eBay announced this week it has updated the FAQs
for its Guaranteed Delivery program that will be launching this summer. As we noted last summer
when we first caught whiff of the program, it had tried a "guaranteed arrival" program in 2011, but it never got off the ground.
Sellers are wondering how the new program will impact them. eBay explains in the FAQs:
Sellers have two options for Guaranteed Delivery. With either option, your listings show up to buyers as guaranteed:
1) Handling time - Sellers guarantee same-day or one-day handling. Then eBay determines the guaranteed delivery date.
2) Door-to-door - Sellers choose to take full control over their guaranteed delivery dates, based on their ability to deliver to various regions and their knowledge of their carriers’ service level by region.
What's really interesting is a video
eBay published 4 weeks ago explaining the program from the buyer and seller's point of view. The abstract reads, "Coming in summer 2017, eBay buyers will see a guaranteed delivery date of 3 days or less on millions of eligible listings. Sellers who qualify will have the option to guarantee delivery by a specified date. Learn more at http://ebay.to/2owav3f"
In the video, you can see a toggle at the top of the search results page that is labeled, "Guaranteed to arrive in 3 days or less" that filters out the listings that don't offer the guarantee. A woman who sells on eBay explains to her sister's significant other that he can use eBay to buy the sister a birthday gift and use the Guaranteed Delivery program to make sure it gets there on time.
"If the package gets there late, eBay covers the buyer's shipping refund or provides a free return label," she tells him.
According to her statement, that means even if a seller ships on time, they might be seeing the item they sold returned to them simply because the carrier was late with delivery. Even if the return shipping is on eBay's dime, that still leaves the seller vulnerable to receiving returns, something that might have them balk at using the program given the increased risk of damaged returns.
Watch the video and pay special attention to the search filter and how the seller explains how the program works.