As the holiday selling season gets underway, eBay is making a number of policy changes intended to protect sellers from buyers who leave unfair feedback.
One of the biggest changes announced Tuesday is a "reporting hub," where merchants can report bad apples. This information will not be visible to other sellers, but eBay will investigate reports to identify buyers who abuse the system.
This change is meant to "ensure that your seller performance ratings are a true reflection of the great service you provide," says Dinesh Lathi, eBay's vice president of Seller and Buyer Performance.
The hub is scheduled to debut in late October. Merchants will be able to access it through their Seller Dashboards, eBay's Contact Us page, the seller information page in the eBay Buyer Protection hub, as well as Selling Manager and Selling Manager Pro.
Sellers will also be able to see which negative feedback scores, low DSR ratings and Buyer Protection cases were removed from their account as a result of the reports made on the reporting hub by logging into their Dashboards.
eBay will prohibit buyers from opening cases before a 'reasonable window of time for delivery' has passed
Protecting seller status
Additionally, eBay will make changes to ensure sellers are given enough time to provide good customer service. To this end, eBay will prohibit buyers from opening Buyer Protection cases against merchants before a "reasonable window of time for delivery" has passed. If cases are opened and "escalated" but eBay finds in favor of the seller, these cases will not affect that merchant's Top-rated or PowerSeller status.
"To make sure you're covered by these new protections, provide top customer service and respond promptly to buyer issues [and] upload shipping tracking or delivery confirmation information for every transaction," Lathi suggests.
Other new policies eBay will implement this fall include one prohibiting sellers from flooding the marketplace with duplicate listings, and changes to the way seller ratings for shipping cost and shipping time are handled.
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Auctiva staff writers constantly monitor trends and best practices of those selling on eBay and elsewhere online. They attend relevant training seminars and trade shows and regularly discuss the market with PowerSellers and other market experts.