Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Nov 23 2015 13:13:55

eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

By: Ina Steiner

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Do you understand eBay's new Late Shipment metric that was announced as part of the 2015 Fall Seller Update? That's a question eBay is asking sellers in a survey it's conducting this month about changes that take effect in February.

eBay announced in September changes to its seller performance standards, explaining it would begin judging sellers based on two key metrics: defect rate and on-time shipping - and would be changing how it calculates those metrics.

Here's a list of questions it's asking as part of the survey:

Standards 2016 Preview

1) Did you understand your performance in the new standards launching in Feb 20th?

2) Do you understand the new Late Shipment rate? Is there anything we could do to improve?

3) Did you see anything that you didn't understand or was incorrect? Tell us about it.

4) Tell us more: We would love to hear your thoughts...

As part of its efforts to educate sellers about the changes, eBay had released an infographic (PDF format) describing how it would calculate a seller's Late Shipment rate (eBay usually refers to it as the more positive-sounding "on-time shipping rate," but in the survey calls it the more realistic "Late Shipment rate").

Do you feel you understand eBay's changes to seller performance standards coming in February, and have you received any interesting surveys from eBay lately? A reader also told us of another survey asking sellers about the listing page.

Please take screenshots if you see any interesting surveys - generally once you've completed a survey, the link will no longer work.




Comments (42) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: rstpete This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 23 13:27:09 2015

Rate of tracking not linking to ebay is increasing.  I not not shipped a single item late and all have been scanned at the door.  This weekend they showed I was late on 10, now it is 18.  

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: JQ This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 23 14:06:33 2015

Like the above seller, I almost always ship my orders the following day. I miss that standard on roughly one out of every 200 orders. Yet eBay displays my on-time shipping percentage consistently between 94 and 96%. That has been the case since they started displaying that number.

It just has never been a concern of mine as the number never dropped below 90% so my TRS discount was never in danger.

The problem with eBay's new system is that it relies on eBay's programming team to get something right, i.e. updating tracking information on orders. I do not know why eBay is incapable of getting that information correct more than 94% of the time, but years of evidence shows that is the case. Any time eBay uses information produced by its own programs to supervise sellers there will be a LOT of problems, not because the sellers are not meeting their own standards but because eBay cannot fulfill their end of the process.

I've said it before, I would MUCH rather have my performance rated by SUBJECTIVE buyer feedback than by eBay attempts to produce and maintain an OBJECTIVE supervision system. Years of experience have taught me not to trust eBay to get anything of a technical nature correct.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

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

Mon Nov 23 14:35:48 2015

More appropriate questions would be

Does ebay understand the "Late Shipment Rate?"

Do USPS, UPS, and FedEx understand the "Late Shipment Rate?"

I ship exclusively through USPS, and the information they supply ebay is usually correct.

But the tracking information is incorrect often enough that USPS and ebay errors could case a seller their TRS rating even though that seller has shipped the same or next business day.

Unless and until ebay gets its own house in order obtaining CORRECT carrier information, then the "Late Shipment Rate" should be lowered to 90%.

Wait! I forgot? eliminating TRS sellers might be the entire point of the "Late Shipment Rate.?"  

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Nov 23 14:48:29 2015

eBay know when I print my shipping label. That should be enough. If it is not, too bad. I ship within 24 hours and many times same day. If they say otherwise then they are wrong. I can not be held responsible for other factors and forces that impede shipping.

I'm not jumping through any more hoops or expending any more energy as it relates to shipping.  What I am doing should be enough.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Mon Nov 23 14:52:18 2015

I haven't noticed anyone else here mentioning it, but when I left feedback for an item last week I wasn't asked if the item arrived on or before XX date (whatever date eBay decided I should have it by). I guess that experiment didn't knock off enough small sellers so they dropped it.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Mon Nov 23 15:06:16 2015

Late Shipment Rate

You: 0.97% (3 out of 310)

Says they allow 3%, I'm 1/3 the way there. . .

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: comments This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 23 22:55:36 2015

This policy is incredibly bad for business. My service has dropped dramatically to conform to the new policy. My ontime shipping rate and defect rates by the new standards is 0%. No cancelled transactions and no late shipments!? But how do I earn this?

Well I now have to schedule a pick up every day. My mail comes no later then 11am, but most days before 10am. My postoffice will take no packages at the counter and all packages must be dropped in the drop box. Unfortunately packages in some situations can shit for 2 days. This is rare but potentially more then 3%.

This means I have to base my WHOLE business model off of that. The means after 11am the latest I must hold all packages until the following day to be scanned at the next days scheduled pick up. Thats right!!! I have to HOLD, DELAY, NOT SHIP til the next day and I can no longer offer same day shipping.

Unfortunately when my mail man comes and picks up my mail before 11am he then keeps it on his truck until his out time late in the evening. He gets back after the packages leave for the sort facility for the day so my packages sit in the post office over night to go out on the next days truck.

Another unfortunate factor is first class packages are now being held for up to two days at the local post offices so every other day this will cause another 1 day delay.

The majority of my packages are now not even leaving my local area sort facility until about the estimated delivery date!

Under the old policy I would go to the postoffice and drop off as often as needed before cut off time. 95% of all packages got their scan within 24hrs with about 5% either getting a first scan next day or missing the scan at my local PO and getting scanned late while somewhere in transit to my buyer (usually the area hub).

I have a solid 5.0 DSR score in ALL areas. 100% positive feedback, and only return defects and a single neutral from a $2 item that thankfully won't count soon. But my service level is virtually perfect. The new hurdles not only give me more work, and waiting....but they force me to slow down 100% of service to combat a 5% late scan rate. This is as doomed for failure as return defects!

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Beanie

Mon Nov 23 23:52:46 2015

@ comments, I'm realize you made a typo, but the sentence you wrote that starts with "Unfortunately" has me dying laughing. I'm not laughing at your situation though as it is serious.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: No Princess This user has validated their user name.

Tue Nov 24 00:48:36 2015

I ship within 24 hours, weekends excluded, as we have very limited Saturday service in the small community where I live.  Being a one person operation, I'm too busy to try to jump through more hoops.  My focus now is on QUALITY items and service for my customers.  

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Nov 24 03:01:47 2015

Most comments are related to the current rules on the late shipment rate.  This changes dramatically in February.  It is important to understand the upcoming change and how it will impact you.  The change is GREAT.  It will help many sellers out a great deal.  Many of the complaints that have been posted here will just completely go away.

The New standard starting sometime early next year is ANY ONE of the three options below.

1. Tracking shows the item was shipped within the seller's stated handling time.

OR

2. Tracking shows delivered within the stated ETA of the package on the listing.

OR

3.  The buyer confirms [via a question on the FB page] that the item was delivered within the ETA time stated on the listing at the time of purchase.

This is leaps and bounds better than what we are currently dealing with.  Still not perfect, but it is moving in the right direction.

This coupled with the more relaxed rules on defects will help a great number of sellers.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: Randy This user has validated their user name.

Tue Nov 24 10:30:24 2015

I don't pay attention to any of this crap, it will just lead to an early grave!

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: rhawk This user has validated their user name.

Tue Nov 24 10:38:10 2015

Ina,  please note that you can take this survey by clicking on the "tell us what you think" button at the top of the february preview page that pops up in your "seller dashboard"

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Shop and Ship

Tue Nov 24 12:40:17 2015

Randy is right. Show me the Money! If my efforts - including reading the constant drivel from eBay and slowly uploading photos - does not earn at least minimum wage then I'm not interested in what eBay did, what eBay does, and what eBay wants. If eBay is not a business then it's a really lousy social club ;-)  

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: Bidderboy This user has validated their user name.

Tue Nov 24 12:43:23 2015

This is the bit I don't understand - I enter tracking for all my shipments within the United States. There is no tracking available for international shipments when you take your packages to the Post Office as I do. Do international shipments count toward this new policy? Any comments or suggestions? Thank you.  

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: comments This user has validated their user name.

Tue Nov 24 16:22:56 2015

@  beanie...LOL!! It was a typo I saw it right after I hit post. I was hoping no one would notice :P

@ Mary...Not sure who you were referring to but my post was probably the longest and I was NOT talking about the old policy.

The only way to ensure packages don't get counted late is to ensure you actively get the first scan. The item getting delivered in their stated ETA is NOT within my control so it is not something I can depend on. Every time one was late outside my control I would get stung then just like I do today if I notice a return defect or something. In order to avoid limits on my account or loss of the discount I will continue to actively get items scanned. Hopefully time will prove this ineffective just like return defects.

Also what we are "dealing with now" sort of got fixed. With the addition of the return reason "just didn't like it" every single return except 1 has chosen that reason instead of not as described. Previously all returns were choosing "item was not as described" and then they complained about stuff in the description.

Example. Listing description "some spots located on the Indian's face and in the fields." Buyer chose SNAD "The spots were worse then expected I would like to return". Not something I deserved to be punished for and ebay did remove the defect but this was happening a lot. Most of those defects were removed but still extra work for me to have to call and plead my case.

In any even ebay is fighting the WRONG battle. They need to combat where REAL dissatisfaction lies.

The real problems with ebay:

Sellers who ignore email.

Sellers who don't care about customer service.

Sellers who dropship FROM AMAZON AND WALMART!

Sellers who just ship out defective merchandise and hide the feedbacks under piles of legit sales.

Sellers who are selling fake flea drops with feedbacks that say "you killed my pet"

Buyers who grossly abuse returns.

Sellers who legitimately earn negative feedback where they don't mind "absorbing" one because they have been devalued.



 

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: Volvo351 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Nov 24 20:20:01 2015

They shouldn't have included that "tell us more" part..'cuz if I get the survey there's a shipload of stuff I'd love to "tell" them.

Of course, no one at eBay is going to bother listening, so your response is just venting.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

by: yesterdaygirls This user has validated their user name.

Wed Nov 25 01:07:16 2015

A couple of things to consider.  First, probably is that ebay is putting another impediment in achieving top seller status...($$$ 20% off final value fees)...also no longer is each item counted as a 'transaction, but each 'payment' is considered a transaction.  So multiple items within a payment will either help/hurt you one time.
Also with one day handling time (to get the extra $$$)...ebay is allowing for 1 day + 12 hours to obtain the first scan to deal with the vagaries of the postal system.  (order paid at 9:00 am on monday...need a scan by wednesday at noon...not sure if uploading tracking by midnight on tuesday is still counted for/against ones account) We sometimes ship 100 packages a day...so it's a going to be a challenge to jump through this new hoop.  (also...not sure how we can tell...after an order has shipped...what exactly is 'on time delivery.')

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Nov 25 02:55:27 2015

@bidderboy

International shipments do NOT count against the percentage currently nor will it count when they change it next year.  International sales are treated differently.  

If you go to your dashboard.  Look at it carefully, you will see a small drop down box on the right.  If you are a US seller then it defaults to USA, but if you go and look at the box, you can find out your standing globally and for a couple other settings.

FYI, the mere fact you enter tracking into Ebay has is not currently enough nor will it be next year.  Currently they have to validate with USPS or your other carriers to make sure you actually did ship the item.  For some sellers, this process does not work out well for them currently.  But the changes coming next year will help dramatically.

Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Nov 25 03:05:47 2015

@comments

The length of your posting had nothing to do with my previous post.  My post was directed at you specifically as others are discussing the current rules in which we are eval'd on.  Ina's article is about the upcoming changes due in February.

It isn't an "old" policy yet.  It is our current policy.  The new policy is not effective until sometime in February if Ebay keeps to the schedule.  So we still have a few months left with the current policy.

"...The only way to ensure packages don't get counted late is to ensure you actively get the first scan."  This is not a correct statement for the changes due next year.  Above I listed the 3 options for verifying a shipment next year.  The current rules are far more restrictive and open to error.

You are correct, we do not currently have control over the ETA now or when then new changes come into play.  However sellers can choose a shipping option that gives them a couple more days if they want to.  I know that isn't always a viable option, but for some it can help.



Perminate Link for eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate   eBay Surveys Sellers on New Late-Shipment Rate

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Nov 25 03:15:46 2015

@yesterdaygirls

Would you mine explaining in more detail what the upcoming changes from Ebay is doing to make maintaining or achieving TRS status more difficult?  I certainly may have missed something, but my understanding is that the changes coming early next year will make it far easier for most sellers to maintain or achieve TRS.  My first post on this thread explains this in more detail.

Ebay is really easing up on the defects sellers get from returns and the way they determine our shipping verification percentages.  Both mean good things for most sellers.  Are you saying it is the opposite for you?  How does the changes make things worse for you?  Just asking so I better understand.

The transaction count has been the way it is for many years.  It goes by a calendar week.  Monday through Sunday.  Not by payment.  If a buyer purchases 1 item from you on Friday and another 1 on Saturday, it is considered one transaction.  But if a buyer purchases 1 items from you on Friday and 1 on Monday, that is 2 transactions because it crosses weeks.

Ebay is rarely that quick to update scans for the current way they are doing things.  Shipping percentages can take a couple days or more to update.  I don't know where you are getting this 1 day plus 12 hours thing.  Ebay can't even get the updates from USPS that fast and never have since they started this thing.

What "new" hoop are you talking about?

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