How do eBay’s new 2016 Shipping Policies affect you?

20150911_SellerRelease_Spring2015_SellerStandards_980x270_V1eBay Australia recently introduced new shipping policies aimed at simplifying seller standards. At the core of this change is the Late Shipment Rate defect score.

This affects many of our eBay shipping customers so we thought it was worth exploring the changes in a little detail and explaining how they affect shipping and tracking as a seller.

If you want to read through the fine detail of the policy changes to Seller Standards, click here.

Some nice changes

In summary, the following items will now no longer affect your feedback:

  • Buyer Feedback
  • Detailed seller ratings (DSRs)
  • Returns requests that are successfully resolved with your buyer
  • Items not received requests that are successfully resolved with your buyer

The new Late Shipment defect score

A new Late Shipment Rate metric has been created.

This has been introduced by eBay to try and make sure customers receive their item within the promised time frame.

To enable this, you must show you sent your item on time with at least one of the following:

  • An Acceptance scan – Your carrier should scan the postage label when you take your package to them or when they pick it up. If that scan is within your stated handling time, the shipment is considered on time.
  • Delivery confirmation – If the tracking scan shows the item was delivered by your estimated delivery date, the shipment is considered on time.
  • Buyer confirmation – If you’re not using a tracked service—or if we haven’t received those indicators—your buyer will be asked if the item arrived on time. If the buyer answers yes, the shipment is considered on time.

Only tracking details from postage labels printed on eBay are counted automatically. For all other shipments the buyer will be asked whether the item was delivered within the estimated delivery date.

This means at the moment for most sellers, the buy will be emailed a question asking them if they received their item on time. So it is very important to ship quickly, and ensure you upload tracking numbers quickly for your customers. This increases communication to the customer, and helps to ensure their expectations are met.

As a general seller (not Top Rated), you need to maintain at least a 90% success rate for on time deliveries.

To maintain or receive Top Rated seller status this increases to 95%.

What is the key takeaway here?

Basically, eBay wants sellers to delivery on time, as promised. Shipping items quickly and uploading a tracking number quickly will ensure you get to or remain a Top Rated Seller. To do this it is important to select the right shipping carrier/service options in your eBay listings and back up the estimated delivery date with a matching or faster shipping service.