Earlier this year, eBay rolled out the 5 star detail seller ratings. These ratings are above and beyond the normal feedback system that has been in place for years. It allows the buyer in a transaction to rate a seller on any of four points: item as described, communication, shipping time, and shipping and handling charges. You can read more about this on eBay detailed seller rating page (link here).
The detail seller ratings system isn’t terribly popular among the eBay seller community. However, it appears as though it’s here to stay as part of eBay’s effort to improve the buyer experience (a goal they stated earlier in the year). Obviously, if you use good business practices, your detail seller ratings naturally will be high. These are four common hot-button issues that eBay has identified as areas where problem sellers need to improve.
Shipping and handling charges is one particularly problematic area because even when you charge exactly the right amount for shipping, buyers might perceive it to be high. The US Postal Rates went up significantly around the same time as the detail seller ratings were implemented, so many buyers have not quite adjusted to these rates yet. This is all the more reason NOT to pad your shipping charges. If you want to add in some handling for things like shipping supplies, you are allowed to do that. But keep it reasonable and if you are adding in charges, use a shipping service like Endicia where you set it up so that the postage is not displayed. This avoids hard feelings when the buyer sees that they paid more for shipping than you did.
In any case, the detail seller ratings are yet another component of an eBay business. You’ll not be able to see the detail behind any of the ratings, but you can see the aggregated ratings. Keep an eye on them and put some effort into improving the areas that begin to slip.
Tags: eBay Home Business, eBay Selling, eBay Sellers, eBay Seller Ratings