When a seller reached out to eBay customer service for help due to a glitch on its site, it ended up costing her more than she bargained for.
The problem began on Thursday night when she tried twice to issue a refund to a buyer for a returned item. She attempted to issue the refund again on Friday morning, but it still wouldn't go through.
Unable to contact eBay customer support by phone, she sent an email explaining the problem using "ask eBay to step in" because it was the option available.
She explained the problem and asked for advice on how she could refund the buyer.
The eBay rep responded, explaining they tested the system and was "hit with the same error," so the rep went ahead and forced a refund through his internal system. "You may get an email from us saying that you got a defect on your account with this closure but you can ignore that email as I have removed the defect. It may show up on your seller dashboard for a couple days but then will drop off," he explained.
However, the rep refunded the buyer for the total transaction amount - he should not have refunded the buyer for the shipping portion since it was a "remorse" return, the seller told us.
When she saw the problem, the seller reached out again, but was told she was out of luck - he would not make her whole for the shipping cost. "In the future to prevent this from happening if the system is not letting you refund through eBay you could attempt to issue the refund through PayPal back to the buyer and then just give us the transaction id to take care of the claim."
She argued her case, explaining again that she had been unable to issue the refund due to an eBay glitch and felt she should not have to absorb the shipping cost for an eBay issue. "Even just a credit to my seller account for the cost of shipping would be appreciated," she suggested.
However, here's the response she received from eBay: "After reviewing this case, we decided to keep the original outcome. We weren't able to grant your appeal because we determined the original decision was correct. You won't receive a refund for this case."
When a company foists a charge on to a customer when it steps in to resolve an issue caused by its own technical glitch, what can that customer do, whether it's a consumer or a business customer?
Besides venting, the seller asked that we let others know about the issue to help them avoid the same cost she incurred resulting from the eBay glitch.