EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 3114 - July 23, 2013     1 of 4

eBay Fall Seller Release Includes Expanded Feedback Removal

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eBay is set to announce its Fall Seller Release, and EcommerceBytes has learned eBay will be expanding the circumstances under which it will remove feedback. eBay will also be replacing its Coin catalog in September.

Each year, eBay releases two major updates impacting sellers, having promised them 60 days notice of major changes to the site, generally called the Spring Seller Release and the Fall Seller Release.

Here are the changes we've learned are coming to over the course of the next several months.

Expanded Feedback Removal
This year, eBay is expanding its Feedback Removal policy across all of its international sites - including the U.S. Here are some of the new situations in which sellers can request eBay remove qualifying low ratings and feedback.

  • A buyer left low ratings or negative feedback but provided clearly positive comments.

  • Feedback refers to information the seller entered in the structured listing fields (item specifics, sales tax, returns policy, combined postage, accepted payments) and there is no contradictory information elsewhere in the listing.

  • Feedback was left as the result of an inadvertent error—for example, the buyer providing the wrong shipping address at checkout, or leaving feedback for the wrong seller or the wrong item.

  • A buyer asks for delivery method or ship-to location not offered and the seller declined or the package was not deliverable to the address the buyer specified in eBay checkout.

  • A buyer leaves negative or neutral feedback for a transaction due to delayed shipping when PayPal placed a hold on the payment and advised the seller to delay shipping the item.

Here's the process sellers will have to go through to get the feedback removed: "First, see if the situation is one in which feedback will be removed automatically. Second, if feedback removal is not automatic, contact your buyer. Always try to resolve issues with your buyer before contacting eBay. Often, it's just a misunderstanding that can be worked out. If you're still unable to resolve it, use the existing feedback revision system to have the buyer revise his feedback. If the buyer is unwilling to revise the feedback and it's eligible for removal under the expanded Feedback Removal policy, you can contact Customer Support or use the Reply to Feedback Received feature to leave a courteous and professional comment explaining your side of the issue."

The policy takes effect for feedback left on or after July 31st. Feedback left prior to July 31, 2013 will not be eligible for removal under the expanded Feedback Removal policy.

TRS Grace Period
Beginning August 20, eBay Top Rated Sellers in the U.S. will have a 2-month grace period to keep their benefits if they fall below required sales or tracking. (eBay had previously rolled out this policy in the UK.)

Replacements Added to eBay Managed Returns
eBay is expanding its Managed Returns program so that sellers can offer buyers the option of choosing to receive an exact replacement as an alternative to refunds. eBay Managed Returns currently limits sellers to offering refunds. Offering replacements as part of the program will be optional for sellers.

Note that eBay Managed Returns does not support exchanges at this time (an exchange is when the buyer substitutes another item instead of the item originally purchased), and the program won't support exchanges in the fall, either.

Expanding eBay Best Offer Changes
In the Spring Seller Release, eBay Best Offers changed in certain categories, and with the Fall Seller Release, eBay will announce the changes will impact all categories.

As eBay announced in the spring release, "Beginning in May, in the Computers & Tablets, Jewelry & Watches, and Art categories, when you accept a buyer's Best Offer, the item will remain for sale until the buyer commits to buy, and in most cases, pays. Since the transaction is not completed until the buyer commits (or pays), you'll be able to accept multiple offers to increase your chances of selling the item."

Beginning in late September, this will apply to all categories.

Replacing the Coin Catalog and Other Category Changes
eBay will replace its US Coins catalog with a new catalog provided by Professional Coins Grading Service (PCGS).

eBay will also make changes to category and item specifics in the fall. Sellers will have to check to see if their listings comply with any new Item Specifics with category changes.

eBay is also rolling out the Fall Seller Release to other international sites - see our coverage of changes coming to eBay UK, including some disruptive fee changes.

What do you think of these changes? Leave a comment on the EcommerceBytes Blog.

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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