Whether you are a novice eBay seller or a seasoned high-volume seller, you will almost certainly encounter an “item not received” situation at some time. Even though these situations might be upsetting, you must follow specific protocols. You could encounter an “item not received” instance for four reasons, yet you might still be covered.
Am I Protected as an eBay Seller?
Using shipping labels from eBay or PayPal is the only surefire way to protect yourself as a seller. By utilizing one of those two services, you can be sure that you have taken all reasonable steps to guarantee the buyer’s shipment gets delivered to the address they gave.
Suppose you utilized one of the services described above and the tracking data indicates that the package was delivered. In that case, you are covered by eBay’s seller-protection scheme and are not forced to provide the buyer a refund.
According to eBay, you took every precaution before the postal service picked up the shipment. You are no longer in charge of the package’s final destination after it has left your hands. Unfortunately, the customer still has the option to provide you with unfavorable comments on your profile.
The 4 Possible Reasons for an Item Not Received Case on eBay
There are only four reasons why an item might be recorded as delivered yet not received by the customer.
1. The Buyer is Deceptive
Contrary to popular belief, this is the most frequent justification for an “item not received” claim. Fortunately, this situation is typically the simplest to handle. If a customer lies about obtaining an item, they have undoubtedly lied before and will probably do so again.
You’re likely dealing with a dubious customer if the buyer rating is less than five and/or hasn’t been an eBay user for more than a month.
2. The Item Was Sent to the Incorrect Address
This shouldn’t be the cause if you utilized eBay or PayPal shipping labels. You must, however, account for postal errors. No one is flawless, after all. In most cases, if this occurs, you may contact your neighborhood postal office and ask them to track down the parcel. In most cases, mail delivered to the wrong address will be sent back to the post office since it is against the law to open mail that does not belong to you.
3. The Item Has Not Been Delivered Yet
Some postal service personnel, like those in any industry, don’t always abide by the norms and regulations. A postal carrier may scan a parcel before delivering it. If the carrier cannot fit an item into a mailbox and determines that the package should not be left outside of a residence, they can and will keep the package for future delivery.
Even though this situation occurs often, a package shouldn’t be marked as delivered until it has arrived at its intended location.
4. The Package Was Stolen
Despite being the least frequent cause, it does happen. If so, the buyer must still contact the postal service to file an insurance claim. The buyer may still get their money back through PayPal if the shipment wasn’t insured, but that is entirely up to them. As was previously said, once the box is in the postal worker’s care, it is no longer within your control.
How to Respond to a Claim for an “Item Not Received”
The best thing to do when dealing with such a situation is to remain unbiased. Do not assume that a buyer is lying if they claim they haven’t yet received an item, but the tracking reports show that it was delivered. Send your buyer a message, show them you care, and assure them that you’ll try your best to help them with this dispute. Let the customer know what steps you’ll be taking, like:
- Notify eBay
- Notify PayPal
- Get in touch with the post office
- Open a case with the postal office involved
Whether you think they are lying or the package might have been misplaced, it will help if you avoid commenting. This conveys skepticism. If a buyer is not telling the truth, they will exploit any indication of suspicion to justify their claim and pursue a freebie. Be as clear and concise as possible, and stick to business etiquette when informing your customer of possible future actions.
How to Stop a Buyer from Giving Negative eBay Feedback if They Don’t Get Their Package
You may want to think about the following solutions to the issue of potential negative feedback:
1. If the item was less than $10, you should consider refunding the buyer. Once you’ve refunded the buyer, file a complaint with eBay, prevent them from placing future bids and view this as a $10 investment that will guarantee you’ll never have to put up with the buyer again.
2. If the cost of the item is above $10, you can take the following measures. The customer is free to leave unfavorable feedback after the case is resolved. However, you can contest or report the feedback as false or inaccurate.
eBay typically favors the member with the better reputation; it is good news for you if the buyer has little or no feedback ratings on their account. To help future sellers, notify eBay about the buyer as well. If eBay didn’t already remove the negative feedback before you even report the suspicious buyer, they might do so if they receive a subsequent report.
What Can I Expect From the Final Decision?
As mentioned earlier, if you used eBay or Paypal shipping labels, you are not required to give a refund. Despite this, negative comments are still a possibility. The final decision is up to eBay’s discretion. eBay may take the buyer’s side if it determines that the customer is being truthful about not receiving their item, cannot find the item in question, or cannot verify it as having been delivered.
This does not require you to provide a refund. It indicates that you, the seller, could not resolve the matter, but this will be considered in your seller statistics. Your seller level won’t change if you only receive one of these a month.
Unfortunately, eBay has become where “the customer is always right” holds true. It will help if you can move on and put the experience behind you. Recognize that customer complaints are just an unpleasant but unavoidable aspect of having to conduct business online to avoid feeling cheated. Customer dissatisfaction is a problem that businesses face.