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Tue May 17 2016 12:32:35

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
I'm sure this subject has been addressed before, hundreds, maybe thousands of times. 

I am a small seller of years of accumulated stuff. Not a "drop shipper" not a "flea market" reseller. Just stuff from my own home & major downsizing. I've done well enough to become a Top Rated Plus seller after being a member on eBay for 15 years. As with all TRS, I've adjusted and jumped through every hoop to maintain that.

After their last "update" of 30 day return policy, I agreed and was good to go. I might add. I have never had a return, a complaint or an issue. 100% pos FB and 5 stars across the board.

Then, my last 2 sales went rogue. 

I sell a lot of glass items and just sold a candy dish with lid to a buyer in CA. I'm in PA. When I went to print the label, it was calculated at 1 LB. so the buyer paid shipping for 1 LB.

There is no way I had it at 1 LB. I double check every detail before I even list anything, especially the calculated shipping weight. I add 1 LB. to everything just for the box, bubble wrap & packing foam. No way would I have that at 1 LB total. I even double check a listing after it's listed JIC.. I've never had to revise anything... ever!

So I sell something for 4.00, buyer pays for 1 LB. I have no choice but to ship, so ultimately I've just "paid" this buyer to buy my candy dish. Cost me near 11.00 for the shipping, buyer's total was 11.85... do the math!

Upon finding this, I went and checked all my other listings that were all ending and sure enough, everything was at 1 LB. The Canada sale (see below) was showing shipping 1st class... for an item packed weighing 3-4 LBS.

I now have to revise every single thing and pray it sticks...

I just had 182 listing end yesterday. The very last thing that was ending, sold... To a buyer in Canada!

I "DO NOT" sell outside the USA and have all the blocks in place. I even double checked that. Yup, all blocked, even Canada.

Last year I tried eBay's Global Shipping Program and it was a nightmare! The very 1st thing I sold was a tea cup to Germany. Packed so well with so much bubble wrap, you would have to run over the box with a truck to break it... well it arrived broken!

My "ONLY" issue ever... but not my fault and eBay agreed. eBay refunded the buyer because it happened after it left the GSP facility. I then removed all breakables from the program and then ultimately opted out completely.

And, the high shipping costs to the buyers. Of all the international sales via the GSP I did have... not 1 buyer left feedback... probably so angry about the shipping costs.

So there... another eBay glitch... selling to a buyer outside the US and now I need to contact eBay about this issue!

Relisting has now been put on hold indefinitely.

Maybe I'm just paranoid but it's feeling like eBay really is trying to weed out us small sellers by any means possible... even sabotage! Or messing things up enough so we get defects and lose our TRS status. It must really be true, ya think?

Thanks for listening,
Linda




Comments (27) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

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

Tue May 17 12:56:04 2016

So, what's new at eBay today? Nothing, I see ...

The eBay executive suite—where the incompetent mingle with the disingenuous, the unscrupulous, the malevolent, the outright criminal, and the just plain stupid. ...

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: Randy This user has validated their user name.

Tue May 17 14:18:09 2016

I don't think eBay is intentionally trying to weed sellers out, they're just soooo screwed up everyone is leaving on their own! LOL. I plan to close my store before the June 1st renewal date...a store which I've had open since 2003. I just can't justify giving them $20 a month on top of all the other fee's for 1 sale a day. It was 15 to 20 a day before the launch of Cassini!  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: alaska This user has validated their user name.

Tue May 17 20:58:08 2016

I quit selling on eBay a year ago. It's so much easier to sell my stuff on Craigs. I still do a lot of searching on eBay in the vintage collectibles and antiques categories, but I hate it. It's so hard to find what I'm looking for. If my keyword search has no results eBay changes my search to include all categories. They don't give me an option to opt out of this STUPID practice. How much time I've wasted going down lists of items before realizing that my search resulted in zero hits. I have never ever bought anything from one of these hijacked search results! They don't give me a way to search only ''listed for the first time'' items. Instead I might get 400 results to wade through of which most are relisted items that I've seen countless times, and I'd never buy one of these relists but I keep having to seem them, month after month, year after year. Searching eBay has become a horrible experience. But, for now, it's the only game in town.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue May 17 22:41:18 2016

Apparently, eBay's glitch effecting sellers using calculated shipping....

We all know eBay prefers sellers who offer 'free shipping' given that the shipping cost rolled into the selling price artificially inflates the GMV figures reported as part of eBay's quarterly reports to Wall Street.

Given eBay's methods and motives, I have no doubt the calculated shipping error was intentionally created by eBay, and that there will be more reports like this to surface from time to time.

ewBay does not care if they alienate sellers who offer calculated shipping.  Management likely believes buyers will find their item from a seller who helps eBay mislead Wall Street by offering 'free shipping'.  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

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

Wed May 18 00:28:52 2016

Yep... I've seen this same behavior over the past year on so... items having shipping altered to some higher value.

I help people learn to list on ebay - every single one has complained of the same shipping issue. At first I thought it was them, then I noticed some of my own listings being 'altered'.

Not sure what else can be said... it's a problem that needs a solution. I'm aware of quite a few other issues out there that haven't been fixed for YEARS although I know they're aware.

Oh, well... and sorry to hear about your issue out there..  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

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

Wed May 18 00:38:49 2016

We have also had the shipping change on our items. I am constantly removing Free Shipping off items that are not free. The worst is when I state calculated and items sales with a low dollar flat rate. Ebay did pay me back for one item, but mostly I am on my own using words that I don't often use.  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: Barbbie This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 01:04:13 2016

I have been noticing price differences when multiple items are purchased. Not each time but occasionally but only after the customer pays. All invoices look fine before paid.  I did not say anything to ebay as I had no "proof" and it was not worth my time to pursue, it had always been enough to mail anyway. A couple weeks ago, I sent a customer a combined invoice, and the customer managed to pay about 5.00 less than the lowered combined invoice that I had sent them. When you add the items up it is a different amt, and you can see the invoice was a different amt, yet they paid less than the lowered price and the original price. Ebay's final opinion: I must have made up the invoice myself in order to try to put something over on ebay and they did not want to see it, they did not want to hear the number on it or anything from me. Yes, I figure out how to make false invoices go through ebay so I can try and beat them out of 5.00, sure. So, needless to say, no one is looking into this. Oh and this was not the foreign crew, they could all speak perfect English. They made up a few dumb excuses before they decided I was a great computer hacker.
The buyer was happy with her shipping total but I do not see how it benefits ebay, they get less money, you would think they would want to fix it.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: LasVagueness

Wed May 18 01:14:31 2016

As a TRS you should have easy access to eBay's customer service. Surely, they will reverse this charge. As to tech issues, it has been my personal experience that those issues take FOREVER to resolve. I have been waiting well over six months for two reported sites issues to be resolved (one involving international shipping) — apparently they have been relegated to the back burner.  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed May 18 02:51:09 2016

I get so tired of reading people describing TRS status and "jumping through hoops" or those darn "dangling carrots".   It is just like many other things in life.  You achieve a certain level you get certain perks.  This isn't new stuff.  We have all experienced this when we were in school, doing sports, at jobs when you worked for other people, etc.  It just isn't a new concept.  If you don't like it, don't participate.

Calculated shipping in Ebay has been glitchy since the day they introduced it to the site.  It isn't a secret and I don't know why some seller continue to be surprised when a problem like this comes about.  If you feel you must use calculated shipping, this is something you will always have to deal with from time to time.  

My recommendation is wherever you can, put in your own shipping rates.  I know for some sellers this isn't always possible, but if you do have some items you can, it is in your best interest to put in your own rates.

As for selling to an international buyer when you only ship to the USA.  If the two settings that matter are set correctly.  First being your listings is set up to ship to the US only.  Second your buyer requirements is set to NOT allow international buyers with ship to addresses outside the US.  Those are the two perimeters that need to be set.

Now if those where set for the listing you sold to a Canadian buyer, then your buyer may have a US ship to address.  You won't know that until you see the payment or you have an email conversation with your buyer.  So if your settings are correct, don't ASSUME that the buyer wants you to ship outside of the US.  You may very well be just fine.  You need more information.  It isn't time to get Ebay involved yet.  You need to chat with your buyer.

FYI  You can't block all buyers outside the USA.  There is no such block in Ebay.  Keep in mind there are some very good international buyers that have ship to addresses in the US.  I have them all the time and rarely is there an issue.  What matters is where you ship.  So if the buyer has a US ship to address all it good.

There is no need to stop listing.  You just need to make sure your settings are correct and use a flat rate shipping wherever you can.  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 05:17:32 2016

Ah yes Ebay Glitches.

Just a different year, same old glitches.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: geministuff28 This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 07:34:12 2016

Marie...

Well, lets start here:
Blocked buyers outside the US.

I do have all my i's dotted & t's crossed..

I'm well aware that some buyers outside the US have US addresses. I have no problem shipping anything to these buyers & have done so many many times..

This buyer did not & somehow my item was found by this buyer on Canada's EBAY, not EBAY.com..
We did communicate immediately as soon as she requested an invoice & I realized she was in Canada..

The invoice, had I actually sent her one, was showing international first class shipping but no shipping cost, again, calculated only. I know, I could have changed that...

Since I gave up on the GSP, I went to USPS just to see what shipping would be & OMG... US59.00 Priority International for a 4LB. package, no additional fees on my part..I can't even imagine what the cost would have beeen if I was still using the GSP...

And this going overseas... YIKES!

I contacted her only after I contacted EBAY to see how this sale happened to begin with..

EBAY said it had to be a glitch & they would make a report..

Obviously the buyer ''did not'' want to pay this outrageous shipping & I didn't blame her at all...

We both mutually agreed to cancel via EBAY & this all went away...

As for the calculator glitch, it was exactly that, a glitch & again, it was reported & EBAY addressed it..
The CS rep I spoke with was able to see all the listing that had the calculators mysteriously convert to 1LB.
Only those that I use the calculator for...
Now whether it gets fixed is another story!

Flat rate shipping... I love it & use it for 75% of what I sell... I never charge handling fees or have any hidden fees...

But some things need the calculator, as with the buyer in CA. at 1LB. it was 7.85 (what she paid) Actual cost for me was 10.44.. big difference!

So listen...
I do love my TRS status & from following this site religiously, I've seen many other who feel as I do... ''carrots'' for ''perks''

I particularly love your posts, as they are right to the point & very informative.
Many regulars on here too...

But you haven't said anything I don't already know pertaining to this post..

I never thought I'd see my ''whine'' on here but here it is...

I'm not sayin... I'm just sayin...

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: geministuff28 This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 07:41:29 2016

Oh.. about the calculator glitches...

This literally is the 1st time this has ever happened to me..

I was not ''surprised'' I've read endless posts about it & knew it existed...

I was more POd then anything..

Lucky to get 1 sale a week with all the hiding EBAY does (and this is a fact)

And I get 2 in a row!

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: spooky This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 10:24:59 2016

first thing - 3-4 pounds Canada can certainly be first class. Priority mail is mandatory only at over 4 pounds. second thing - I am going to make an educated guess but I am thinking you accidentally set your defaults for shipping at 1 pounds and did not notice it. 18 years selling on eBay and have never had or heard of that glitch but eBay certainly has plenty of glitches. And for all the folks telling you to sell elsewhere - don't believe it. There is near zero traffic on other sites. I gave up completely on Craigslist after having no interest in anything and I set my prices crazy low almost as a test to see if I could get any bites. Yes eBay sucks but still only game in town in 99% of the cases.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: Toledo Maude This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 13:09:25 2016

Knock-on-wood, I do not suffer these shipping calculator glitches.  My biggest problem is covering the high cost of packaging supplies and the high (and going higher) cost of shipping.

The USPS international fee hikes in 2013 killed my international business.  Ebay's global shipping program is a lucrative profit center for eBay but does nothing to help my international sales.

The infrequent requests for shipping costs to a foreign country ends with no response/no sale from shocked foreign buyers after seeing the shipping quote.

Now I find that domestic sales are imperiled by high domestic shipping costs as well. Sales to the far corners of America are only for my higher cost items that make exorbitant shipping charges seem reasonable.

At this point for all small sellers knowing that the last thing eBay management is interested in is helping small sellers, when does one call it quits on eBay?

For me, my shrinking eBay sales are helping me to make up my mind.  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: Randy This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 14:30:54 2016

Marie writes: "Calculated shipping in Ebay has been glitchy since the day they introduced it to the site.  It isn't a secret and I don't know why some seller continue to be surprised when a problem like this comes about."
Sellers are surprised because it has been happening for soooo d*mn long! A multi-billion dollar company should NOT have the same problem happening over and over again for 10+ years!

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed May 18 14:36:20 2016

@geministuff28

International invoices don't show a rate for shipping unless inside the listing it has a rate specifically for their country.  Otherwise it is left blank for the seller to fill in and send the invoice.  

There is no doubt, international rates where significantly increased a couple years ago and then with the even bigger increases at the beginning of this year, it has become ridiculous.

The glitches that have happened for YEARS with Ebay's calculator have been reported as well.  Still over a decade later and still there are significant and costly glitches as way too many sellers have fallen victim to.  I personally don't think they will do anything new with your report than they have done with all the other sellers reports before you.

Charging handling fees are a personal choice for each seller to make for themselves.  There is nothing wrong with charging them as long as you are reasonable about it.  

For those items that are a pound or less, you could consider using FCP instead of whatever method you are using now.  You can ship FCP 16 oz from home now and the price is the same for the the US.  16 Oz via online rate is $3.65.  I of course don't know if that works for you, it is just a thought.

Yes I agree, many refer to the "carrots".  But they do so as a negative thing.  All I'm saying is that there are many things in life that once you achieve a certain goal or level you get additional perks.  It not only happens with work related things, but in buying power too.  At certain stores the more you buy the more you save.  We all have choices to make.  If the "perk" isn't important to you, then there is nothing saying you need to do it.  If you decide the "perk" is important, then go for it.  It isn't a bad thing, it is just part of many things we do in life.

You've been very lucky that the calculator glitches haven't struck you before.  Not so long ago, many sellers using it got stuck with free shipping on some of their sales.  A friend of mine got hit by this on a few of her listings and it was a mess.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed May 18 14:39:29 2016

@randy

You get no argument out of me.  I completely agree with you.  But the fact remains that what I said was and is true.  It shouldn't be, but it is.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Wed May 18 15:48:47 2016

geministuff28 writes: "But some things need the calculator, as with the buyer in CA. at 1LB. it was 7.85 (what she paid) Actual cost for me was 10.44.. big difference!"

You should consider doing what I do: I figure shipping to the farthest destination from my location in California, and use that as the shipping cost. If the buyer is in, say, Nevada, which is much closer to me, then I refund the difference in the shipping amount posted and what the actual shipping is.  

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

by: Henry This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 18 16:24:47 2016

This is not a glitch - bad choice of words. It is either a software bug or it is intentional by eBay. My guess is it is intentional by eBay. We closed our store in April after 11 years due to mismanagement by eBay executives.

eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller   eBay Glitches Prove Costly for This Seller

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed May 18 17:42:26 2016

I think most people use the word "glitch" interchangeable with the word "bug".  No matter what you call it, it has been an inherent problem for many years.  Personally I don't think it is "intentional" on Ebay's part as it would serves no beneficial purpose for Ebay, the buyer or the seller.  Sometimes the problems with the program, whatever you want to call them, causes too much shipping to be charged and other times it is too little being charged and at other times no shipping at all is charged.

My opinion, after all these years, is Ebay is unable to identify the problem and therefore has never fixed it.  At this point they may have just given up, but I really don't know.  All I do know is that the issues continue from time to time.

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