New eBay UK Seller Dashboard doesn’t track PayPal refunds
Since the new eBay Seller Dashboard was revealed last week, we’ve had numerous emails from sellers as everyone has been getting to grips with the new system. You can see our post about appeals and descoring here.
It’s a good job that the new Seller Standards don’t come into effect until August, because there’s a lot to get to grips with.
And one key detail that has come to light this week regards how eBay tracks refunds. It’s vital that you make your refund through the eBay process because otherwise you might still suffer a Defect. The refunds you make through PayPal are not automatically tracked by the the Seller Dashboard.
As eBay noted in a statement to Tamebay yesterday: “Where sellers can see defects for cancelled transactions or unresolved cases we’ve seen this is most likely when the process flows on eBay haven’t been used. We advise sellers to always make sure the transaction is logged correctly and any communication with the buyer is through eBay. This way we can see what is happening which is really important.”
Of course, and it has to be said, that eBay Inc. company PayPal doesn’t seamlessly connect with the eBay Marketplace to make sure that refunds are tracked (and we mean this charitably) is shabby. But that’s the system for now, it seems.
In such past cases, prior to your knowledge of this information, you may have defects related to refunds… and you might want to consider the descoring process to tell eBay Inc’s left hand how you’ve been serving customers ably and correctly with its right hand.
The problem is that the 2refunds I have made recently via the “issue refund” button on Paypal now show up as “Seller cancelled sale as item not in stock” on ebay. I didn’t cancel the sale, I refunded the seller because they returned an item. So from now on if I want to refund a seller I’ll just send them money via Paypal instead and avoid a defect. Ebay have a lot to sort out in order that they can reduce the number of Top Sellers receiving a discount (that’s what this is all about I assume?)
Up until now, the majority of buyers have opened up cases through eBay for item not received or item not as described because I have asked the to (to follow eBay procedures) so that I can give them a full refund without a problem. Sometimes when an item has not been received, it is because the buyers has not collected it from the sorring office. When not as described, it is because sometimes the item has clearly been damaged by the postal courier.
These buyers would buy from me again and I don’t think I should be penalised by eBay by registering these sales as a defect.
Surely eBay can ask the buyer a simple question when they receive a refund as to whether they would buy from the seller again. It is not at all fair that these current transactions where the buyers are still happy are regarded as defect.
We would then not have to consider going to Paypal to give refunds instead of following a correct procedure and logging the problem through eBay.
How do you “make your refund through the eBay process” when the buyer calls up and you immediately promise them a full refund over the phone? At the moment, the best process I can see is sending the refund straight away and then cancelling the transaction via eBay.
Anything else is worse for the buyer. “Hi yes, thanks for calling the 0800 number we provide to help solve problems but I’m not going to help you, I’m afraid. Go to eBay instead and let them arbitrate whether your claim is unworthy and fight fight fight for your right.” Good grief.
And this is not just any buyer. This is a buyer with a problem, and those are the ones that I want to make things much much better for as soon as I possibly can. Give those guys a good experience and they return forever. Do we really want to build a world that is worse for the buyer who has a problem?
‘Surely eBay can ask the buyer a simple question when they receive a refund as to whether they would buy from the seller again.’
That is such a great idea! I’d go further and say that for any problem/refund that a seller resolved, the buyer should be asked if they were satisfied now and if they would buy from the seller again. If they answer ‘yes’ there should be NO DEFECT.
I really don’t think it is true that all/any problem results in a bad buyer experience – like others I find that where you do resolve things in a good way, the buyer becomes a repeat buyer not the opposite. Therefore, eBay should give you a Plus Point, not a Defect.
So how about a new system where buyers can award Plus Points to sellers for outstanding service that we could use to offset some of our defects?
One of the problems that we have found is that of the 2 “Cancelled transaction (out of stock or sold to someone else)” that we have staring at us from our dashboard, neither are correct.
They are both caused by a refund in PayPal without any messages coming from the buyer through the eBay messaging system first.
In the first case, a buyer paid with the wrong address selected in PayPal. He phoned us up, apologised and asked if we could deliver the item to his other address. We explained to him that due to PayPal Seller protection we couldn’t without following a few steps first. One of my staff members refunded him in full via PayPal. The customer then resent the money through PayPal with the correct delivery address selected. At no point did we cancel the transaction in eBay.
He has the goods, we have his money. EBay and PayPal both have got their fees. The reason it is classed as a cancellation? … EBay has detected the refund, but not detected the repayment. That’s 1 defect for us.
The second case is even more frustrating …. A customer phoned us up and asked us if we could provide a discount if he bought 4 items together. We agreed the discount. The normal way that eBay allows a discount to be applied is for the customer to “request the total from seller”. This then allows you to apply a discount, but for some bizarre reason, only up to the value of the shipping. Since we now offer free shipping on all of our products, we have to find another way. The quickest and easiest for both us and the customer is for the customer to pay in full, and then for us to immediately provide a partial refund for the agreed discount amount. This keeps it nice and tidy for all parties. Except for the fact that now it doesn’t. Apparently because the customer phoned us and had not contacted us through the eBay messaging system, when we issued the PARTIAL refund (£15 refunded from a £200 order), eBay has detected this as a “Cancelled transaction (out of stock or sold to someone else)” Defect.
eBay … WTF???
I made 2 full refunds using the Refund link in Paypal – these were made prior to posting, no contact whatsoever from buyers, no cases were ever opened. Both items had minor flaws which I hadn’t picked up when listing, but I still sent the items at my expense and both buyers were absolutely delighted – but not ebay apparently.
It seems if you make a full refund via Paypal even if no case is opened or there has been no contact from the buyer then you will get an ebay Defect.
So perhaps I should have retained 5p or used the send money facility and added 20p to cover any deductions which Paypal may have taken.
I didn’t even bother to claim my FVF’s back, what a fool.
i also have noticed the same problem with partial refunds now showing as defects. Especially frustrating as ebay cannot sort out the “request the total from seller” glitch that appears to be on mobile/tablet/international sites or when buyers don’t read and ask for discount after they have paid individually. As we sell items of different weights and sizes we always issue part-refunds for overpaid postage, now we get a defect. Crazy. Can’t see many sellers surviving these latest mad changes, expect we’ll be closing our anchor shop end of August and saying goodbye after 15 years of selling on ebay.