Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Wed Feb 26 2020 15:49:00

The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay set up a special section on its discussion boards to discuss the 2020 Spring Seller Update announced today, February 26th. It created dedicated areas for sellers to comment and ask questions about the various changes.

The issue garnering the most threads as of approx. 3:30 pm on Wednesday was regarding claims.

And among the threads on that board was one dealing with a change regarding a new protection for sellers - requiring buyers to prove that they actually shipped items before closing a returns request.

That issue is explained on this page of the eBay Seller Update board under "Changes to handling return requests that appear abandoned" where eBay stated:

"Starting April 1, 2020, we will no longer close returns early at the request of a seller when the buyer has not shipped the item back. Instead, we will wait to ensure buyers have sufficient time to provide proof items they requested to return were shipped back. If we do not receive proof of shipment from your buyers while the return requests are active, we will protect you by removing any negative or neutral feedback left on that transaction." 

Sellers were not pleased at the answers moderators provided on the eBay thread devoted to this particular question.

Here are the all of the sections on the eBay Spring Seller Update discussion board with numbers of replies as of this writing:

Updates to how you list - 6 topics
Discuss the updates to help buyers find your items with required and recommended items specifics, automatically clean up your images, and allow read-only access to orders with Multi-User Account Access.
 
Updates to how you ship - 3 Topics
Talk about updates that allow you to send your packages to international buyers with eBay international standard delivery. See what’s new with FedEx Home Delivery rate reductions and notifications for listings missing ZIP codes.
 
Updates to how you promote - 2 Topics
Let's talk about the updates that enable you to send more “Offers to buyers” with greater ease, and updates to drive higher conversion.
 
Updates to how you service customers - 14 Topics
Chat about updates to manage common selling issues with Seller Help and quickly resolve claims for “Item not received,” “Item not as described,” and low average selling price returns.
 
Updates to how you manage your financials - 5 Topics
Share your questions about new managed payments features and global expansion.

Updates to your user agreement - 1 Topic
This is the place to chat about announced updated to the user agreement.
 
Let us know what areas of the 2020 eBay Spring Seller Update you find helpful, and not so helpful! And let us know if you have a good handle on what changes are included in today's release.



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Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: Shanna This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 26 16:31:26 2020

I have taken 2 things away from the Update.

1st, as noted by seller twnpopcards, the extended return mandate is another ebay money grab by forcing sellers to use eBay labels. Ebay is paying pennies on the dollar for postage from the USPS, they make much more on the shipping and return labels than they do FVFs.

2nd, they want to force international sellers to conform to the return stands they mandated 10 years ago.  But we all know that means our friends in Canada and the UK, not the Chinese sellers.

Third, all the hype and bluster coming from  Jordan Sweetnam was all lies, there are now less seller protections when he promised more.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: Whatever This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 26 16:43:12 2020

ok - so where is it?

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by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 26 20:53:24 2020

@whatever    You can find the UPDATE both in your own MESSAGES from eBay and by clicking on the BLUE LINK in the  LAST PARAGRAPH  of Ina's write-up  "2020 eBay Spring Seller Update"  

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

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

Wed Feb 26 22:26:30 2020

Seller Discussion Boards are already locked so that no more discussion can occur on them.  Says a lot about how Ebay really feels about hearing what those that pay their salaries have to say about the way they run the company.

I see Ebay GMV continuing to fall in reality even if Ebay continues to inflate the numbers as this number is not audited.  Current ownership of Ebay appears to be very short term based on these replies and reactions from their own moderators.  I would advise all Sellers to start getting an exit plan together as well as selling on multiple sites so you are not caught flatfooted when the next round of buyer protections are put into place.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: ShortSeller This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 26 22:50:04 2020

Also note the further automating of seller inquiries so they can relocate a portion of customer service from the more expensive Philippines to India. It should be quite obvious the company is being gutted with the direction they are moving things and everything else in recent years (firing of many staff, severe cutbacks to marketing funds, moving domestic customer service jobs to contractors, all sale money being pumped into stock buybacks, ridiculous buyer policies, etc).  

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: justchangecarriers This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 26 23:08:20 2020

I dont understand how they can spin " we wont close returns not shipped by the mandated date" as helping me in any way.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 00:18:29 2020

“ Thank you for this feedback, we'll definitely take it into consideration. We don't anticipate this change will significantly increase the number of returns that are actually shipped by our buyers, so there shouldn't much change to the total number of return label charges applied to your monthly invoice. However, I can certainly see your perspective, so we'll keep this in mind for future changes.”

The above, a reply provided by someone named Steven.Cal who apparently lost the office lottery and was forced into the mosh pit of the few sellers who bothered to submit comments and responses to the bi-annual seller disrespect reminder they call an “update”.

The topic related to sellers trying to clarify elements of eBay’s decision to allow buyers up to 35 days (we eventually learn means business days after Steve gets back from lunch or something), after opening a return request. Of course, it’s significantly shorter than that if one acquiesces to using an eBay generated label, rather than their own. Extended from five to only ten after they see it ‘printed’ but not yet scanned by the carrier.

In this particular case, the seller was trying to get eBay to put some limit on their providing a much more expensive service (priority) than the seller used to originally ship (imagine that), since the seller may naturally not want that return hanging out there for months, so therefore would be coerced into letting eBay provide the label the seller will pay for (anyway). Like, use what was used the first time if I’m on the hook for it while waiting - only fair and all that. Btw, not for nuthin’, it was “free” to begin with...

Anyway, that was Steve’s answer. Yeah, we can see your point. We don’t think our little ‘extension for buyer convenience’ will likely increase returns (I.e., your current [unnecessary] costs), but sure. We’ll look into it. “Definitely”. Maybe in the ‘future’. Just continue to foot the bill for now - one way or the other - and trust us.

Kinda makes ya all warm and fuzzy inside, no? Like, just before that prayer you make to the porcelain God after ingesting one too many ‘feel good’ shots.

Ya’d think ya’d know better by now, right?




Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: Tiffee Jasso This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 05:13:11 2020

I did not like the legal language in Managed Payments. Ebay's payment processors will have their own rules and holds can be put on your account for any and every reason that anyone could come up with, and Ebay has no liability for any seller's loss nor will they help you with any holds that the payment processors decide they want to do. Also these same foreign payments processors who are going to want your driver's license number, social security number, and banking information, and will be sharing this information with their partners, whoever that is. Folks can say what they will, but Paypal has always gone the extra mile to protect me from dishonest buyers. That will not be the case with Ebay's payment processors, and if you read the fine print, you will see that you  can and I imagine you will be charged fees for these holds. How is that going to work out for all of us?

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: hawk This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 06:42:52 2020

ebay has proven beyond a doubt that they wish to destroy small sellers and business with their horrible lies and corruption. never trust them , ever again , to protect small businesses. do as we did and get to h**l out. their lies just get bigger and bigger.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: Mark4 This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 09:31:44 2020

This is nothing more than an expansion on the fraud that ebay is committing in regards to return shipping labels and trying to dupe more sellers into ebay's scheme. We have had return requests (fraudulently made) so we get stuck having to pay for the return shipping costs. Our latest case was we paid 32.09$ to ship an item to a customer. Buyer opens case, ebay tell us we can purchase a return label for 63.93!!!!!  We called UPS and gave them details, UPS cost for a label is 32.45$!!!! Ebay is ripping sellers off with this scheme. Sellers, if you are purchasing the ebay return labels, your most likely getting ripped off. We filed a complaint with all the corresponding documentation to our state's attorney general. They also put us in contact with the Consumer Protection Agency. Filed complaints there as well. Our state AG said they are flooded with complaints about this. UPS was also rather upset that they are being used in ebay's fraud.  This latest push, buy or label or wait 35 days, is just an expansion of this illegal fraud. If it happens to you contact your state attorney general office. Thank god our 4 million dollar year business is down to less than a 1/2 million at this point. This dumpster fire of a markeplace is about obsolete. Moved  our inventory to many other sites, never looking back.  

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

This user has validated their user name. by: NoMoreEbay

Thu Feb 27 09:47:50 2020

Debating the finer points of ebay's update is like questioning the Mafia's motivation for extortion while ignoring the rest of their illegal activities.

When it comes to corruption there is no debate, no rationalization, no need for vague buzz-worded townhalls. It's simply corruption at face value. Know that and know ebay's motivation for everything.  

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: Whatever This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 10:25:46 2020

"Also these same foreign payments processors who are going to want your driver's license number, social security number, and banking information, and will be sharing this information with their partners, whoever that is."

Tiffee - did you say their located in Romania? kidding (not)

Opened 2  more untouchable checking accounts with my bank - funny they told me they'd already heard about it.  My friends bank told him they could put a withdrawal block on the accounts he didn't want ebay to get into. So ebay only has access to the 1 clawback account which he transfers out daily to the safe accounts. Christ - does eBay think everyone is stupid???

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by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 10:28:14 2020

Let me get this straight... a 'buyer' FINALLY pays on last HOUR of an Unpaid Item Case... and Seller gets a YOUR BUYER PAID SHIP NOW message... but a 'buyer', has EXTENDED DAYS to RETURN ? - No, nope... not for me... I once had over 500 items on eBay & 300 on Etsy... down to under 100 on BOTH Sites & deleting/removing DAILY... Go line your pockets & abuse somebody else... 23 years on eBay... 12 on Etsy... for NOTHING.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Thu Feb 27 10:36:39 2020

This is about the most boring seller update I've seen in 20 years!

yawn...........

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 11:06:30 2020

I've seen a fair number of sellers with 20+ years (like moi) saying AMF to ebay.
This momma's boy will add his ID to that list if I'm forced into MP.
ebay is now basically mad money for me, so for my situation, Mercari easily fills the bill.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

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

Thu Feb 27 11:51:59 2020

Selling on EBAY for 15 years.  Now 2/3 of my sales are elsewhere.  Once had 8800 items now have just over 1100.  Looking to get under 1000.  Ebay has not made one change in 15 years that has helped sellers.  Think about that.

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by: Smallseller This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 12:46:04 2020

Here is a scenario regarding returns. A buyer purchase a piece of clothing. They initiate a return on day 30. The seller does not provide free returns or chooses not to purchase an ebay return label. The buyer has an additional 35 business days to create a return label. So now the buyer has just "rented" the item for more than 2 months. I am glad I do not sell clothing, although it can happen in any category. It may have been a Christmas gift that a child got tired of playing with or any reason that a buyer can come up with. How is this improving seller protection? I agree with the other comments about ebay trying to force you to purchase a return label. Otherwise your item is being held hostage. I would have loved to have heard the discussion around the table from those that came up with this idea. What happens if I purchase a return shipment label from Pirate Ship for example?

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: thievesBay This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 13:51:46 2020

So basically a photo editor and even more lenient returns? There's nothing here. Most of the rest is nothing new and just repeated word salad. I also guarantee that the photo editor isn't gonna work as expected most of the time. It'll be nothing different than other editors out there. It'll erase parts of the outline of your product, leave the edges looking jagged, etc You're better off NOT using the editor. A white background is NOT required by Google to index anyway, contrary to what eBay seems to suggest.  

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

by: notfunanymore This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 27 15:18:57 2020

How are those seller protections coming along?? Sadly, it’s not only eBay... it’s ALL corporate America.

Perminate Link for The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020   The Buzz about eBay Spring Seller Update 2020

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

Thu Feb 27 16:17:33 2020

I don't see anything in this update that really affects how I do things. I guess one of the glaring standouts are the automation of customer service functions through Seller Help. If they manage that the same as Seller Hub, then it will be little help at all.

The updated User Agreement was interesting. Since it doesn't highlight the changes, I don't know what I am agreeing to versus what I already have agreed. I assume that most of the clarification revolves around Managed Payments. Probably language to cover themselves when they don't remit to sellers for any multitude of reasons.

This returns issue struck me though. I couldn't figure out what would prompt people at eBay to even conjure up a convoluted mess for a process that, to me functions okay. I use eBay labels for my returns and the process works fine. I think there are quite a few sellers who manage their returns outside of the eBay platform. This scheme is a way to disincentive that practice. Yes sellers who accept returns "off eBay" give up the FVF credit. The Paypal refund credit is gone. If their return percentage is too high, giving up a credit here and there is better than all FVF increasing by an additional 5%.

I also think it could be an incremental step toward something bigger. The eventual loss of FVF credit for some if not all returns. I can't help but think the executives at eBay have their eyes on that.

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