You work hard! We get it. And, there’s not much that stings quite so bad as opening up your eBay solds for the day only to find a new negative feedback on your account. With the care we all put in maintaining our Top Rated Seller status and good search rankings, learning how to change feedback on eBay is critically important. We’ll cover how to remove negative feedback on eBay by dealing with eBay directly, how to work with your customer via an eBay feedback revision request to get the feedback removed, and how to avoid getting a bad feedback in the first place. I know it’s a sore subject but having a plan of action ready to go will help you grow your business and maintain your peace of mind.
Before we get started let’s just acknowledge that more often than not the feedback won’t be deserved. You may have transactions where you didn’t perform up to snuff but it’s usually the ones where you did everything right and some frustrated soul out there decided to lash out. If you are here reading this article, then you are the sort of eBay seller who cares about their customer and your business. I know you are probably angry and frustrated that someone if essentially trying to hurt your business, but you need to try and put away the impulse to react. From the moment you receive a negative, just focus on what you need to get out of it. Let everything else go and just work on helping the buyer and your account by getting back on the right track. Again, it’s your peace of mind, so I would always recommend maintaining professionalism and kindness to get things right.
How To Change Feedback On eBay. Your First Line Of Defense.
There are several circumstances where eBay will remove the feedback for you without ever contacting the customer. Before wading into the deeper waters of trying to get the buyer to do it for you, it’s always good to look at the situations where you may get an automatic eBay feedback revision. Often times a quick phone call to eBay may take care of it. Just be prepared with a specific request when you call. If you can point them to a rule that appears to have been broken, then they often side with the seller, even if you are borderline on the policy.
eBay negative feedback removal may be handled by eBay, without consent from the buyer, under these guidelines:
- The buyer didn’t pay for their purchase and an unpaid item case has been recorded against the buyer.
- The defect, Feedback or late delivery was the direct result of an eBay site issue or program error.
- The delivery estimate shown in the listing was shortened and tracking shows the item was delivered by the carrier’s longest delivery estimate.
- The Buyer violates the Buying Practices policy, such as violating the Member-to-member contact policy.
- The Buyer threatens the seller with negative feedback for any reason.
- Ebay instructs you to hold a shipment or take action to cancel the transaction. (i.e suspected fraud)
The one’s you’ll want to focus on are the content of the feedback itself and the feedback extortion protection. Essentially if the buyer uses any form of threatening or hate speech in either messages or the feedback itself eBay will most likely remove it automatically. And, if the buyer at all mentions feedback in direct eBay message you’ll have a great chance of it going away. Buyers are not allowed to leverage feedback for any sort of discount or any other benefit. A message like “I’d hate to leave you negative feedback but this item is just not right” will often be enough for eBay to pull it.
Some advice for all calls to eBay for a feedback revision request:
- Be the calmest and most professional person the operator has talked to all day. They are much more likely to help you if they feel like you are the rational one. Maintain your cool at all times.
- If you don’t get what you need in the first few minutes with the operator, thank them for their help, and ask if there is a department you could speak to that might be able to help more. If not, just ask for your call to be escalated.
- If you don’t get what you need on the first call, (and you feel like you have a decent case for removal) just call back later and get a different operator. I can’t tell you how many times we have succeeded on the 3rd or 4th operator.
- Never try to leverage with an eBay operator. You cannot say things like “Do this or we’ll quit eBay.” They will always know your bluffing and ultimately we are all very small fish. Just don’t do it. Again maintain your cool.
eBay Feedback Revision Request: How To Change Feedback On eBay By Contacting The Buyer
If a buyer has left negative feedback which doesn’t violate eBay buyer practices guideline, your next best option is to directly contact the buyer via an eBay message. Never, reply to feedback with a publically viewable response. It will make your business look petty and passive aggressive. It’s the last thing your next prospective buyer wants to see. A customer will often let a seller make up for a negative experience if you just make it easy for them. Here are a few quick steps and a good 2-minute video on everything you need to know about eBay’s feedback revision requests.
- Contact the buyer, apologize for their bad experience and ask how you can help make it better.
- We like to always offer a return in the first email, so they know they have an easy out.
- Better still, is to give the buyer some options. If you can give them two choices they feel in control and are more likely to reply.
- You can’t directly offer money for feedback removal but you can get very close. eBay has never enforced this policy as far as we know.
- Be certain to get a confirmation from the buyer BEFORE sending a revision request. You have a limited amount of these requests.
- Go to the Request Feedback Revision page and follow instructions.
- The buyer will receive notice of the request revision.
- If no reply is received from the customer, we like to give them 3 days and then make a more direct appeal of a partial refund.
How to Motivate A Buyer to Change eBay Feedback:
The best approach we use is to simply apologize for the issue, offer them a return or a % discount and ask them which they prefer. Follow this up with a “we’d also ask that you remove your negative feedback”. Buyers typically will get what this means and work with you to change the eBay feedback and to get everybody what they want. If they are not willing to return the item, then on some level they are happy with it and just want some give back from the seller. At the end of the day it’s worth $20 to just have the problem go away, so work on communicating that without being too painfully obvious. Again, I’ve never seen eBay wade into this. They want happy buyers and discounting transactions is one of the easiest ways to accomplish that.
Some Important Notes About FeedBack Revision Requests:
- You need to make your request within 30 days of the buyer leaving Feedback.
- After you ask them to revise it, they only have 10 days in which to make the change.
- You may make one request per Feedback. You cannot send the buyer a second request if they ignore the first. eBay will send them a reminder after one week.
- You only have five Feedback revision requests per year, or per 1,000 Feedback received, (whichever is greater) so use them wisely!
How To Avoid A Negative Feedback On eBay.
1. Your Product:
Offering a high-quality product will lower chances of receiving negative feedback. If your product is in perfect working order and is an all-around great product, your customer will likely be satisfied with their purchase. A good product sells itself, and feeling good about a purchase will influence the buyer’s decision when leaving feedback. A certain amount more diligence is required when selling used vs. new items. If you are selling used there is a much bigger burden on your description. Know the difference and when to put in the extra work.
2. The Buyer’s Perception of the Product:
A buyer and seller should have the same idea of the product they’re receiving. (Again, especially with used products.) Under describe and over deliver is a good mantra. The buyer is trusting you to provide an unbiased description of what they are getting. If you promise too much you are setting yourself up for a bad exchange.
eBay Condition Description and Photos
A products photo set should include a well-illuminated 360-degree view of the product, as well as, any descriptive tags on the product. A well-pictured product makes the buyer less suspicious of what they’re receiving, especially with used products. Highlight any marks, dings, dents, or notable conditional attributes via photos and description, this will instill trust in your buyer. When describing the product it is best to provide an awesome photo set, then ‘under-describe’ the condition of your product.
eBay Seller Rating:
Having a good feedback record and DSR’s will instill trust in a buyer. This is one of the first impressions they receive and will stick with the customer. Communicating with a customer, providing fast, preferably one business day, processing time, making clear and honoring return policies, as well as, providing free returns and shipping will leave your customer with a warm and fuzzy feeling of security. If a buyer feels ignored, or if they feel that it would be a struggle to return a product, they’ll be left with a bad taste in their mouth. If you communicate with your buyer and allow them to decide whether they want or don’t want the product upon receiving it, you’ll be much less likely to receive negative feedback.
A properly packaged product presents professionalism. Your package is your buyer’s first impression of their purchase. A properly packed product should be placed in an appropriately sized box, bubble wrapped, with at least two inches of space between the product and box, and should include a packing slip to thank the buyer, provide a few means of communication, remind them of your return policy, and ask for communication before potential negative feedback. The package should be filled to the point that nothing shakes inside, but not overly stuffed so that box is bulging. Also, taking the time to do a nice tape job and carefully placing the label can add to the presentation of the product.
Shipping and Handling Time.
Nothing has a greater effect on your feedback that the time from purchase to receipt by the buyer. When a buyer runs into a problem they reflect on how long it’s been since they bought the product. If it’s only been a few days, then they feel like it won’t take long to resolve the problem. If it’s been 10 days since they ordered the product they feel like they are looking at another couple weeks of headache to get it returned or dealt with. It’s this frustration that most often leads to a negative. Getting the product in their hands fast will help to avoid them all together. Focus on using a fast ship service whenever possible and getting your products handled and out the door fast.
Always make certain your buyer knows what’s going on. If it’s a long weekend and you get a Friday purchase that won’t ship till Tue, send them a little note thanking them and letting them know when it will depart. As long as they know what to expect most buyers are happy. If they don’t hear from you for days, though, that can set a bad tone. Then, if something is wrong with the item, a negative feedback is their first step rather than their last. They may assume since they haven’t heard from you, that you’re not listening and they need to get your attention. Also, check your automated email settings on eBay. Be sure each step is generating a status update email to your customer.
Summary: How to Change Feedback On eBay.
In the end, although it is important to maintain positive feedback and DSR’s, there are times where nothing can be done to remove eBay negative feedback. Learn to not let it keep you up at night. Do your best and always stay professional. If you can be positive and keep your cool, you will almost always find a solution. Buyers, even those hard to deal with, just want to know they’ve been heard. Reassure them, offer some compensation, and do your best to understand what they are going through. Having an action plan for how to change feedback on eBay through either automatic removals or revision requests will take out some of the sting, and help you get on with the business of selling great products to awesome customers.