Customers are turning to social media to complain that Reebok is failing to fulfill items they purchased on eBay, and the brand is racking up negative feedback that has dropped its score
to a measly 88.5%. It's the second major incident in the past 2 months in which big brands have gotten negative attention for failing to honor orders made through their eBay stores.
On Thursday, Reebok blamed its failure to ship orders on a technical error that caused some of its listings to be "offered for lower than anticipated prices," responding from its main Twitter account
. "For the inconvenience, we're extending an extra 35% off your next order from the Reebok eBay Store."
Reebok customer service's account (@ReebokUSHelp) also fielded complaints - in one post it tweeted that customers would have to contact eBay customer service, "as we do not have access to Ebay's orders."
A buyer clearly furious at Reebok's failure to honor his purchases told us, "They owe me 7 pairs of shoes they will not ship!"
Some buyers heard about the incredibly low prices Reebok was offering on its eBay store through alerts on deal sites. One such site wrote, "These are sold and shipped directly from Adidas via eBay." (Reebok is a subsidiary of Adidas.) "Play around with the sizes/color if you don't get the glitch price. You'll even get an additional 30% off when you add 2 to cart!" The reference to "glitch price" indicates *some* shoppers may have gone on their shopping sprees with the understanding that a glitch might have been the reason for the absurdly low prices, with some even speculating as to whether their orders would be honored.
Some of the prices that one deals site pointed to:
Reebok Men's Training Essentials Woven Pant Only $2.38 + Free Shipping
Reebok Men's Ridgerider Leather Shoes $3.76 + Free Shipping
Reebok Men's Speed TR Flexweave Shoes $3.96 + Free Shipping Sold Out
Reebok Men's Speedwick Knit Trackster $3.96 + Free Shipping
One participant of the TJBDeals.com website
wrote, "3 shoes, hoodies and sweatpants for $12.64 shipped! Now hope they honor it! Thanks guys!"
A similar incident occurred in May when Hasbro's eBay store oversold thousands of special edition Magic: The Gathering cards and had to cancel orders. eBay tweeted
to @wizards_magic fans "we unfortunately sold out of the War of the Spark Mythic Edition exclusive earlier today. We are working to ensure all subsequent orders are canceled and refunded. Any direct inquires please reach out to us."
: "Hi, we recognize there was an issue with eBay orders for Magic: The Gathering: War of the Spark Mythic Edition. We're working closely with eBay to remedy & anyone affected will receive an email notification from eBay. We understand your frustration & appreciate your patience."
Blowback from the Hasbro incident appears to include a lawsuit against Hasbro and Wizards of the Coast alleging breach of contract and negligence, according to Yahoo
Meanwhile Reebok has been heavily featured as a success story for eBay's Promoted Listings ad program. In an April post
on the eBay corporate blog, eBay Vice President of Revenue and Seller Growth Bridget Davies wrote the following:
"A great case study of how brands can also leverage promoted listings is our partnership with Reebok. The company used eBay's trending ad rate guidance to stay competitive and saw a 55 percent lift in overall sales and 142 percent lift in sales for their promoted items. We want our partners to succeed, and results like these make us excited about the future. That's one of the reasons we believe that brands like Adidas, Dyson and KitchenAid choose to be on our platform."
"Reebok saw great success in following eBay's Promoted Listings recommendations. They promoted more than 100 items at eBay's trending rate for their multi-quantity inventory. Over the past 5 months, Reebok has seen a 55% lift in overall sales and a 142% lift in sales for the items that were promoted."
The question sellers may be asking themselves is whether eBay would give them the same slack it appears to be giving the brands. While Hasbro-Toy-Store displays an 86.2% eBay feedback rating
, it still displays a banner reading "Top Rated: Seller with highest buyer ratings."
However, tweets from the brands indicate they may have been leaving it to eBay to manage their stores; if that was the case, how would (or should) eBay handle those stores' seller performance standards?