As noted in a previous guide, customer service is a top priority for us in our eBay family business. We strive to provide accurate listings to minimize returns. However, on occasion, we do have customer returns. Here we will share our eBay selling tips when handling customer eBay returns and refunds.
The Family Pickers eBay Return Policy
1. Refund the customer’s money through PayPal immediately. Don’t even send a message, don’t do anything until the money has been refunded. We never question the customer, even when we don’t agree.
2. We send the customer a message through eBay messaging with the following information:
- Apologize that they were not satisfied with their purchase.
- Inform them that we have already refunded them 100% through PayPal.
- Ask them to keep the item and pass it along to someone else or donate it to a charity.
Yes, we lose some money with this return policy but the benefits of providing this kind of service is priceless. Even though our listings state that the customer must pay the return shipping, we still tell them to keep the item. The response we receive from our customers is well worth it.
We have been selling on eBay (on a smaller scale) for 10 years so we understand that sometimes there are buyers that will try and take advantage of you. In this business and our current culture you have to take the good with the bad. Our motto is “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.
eBay Return Policy Example 1
One day we received a mystery package in the mail. Upon opening it we found a popcorn popper we had sold about 60 days prior. We had not received an eBay message from the customer however there was a false accusation note in the returned package. The package was badly damaged and the popcorn popper had definitely more than just shipping damage. We were fully aware that based on our return policy we were not obligated to do anything. And if the customer decided to give us negative feedback it would have been removed according to the guidelines set forth in the eBay seller protection policy. As a result, we immediately refunded the customer and sent them a message. We never received a response from this customer, feedback or otherwise. Conclusion, some customers will try to take advantage of return policies.
eBay Return Policy Example 2
We recently sold a used HP calculator. We noted in the listing that a battery was included but we failed to mention that the battery was not new. The customer contacted us to request return information because the calculator display was fading. We followed our return process (refunded payment in full through PayPal) and emailed message with our apology and request to keep the item. We also humbled ourselves and admitted that after further review of our listing we did not state the battery condition. Therefore we suggested that a new battery may resolve the issue. Nonetheless, we insisted the customer still keep the item due to the inconvenience. A few weeks later the buyer contacted us to let us know that the new battery did indeed fix the problem. The customer, showing integrity, insisted he should pay us as he did not feel right accepting the item without paying. Conclusion, not all customers are trying to take advantage of return policies.
We realize this process may not be for everyone. We are sharing this merely as our method and suggestion for those who have struggled with the eBay return policy. The bottom-line, customer refunds and/or return item request are inevitable. Preparing now will make you more professional and provide greater opportunity for positive eBay feedback.
New eBay Return Policy
eBay has recently came out with a new return system called “Hassle Free Returns“. Each seller has the option to participate in this program. It is not mandatory by eBay. We encourage you to read the eBay Return Policy and eBay Refund policy and decide for yourself if you want to enroll. We have decided, at least for now, to continue with our current method of handling returns.