Good Sellers can make a difference when they are Good Buyers too.
Many eBay sellers are also buyers and should have a solid knowledge of what it takes to be a good seller to their buyers. It’s the old “Do unto others as you would have be done to you” theory. However as a seller they should also remember to use this same theory when they put on their buying hat and step on the other side of a transaction.
Seasoned sellers can help not only themselves but also the rest of the eBay community. When you have a transaction with a new or inexperienced seller and you are an experienced seller you will be able to see and maybe prevent any of the red flags and any potential problems. This is where you should offer your knowledge and help. Sometimes as a buyer you may find yourself in a transaction that has the new or even experienced seller making a mistake, or maybe appears to be doing something wrong or against eBay polices. You should take the initiative to see if you can help straighten them out. But do it in a way that is educational and not emotional.
What you say and how you say it in emails!
The first thing you should do is to remember that the typed word does not show emotion. What you write may look cold and harsh if you don’t clearly state that you are offer suggestions and support and not blasting them for their selling abilities or lack of.
Think about how would you feel as a seller if you didn’t know about the policy against charging a buyer for a Paypal fee and received each of the following emails.
- Hey Seller,
What’s the matter with you – can’t you read!! YOU CANNOT CHARGE A FEE FOR TAKING PAYPAL!!!! You’re a crook! I am going to report you.
Your angry buyer
I am going to send you my payment minus the added fee you tacked on for using Paypal.
Since that is not allowed I am not going to pay it. I expect to you complete this transaction and send me my item once you have received my payment.
- Hello Seller,
I noticed that on your invoice for the item I am purchasing from you that you have added a charge for paying by Paypal. As a seller I truly understand how much these fees cut into sellers profits but at the same time it is the rules we all have to abide by. I would like to point out the eBay and Paypal policy that states that you cannot do this. You may not have been aware of this but you can find this policy at the following eBay link: place the url here Please send the adjusted invoice and we can continue our transaction.
There is a difference in the way it was said in all three and the way it may be taken by the seller you send any of them to. The key is to be straightforward and explain the problem and offer a workable solution. Every situation is different and you have to realize that not every seller on eBay is an experience businessperson. Some are just part time sellers with little or no sales and shipping experience and just might need a helping hand instead of a slap.
Some examples on what you can do to help
You order an item and it doesnt show up, you should notify your seller as soon as you begin to worry about a package. If it has a shipping tracking number make sure you get the number if your seller hasn't already given it to you. If the item was shipped without insurance, delivery confirmation or tracking you can always ask to see a copy of the receipt from the shipper that clearly states that the item was indeed shipped to you when the seller stated it was. Try inquiring at your own Post Office as the seller checks with theirs to see if the package landed in the dead letter area for some reason. Communication and patience is the key here to coming to a reasonable conclusion to your transaction when your item never arrives.
If you receive only a part of your order contact the seller immediatly and advise them of the problem. Give them time to check around and see if the item was left out while packing and is still at their location. It could be that the item was mistake packed in another package and needs to be retrieved from another buyer or a partial refund sent to you. As long as you and your seller keep in touch you can work it out.
The item arrived but was not packed well and suffered little or reparable damage. Photograph the damage and include it in your contact email to the seller. Explain that this type of damage can be avoided with proper packing and suggest they check out the shipping discussion board.
On one of my transactions with a new seller one of the items out of a box lot was damaged. The seller had used the bubblewrap on the bottom and top of the items in the box but had wrapped the items in newspaper. I suggested in the future to reverse the order and wrap the bubblewrap around the items and place the newspaper as filler on the top & bottom. A partial refund was offered. The item which was one out of many in the box and was not really needed by me so instead I suggested that she go ahead and keep the payment and put it towards purchasing good shipping supplies. I checked back on her feedback a few weeks later and felt good when I saw positive feedback on her careful packing.