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Sat Mar 26 2016 23:06:13

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Standards

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
Do you ever get that gut feeling about something? I do.

When I first read about eBay's new performance standards that rate EBay sellers primarily based on the performance of the US Postal Service or other shipping service.... I HAD A GUT FEELING THAT EBAY HAD FOUND A MAGIC BULLET TO ELIMINATE ALL TRS SELLERS! And it is proving true!

I just checked my seller dashboard. I have always had 100% on time "Tracking on time and validated by carrier". Now for March it has magically dropped to 87% which is below TRS requirements.

I ship 99% of sales same or next business day....with over half same day.

Nothing has changed on my end. Problem is I live on a rural route, sometimes the mail is not picked up until very late in the day. Rarely is it scanned when picked up. A good percentage of the time it is not accepted until the next day at the post office.

So what do I do? Drive to the post office, spend an hour of my time and $5.00 dollars worth of gas to ship a $10.00 item? Even that does not guarantee it will be accepted until next day.
Tom




Comments (42) | Permalink

Readers Comments

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sun Mar 27 07:05:58 2016

The first question need to get answered from the post office is " WHY ISN'T MY PACKAGES SCANNED WHEN THEY ARE PICKED UP"

If your postmaster gives a stupid answer then file a complaint. As long as you request a pick up those packages are supposed to be scanned. If you aren't requesting a pick up its a different story.

Your solution is right at the point of pick up. We live in a rural area. Miles from the closest street light. Every one of our 50 or so daily packages are scanned when they are picked up. Is been that way for years.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: Beth This user has validated their user name.

Sun Mar 27 07:57:38 2016

I agree with feelingfroggy. You need to print a scan sheet for your packages and then insist that the carrier scan that as accepted before leaving your property.

If necessary call and make an appointment to speak to the Assistant Post Master in charge of the routes at your post office. Show  him that letter Griff provided on facebook/ebay where the USPS Mgmt person explained that EVERY package is supposed to be scanned at pickup.

and if they can't handle doing that for you,you'll have to take your business to UPS for your own protection.

see if they can grasp that concept. (I waved $19,000 in postal receipts at them. It did make an impression. No further issues with non-scanning bozos)

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Sun Mar 27 08:02:28 2016

Ummm, requesting package pickup requires 24 hours notice, and to print a scan form, all packages must be listed on the scan form. This would require that all packages be held until the next day for pickup.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sun Mar 27 16:38:19 2016

If your shipping percentage was fine BEFORE the new standards took place, it makes absolutely no sense that they suddenly aren't OK with the NEW standards.

Sometimes when a seller feels this way, it is a simple misunderstanding of how and when the dashboard is updated and/or what goes into the how the percentage is calculated.

BEFORE the change we were dependent upon the carrier getting the product scanned in on the day we shipped for the percentage to be calculated.

The NEW standards has THREE ways in which we can show on time shipping.  ANY ONE of the three methods will count as on time shipping.

1. Scanned on the day shipped.
2. Scanned as delivered within the ETA on the purchase.
3. When the buyer leaves FB and they answer the question as to when the item was delivered, if they answer it was within the stated ETA on the purchase.

So if you were fine before the change, it makes no sense that you aren't fine now, except if you don't understand how and when the dashboard is updated.

I know most sellers will say they understand, yet it comes up all the time here and on Ebay threads which clearly show they don't understand.

Most everyone understands that Ebay eval's on the 20th of each month for the period ending the previous month.  

Once the eval is completed, Ebay changes the number on the dashboard to reflect the current month we are in.  So these number will fluctuate while you are in the current month in which we are actively seller [or we hope we are actively selling].  

For example.  On Monday you have 10 sales.  On Tuesday you ship everything out.  On Tuesday you look at your dashboard and your shipping percentage has dropped way down below standard.  That is because you just has some sales that are not reflected yet in the shipping percentage.

Ebay is NOT on real time updates with the various carriers.  Sometimes these numbers can be a couple days or more behind.  And if it is the case where you ship without tracking, then you are waiting on your buyer to leave FB and that could take a while.

@xebayx

You don not have to give USPS a 24 hour notice.  You just need to request it before midnight for the next day pick up.  However, I have noticed that if I go to USPS and log in, then request the carrier pick up, it does require more lead time.  I suggest just going to USPS without logging into the site.  You can then do it with less lead time.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: RLS This user has validated their user name.

Sun Mar 27 17:38:59 2016

Marie is totally accurate. Have seen this happen to my store and it works it self out

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 28 07:31:52 2016

@ marie
I misspoke by saying 24 hours lead time. If I do as you say and don't log in and request a pick up this morning (Monday)for my orders from this weekend (Saturday and Sunday) the earliest available pickup is Tuesday.
This neither fits a one day handling time or my customer's expectations.
Carriers are REQUIRED to scan packages on pick up. Senders are NOT required to use the inefficient package pickup request system.
My carrier scans my packages on pick up. Then they go to the Detroit sorting center and disappear. Of packages shipped from 3/10 thru 3/17, only 65% have been delivered and the rest are "lost" without an update, a few have been in transit for 20 days per USPS tracking. USPS is "looking into it" and acknowledges the issue.
Requesting package pickup does nothing, and is a hoop that uninformed USPS employees insist is a requirement that customers jump through to cover inept service, when it is not required, and when used, will ensure that a seller cannot provide a realistic 1 or 2 day handling time.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 28 07:43:15 2016

My late shipment rate shows ZERO late shipments, but once the estimated arrival dates of these "lost" packages passed, my visibility and sales dropped by a corresponding percentage, on top of a few very mad customers demanding replacement shipments.  

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 28 09:06:02 2016

@Marie
My cutoff time for shipping the same day is 10:00 AM Eastern Standard Time, which gives me plenty of time to pack and process orders by my normal 3 PM pickup.
By USPS scheduling of package pickup rules (before midnight the day before), my cutoff is nullified. There is no USPS rule requiring request of package pickup, and insisting that the level of service will be better is BS. Carriers are REQUIRED to pick up and scan packages as long as mail is being delivered to an address. Blaming a customer because no pickup is requested is like saying that it doesn't matter if a package gets lost because no insurance is purchased.
Regarding Scan Forms. There IS a requirement that ALL packages being picked up are included on the Scan Form. Unless a seller prints all labels at once, there is no way to include all packages on one scan form. Printing multiple scan forms is a waste of time and paper.
USPS needs to provide the service that they are paid for, which includes scanning all packages on pickup as REQUIRED, and eBay needs to stop holding sellers accountable for the actions of the carrier, which is chosen by the buyer. Just because these ''late shipments'' don't show in the seller's late shipment report doesn't necessarily mean that eBay isn't manipulating and limiting seller's listing visibility in the name of ''providing a great buyer experience''. Since when has eBay EVER been 100% transparent about the double secret actions they take against seller's accounts?

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Mon Mar 28 12:45:11 2016

@xebayx

I think you have unrealistic expectations of USPS.  I don't know why you feel you should be able to order a carrier pick up on a Monday morning to receive the pick up on Monday.  They have routes and schedules to work with. Simply request your pick up on Sunday and your problem is solved.  You know the day before if you have enough to ask for a carrier pick up.  I'm unsure why you would wait until the following morning to order a pick up anyway.

I don't know that anyone here said anything about a "carrier pick up" being some kind of requirement.  

As for it being a useful tool, I love it.  It helps be out a lot.  I find it both useful and efficient.  And if used properly, it works just fine so that sellers can adhere to their 1 day handling.

Your personal policy of the 10:00AM same day shipping, is just that, your policy.  To expect that USPS is going to work to your schedule is simply not realistic.  You will be forever disappointed and/or upset with them if you feel you should be able to contact them after 10:00AM any given day to get a carrier pick up that same day.  Their delivery people are well on their routes by that time of day and may have already done your area or maybe not.  

I don't use scan forms, never have.  For me, I rarely have a problem with packages not being scanned.  I  know others do, I am only speaking for myself.

The new tracking validation matrix is certainly not perfect, but it is better than what we were having to adhere to.  We are no longer limited to the scan upon pick up.  Again, not perfect, but a step in the right direction.

And as I stated before, any seller that was doing fine for tracking validation under the old system will be just fine under this one.  Any ONE of these options is all it takes.  Not two and not three, just one.

1. Scanned on the day shipped.
2. Scanned as delivered within the ETA on the purchase.
3. When the buyer leaves FB and they answer the question as to when the item was delivered, if they answer it was within the stated ETA on the purchase.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 28 19:11:10 2016

Marie--on the 20th of each month--are we evaluated for the previous 30 days, or the previous 90 days? Thanks

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Mon Mar 28 19:17:13 2016

@rcl

Depends on the size of seller.  If you are a seller with 400+ transactions in the previous 90 day period, then you are eval'd on that.  If you have less than 400 transaction in the previous 90 days, then you are eval'd on the previous 12 months.  

Now there is one exception to this and that is tracking validation.  No matter the size of the seller, those percentages don't go back any further than 90 days because USPS doesn't give Ebay access to records on a regular basis older than that.

I suspect that is why Ebay came up with the late delivery percentage on our dashboards.  However I firmly believe that 3% threshold is too low for TRS sellers, especially those eval'd on the previous 12 month period.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 28 22:54:08 2016

@ Marie,
1st and FOREMOST, I never asked for your advice. and I'm absolutely sure from reading previous posts here that many others feel the same way,
I responded to FeelingFroggy's comment ''As long as you request a pick up those packages are supposed to be scanned. If you aren't requesting a pick up its a different story.'' This implies a requirement.
I'm not sure why you seem to think every response is directed at you.
As far as ''carrier pickup'' whatever you mean by that term, carriers are REQUIRED to scan packages on pickup.
Once again, you have deviated from the very point of the post in an attempt to be ''helpful and knowledgeable''.

The title of the post is ''USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Standards''
I DO NOT USE PACKAGE PICKUP REQUEST AND NEVER WILL and was very clear about that.
You are putting words in my mouth. My schedule is based on the USPS Requirement to scan packages on pickup. How can you say that I am expecting too much? It is based on USPS rules.
It seems like you simply read whatever you want into whatever anyone says, and then ''correct'' them.
My response about the workings of Pickup Request were not directed at you, and I did not solicit ''instructions'' or corrections from you. I stated, in response to FeelingFroggy's post that Package Pickup Request does not work for same day handling, and requires 1 day advance notice (you were all too quick to call me out on cheap semantics when I said 24 hours and not 1 day, as if I were talking to you). I only responded with an @marie after you found it necessary to tell me I don't know what I am doing and don't know how to request pickup.
I also stated in general that Scan Forms do not work unless you are printing postage all at once, plain and simple because there is a USPS REQUIREMENT that all packages being picked up MUST be on the form.

USPS currently only has accurate tracking on 65% of the packages that I sent during the week of 3/10-3/17, which is why I responded to a post with the title of the post ''USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Standards''.

I guess that I am expecting too much from USPS when I expect that they would provide tracking on more than 65% of my packages, and that the other 35% should be delivered sometime close to the published expected delivery dates of 3-5 days and not 15-20 days with no explanation, scans, or other indicators. I guess I am asking too much when I expect that packages be scanned on delivery since it is a service I pay for.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 28 23:20:33 2016

@Marie
Regarding your statement that Package Pickup Request works great for you, good for you. I'm sure your customers appreciate the extra day your packages take to get delivered on top of the extra 10-15 days that USPS takes on a percentage of your (and everyone's) package delivery. I ship 20-30 packages a day and half or so are from orders the same day. Package pickup Request is inefficient, and causes yet another delay, and I don't sacrifice customer service for convenience.
I don't believe for a minute that eBay changed Cassini's algorithms to eliminate the data set that tracks package delivery vs. estimated date as a customer experience satisfaction metric. All of this explanation of the panacea report metrics is just an extension of what eBay wants sellers to see. When it comes down to it, my data shows that the more late deliveries my items have (by actual delivery scan data), the lower my listing visibility and the lower my sales, even though eBay's ''report'' shows 0% late shipping rate. It's all much ado about nothing. Only the report has changed to pacify sellers. The net result is worse because USPS begrudgingly traded off occasional point scans for the required acceptance scan, and the dead give away eBay and PayPal labels create packages that get de-prioritized over Amazon packages because of the false belief of USPS employees that ''eBay customers get a discount so they don't get the same service'' as has been reported here previously.
Every Amazon package I ship is delivered on time, with zero ''lost'' packages.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: yesterdaygirls This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 29 00:39:10 2016

I've written this a few months ago but just finally had time to validate it...one day handling actually requires getting a scan by noon (at least here on the west coast) by the third day.   Receive an order on monday...generate label by midnight tuesday and scan by wednesday noon is acceptable.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Mar 29 02:42:20 2016

@xebayx

Chill !!  This is a blog / thread where we share ideas, thoughts, advice, etc. Respectfully, posters don't have to have your permission to post a comment to what you have posted.  With that said, my post was never intended to get you so upset either, I'm sincerely sorry about that, but obviously I struck a nerve.

I'm aware of the article and its contents, I deviated to give my opinion of what you posted regarding USPS carrier pickup, so I guess we both deviated.  

You stated your policy is" "My cutoff time for shipping the same day is 10:00 AM Eastern Standard Time, which gives me plenty of time to pack and process orders by my normal 3 PM pickup.
By USPS scheduling of package pickup rules (before midnight the day before), my cutoff is nullified."  That is the statement I was commenting to earlier.  USPS doesn't offer same day regular carrier pick up service.  To expect USPS to do this is unrealistic.  I meant not disrespect to you or your policy.

You are correct, USPS does NOT need a 24 hour advance notice for a carrier pick up.  As long as you request it by midnight the night before, you can get the pick up scheduled for the next day.

My packages rarely take 10-15 days for delivery.  

I don't see the same comparison between late deliveries vs search standings as you do.  I have very few late deliveries, but even with that said, sales on Ebay has been substantially down for me since about April of 2014.  There were a few factors that started the down hill roll.

I've never heard this before "USPS begrudgingly traded off occasional point scans for the required acceptance scan, and the dead give away eBay and PayPal labels create packages that get de-prioritized over Amazon packages because of the false belief of USPS employees that ''eBay customers get a discount so they don't get the same service'' as has been reported here previously."  I must have missed that article.  Shipping labels via Ebay, Amazon, Etsy, Stamps.com, etc for FCP Domestic are all the same rates. Ebay and Amazon are the same rates for PM domestic.  Not sure about the other sites, I haven't checked them.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: quovadis12345 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 29 07:18:52 2016

We live in cape coral Florida, and notice that when the mail man picks up our packages they are scanned right there and then. However when we drop off at a large post office, some of the packages are not scanned for hours, sometimes next day. A few packages never get scanned at all, they simply appear as delivered a few days after.
Another thing I do not understand about USPS, is that they print these overly optimistic priority mail labels from Florida to California ''2'' day labels. The parcels take at least 5~6 days to arrive in California. What is the point of printing a 2 day label when in fact we know it will take many more days?
Now it would be something, if they printed a 10 day label and the parcel arrives 5 days early!!

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: oscar This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 29 08:25:33 2016

There is a glitch in the eBay system.  In February I lost by TRS rating because of late shipping - never had a problem before.  I called eBay went over the items they said were late, they said that there definitely was a glitch.  Told me they would fix everything and guess what - Feb. 20, I lost TRS.  Made me mad but sometimes you just have to walk away.  This week I had a problem with an item saying it was late when the buyer gave me the wrong address and it was forwarded back to me.  Called eBay about it and again we discussed the late shipping.  My mail lady picks up and scans my packages every day - so I know it's not me.  They finally agreed that there still is another glitch, all of my "late shipments" were removed and said I would get my TRS back in April. Nevermind the money I lost from not getting my discount.  So everything was "fixed" last Friday and guess what, Monday I had 3 more late packages.  13 packages were picked up the same day and 3 are late.  It does not make sense.  So once again, I have to call to ask them to fix their glitch.  It is maddening.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: GotToGetOut This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 29 08:56:12 2016

I do standard shipping on all my packages so it gives about 3-10 days as a receipt time BUT I usually ship via priority mail so now I find I'm doing great with this new rating system. No problems at all. The only thing that might give me a ding is if someone doesn't like how long it takes for them to get the item. That counts as a defect. Try changing your delivery time to standard. I don't think most people have a problem with that and if they want something quickly, they often write and ask if you can ship via priority and you just say, yes, no problem and no charge and you have a happy customer.

By the way, I had a hard time being a TRS with the old system but now I have very few defects and have been a top rated seller since the start of the new program. I like it since it works for me (and there are a lot of things I don't like about Ebay so I am not being a Toolguy).

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 29 09:02:10 2016

@Marie
Thanks but no thanks.
I don't need any tutorials about how forums work, how USPS or eBay works, or recaps about what you said. This isn't the ''Dear Marie'' column you imagine it to be.
You didn't understand what I was saying when I said it, and you still don't. The post is for users to share THEIR OWN experiences about USPS dropping tracking after the change in seller standards. My personal experience and data is supportive of this idea, and your opinion and experience, or even your ''explanation'' of how it all works doesn't change that (even if you fully read and comprehend before commenting, correcting, and telling others that they should ''chill'' (OK Mom, LOL)).
It would be pretty hard for you to determine if late arriving shipments affected visibility and sales if you only have a few packages and are lucky enough to have a small percentage of those few delayed, let alone the data being dependent on what method you use to track visibility.
My late arriving shipment rate (actual arrival date, items with missing tracking (missing packages), and packages with no Delivery Scan) is currently 36.2%, even though 100% of my orders have been shipped on time (1 day handling), many the same day. This is documented with USPS Consumer Affairs.
Does this affect my eBay Late Shipment rate? No. Does it affect my visibility on eBay? Yes, my data suggests it does. Does this affect my sales? Yes, there is a direct correlation between visibility and sales. Does it affect customer satisfaction? Absolutely, many customers don't care who's fault it is, they just want their orders, and are less likely to return if there is an ''issue'' with delivery time.
Before correcting and ''tutoring'' me, why don't you consider how you would react if, through no fault of your own, over 35% of your transactions caused customer dissatisfaction even though you did everything right, and you lost customers and business because of it. Or how it feels to pay for a service and consistently not get what you pay for. Maybe you can tutor and correct that away too, since you have all of the answers.

USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan   USPS Tracking Drops after eBay Changes Seller Stan

by: XebayX This user has validated their user name.

Tue Mar 29 09:16:01 2016

@Marie
Regarding PayPal and eBay labels vs. Amazon labels, the rates are the same (I never suggested otherwise). Amazon Labels are formatted differently, and have a different tracking number format, and are given a negotiated priority over other packages. If you aren't "up" on this story, or know the pertinent facts, maybe you shouldn't comment or dispute / correct what others are saying.
If you don't know that there is a physical difference in the labels, it's pretty obvious that you have never printed a label from Amazon.

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