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Delivery date options for sellers

For buyers, knowing when they can expect an item to arrive is an important factor when making a purchase. That's why we always show an expected delivery date on eBay listings.

The estimated delivery date shown on your listings is based on the time it takes you to pack and ship items (your handling time), and the delivery or courier services you offer.

Handling and dispatch time

We define handling time as the time it takes you to hand over the item to the shipping provider after the buyer has paid.

Buyers want their purchases to arrive quickly so we recommend setting a dispatch time of no more than 2 days. Shorter dispatch times are always better if you can reliably meet them.

If you offer 1-day handling, remember the time frame isn't based on 24 hours: it's the end of the next business day. For example, if a buyer pays for your item on Monday, it needs to be scanned by Tuesday, 11:59pm.

If an item is bought on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, it needs to have tracking added by Monday, 11:59pm.

Always make sure to send your items on time or your late delivery rate may be affected. Learn more about monitoring and improving your seller performance.

Weekend and holiday deliveries

Weekends and holidays aren't included in estimated delivery dates, even though some carriers deliver on weekends.

A buyer may contact you if they specifically need a weekend delivery, or if they want a faster delivery option. If they're willing to pay any difference in cost, it's up to you whether to accept their request or not.

Express delivery on eBay

To appeal to buyers who need items quickly, consider adding express delivery services to your listing, such as overnight, next-day, or same-day delivery.

To offer express delivery:

  1. Go to the Shipping details section when creating a listing.
  2. Choose your preferred carrier(s) from the Services dropdown menu.

Free shipping message

The free shipping message lets buyers know when they can expect to receive their item and that they won't have to pay for delivery. We'll automatically add a free shipping message to your listings whenever you meet these requirements:

  • Both you and your buyer are located in the 48 contiguous US states
  • We can estimate the item's delivery date as 4 business days or less based on your handling time, the delivery service you've offered, your location, and the buyer's delivery address
  • You offer free shipping as your first (default) shipping option
  • You don't offer local pickup or freight as your first (default) shipping option
  • The listing isn't in Classified Ad format

How to qualify for a free shipping message:

  • Offer free delivery using a shipping service that will arrive in 4 days or less
  • Offer same-day or 1-day handling
  • Upload your item's tracking details when using tracked shipping

If eBay determines that your listing qualifies and you meet your handling time, we will remove any negative or neutral feedback left by the buyer regarding late delivery

This late delivery coverage does not protect your late shipment defects, and your listings can be deactivated from the program if they fall below the performance requirements.

On eBay Motors, the free shipping message is only shown in listings in the Parts & Accessories category.

Specifying "Get it by" delivery dates

If you're confident in your end-to-end delivery time and you'd like more control over the expected delivery dates shown on your listings, you can set up shipping rate tables - opens in new window or tab to show how quickly you can get your items to a customer's door.

In your rate tables, you'll specify your shipping costs and delivery speeds by region, based on your handling time plus your shipping carrier's delivery time. You can choose to enter delivery timeframes nationwide, or just for certain areas.

You can then choose which listings should show "Get it by" delivery dates by applying your postage rate table(s) to the listing. You can apply rate tables to listings one by one, by using bulk editing tools in the Listing tab - opens in new window or tab of Seller Hub, or by using business policies.

If you offer same-day handling, you can also set your handling time cut-offs - opens in new window or tab for more accurate delivery timeframes.

The estimated delivery date shown on your listings is based on your handling time, and the delivery or courier services you offer.

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