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Tue Sept 25 2018 20:56:13

eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay sent notifications today to sellers with "high" or "very high" rates of claims warning them of possible 4% penalty fees and other consequences as a result of its new policy that takes effect on October 1, 2018. Readers forwarded us two types of letters eBay sent today, one for Item Not Received and one for Item Not as Described. 

The consequences are different for each.

eBay's will charge an additional fee of 4% for "Very High" Item Not as Described rates, and eBay will automatically add time to delivery estimates for listings of sellers with "Very High" Item Not Received rates.

"Okay what does VERY HIGH mean," one reader asked. "Has anyone put an actual number on this???"

It is a relative number - eBay compares an individual seller's performance to other sellers who "sell similar items under similar circumstances." Sellers must view their own standings in the service metrics dashboard in the Performance tab in Seller Hub.

In the dashboard, eBay shows a thermometer-style graphic with four sections: Low (green); Average (yellow); High (orange); and Very High (red). (You can see an example on eBay's help page.)

In one seller's report we obtained, eBay displayed the seller's Item Not as Described returns as 1.43%, which was in the "High" section of the thermometer, while showing the rate of the seller's peers as 0.46%, which fell into the "Average" section of the thermometer.

Today's letters referenced requests opened by buyers between Jun 1 and Aug 31, 2018 and detailed the potential penalties sellers will face as follows:

1) Consequences for sellers with "very high" rates of Item Not Received claims:

Service metrics are evaluated on the 20th of every month. Consequences will apply to your listings on the eBay sites and in the shipping categories only where you received a very high rate.

- Time automatically added to delivery estimates for listings in the shipping categories and listing sites where your rate is very high

- Time added to delivery estimates only to items listed directly on ebay.com, ebay.ca, and cafr.ebay.ca

eBay said those consequences would apply "until the rate is no longer very high" and made the following suggestions for sellers with very high rates of INR claims:

- Ship sold items within your handling time
- Use a shipping service that provides tracking

2) Consequences for sellers with "very high" rates of Item Not as Described claims:

- Additional final value fees on listings in the categories and listing sites where your rate is very high

- Additional fees apply only to items listed directly on ebay.com, ebay.ca, cafr.ebay.ca, and ebay.com.au

Note that eBay states on its policy page that sellers must have received at least 10 claims before they will be subject to consequences.

Another reader was upset because they determined the claims against them were not accurate but eBay would not let them appeal those claims. "I found that the customers had chosen "item not described" even though that wasn't the issue," the seller explained. "I have the emails to prove it as well, but eBay says they will not receive appeals for these transactions."

There's also an interesting thread about the policy on the eBay discussion boards. One seller notes there is a distinction between how eBay treats claims when determining "defects" versus sellers' "service metrics."



Comments (61) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: Dburn This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 25 23:19:36 2018

In the seller metrics eBay is also counting aborted returns. This was when a buyer started a ''defective'' return and closed the return when it was  explained they had installed the item incorrectly. This happens around 4 out of every 5 returns with the items carried by me.

I called the CSR and could not get a straight answer on  why aborted returns were being counted and was there any mechanism where the seller can call on the aborted returns and have them removed from the count.

It became apparent that  aborted returns will be counted as a full return and there won't  be any method of having those returns removed. This is most likely a combination of programming shortcomings and management seeing more fee opportunities  . The CSR  tried to tell me that they would have to review the listing to see if it was written properly. I asked him how that was going to be possible when eBay was trying to substitute their images and descriptions for the sellers in what appears to be another disfigured initiative to build a product catalog for the ''product experience'' which when boiled down to it's essence; eBay wants millions of sellers to back stop a shopping cart department store site without eBay doing any work. Like the market was wide open for another plain jane eCommerce site  with bad images and bad descriptions of brand name products.

As eBay's  stock took out another 52 week low today, it should be noted that billions of dollars have now been expended by this management team to raise the stock price. The market cap of the company is lower now than it was two years ago  as the stock price  is down YTD and over 52 weeks.

The Balance sheet has been decimated by eBay management. In the last year the tangible assets have sunk from 6.5 billion to 1.8 billion.   Their borrowings to buy the rest of the 6B stock buy-back authorization will soon exceed assets. They are desperate not only for increases in revenue to show wall street but increases in funds to buy back more stock as the state of their balance sheet could limit additional borrowings if the economy turns down and eBay's house of mirrors starts crashing.

I'm starting to doubt that even if the stock breaks in half, the board would do nothing to stop the systematic plunder.  

The beatings will continue...




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by: eBay Shill Buster This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 25 23:51:09 2018

This program is a criminal fraud scheme dreamed up by the 3 Stooges of eBay, Cunning Cutler, Dummy Devin and the Wall Street Whisperer CFO.

Sellers subject to increased fees should file complaints with their local Attorney Generals office, and they should also send a complaint to the FTC.

 https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/GettingStarted?NextQID=192
&Url=%23%26panel1-6#crnt

In
no way will the eBay metrics posted have any possibility of being correct and this is the basis for a massive criminal fee fraud that is upcoming against sellers.

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 01:30:22 2018

Return metrics are a farce from the get go. There are far too many return nuances for ebay to deal with given it's lack of manpower and a willingness to do so in the 1st place.
Example: I have a defect for "article arrived broken".
HUH? I have limited control over any such situation.
PLUS...the article was a golf club that had a minor smudge which was MISTAKEN for a crack (which club I later again sold with no problem). Try explaining THAT to a 3rd Wordl CSR. It's like the new full-weight-on-the-QB rule in the NFL. Things happen that are unintentional, and DON'T deserve a penalty.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Sep 26 02:28:02 2018

It is a horrible policy.  It does not matter if the SNAD was filed correctly or what the outcome is.  The mere fact that a SNAD was opened is what they look at in the Service Metrics.  And there is no appeal to have any falsely filed SNADs or ones opened by accident removed.  Ebay says they have this factored into the metrics.  Somehow I doubt the accuracy of that.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

This user has validated their user name. by: DeathFromAbove

Wed Sep 26 02:45:19 2018

Don't forget, even if you aren't a victim, notify the California Attorney General.  Simply explain how it is an exceptionally unfair business practice, that likely violates the Caliifornia Unfair Competition Law (UCL) by harming business with a metric that is missing data, and no way to correct or appeal the unfair penalty.  So this is obviously a way for them to collect more money from sellers, with no publicly viewable or trustworthy backing data, meaning they can literally add EVERY seller in to this Higher Fee pool if they so choose, and this will inflate pricing, and harm the retail market in California and everywhere else.  


UCL info:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Unfair_Competition_Law
>Contact
form:  https://oag.ca.gov/contact/general-comment-question-or-complaint
-form

The
thing is, sellers that are "so bad" should be removed from the site, not encouraged to list more.  What goofy idea is that?  

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 03:01:15 2018

Only TWO things can fix this ABOMINATION of a misguided policy.
One.   EBay can Crash Burn and vanish off the face of the Earth.
Two.   Some SANE person at eBay who has yet to GRAB the steering wheel to keep this BUS from Zooming off the cliff.  
I hope it is scenario TWO.
There is more than just the HINT of a REASON as to why eBay would DESIRE to see "item not as described" rates FALL.   Seriously, that is what ALL of us should desire.
The FIX to this is to STOP THIS INSANITY of treating Every Single Report of Item not as described as being VALID.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 03:26:34 2018

Part two.
I can SEE that eBay had some level of REASON to want to diminish the current level of reported Item Not Received / Item Not as Described.  WANTING it is one thing, but THIS is NOT the WAY to do it.
Treating every REPORT from buyers as VALID is insane.
Especially as they are ENCOURAGING RETURNS and entirely too many eBay users are BUYERS ONLY.  I am not attacking Buyers, but for those who NEVER sell thru eBay, there is no VALID reason to presume those folks understand the PAIN they inflict if they elect to pick the WRONG REASON for reporting a problem.

A PRIME EXAMPLE for me was a buyer who was completely confused about how DVDs work vs. VHS.
No, I'm not kidding.  An ADULT buyer in 2018 who did NOT understand DVD technology.  Too much like an adult in 1950 who could not decypher the Rotary Dial Telephone who kept on picking up the HANDSET and yelling "Hello, Central?" into it.
She bought and quickly received her DVD Travelogue of TURKEY produced and provided by the Government of Turnkey in ENGLISH to promote Tourism.   It was BRAND NEW and still FACTORY SEALED.
Her initial message was that she was appalled that I had sent her a DEFECTIVE movie that once loaded would only play, replay, replay ad infinitum a 30-second collage of scenes of Turkey with a music background. She paid for a FULL movie and she wanted me to PROVIDE what she bought.
It took me TIME to think this one through and finally realize that THIS DVD was clearly the FIRST DVD she had even purchased, loaded into the machine and TRIED to watch all on her own.  Think about it.  Up to this point any time she watched a DVD someone ELSE, (husband, daughter, grand-daughter) had LOADED the DVD, viewed the MENU PAGE and then selected "PLAY".  
VHS movies were always set up so that you LOADED any PreRecorded FACTORY produced tape and POOF it started all on its own if the CASSETTE body were already "TAB OUT" .
Took 3 back / forth messages to get her all lined out to understand that her problem was OPERATOR ERROR.
Under eBay's new Seller Punishment Program THAT would have counted as a SELLER ERROR with NO Rhyme, Reason or manner of appeal.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: hawk This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 05:11:43 2018

just another way to steel more money from sellers. isn't it amazing that you never hear a good word about sellers. and everyone just lets it go on.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: Marzy This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 05:25:29 2018

We all have stories similar to angryllama.  I have been selling on eBay since 1998.  Recently I acquired a lot of laserdiscs. Even though I was clear in my postings regarding that these were not DVD's and would not play in a DVD player over a short period of time I had 3 people question me as to what I sent/sold them.  
So my solution? I stopped selling Laserdiscs on eBay.
Overall I am in favor of anything eBay does to discourage poor sellers. Unfortunately, there are many sellers that provide poor customer service and or poor quality products.  
Dburn states that 4 out 5 of his returns are due to customer error and not the product. My suggestion? Get better instructions or quit selling what you're selling.  

I am not an eBay fan, nor do I think they care about me as a seller.  However, when I buy on eBay I only buy from sellers with 100% positive feedback.  Earn it by selling good products or customer service or giving refunds when the buyer is a jerk. Either way, I know that you care when its 100.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 06:04:50 2018

in my opinion,,,,,,,,,,,,,

this ebay is so desperate for money, they will resort to anything, and this shows how bad this rancid company has become


They have rigged a system where they will now earn almost double the profit, on items and sellers that really should be simply removed from the marketplace

if buyers are returning these items because they are so terrible, dangerous, counterfeit or whatever the reason, is it ok for a company to keep promoting and selling these product for DOUBLE the profit,?
.

This is a disgraceful act , and in my opinion has to be illegal, where the hell are the consumer protection, agencies, this needs to be investigated asap

or,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

They have set the bar so low, that many sellers will fall into the double profit for ebay trap , this would also be a despicable act , from a disgraceful company

equivalent to theft


, sellers, buyers and consumer protection groups need to look up and pay attention to what this company is doing,

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Sep 26 06:12:01 2018

This policy was implemented to monetize.

What more do you need to know?  These warning letters are nothing more than subterfuge.  Once again, they have to frame this as "bad seller......bad, bad seller".  Bad seller must be punished.

Sellers really need an Avenatti style attorney to go after these thieves.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

This user has validated their user name. by: Bidonmine

Wed Sep 26 07:11:29 2018

Penalties without any due-process... welcome to the new world order

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: leathermermaid8 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 08:17:28 2018

These metrics sound more suited to a direct employee of a company rather than a business using services (venue/platform) of another company and paying a fee to do so.  At least direct employee would be getting health benefits and a chance at least at a 401K.....

It would be more honest simply to charge an all encompassing fee to everyone and any additional based on usage.  Ebay wants to charge more money for use of its site.  Period.  I think I'd rather be told I'm going to pay more than hitting me every other week with "gotchas" and impossible rules.

they're not kidding anybody and they're not making it a better buying experience, either.

Add to this the level of confusion that occurs when changes are made, new payment systems, mobile app that doesn't work well, no real protection against any kind of fraud (unless fee avoidance of course), buyers remorse or re-listed items that have been sold thereby frustrating flakey buyers all over again.

My bad experiences with sellers have been very few, my irritation with a site that is in a constant state of flux has me shopping elsewhere.  

The only real solution is to either establish a website or find another venue that treats its buyers and sellers like partners and allows neither to abuse the other.  AND PUBLICIZE THE HELL OUT OF IT.

Name recognition is what eBay has right now and the leaders are just trying to do the same thing with  as the Singer sewing machine name.  Singer doesn't make its machines anymore, you know.  But the name was worth a lot.  Ebay on the other hand never really had a solid product the owned and made but their website.

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This user has validated their user name. by: CanBrit

Wed Sep 26 09:44:37 2018

On the eBay Top Rated Seller Standards for US performance. There is a pop up you can select for information. This is what is contained in the pop up. Could someone read this and see if it makes sense. I keep going around in circles. There just seems something contrary about it., In addition they seem to have attached the performance requirement to the punishments. Maybe I need another coffee.

"To meet the performance criteria, be sure to stay below the maximum limits for percent and count. If you exceed the limits for both maximum percent and count, you don't meet the criteria. If you exceed the limits for either the maximum percent or count, you still meet the criteria. We designed these limits in this way to measure all sellers regardless of their sales volume"

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: Dburn This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 09:46:53 2018

@Marzy

''Dburn states that 4 out 5 of his returns are due to customer error and not the product. My suggestion? Get better instructions or quit selling what you're selling.  ''

Just as simple as that eh? Seriously, stop blaming the seller. Everything was fine until this policy came out and the amount of returns were considered low until they weren't. Then we have the problem of reading in general and reading comprehension. Listings state, ''do not buy this if you don't understand the requirements above. ''

I'm going to get a new products to fit eBay's new policy? I feel sorry for all the people selling electronics with a 6th grade level of complexity. @Marzy is saying get rid of your products, because eBay's policy won't permit them.

Nice thought. Simplify your offerings for mentally challenged people with the attention span of a Gnat who open eBay packages with one had on the package and one hand pointing at the large return button.

Much easier, go to other sites whose management doesn't have a problem with increasing organic traffic and isn't intent on self immolation

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

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

Wed Sep 26 10:06:58 2018

Strangely the Camera  Trade shows are rebuilding  visitors  and vendors again. A buisness ebay closed 90% of since 1985. Why?  The self destructive policies of eBay. EBay sellers are going to other sities, or trade shows. Wall street sees the down fall, how can the eBay board of directors be so stupid not to stop the slide?

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 10:11:41 2018

...and then there's the 78% or whatever of returns that were bought on mobile devices where the buyer didn't read the full desciption.
There's a reason that Common Sense is not for sale on ebay...it would be yanked.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Sep 26 10:24:20 2018

Marzy says "My suggestion? Get better instructions or quit selling what you're selling. "

Word up Marzy--buyers don't read.  And now that eBay hides descriptions behind a click those who did read don't.

Exactly how much coddling of a buyer is required Marzy?  It's not the product that the seller needs to change.  It's the venue that he sells that product on that he needs to change.

Perminate Link for eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees   eBay Sends Warnings to Sellers Facing Penalty Fees

by: sasikat9 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 10:52:44 2018

Ebay needs to quit changing buyers diapers and shoving a pacifier in their mouths. Buyers need to own up to their own stupidity of not reading or understanding what they are buying. 50 percent of these morons would be further ahead going to a store so they can touchie feelie what they want.

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Wed Sep 26 11:23:18 2018

The return metric is a statistical joke. It clumps all sellers into a single category regardless of unit volume and/or sales volume.
Some poor smuck who has 100 sales and 2 returns is TWICE as bad as the jerk seller who has 5000 sales and 50 returns, or equal to the same jerk with 100 returns?

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