on ebay who advertised that 1 day turnaround time.  Out of 5 sellers, 2 of them did the following:

They printed the label, and  the tracking number was entered into ebay's system.  I received a 'this item has shipped' notification the next day.  

Then the label sat, until (I guess) the part was packed, or received, and THEN they physically sent the package.  A week later!

I know this because I called them both and asked why the package had not moved for a week.

So, tracking numbers can be deceiving.  The Acceptance Scan is a more accurate representation of the actual shipping date.


eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 29 16:07:35 2012

What this update is, and what no one speaks about is what scares me.

No matter how you polish this turd of an announcement, its still that, a turd ... for sellers. Buyers once again get ''what they want'', and sellers get imaginary but unobtainable discounts.

Its obvious whom it applies to (small to mid sized seller), and if you arent one of the special few - PRO Group members, Platinums, Diamonds, Chinese Megasellers,, J&R, ONECALL etc - then this is just another diasterous change that no good will come of.

If you are ''one of the chosen few'' then this accouncement is good news for you.

A) The nonesence with pictures. Your creativity, your hard work, your ingenuity no longer matter. You need to post regular pics of items (they of course can post stock pics AND not ever get VERO'D) so that your pics and listings arent better then thiers.

B) Returns. No one complained - except that above group. They already do 14+ days - they simply didnt want to have to compete with smaller more nimble competition. Your policies are now in line with thiers (just like the pics).

Ebay is still changing, and it is changing from a catterpillar to a moth .... not a butterfly. The time for its changing to a butterfly has long passed - eBay is no longer the seller friendly site, the landlord who rents you space to sell your goods, your community flee market, your school or church bazzar - its simply a mall in the USSR circa 1980. Everything you do, everything you say, the way you set your store up, how you ship, to where you ship etc is all controlled by eBay.

Ebay is completing its transformation into a USSR style SUPER MEGA MALL. Period.

JD said so in his CES speach and ''Captain Noah'' repeated it again in this issue of TWICE. Its all about thier relationships with, the PRO Group and how eBay can help THEM be more profitable .... that means LESS of us!

And no its no coincidence that J&R is now in the baby business - its a category that eBay BEGGED people to get into as they felt they were weak in that area (as Amazon begs people to get into the car audio business - they need help in that category).

Did you notice the one thing no one mentioned? THE CATALOG and its mandated use - along with UPCs!

Guess who will come up FIRST When this is all done? (hint - not you OR me)

Here's one even Julia missed. Its called ''Unilateral Pricing''. Thats comming here to eBay too! Simply speaking - manufactorers will be able to control your pricing - ie MAP.

And I quote ''In general the manufacturers are trying to hold the line on pricing, by stopping marketplace sales which encourage, in the words of many, “the race to the bottom.” ... can you guess who THAT is? EBAY!

Noah Herschman, eBay: It’s interesting to see how the manufacturers are evolving or not evolving their channel management strategies, as the case may be. And I’ll bet you, as online sales grow to 40 percent of the CE business, that manufacturers also develop a segmented online strategy. ''and also an eBay segment, which consists of, for the most part, local specialty retailers, independent retailers, the chains, or whoever it is that we have. is one of our great partners too.''

Notice that small and mid sellers are NOT mentioned ......!

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

This user has validated their user name. by: Tula

Wed Feb 29 17:29:32 2012

This is a very interesting update. I read through it twice last night because I couldn't believe it actually had some good stuff for me.

The things I like about this update:
* "To include sellers of more sizes, the annual sales requirement to be a Top-rated seller will be lowered to $1,000."

-- this is awesome for me. I've never been able to get fee discounts or qualify as a TRS or Powerseller due to being a small business who doesn't sell high-cost items and has relatively low volume.

* "Reclassifying USPS® First-Class service from “Expedited” to “Standard” will help set the right delivery expectations and help protect your ship time ratings."

-- this is a welcome change to keep buyer expectations reasonable, especially with the looming USPS cutbacks.

* "Feedback for unpaid items: Feedback left by a buyer with an unpaid item recorded for the transaction will be automatically removed from your record."

-- It's about time.

* "Get an automatic 5-star communication rating for transactions where you offer same-day or 1-day handling time, upload tracking information by the end of the next business day, and there is no communication between you and the buyer."

-- This is great! I use the buyer email addresses to send my thank you message and I already do 1-day handling, so this works well for me and bodes well for my DSRs.
My concerns about these updates are limited to the new picture requirements. In particular
* "Borders around pictures, and text added to pictures, will no longer be allowed."

-- I usually use a color block as the base for my gallery images, to make them square (most of my pics are not) and fill all available space. It also is a quick key that highlights my items and makes it easy for a buyer to determine which ones are mine without having to click on the listing.

I found the following statement about photos rather curious, too (in the FAQ section):

* "Pictures without borders and seller-added text are often given better exposure by outside search engines."

-- I'm no SEO expert, but I was unaware of any photo criteria like this for search engines. Anyone here know anything about that?

It seems that they're trying to get people away from self-hosted images. They claim it's to help improve mobile buying, but I suspect they'd prefer to have more control over the photos.

I use TurboLister and I'm also concerned about the extra time that adding pictures to eBay hosting will take. I have an automated process that loads my photos into my listing template and uploads them to my hosting server, which is an extreme time-saver. Having to click on every picture separately to add it to eBay hosting is going to be a time-consuming pain in the backside.

They say that "Self-hosted pictures in the description are exempt from these policies" but on the next line, "sellers are highly encouraged to move self-hosted pictures from the item description to eBay picture hosting services."

-- That makes me wonder if they're eventually planning to eliminate self-hosting altogether (and HTML, and any sort of branding.....)

Overall, I'm uneasy about the photo issues, but am pleased with the rest of the updates. I'm a small seller, with fairly low-volume of small, unique, easy-to-package items, so none of these new requirements -- barring the photo stuff -- are especially onerous. I already meet most of these new requirements, so I may even start saving money through FVF discounts (finally!). I realize this is not the case for others, but it's nice to see a change that's actually positive for my business. Though I'll have to wait and see if there are any "gotchas" in the mix that negate the good stuff. I'm not going to plan on anything good until it actually happens, since eBay has played this game before.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: exdwh This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 29 23:49:05 2012


You're absolutely right. I've had sellers print the label and completely forget to ship until I asked for status. These guys will keep their TRS badge and simply forfeit the automatic 5 for shipping time. With First Class downgraded to 'Standard', eBay has even provided some slack to assist the scam.

The other loophole is that many postage programs will generate a DC number without prepaying the postage. What happens if sellers upload those numbers?

If eBay wants to see actual scans, then you need to factor USPS error and the seller's outgoing percentage would likely have to be more than 90%.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: Lawrence A Dickerson This user has validated their user name.

Thu Mar 1 00:52:58 2012

I have a very good friend who sells upscale women's clothing and I remember one time when she received a return on an expensive dress that had what looked like mustard stains on the front.

The buyer of course  blamed my friend and won her case with PayPal and had to not only eat the price but the shipping as well.The buyer sent my friend a request for a rush order because she wanted to wear that dress on a particular date.Two days after the scheduled event she returned the dress Not As Described.

No seller can make any money with customers like that and this will only increase as a result of the mandatory return clause.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Thu Mar 1 11:57:02 2012


Ya THINK?  Really?  The sellers of used clothing and similar are HYSTERICAL over this blatant slap in the face towards us.  We will be forced to accept items we can no longer sell and must trash because of this absurd policy.

And the PINKS keep repeating that the "answer" to this is to impose a "restocking fee" if items are returned to us.  And that ebay will consider on a case by case basis what "we" ahve to say about items rented and returned.  And that there is "protection" against buyer return abuse.

And yet--when ever we ASK what these policies ARE and WHERE to FIND them---crickets.  

How DO you manage to grab onto and HOLD onto a "re stocking fee" when ebay/pp refunds your money?

I for one will NOT buy into the 14 day (or any OTHER) return policy.  If you go to a B&M thrift store or consignment store or for that matter the Salvation Army stores you will see LARGE SIGNS telling you that there ARE NO RETURNS.  Period.  

And to me--unless the buyer can show me HOW I screwed this up---this is NOT my problem once I have mailed the item in a timely manner.

Now as to that TIME issue---we have had a snow storm here in the North East that has closed schools and other business'.  Now that the plows are out I might be able to make it to the PO to send the SWIM SUIT that I sold last night---and the buyer contacted me hours AFTER the payment to ask me---"Can this be in Kentucky BEFORE we go on our cruise?"   Ummmmm---well I certainly HOPE so but ya know I don't own or run the USPS.  AND unless you WANT to pay for a more spendy class of postage---well,  I certainly HOPE it gets there in time.  How will these unavoidable weather related delays play out?  Will the sellers who "opt into" the 1 day "shipping" be penalized for this?  The floods here this fall shut the Post OFfices DOWN in many towns!  Roads were washed away.  And there WERE people without power for WEEKS---some of them were ebay sellers.  How would they fare under the new "improved" rules?

And I DO know personally sellers who WERE penalized by their buyers for this occurance.  Can you imagine what it will be like NOW?

I am a very small TRS seller and will lose whatever "discount" I allegedly have been benefitting by but I am NOT signing on to have my items used abused and returned in trashed condition.

eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take   eBay's Spring 2012 Update: A Seller's Take

by: Andy55 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Mar 7 14:41:50 2012

For my business, books and rare media I see a huge problem with the mandatory return policy that ebay requires to be counted as a top rated seller.
Example 1: I sold a rare early film reel that has high value to stock footage vendors.
Having to offer a return policy opens the door for buying the film, copying it and then send it back for a refund (for example this  film sold for $600)
Example 2: I regularly sell books (that are due to their age in the public domain) to reprint publishers. Again, the value is in the buyer attaining a copy for commercial reproduction purposes.
After this, when a reprint copy is offered, my book becomes relatively worthless.
Needless to mention rare and unusual vintage photography etc.
So, in that sense I consider it as a somewhat unfair demand, especially in that it financially punishes vendors of products like mine and in addition lowers the exposure of the product and competitiveness.
But then I understand that in the big picture these niche markets on ebay are relatively unimportant and ebay simply does not have the qualified staff needed to make exceptions/accomodations.

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