Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Jan 29 2018 22:54:42

Does eBay Need a Blocked Seller Function?

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay has a feature that allows sellers to block shoppers from bidding or buying from them. But should it also have a feature that allows buyers to block sellers to ensure they don't accidentally purchase from someone with whom they've had a bad experience, or just don't want to deal with for one reason or another?

Some buyers say yes in discussion threads about the issue.

But some sellers think that's not a great idea. A seller has no control over who buys from them (thus the blocked bidder list), while buyers can simply choose to abstain from buying from any seller they want.

What about giving shoppers the ability to block sellers with certain characteristics - sellers from overseas would be an obvious possibility.

Some buyers say they want a way to block certain sellers from their search results because they dominate the page with duplicate and/or overpriced items. When you put it that way, maybe being able to block bad or annoying sellers would have a positive impact on "good" sellers.

What do you think?



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Readers Comments

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This user has validated their user name. by: Beanie

Mon Jan 29 23:07:02 2018

Ebay already has a blocked seller feature by hiding sellers listings, LOL! But seriously, no I don't think Ebay needs a blocked seller feature. Way too many other things they need to focus on to fix, but of course won't.

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by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 29 23:32:44 2018

Ebay will never do that because to many buyers would block any and all sellers from China and that would hurt Ebays REAL partners to much.  Even if they did do it there would probably be a glitch that in the program that never blocks anybody from China.

Supposedly you can already filter out all non USA sellers, but when I have tried that feature, there are still many Chinese sellers that sneak through the filter even though their items state they are shipping from China or Hong Kong !!!!

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by: sellerchick This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 00:42:48 2018

^^^ ^^^ ^^^ What Silver Ice King said...

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by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 01:01:24 2018

Ebay i$n't going to do anything to endanger their money making $cheme$. If Ebay think$ they would lo$es$ any money they aren't intere$ted. Doe$nt care what the noi$e $ay$

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by: Studiolines This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 02:07:05 2018

They used to have a feature to pull up only certain sellers, or sellers on your saved list. Don't know if that is still functional. Most filters are in some sort of glitch most of the time anyhow. It would probably just further confuse whatever controls search anymore.

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by: comments This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 02:41:51 2018

The act of blocking in general is childish. In the only two times I have ever been blocked by a seller was once where a seller showed $4 shipping in the listing (which is about the actual cost), then the seller sends me an invoice with the shipping jacked up $25 more. So when I said something about it they sent me a nasty email acting like they were doing me a HUGE favor by charging me the shipping in the listing and then blocked me.

The second was back when they had defect returns. A seller sent me a SNAD item with severe damage. I returned it as "changed mind" so I could spare him the defect. I got blocked for that?

Instead of doing more blocking ebay should just block the truly bad buyers and sellers or offer a better rating dispute system. Blocks make ebay a very unpleasant environment. I regularly see unreasonable sellers bragging about how they blocked a buyer for an offer that was too "low" or asking a question they didn't "like".

Blocks should only be done in extreme situations where a buyer poses a risk to your business not as a way to "get even". Blocks are badly abused and need a dispute process or regulation.

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 09:47:24 2018

While we are at creating blocks ....

Can I get a block DW function please?
Can I get a block VERO function please?
Can I get a block the morons @ Lithium (eBay forums) please?
Can someone please block GRIFF "the SELLER advocate (LMAO)"?

the list goes on and on

eBays as slow as molasses running uphill in the winter ATM - fix that first before playing with stupid ideas like this.

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

Tue Jan 30 10:15:55 2018

There is a reason to block buyers - follow the link for a refresher course   https://tamebay.com/2012/06/whats-the-value-of-questions-from-buyers.h
tml



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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Jan 30 11:13:26 2018

I was blocked by one seller. I had purchased an item from him that was somewhat expensive, and I chose to have it insured. When I received the item, it was obvious he had not paid for insurance. I politely requested that he refund the cost of the insurance I paid for that he didn't purchase. I got back a nasty note that he "self-insures," and then he blocked me.

Personally, I like the idea of a blocked buyer list. During my time selling on eBay I had a few buyers that had to be seriously mentally ill and I didn't want to have further dealings with me. As far as blocking sellers, I would think that keeping your own list of people you didn't want to buy from again would be sufficient.

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This user has validated their user name. by: eXtinctBay

Tue Jan 30 11:16:39 2018

If a buyer asks a silly question that, in most cases, could be answered by simply reading the description, this signals a likely future problem if a transaction occurs.

It is NOT ''childish'' to block buyers, it's just business. Why does one need the stress of dealing with unreasonable people who cannot understand what is going on??

I have no problem with a buyer blocking me as a seller. Since I do not mislead or steal from paying customers, there should be no issue with me or my business. If anyone feels compelled enough to put my ID on their block list, I do not need to deal with them anyhow.  

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This user has validated their user name. by: iBuyers

Tue Jan 30 11:17:31 2018

That's stupid; just pay attention to what you are doing as a buyer. This is more evidence  and argument for the completely incompetent buyer and trying to isolate the buyer to no responsibility.

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by: hopeforthebest This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 14:14:08 2018

If buyers want to block sellers items from showing up in search I have no problem with it.

Not that Ebay cares what any of us think.

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by: I Must be Crazy This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 15:38:47 2018

Ebay already does a fine job of blocking sellers at random so I doubt much more is needed in that regard. What eBay needs to do is enforce their duplicate listings policy against all sellers evenly. Not just against most while letting the larger and preferred sellers slide. That would go a long way toward reducing duplicates. The search also doesn't seem to be very efficient. When I search for something, I see a lot of items that are unrelated, and even more that are missing that should appear.

I would however, LOVE to be able to block ''buyers'' who follow me. Most are competitors just watching for new product ideas. I can do without that. Let them go and do the research, just like me. They are no different than the lazy student in school who copies somebody else's work.  

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by: b86fiero This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 16:22:52 2018

Yeah sure, why not.  If somebody decides they don't want to buy from me, I'll probably be better off not selling to them.  

Blocking bad buyers?  That's a different story.

Had a very nasty female purchase a roll of silver wire for jewelry making.  She used all of it up to the last foot, then messaged me that she put a crimp in the last few inches when she bent it and demanded a full refund.  I suggested a partial refund pro-rated on that last foot.  She immediately purchased 4 more items from me, then filed a SNAD case against me.  I received several profanity laced messages from her.  eBay stepped in and closed that case in my favor.  CS rep told me eBay the company refunded her money and she would not be able to leave feedback for me.  Refund did not come out of my Paypal account.  She then said she wanted to cancel the 4 new purchases.  I refused.  eBay automatically opened 4 non-paying bidder cases against her.  All 4 automatically got closed in my favor.  Bad buyer got her money back, free silver wire and 4 unpaid item strikes.   I got to keep her full original payment and had some satisfaction knowing that Karma (and eBay) gave her a big old noogie upside the head.  Her account is now Not A Registered User.

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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Jan 30 18:36:41 2018

@b86fiero - That's a great story. Just be careful that she doesn't open up another account with a different ID and try to get revenge for what you did.

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by: shut1968 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jan 30 20:09:29 2018

Blocking bad buyers is just good business, If you've cost us any funds out of pocket simply because you didn't read the item description where it's crystal clear what you ordered.. acknowledge you didn't read it.. then open a return claim anyway.... your blocked.   If you have harassed us multiple times since placing your order all the way up to delivery.. your blocked (I once had someone send 43 messages over a three day span because their package wasn't moving fast enough and I had one who opened an item not received claim on a Monday when they ordered it the prior Friday evening.. both reasons to block)  Over the last 5 years I've probably blocked 50 or 60 people who were just bad buyers (out of 40,000+ transactions) so yes, there are reasons to block buyers.  I personally would welcome a "block listing" feature.. I do a lot of purchasing and get tired of seeing the same old listings for certain things over and over again and there's a few sellers who I automatically know are severely over charging for everything they sell that I would block..    

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Jan 31 03:10:36 2018

From the posts I've read so far, it appears buyers don't like it that a seller can block them and sellers don't like the idea of buyer's having the ability to block them.  I see valid points on both sides.

For sellers, there are very good reasons for blocking some buyers IMHO.

As to a buyer being able to block a seller, it seems to me that better search filters would do the trick.  I would LOVE to have access to better search filters.

As some have said, some international sellers still show in the search returns even when you state US only.  This happens when that sellers sets up their account / listings to be located inside the USA.  The seller is outside the US, but they are saying their products are here.  Therefore the block won't work.

I think that should change.  Ebay needs to be stricter about this.  Sometimes the product is here, but sometimes it is not.  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Jan 31 06:38:18 2018

A lot of folks have already blocked eBay sellers.  They do this by shopping elsewhere.  Hence, the recent survey that eBay sent out in an obvious attempt to find out where their buyers went.

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This user has validated their user name. by: LasVagueness

Wed Jan 31 20:05:19 2018

Reciprocal, optional tools for both buyers and sellers would be greatly appreciated (starting with feedback).  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Lightning

Wed Jan 31 22:04:44 2018

I blocked a few billion people all at once - I stopped selling internationally.

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