As you know I run an eBay business. The majority of the time its great. But there is the rare occasions when you can feel quite sad about trading on eBay.
Its not the fees, or the tedium of listing. The fees are part and parcel of gaining a worldwide customer base, so that part pays. The listing, yes… can get a little boring sometimes, but again if you want to make money its something you have to do,
Its not even the awkward customers, that expect it to be delivered that very hour, or complain that there is something wrong when you know for a fact their isnt, every shop meets people like these so mine is no different than those.
What brings me down is eBay itself. Its unfair feedback system, the detailed seller ratings that the seller cant see the information on, the fact we cant warn other sellers that certain buyers are trying it on. Just the other day I had a buyer complain that an item hadnt arrived, yet when I checked the recorded delivery number, it had been delivered 2 days before. Another buyer complaining that the item wasnt as described, yet when I ask them to return it to me for a refund, the item is then actually OK enough to keep. But there is nothing stopping the buyers from leaving a negative feedback rather than attempt to sort the problem out.
Every day you are on pins trying to sell to the highest of standards and sometimes actually making a loss on some items just to keep the customer and eBay happy, because one small negative feedback can reduce your visibility on eBay for a month or more so you lose a great deal of money.
They dangle the carrot of Top Rated Seller, and you aim to achieve this yet its so easy to lose once you get it, and buyers seem to know this. I have been a powerseller for years, I have had 1 negative feedback and that was only a few months ago. I was slow to deliver and item was not a 14, I was on holiday with my holiday settings on and measurements are listed in the description, would eBay remove it… No!! did it affect my sales?? YES !!!
I have been marked down 5 times in the last 3 months for high postage charges. My postage is one of the cheapest on eBay for the items I sell bar Free Postage (Which I have tried before) plus I have a business account and no postage prices get put on the stamps so how do they know if I have charged high or not? Can I check the items that have been marked as high postage?? No I cant, so how can I correct something that I dont know about?
So yes eBay is very favourable to the buyer, but its the sellers that make them the money.