People are still buying and selling feedback on eBay

By Chris Dawson September 11, 2016 - 10:20 am

There was once a time when people stressed about how much feedback they had on eBay. People would (and still do!) buy and sell accounts because they think they’ll be more successful if they have an account with 100 or 1000 feedback than an account with zero feedback.

There is a little truth in the fact an established account is more useful, but only to the extent that it might have higher selling limits than a brand new account. In reality, if you’re an inexperienced eBay seller and you start off listing 1,000s of items on day one you’re likely to screw your account up no matter how experienced you are. If you’re an experienced eBay seller then you’ll recognise that everyone started out with zero feedback and it’s perfectly possible to build a business with a brand new account rather than wasting a ton of cash on an account with a few feedback.

nothingOf course creating an account with feedback generally means buying or selling something and Tamebay reader Sam was shocked this weekend to see that feedback selling is still taking place on eBay. eBay do of course have a Feedback Manipulation Policy which bans selling an item purely to exchange feedback, but in the past this has never stopped people doing so and won’t in the future.
Take the example above, the title is very clear that the listing is selling “nothing” and the description is even more blatant simply stating that the listing is designed to help eBay users “boost” their eBay accounts.

1x-nailWhat’s even more surprising is that two people bid on the auction so the 1p item sold for 6p – there’s actually competition to buy feedback on eBay, although I’d be surprised if any money ended up changing hands.

Sometimes an actual product might be on offer but I think the day I drive to Wigan to collect a single nail isn’t likely to come any time soon.

Our advice is that feedback isn’t worth buying, if you have a new account go and buy 10 things that you actually need and you’ll receive some feedback honestly.

Today, buyers on eBay don’t bother looking that closely at your feedback to see if you’ve got 1 feedback, 1,000 feedback or 10,000 feedback. Especially on mobile devices (where way over half of all eBay sales take place) it’s highly unlikely that a buyer noticed your feedback. We know that for some purchases such as a £10,000 Rolex Watch a buyer is more likely to carefully check out a seller’s history, but for a ten quid cushion or car tyre pump they’re much more likely to click and buy and never notice if you’ve got any feedback at all.

  • Sam O'levski
    1 year ago

    To add to the mix, there are also sellers in China selling a single nail, screw or other similar item which would appear to be just a way to boost the buyer’s feedback, as the Chinese sellers often have thousands already, unless of course they get enough people paying a few cents or pence for something which almost certainly never gets sent, in which case it’s a nice little earner.
    Surprised nobody else has commented yet – perhaps everyone is so used to this sort of stuff they cant be bothered ?

  • James
    1 year ago

    This scam could be used by the other side of the less scrupulous members of eBay.
    We have our account set up to prevent anyone with “0” feedback score purchasing items, therefore avoiding fraudsters who set up a new account and purchase from us and other eBayers, before deleting the account or moving on to a new one. This was a real problem at one point.
    If people are able to “buy” feedback without purchasing items then this is worrying, as we all know fraudsters can be inventive individuals…

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