WHAT MAKES A BUYER SATISFIED?
Seller Feedback with Buyer Satisfaction
When I first started selling on ebay, I sure didn't know much about "customers satisfaction". But I realized that it is just common sense. Buyers want to be treated the same as you do when you buy. Then I discovered the feedback system that rates sellers is paramount is about "what makes the buyer" rate you high with 5-stars on all four catagories. These are called DSRs. It made sense to make the buyer happy with the purchase and go the extra mile. The DSR's are how ebay judges a seller.
Description: My first listings didn't have a lot of description about the items. It seemed that the buyers had to email me for simple questions that I should have put int he description. I quickly learned to make it clear so there are no misunderstandings, put measurements, age and condition. Your descriptions are necessary, but even more important is that you speak the truth about the condition and wear of the item if it is used. Buyers can leave sellers an overall positive, neutral or negative feedback on four aspects of their transaction which are 1) accuracy of item description 2) communication 3) shipping time (the time it takes the package to be in the mail after payment is received) 4) shipping and handling fees. The rating is based on 1-5 star scale with 5 stars being the highest. If the seller does not receive high ratings then they are not eligible for "key seller benefits like their items getting more exposure to the public, membership in the "PowerSeller program" which gives them 24/7 contact with ebay managers, and the last is the most important - with high ratings the seller can earn discounts on their final value fees of items they sell. So you can see the ratings are extremely important to the seller. It pays to write a great description, but don't sacrifice relevant details for the sake of "sizzle" and be accurate cover all defects. Use photos and show the item from every angle. If you have missed something in the description and the buyer emails you about that defect, resolve the problem in a timely manner. This will benefit your ratings and you will have a satisified customer.
When I started out, I didn't realize that any prospect buyer would like to know if the item you are selling is, NEW, USED, Vintage, Barely Used, Never used, or in between. If the item is rough, put that in the description too. If the item was vintage, that was important because maybe the buyer would think the item is currently available in stores. If what I sold was rare then it is good to mention that too. The description is the most important feature since the seller must see the item you are selling as it actually is. If the item is discolored, torn, or patched, it needs to be mentioned in the description. Can you imagine the buyer receiving the item and no mention of the item having a tear or patch in the description, but their eyes tell them this is not what they were planning on receiving. This will affect their ratings on that seller.
Communication: I didn't realize that the buyer would want to hear from me as the seller that I had shipped the item. I was good about answering their questions, but posting the shipping date had slipped my mind. I have seen sellers notify the buyer that they have been away for family business, death in the family, sick relative, and that is why it took 5-7 days to ship. Excuses are not received well by the buyer because they think you probably made that up to cover yourself because you were busy doing other things. Now don't get me wrong, there are emergencies in life and we all hope it doesn't happen to us, but if "high ratings" are your goal, then have someone else do the mailing for you while you are gone. In purchasing items on ebay, I have had the same excuse given to me when I bought from the same person - and that didn't settle well with me.
Shipping time: At first my shipping information was fuzzy because I didn't have a weight scale and didn't have a handle on the shipping cost. This was a fast learn, because everyone wants to know what it will cost to ship the item to them before they bid, not after and no guessing. Ebay has an automatic shipping icon that you can add to your listing and it figures based on weight and size of the box, what the item will cost from your zip code to theirs. It is wise to let the buyers know the box will be heavy or that the box size is large. When I didn't have all this information, buyers just skipped over my items and went to ones that explained every detail. I also decided early on that I would not charge buyers for packing materials or tissue. This is part of the business. I just wanted them to pay the actual cost of shipping and insurance, not one cent more. If I over shot the shipping cost, then they got a refund. I still feel the refund for overage on shipping is important. The rating's catagory for shipping is based on the time after the buyer pays that it takes the seller to put the item in the mail, not the time it takes to reach you. If you live on opposite sides of USA it will take longer and if you are a International buyer it will be 10-14 day stretch, even with USPS prioirity shipping. This rating is sometimes mixed up with the cost of the shipping and if the seller charged handling fees. This catagory causes stress for buyers and sellers because it is misunderstood. The time it takes for the seller to put your package in the mail after you pay is what ebay bases the rating on, but sometimes a buyer feels the time should be from the time they paid until they receive the item in hand. And with all the alternates in shipping, priority, post mail, air mail, international - it can vary.
Using Paypal - I found you that if you didn't offer PayPal you were really hurting yourself. The buyers like Paypal because they can use any of their credit cards or bank account with an e-check. Yes, it cost the seller to offer this service, but it turned out the best thing I could do. At first I didn't realize that buyers don't like sending checks or money orders because too much time passes. They want to pay now and get the item shipped off immediately. That was another thing I learned, when the pay, ship the next day if at all possible.