How much extra eBay charges sellers in hidden fees on returned items - iNews

Summary

Sellers on eBay need to be aware of hidden charges that could set them back hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds each year.

Sellers who are deemed to have too many returned items will be charged an additional 4 per cent final value fee, it has been revealed.

Sellers on eBay need to be aware of hidden charges that could set them back hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds each year.

Sellers who are deemed to have too many returned items will be charged an additional 4 per cent final value fee, it has been revealed.

This fee will also be applied if items have not been received in time.

While this might not sound a lot, when applied to those who sell many items for high prices, it can have a significant impact.

There has also been an increase in users of platforms selling second hand goods since the cost of living crisis meaning many people will likely be unaware of such fees.

One reader, Stuart, got in touch to say he was shocked to find a 4 per cent fee, on top of the usual selling fees, were taken after he sold a Tag Heuer watch online for £1,100.

The 4 per cent fee totalled £45.32 – an amount he otherwise would have been able to bank.

He said: “This fee is totally excessive and is in addition to the normal eBay fees charged.

“Having spoken to the relevant eBay team I was informed this is due to my returns being at about 5 per cent, which is deemed as ‘very high’.

“I mentioned to eBay that I had not had any prior warning that this additional fee was going to be applied, nor any help, advice or assistance in getting the ‘very high’ service metric back down to a normal level.”

Stuart says that eBay should have informed him that the level of returns would affect his metric score and he would be charged.

Other users experiencing the same issue took to eBay’s forum to say they also weren’t informed of these charges.

One person said: “On my selling ID, I am suddenly being charged “Additional 4 per cent fee for Very High ‘Item not as described’ rates”.

“I have had no communication from eBay; I have no opened cases against me as a seller in the past 12 months, and all my ‘stars’ stand at 5.”

However, eBay said it does contact users and gives them advice on what to do if they find themselves in that category.

i takes a look at what is deemed as having ‘very high’ returns and why eBay decided to charge its users.

How do eBay determine people whether will be charged?

The platform uses ‘service metrics’ that rate sellers, which provide users with data on the percentage of transactions that result in ‘item not as described’ return requests and ‘item not received’ requests from buyers.

‘Item not as described’ could mean the seller did not accurately describe the product.

Peer benchmarks are then an indicator of how you are doing in these areas compared with other sellers who sell similar items.

Only sellers who list hundreds of items will fall under these rules.

The online auction site said sellers who have an evaluation rate as ‘very high’ in the ‘item not as described’ service metric might be subject to increased final value fees of 4 per cent.

However, it seems to be labelled as ‘very high’ can mean only 5 per cent of your items are returned – a small amount.

And as Stuart mentioned above, he was not informed he was in this category otherwise he may have chosen not to sell his items on eBay.

eBay said consequences won’t be applied once a rating improves and users are no longer evaluated as ‘very high’.

An eBay spokesperson said: “At eBay, we have high expectations for the level of service our sellers provide.

“If we find that sellers are not offering a high quality service to our buyers, we will communicate with them to let them know they need to improve and give them tips on how to do so. We will also always inform sellers of what the consequences may be if they do not improve their service.

“If sellers do not improve then we will take action to encourage them to do so. When sellers improve their performance then these measures will be removed.”

What are the normal eBay fees?

Private sellers can list for free on eBay. After you’ve used your monthly allocation of 1,000 free listings – or more if you have an eBay Shop – you’ll be charged 35p for each new listing created.

Consumers pay one final value fee for items you sell on eBay, and you don’t have to worry about third-party payment processing fees.

The final value fee is calculated as 12.8 per cent of the total amount of the sale, which includes the item price, postage, taxes and any other applicable fees, plus a fixed charge of 30p per order.

If the total amount of the sale is more than £2,500 for a single item, you’ll pay 3 per cent for the portion of the sale price above £2,500.

What can sellers do?

Sellers are encouraged to keep an eye on their eBay dashboard to see how many returns they have or how many buyers have marked their items as not being received in a timely fashion.

It is also worth contacting eBay for any unknown fees that appear to find out what they relate to.

How much extra eBay charges sellers in hidden fees on returned items - iNews
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