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Sun Sept 21 2014 07:56:25

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eBay?

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
Today I tried to contact eBay Customer Support with a simple question about shipping. The recording said that the wait was 127 minutes!

eBay stresses sellers incessantly with demands for perfect customer service. I think eBay should get a "defect" for every seller/customer that has to wait on hold during regular business hours for more than 5 minutes to speak with their customer support staff!  

When a relative of mine worked for Bell Telephone information (before the breakup), her department had to answer calls within 30 seconds.

eBay's defects for slow customer support response would be dwarfed, though, if they were so penalized for the millions of sales adversely affected by their recent outages. They'd have so many defects that they would have to throw themselves off of the site!

Their hypocrisy is stunning.
drbev




Comments (24) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: Willie This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 08:07:45 2014

I gave up on Greedbay years ago but still follow the news  of their latest transgressions.  It is mind-boggling esp. when one looks at the monopoly in its entirety. So no, I'm not surprised by a 2 hr. wait. Best to cut your losses and jump ship. JMHO

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Sun Sep 21 09:47:04 2014

I think the main problem is the eBay executives want all the profits to go in their pockets, and not to be spent improving the site. Some "glitches" have been reported as having gone on for years. eBay could hire more and competent CSRs, but they don't because that would cost them money. If they really cared about the sellers, or the buyers, they would train the CSRs so they'd actually be able to provide accurate information, and not just read off a script. The last couple of times I called a CSR, they didn't provide answers to my questions, and, in fact, I new more about the subject the CSR did! With the direction eBay is going (downward), I can't see this situation changing for the better.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Sun Sep 21 10:17:15 2014

eBay's customer service is the absolutely worst possible process sellers are forced to endure.

every time John Donahoe needs to squeeze out more positive revenue figures because he is unable to grow sales, Donahoe looks for ways to cut back on services.

Customer service at eBay has been largely outsourced to third world countries who hire agents who barely grasp the English language let alone the intricacies of selling on eBay. The result is little more than script reading, heavily accented agents who's job it is to parrot the information on the screen in front of them.

There is little concern with regard to accuracy and or relevancy of the information offered since eBay management really does not care.  

Management does not care that the same question asked the same way to three different agents will most often have three different responses offered. The only consistency with eBay customer service is its vast number of inconsistencies.

management does not care if wait times grow. The whole idea is to discourage users from using customer service both today and in the future so that staffing can be reduced even further.

Management does not care that customer service is woefully understaffed or that buyers and sellers are poorly served due to the budget cutting - revenue squeezing of management.

All eBay management is concerned with is the bottom line revenue number their CEO will report every quarter to his Wall Street Masters - everything, and I mean everything at eBay comes down to retaining revenue, and the ineffective and embarrassing state of eBay's customer service reflects this unfortunate corporate mindset.





Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: LDS Brother

Sun Sep 21 13:35:26 2014

All John Donahoe does is stress out his sellers ( eBay's real customers ) then we can't get through, it takes me 1 hour to 1 and 1/2 hours and getting worse !

Why ?

Becuase of his ill though out DEFECT BULLSH*T !

Which I might add, that is stresses out the commoner eBay workers, YES YOU CS Reps have been PUNISHED by Master Donahoe AKA Captain Queeg/Humphrey HOEgart's insanity !

When he comes up with the dumb sh*t seller releases, he unleashes HELL on the CS Reps also, as they have to deal with the MILLIONS of Pissed off sellers who are unjustly screwed daily !

eBay sucks, it is time to close it it is a ghost town ! The eBay have and Google search engine demotion has killed the already dead site !

It is almost October and my sales are as if it is June 10th SUMMER !

Pierre you better sell the site soon, as Donahoe has not only disrupted it, he has ANNIHILATED it !!!!!!!

Donahoe has made AMAZON stock grow by leaps and bounds since June 2008

Hey Wall Street, please spend a weekend with us sellers, and hear about how good we have all done since 2008 when John Donahoe has left OUR successful past go, for his own personal enrichment !

Those Bain people in my opinon are ruthless, souless, corporate raiders ! They destroy anything and everything for their own gain and appear to be blessed and rewarded for it !!!!!!

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Sun Sep 21 13:45:25 2014

It's strange that people in the U.S. can wait so long for service; from Australia, I recently got through to CS in the Philippines immediately; maybe it has something to do with the time of day, or night; try in the middle of the night ...

The eBay executive suite—where the incompetent mingle with the disingenuous, the malevolent and the outright criminal, and the just plain stupid ... http://bit.ly/11F2eas

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: LDS Brother

Sun Sep 21 13:50:01 2014

RIC said: "Customer service at eBay has been largely outsourced to third world countries who hire agents who barely grasp the English language let alone the intricacies of selling on eBay."

I love getting an undeserved DEFECT, then waiting 1 and 1/2 hours to a get some FOREIGN CS rep, who RIC is right, barley grasps the English language, let alone the intricacies of selling

I love practically crying to tell them how unfair it is, and I don't understand a damn word they say !!!!

It is just horrible what eBay has become !

Sellers need dealt with that do not perform as they should, but Donahoes PUNISH them all philosophy is just plain evil !

Anyone who courts sellers with respect, and makes it fair for the sellers will put eBay out of it's misery !

Buyers are important, but so are sellers, I am still in shock from the attitude of the CS reps most of the past 6 years when I had legitimate concern, and years and years of loyalty, great feedback, great service, and they sounded arrogant like if you don't like out rules get to hell off of eBay !

NO RESPECT for even the BEST and MOST LOYAL longtime eBay sellers ! This company really is EVIL in my opinion !

Bet you Donahoe sleeps like a baby each night ! Millions of $$$$ Yes men telling his yes and good idea boss ! While we the sellers, have ulcers everytime we look in our inbox to see what idiot is punishing us again for getting something 80% cheaper than brick and mortar with free shipping etc.

I used to hold out hope, that MAYBE if Donahoe left, things might go back to normal, but no that will never happen !

Who would we get next ? Devin Wenig ? NO THANKS !

At this point as my business has all but died through no fault of my own, I am just enjoying watching eBay as a site die also !

Don't care what kinds of spins, or numbers they come up with, this site is DEAD ! Buyers are not there, the ones that do are non paying complaining low ball buyers !

The search engine is a DISASTER !

All in all Humphrey HOEgart has ran this site right into the ground !

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: Annne This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 14:50:57 2014

I'm pretty sure Ebay is hoping the sellers will just hang up after a while figuring that their time is money.  And that strategy probably works.

The choice for sellers now is bleak.  In 2005 power sellers united (PSU) was created to set a boycott in motion against ebay in response to ebay raising their fees.  It was a great effort, but they couldn't all agree on moving to ONE new auction site, and so they spread themselves all around scattering to different sites.  This and the fact that most of them would not completely remove their items from ebay made PSU totally ineffective.  I suppose most didn't totally leave ebay because they could not afford the loss of income or were worried that the sellers who stayed would take their customers while they were gone.    

But this time it's different.  Due to ebay and paypal's latest ''strategies'' most sellers feel they CAN'T  stay on ebay (or they are being kicked off).  It would be a great time for sellers to unite again and find one venue.  Personally, I think that Etsy is the only place most buyers are comfortable with or have even heard of before.  Could sellers get Etsy to open up to new categories ... not handmade?  I don't think they are far from it now.  

Bottom line is that no one has ever figured out how to get the buyers to leave ebay.  You'll have to admit, it's very convenient for them and they are treated royally.  

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: sasikat9 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 17:16:07 2014

Trying to get two people on Ebay to agree on anything is funny. Just read the discussion boards..

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 17:57:04 2014

eBay sellers tend to be self-focused and every seller has its own unique experience. There ARE common grounds of complain and agreement, though.
I think we all agree the eBay we helped grow is gone.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: tango This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 18:30:11 2014

I cannot share the experience you all are having - maybe there are criterias we don't know about.  I always use the Ebay 'Call Me' service - saves me time and I don't have to wait on the phone.  I have seen wait times of 60+ minutes shown, however, I have never waited more then 5 minutes before ebay called. I have also not had any bad experiences with outsourced, foreign country CSR's, sure I get someone with an accent every once in a while, but its rare and then again, I also speak with a foreign accent.  All CSR's that I have asked out of which location they are, were US Stateside and by their knowledge of the area, this was not a fib.  I contact ebay probably once a week, so thats a fair amount for a seller - can only say good things about those people I have spoken to - that does not mean that I agree with the constraints Ebay puts on their CSRs in regards to what they are permitted to do or not to do.  Figured I write this since my experience is so different from what I read in the comments here. Chers.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: 1beck3 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 20:17:33 2014

@tango Exactly! I called in on Friday and the wait time was 57 minutes. Then I clicked the "Call Me" link and it said the wait was only 34, so I hung up and did that.  Call came in under 30 minutes and I was able to go about what I was doing until the call came. Much better option.

I have had someone with a pretty heavy accent and seemed to be lacking English comprehension skills once, but most of my calls have been answered by someone from the US.

Have found out a couple "work-arounds" from the new defects aren't working though (or anymore).

For example, I'm pretty sure it was a message board here, someone said something about running out of an item and having to refund the money to the buyer. Rather than try to get the buyer to agree to a cancel, they said they weren't sending a Cancel Request, they were just eating the ebay fee so they didn't get dinged for a "out of stock" cancel.  I tried it once and ebay is still counting it as a cancel if there is a full refund through Paypal and the item doesn't ship.  I tried arguing my point that they were grouping non-cancels with cancels to no avail.  So, now you're better off just sending through a Cancel Request to your buyer if you run out of an item and choose the "buyer changed mind" option so, if they agree to it, you won't get dinged.

Also didn't know that if you get a buyer to revise feedback to positive, it still doesn't change the defect.  Once it's designated as Neutral or Negative, it counts towards you defect rate.  So, you can save yourself a tenth of a percent on your Feedback score which, in the grand scheme of things doesn't mean too much, but you can save yourself from a defect.  Not sure if they'll remove it if the buyer chooses Neutral or Negative completely by mistake.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: DSR This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 22:54:35 2014

I spent eight hours on the phone conferenced with eBay Motors and eBay.

eBay removed my products saying I was circumventing fees.

eBay Motors spoke to Trust and Safety insisting my products, since they run on batteries, belong on eBay.

Eight hours! Conclusion, eBay insisted they belong on eBay Motors and the eBay Motors Rep apologized to me for eBay's behavior.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: Lois This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 21 23:10:39 2014

Today, I got a notice from Ebay that I had not left feedback for an item I sold at least 70 days ago, and urging me to do so instantly.

Only thing is, the woman canceled the order before it was sent to her, we mutually agreed to this; Ebay refunded the fees and all was good. There was no transaction. Now, suddenly, I am supposed to leave positive feedback? The time on hold for a person to speak to me was announced to me as 131 minutes! Wow! I am quite sure I will get dinged for not leaving feedback for a non-existent transaction, and when I do get a ''representative,'' it will probably be someone who has absolutely no clue what I am talking about and can not/will not do anything to resolve the problem. At this point, I am trying to get rid of all my  stock because I am, quite frankly, too old to permit myself to be treated like the village idiot.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: LasVagueness

Sun Sep 21 23:15:21 2014

I have had similar experiences as tango. I call eBay ALL THE TIME (I actually use their 'call me' option) and have never waited more than 5" nor been dispatched outside of the country. I wonder if there are different tiers of service based on sales? I don't know...just putting it out there. I think once I had to wait 15" but that was a single episode out of hundreds of calls.  

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

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

Sun Sep 21 23:58:51 2014




not only do you spend hours on the phone but you don't get anywhere when your thru




Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 22 00:48:49 2014

I spent well OVER 2 HOURS waiting on ebay the other day--last week---and almost an ENTIRE HOUR ON HOLD.

I had three different CSR's and had the "Triple Team 'Em"  approach tried on me--the first two off-shore CSR's agree that the issue I have is terribly WRONG and of course ebay will take the appropriate action since I am a valuable seller who has been on ebay since the Year 1.  

Then you get passed to CSR #2 who rephrases all of this happy horseshit and tells you that YES ebay will HELP you if you only hold on and wait to talk to a THIRD CSR who can actually DO something about this egregious error.

Then when you FINALLY after 50-some minutes on HOLD actually GET the next USA CSR--they cut you off at the knees claiming that NO those other two CSR's did not have the faintest clue what they were telling me and NO they will absolutely NOT help me in fact they are so smug and condescending that you wanna smack the smirk right off of their faces.

I have heard that if you press the selector for BUYER PROBLEM that this fast tracks you but---I kinda fear getting caught up in that in case they punish you for doing that.  I guess you could always claim that you picked the wrong prompt but----

I did find it--ahem--amusing that one time I was out shopping and I got a CALL FROM EBAY and they REFUSED to STFU and go away---they would NOT take NO I REALLY CAN'T TALK RIGHT NOW for an answer.  When was a good time to call?  Couldn't I just answer a few questions?  Wouldn't I just listen to a few things to HELP me be a better seller on ebay?

NO.  

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: Watching the Wheels This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 22 02:48:46 2014

@Anne, Etsy isn't all that different than Ebay.

Etsy sellers get blown off all the time, too.

I think that if you're going to do venue selling, you have to learn to ignore the company propaganda, and leave the Kool-Aid and cupcakes sitting on the table.

List your stuff and move on.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: luxe1 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 22 09:11:43 2014

I don't think the 'call me' option is available for Canadian callers or I'd use it.  I spent 40 minutes on hold this week, my phone battery rapidly draining.

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

by: tango This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 22 09:16:20 2014

Here are the lessons I learned along the way:
- use the ebay call back system - its better/faster and you can get on with your stuff in the meantime, it also doesn't ruin your mood
- always be professional, be polite, the more positive you are, the more positive the CSR can be - if you can - try to 'connect' to the person, small things go a long way - we are all people, real people - even ebay CSR's
- if you see that the conversation isn't going well, for whatever reason, you/them/ the issue/comprehension/language barrier - be polite, cut it short - call again in a few hours, or the next day, perhaps a different CSR/a better start/a better mood turns it to a positive call.
- try NOT to call on Weekends, ebay gets hammered on weekends and you don't have the top staff.  Try to call Tues - Friday.
- always ask yourself - am I being reasonable - or am I stuck in my own bubble (we all get stuck there at times) - step back from any issue if you get emotional - it is not useful to the cause.
It is sometimes a bit of Roulette, but if you keep the eye on the ball, what is your goal?!, and don't get sidetracked, you might find that most CSRs are as helpful as they can within their means/rules etc.
Good luck, may the force be with you!

Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB   Two Hours to Talk to Customer Service - Really, eB

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous

Mon Sep 22 09:25:35 2014

@watch the wheels:

One doesn't really need customer service at Etsy b/c:

1) the platform is SO simple to use (much more user friendly than eBay's)

2) etsy has super informative, helpful blogs all over the site that tells one how they can improve their sales, get found in search, etc. Whereas eBay makes their sellers ''try to figure it out for themselves''

3) Etsy's fees are much lower than eBay's

4) Etsy is not a greedy Wall Street Corporation. They are self-supporting, hard-working regular people. They are BUSY b/c they have less employees than ebay.

5) Etsy sellers HELP each other, whereas eBay sellers compete against themselves and don't help each other out. True difference!

I give ETSY a LOT of respect. eBay? None whatsoever. And I ''was'' a F/T ebay seller for 14 years until the beginning of this month when I jumped ship and MOVED ON.

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