EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 1495 - March 15, 2007     2 of 3

eBay Rolls Back Changes to Best Offer Feature

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eBay said Wednesday it was rolling back changes to its Best Offer feature. The changes had been part of the Safeguarding Member ID (SMI) project, but took users by surprise when they began appearing for the first time on Monday.

As AuctionBytes reported yesterday, buyers' IDs were partially hidden from sellers, who were no longer able to add comments when responding to a Best Offer (

eBay spokesperson Nichola Sharpe said sellers were concerned that the truncated User IDs from bidders left them blind when trying to evaluate an offer from a buyer. "Buyers with 0 feedback and low ball offers might be disregarded, whereas an offer from a faithful repeat customer might be eagerly accepted. However we have now taken the decision to roll back the changes. While the Best Offer could be used by scammers, the Trust & Safety team reconsidered their options in light of the problems being caused for sellers. Our Trust & Safety team has decided to restore Best Offer as it was previously until a more workable solve has been developed."

Sharpe said eBay was moving so fast that it didn't follow its normal procedures for communicating site changes to its community. She pointed to a post on the eBay Chatter blog that explains eBay's decision more fully.

About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to

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