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Changes to eBay UK Anchor and Featured shop customer support

By Dan Wilson August 17, 2016 - 12:17 am

eBay UK has made changes to the customer support provision for sellers with a Featured or Anchor Shop that are in force with immediate effect. A seller has forwarded us the email he received from eBay on Wednesday. (You can read it in full below.)

The email says: “With immediate effect, our customer support will be available to all Anchor and Featured Shop subscribers through both our European and international support centres. This is to ensure you’ll always receive optimal service.

We’ll make sure to direct your calls to the customer support staff who are best suited and trained to handle your specific issues.”

You can read the text of the email sent out to relevant shop owners below but it’s not entirely clear what the changes are going to be so we’ve sought clarification from eBay and can elucidate two specific changes.

– Anchor and Featured Shop subscribers will now receive Irish support and also responses from eBay CS centres around the world. It’s the “follow the sun” principle that means reps globally will be able to help you at different times of the day.

– New processes have been put into place so that specialised enquiries can be directed to the appropriate team members. Anchor and Featured Shop owners will likely have specific needs and you’ll be channeled to the rep who can best help you.

As far as we can tell there is no change to provision for Basic shops.

Several sellers have been in touch to say that they are unhappy with these changes. Specifically, they no longer have dedicated phone support from Irish reps. They perceive the support they get from other support centres around the world to be inferior.

According to one seller who contacted Tamebay, eBay UK Featured Shops subscribers have been universally transferred to non-Irish reps for some weeks. The seller notes that he considers the support from Manila to be less good than that from Dublin/Dundalk.

And that does seem to resonate with the fact the email sent to sellers does offer a discount in “goodwill” that would hardly be necessary if this was an unambiguously positive move. This editor is a bit confused.

To remind yourself of the various features and costs of the different shop levels, check out this page here.

At Tamebay we’ve always been keen to see eBay invest in Customer Support, to help sellers grow and support their buyers. But this quite confusing communique from eBay is a little troubling in its lack of clarity. How exactly will sellers be impacted?

Do let us know your views and experiences.

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  • JD
    7 months ago

    ~
    Que?
    An improvement? UK Featured shops subscribers used to have dedicated support from Dublin/Dundalk.
    eBay changed that without the T&C 60 days notice so hence the gesture.
    More eBay spin!! Suckers.

    • 7 months ago

      As I noted: we’ll see how this pans out.

    • JD
      7 months ago

      ~
      Que (again)?
      See what ‘pans out’? It’s been like this for a couple of months but eBay was caught out by not givIng the 60 days notice for a change of T&C.
      Sorry Dan but you have to use it to lose it and us Featured Shop subscribers have lost it. Hence the gesture from eBay.

    • Kath
      7 months ago

      At least someone (JD) has the meaning of it.

      Quite why Tamebay are calling it ‘confusing’ (and allegedly originally heralded it as an ‘improvement’ ??!) is beyond me.

  • Andy R
    7 months ago

    How many times did Ebay redraft this announcement before issuing it? Must have been tough to find sufficiently neutral language to hide this downgrade to fee paying business customers.

    If Ebay is making so much money, why do they need to make savings like this?

    Ebay is still hitting sellers – and why can’t UK sellers have BRITISH support centres?

    Why doesn’t Ebay UK fly the flag and prove it is genuinely a British based company?

  • tinker
    7 months ago

    no big loss, ebay customer support is ineffective who ever and whenever you contact them

  • chrisL
    7 months ago

    I have recently noticed that my calls to Ebay have also been diverted to Manilla.
    I am a Top Rated Seller and my calls in the past always were handled by Ireland.
    The support from Manilla cannot be compared to that received from Ireland.
    When I notice that my call has been diverted to Manilla I generally hang up and call again.
    I suggest that other sellers also report their dissatisfaction to the Irish Call Center when they call there next (and actually get through to Ireland).

  • Steve
    7 months ago
  • Joe
    7 months ago

    One of the main things that doesn’t sit well with sellers over this is the fact that there is a long thread on the UK PS board about this. More than a month ago, the question was asked (paraphrased) ‘I have a featured shop so why don’t I get put through to Dublin every time?’. An eBay employee asked ‘where does it state that featured shop subscribers get Dublin support,?’ and he was shown a link. Obviously he should already have known this.

    Within a few hours the page shown was changed, basically the tick that showed the featured/anchor shops got priority support from Dublin was removed. Reading between the lines, eBay got caught out and just changed their terms and conditions by changing the page showing the various benefits.

    Another eBay employee said she’d look into it and update us. Over the course of a month various sellers kept asking for the answer and she just kept saying ‘still waiting, will update you soon’.

    Then we got the email yesterday. It’s not a good thing. It’s removing a benefit from higher level shop subscriptions and it’s been done in a underhanded manner, communication has been badly botched.

    If eBay sellers treated their customers so badly, we’d be quickly sanctioned and banned.

  • Chris
    7 months ago

    I have been through to Manilla and was basically told a load of rubbish – Better trained, Ebay? They are difficult to understand, can’t understand me properly and the phone line tends to be poor.
    I tried to “force” a call to Dublin but was left on hold for 50 minutes before being transferred to a lady in the USA – at least she spoke clearly and knew what she was talking about.
    I think the rebate on our shop fees should be forever, not just 60 days, if the service has dropped to this level. Time to wake up Ebay, you cannot screw your sellers and expect them to keep coming back to pay you thousands every month!!!!!!!

  • SAM
    7 months ago

    I think they are just going to phase out the support from Dundalk. Ireland has the highest min wage in Europe. The same job can be done for pence instead of pounds in the Philippines. Education standards have improved a lot in the far east and there a lot more English speakers these days. They are willing to work for a lot less than people in UK or Ireland. Us who have built our own business’s i.e self employed have the safest jobs these days.
    This is not just eBay loads of corporates do this. Half the people who work for them only understand how to cut and make savings rather than invest and grow. I had some design work done by a freelancer in the Philippines for pennies compared to using a designer in the UK. This is the way of the world.
    Here is £5 what I already think is overpriced featured shop as a sweetener as we have taken “away” dedicated customer support. I have never rated eBay’s support anyway for sellers it is truly awful anyway and it has just become lip service. I prefer actually to send an email spelling out an issue clearly like I do with Amazon it might take 24 hours but at least I get a straight answer. You have seen it is harder to get a CALL ME number now on eBay.

  • james
    7 months ago

    absolute garbage communication from ebay.
    absolute garbage everything from ebay, as usual.
    cant manage the truth, we’ll BS instead, make completely meaningless statements, then tell you how you need to be clear and straightforward with people.
    what a bunch of complete scumbags.

    “some people perceive the foreign support may be slightly inferior” – the foreign support is no support at all, they are literally useless.
    i dont care if they cost 3p per hour, you definitely get what you pay for with CS staff, they are dreadful, they dont know how to work the basics of ebay, let alone help me with actual problems i cant fix myself.

    “dear passengers of the Titanic, we’ve amended our dry feet T&C’s to improve passenger moistness, and detoured to the ocean floor, we’re pleased to report we’re giving you 10% off your ticket fees as a result of the ship crashing and sinking”.

    all aboard SS ebay.

  • Dave P
    7 months ago

    I have to agree that in my experience the Irish CS team always seem to be far more knowledgable. Before the previous changes, phoning through to Manila was about as bad as going on the live chat

    • Sam O'levski
      7 months ago

      Perhaps the fact that most if not all of eBay’s terms and conditions etc were drafted by people with a western background and viewpoint comes into it, so even if the Irish cs people don’t know the rules inside out, they know what sounds right and what ‘normal’ practices are in the western world.
      I lived in parts of Eastern Europe for a few years, and found that I would often be amazed at just how differently things worked, even in Spain there were differences, so how can we expect people who live in Asia to grasp many of our methods and practices ?

    • james
      7 months ago

      we dont, we expect them to know how to copy & paste the equivelant of “f**k off”, which they do well.

  • Kevin A
    7 months ago

    Well, what a disgrace.

    My wife and I, run a small business with a Featured Shop and have done so for about 10 years now.

    We’ve seen a lot of changes over the years and as neither of us are getting any younger, we set about planning for our exit strategy a couple of years ago.

    This latest change confirms to us that the writing is most certainly on the wall, well for us anyway and we look forward to hanging up our eBay and Amazon hats

    Shame on you eBay

  • John
    7 months ago

    eBay are looking at ways to cut costs as they see Amazon just railroading them.

    Amazon support is so so good. I get phonecalls at 7pm telling me a support query from a week ago has been resolved, and thanking me for my business with them… Amazon has such an edge on ebay…where did it all go wrong…I think it was when Mark Lewis left. They were top of the tree when he was in charge. Since then the service side has slipped, although I will say if you dont need to speak to ebay, their site is still a good place to sell..

    • Barry
      7 months ago

      Well said John

  • Gareth Barns
    7 months ago

    I always get Manila no matter what I try. They have no autonomy to apply any commonsense and have to work from a rigid script.

    I try to avoid eBay’s CS (and BS) as much as possible these days. It’s just a frustrating experience.

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