eBay.com TRS Tracking requirement postponed
eBay have postponed the requirement for sellers on eBay.com to uploading tracking numbers for at least 90% of shipments as part of the qualifications for Top Rated Seller status. Originally the announcement stipulated that tracking would have to be uploaded from the 1st of May in time for Top Rated Seller assessments on the 20th of June. Sellers now won’t be assessed on this requirement until the 20th of July which means you only need 90% of more shipments to include tracking from the 1st of June.
The reason given for the delay is that many Top-rated sellers have said they need more time to meet the new requirement to upload tracking within handling time on 90% or more of US transactions. Essentially it’s a one month grace period although eBay acknowledge “the number of sellers who have already risen to the challenge of the new criteria and now offer the services online buyers expect—including tracking”.
On the surface this is good news, lots of sellers have already complied and are now providing their buyers with a much better service and those that aren’t have another month and so won’t lose Top Rated Seller status. However looking at this from the point of view of the compliant sellers eBay have just cost them a wedge of money for no advantage. Tracking costs money and sellers have invested in tracking to meet the new requirements. Why shouldn’t they be advantaged compared to sellers who couldn’t be bothered/didn’t want to invest/have been offering cheaper shipping (which even if “Free”) has put them at a price Best Match advantage for the last month?
It’s simply not fair to change the rules one day before the requirements come in. The new requirements were announced on the 28th of February so sellers had over two months to get their shipping compliant. To suddenly give a months grace means the winners are the sellers who have no intention of complying and took the decision they’d never provide tracking and to those who couldn’t comply within 60 days but can within 90 days. The sellers who lost money providing tracking for the month of May have a justifiable reason to be a bit miffed.
It also occurs to me just how many sellers will be able to comply within 90 days but couldn’t get ready within 60 days? I suspect this might not be the smaller sellers who are generally fairly nimble to accommodate eBay’s changes. The chances are that eBay have decided to shift the goal posts to accomodate the medium to large sized sellers.