Ok Ebay, It’s Time to Confess! Is It Really The Sellers?

This past year many long time Ebay sellers moved the bulk of their business to Amazon, and became multi-channel sellers. During the testing of “best match”, and “finding 2.0″, there were many sellers with a huge drop in sell through rates that lasted for a week or more. The only way to continue to sell on Ebay was to find another avenue to make sales. The avenue of choice for many was Amazon.

As you can see from my last post, Amazon is now becoming the number one place for ecommerce shoppers. So, I have to ask if all the problems on Ebay are really the fault of the sellers? Because after last week, it seems they are blaming the Ebay sellers for the poor buying experience. But, since those same sellers are making Amazon a fortune, how can it be the sellers fault?

Most of the changes to the Ebay site over the last 2 years have not stopped phishing e-mails, or account highjackings, or fixed system glitches, but they have taken a toll on my time to sell on Ebay. Many Ebay initiatives force me to use my time for customer service. Such as the “unpaid item process” where I have to spend a lot of my time because the number of unpaid items keeps rising each month.

The point is that I spend an incredible amount of time taking care of my customers on Ebay. Most Ebay sellers are constantly afraid of making even the tiniest mistake. We have been told by Ebay so many times that we are the reason buyers don’t like to shop at Ebay anymore, that I think we’ve begun to believe it. It has become part of our psychic makeup.

And I want to know where a buyer is going to get the same level of customer service at a regular Brick & Mortar store. Wal-Mart? Best Buy? I don’t think so.

And the most terrible thing is that, if we are doing everything possible to be a perfect Ebay seller, and Ebay is still losing buyers, then it must be the other sellers on Ebay who are to blame. I don’t know how many times I have heard one Ebay seller blame the other “scam” Ebay sellers for all the wrongs on Ebay.

So I have to ask again, is it Ebay’s habit of passing the customer service buck to the sellers, their habit of not telling buyers about account takeovers, their habit of not fixing system glitches that cost buyers and sellers time, their messing with search until nobody can find anything, and most of all blaming the sellers for trying to stay profitable and secure that is actually causing all their problems?

After all, the very same sellers Ebay is blaming, are making Amazon a fortune.



  1. says

    Hi Jennies,

    I have been reading a lot about e-bay sellers going on strike through out weeks of February. I believe that in addition to this, that e-bay sellers should also start instituting changes to the way they handle business.

    For example: E-bay “encourages” buyers to contact sellers prior to purchase. This is not enforced and certainly all questions would be answered as the Seller would then perhaps actually put hands-on to the item in question to best answer. For myself, as a small seller, I would like to TURN AWAY customer’s who do not contact me first. Having them contact me first would ensure that if they were not satisfied with what they have received that they would also then contact me again prior to leaving any form of negative feedback for customer satisfaction resolution.

    When a person writes to you, you are then able to click on their feedback to see if they have negative’s on THEIR feedback ratings; at which point in time you can also turn them away and / or add them to your blocked listings.

    MONEY: Should PayPal deem that money is to be held for a certain amount of time for any buyers, that is when the transaction would go to dispute resolution by Seller in that if PayPal and E-bay feel this would be a risky transaction, I should also, with the transaction being STOPPED and the money refunded; which PayPal would have to do if the Transaction is no longer in play.

    It would not be enough to boycott or strike at e-bay if we too, are not putting PayPal in their place. In the past six months I have had money held by PayPal for clients who have a PayPal account but do not have more than one back up resource such as a credit card to back up the money which is within their bank. When I contacted PayPal about holding these money’s they gave me the above definition. So a person who actually has money in their personal off-line bank makes a payment of cash which PayPal HOLDS for 7 days prior to releasing because that person does not have a credit card also on file. In these days of recessive economics; what person wants a credit card? Lets put PayPal to the same task that we are putting e-bay to and hold them accountable.

    I believe that there are other ways we can unite to protect ourselves as sellers from the viscious attacks of buyers who know that if they can complain simply to get a partial refund or an additional item. In as much, the seller then becomes enslaved to the stroke of the Buyer’s whim.

    I would like to see an open forum of suggestions towards this end, that would inspire Sellers to Unite in way’s that would follow as well as create POLICY & STANDARDS that better protect us within our online existence.

  2. says

    With the pending feedback system changes, where sellers cannot leave negative feedback on buyers, I think eBay is making a radical departure from their peer-to-peer roots of eBay, where there was transparency between buyers and sellers.

    This is not what many seller ‘signed up’ for.

    I woke up last night with some ideas of how I might be able to put together a service that will help sellers better segment out bad buyers before they create damage – even if eBay doesn’t allow sellers to leave negative feedback. But before I go ahead and spend more nights and weekends on this, I wanted to ask the community a few questions that will help me determine whether I’m in tune with the rest of the seller community’s problems and needs.

    Please take my survey here:

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