25 Tips On How To Be Safe In Your eBay Buying and Selling

April 12, 2006

Found this article today while it is on the dailyindia.com website, has some excellent tips for eBayers no matter where they are. By the way, dailyindia.com subcontracts with some great article writers. I suggest you check them out reguarly. This article does a good job of outlining many of the eBay pitfalls that many new eBayers and veterans alike fall for. This is a list to post right beside your computer. Let me comment on the highlights: #3. High Value or high volume for newly registered sellers. This is a big one! New sellers who are selling high value/volume items are more than likely scammers trying to fleece you. These accounts are usually terminated by eBay within days or even hours. However they are still able to generate some "profits" from the short time they are live. #7. Unusual sales pattern. If the recent sales do not match items sold in the past (this can usually be seen by looking at their feedback), then that is a good indication of a hijacked eBay account. The account may be legitimate but it was hijacked by the scammer for their devoius deeds. #9. Location, Location, Location. Make sure the gooods match the location as stated everywhere you can find it on eBay! The location on the feedback page should match the location on the auction page as well as the location stated in any email correspondence. #20. "I noticed your Bid…" Never conduct business with anyone who contacts you regarding recent items you have bid on. On one hand they are offering to handle the transaction outside of ebay which is against eBay policy, while on the otherhand they are usually fraudsters or at best unscrupulous sellers. #24. Time is of the essence. This is one that I knew about but was not exactly sure how the scammers pulled it off. Basically the scammers troll eBay for high priced items with multiple bidders and they send the bidders who did not win the items a Second Chance Offer. For more information about real second chance offers click here. The 2nd chance offer is not valid, it is just an attempt to get the buyer to send the scammer funds. Those are my highlights, this is a great article that is well worth a read!


Why, As A Seller; You need to respond to negative feedback respectfully.

April 11, 2006

I have been wanting to make this post for some time now and I will probably come back to this topic frequently.  This is a very important part of being a seller on eBay.

Everyone knows that they can not avoid a negative or neutral feedback.  What you can do is be prepared to react in a professional manner.  Make sure that you keep your response factual and professional.  Nothing VALIDATES a negative feedback more than an unprofessional seller who resorts to slander and name calling in response ot negative feedback.  Believe me when I tell you that your response is more important to potential bidders than the actual negative or neutral feedback.

Bidders who take the time to look at your feedback are looking for reassurance that you will handle any problems that may arise.  If your responses to negative feedbacks received show your efforts to resolve the tough situations, then any reasonable bidder will see that.

Retaliation negatives.  This is a sore spot for a lot of people.  As much as humanly possible refrain from retaliating with a negative feedback that is based solely on the comments in the feedback left for you, or your feelings about said feedback.  Feedback retaliation will be seen as unprofessional by potential bidders as well as undermine the trust that you are an honest seller who is customer centric.

If you feel that the buyer truly deserves a negative in order to warn other sellers of this buyer's dishonest practices; then by all means go ahead and leave one.  Just make sure your negative is factual, states timeframes and communication (or lack there of) if necessary and make certain you do not stoop to name calling.

Please feel free to share you thoughts about feedback and how eBay bidders react to unfavorable feedback.  I would enjoy reading your comments.


Another high profile eBay Vigilante.

April 10, 2006

On April 5th Jeffrey Young of ZDNet posted this
article on his blog. While I understand his frustration with the eBay transaction. It really infuriates me when people make sweeping generalizations about a market with hundreds of thousands of users from one bad transaction.

Here's my take on his "Musings":

1. Handbags- Most experienced eBayers know that the high end handbags are riddled with reproductions. As an eBayer since 1998 I would go to extraordinary lengths to ensure I am purchasing a "real" handbag. Anything that has a "Designer" is going to have reproductions surface on eBay sooner or later.

2. Second Chance Offers – I can understand how an eBay user who doesn't "read" the email in it's entirety would not understand the process. All second chance offers are not made because the winning bidder backed out. The majority of our 2nd chance offers are made because we have multiple pieces of the same item to sell. Obviously Jeffrey did not read the email closely enough where eBay states that the seller might have additional items to sell and this could be the reason the 2nd chance offer was made. If he suspects that the Second Chance offer "alludes" to shill bidding; why not do some research? How many of the sellers other items has this same bidder won in the last 2 weeks? I would say that if there were more than one or 2, then the bidder could be shill bidding.

3.Collusion among sellers – Many sellers have more than one account; this could have been the case with this seller. eBay only allows a seller to have 10 of a specific item live at any one time. To get around this the seller has to set up 2 or more accounts; which is actually legal on eBay. Also the similarity in this seller's description could be because the other seller has "copied" his discription.

4. The feedback ratings are meaningless – Well finally he has hit on something that has some grain of truth. However, the problem with feedback is the fact that eBayers DO live in fear of getting a negative for speaking their mind and leaving a truthful feedback. If you want to leave a negative for a seller make sure you contact the seller first and give them the opportunity to make things right. If they threaten you with negative feedback; then leave a very professional negative feedback that only states the facts and doesn't do any name calling. If the seller follows up with a negative of his own it can easily be seen as retaliatory especially if the seller resorts to name calling and making accusations. Even if you only have 10 feedback, if you comments are professional in their content; that will over ride any negative you may receive.

5. PayPal playing the float – Come on! This guy is angry about more than a bad eBay transaction! I have purchased hundreds of items through PayPal and they have never charged a fee for transfering money from a bank account. Paypal charges the person who is receiving the money the fees.


Hello world!

April 7, 2006

This is my first post on this new blog.  I am excited to finally be taking this step.  Most of my posts will be my reflections on what is happening in the world of eBay.  I also have a passion for technology and programming so expect that from time to time.