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Seller performance standards update
Higher standards coming in April

All eBay sellers are expected to provide service that consistently results in a high level of buyer satisfaction. This includes setting and meeting buyer expectations and providing excellent customer service from beginning to end. Starting in April, 2010 new minimum seller performance standards will be enforced for all sellers:
  1. Detailed Seller Rating (DSR) requirement. The main way eBay measures seller performance is by the number of low DSRs (1s and 2s) buyers give sellers on their transactions.

    • Starting in April, all eBay sellers will need to have low DSRs (1s or 2s) on no more than 1.00% of transactions for item as described, and no more than 2.00% for communication, 2.00% for shipping time, and 2.00% for shipping and handling charges. (Even stricter DSR requirements are already in place for eBay Top-rated sellers).

    • To ensure lower volume sellers are not penalized as a result of one or two transactions, it will take at least four instances of 1s or 2s before consequences based on low DSRs are enforced.

    • Sellers not meeting this requirement will receive lowered placement in search and may face limits on selling activity until their ratings improve. Sellers with excessively high rates of 1s and 2s or other low performance measures may be restricted from selling.

  2. Selling Practices Policy compliance: The eBay Selling Practices policy defines clear standards for accuracy and professionalism in listings and listing descriptions for all stages of a transaction. Adhering to the policy, already required for eBay Top-rated seller status, will be required for all sellers in April 2010. In short:

    • Information within a listing such as item condition and seller terms and conditions need to be consistent.

    • Sellers will be expected to follow through on their stated terms through all stages of a transaction.

    • Comments that undermine confidence in eBay sellers or misrepresent a seller vs. buyer's responsibility in a transaction will not be allowed in listings.
Get an at-a-glance overview of all seller requirements and rewards.

Follow best practices to improve or maintain your standing.

See the PowerSeller Portal for PowerSeller and eBay Top-rated seller performance standards.


New DSR Requirement

What are the new minimum standards for selling on eBay?
In April 2010, eBay sellers will be required to have 1s or 2s for item as described on no more than 1.00% of transactions, and no more than 2.00% of transactions for communication, 2.00% for on shipping time, and 2.00% on shipping and handling charges. To ensure sellers—especially lower-volume sellers—are not penalized as the result of just one low rating, it takes at least four instances of low DSRs (1s or 2s) in one DSR for this requirement to apply.

What happens to sellers who do not meet the new standard?
Sellers are lowered in search standing. They may be offered coaching and training on selling best practices. In more serious situations, other consequences may also apply including limits to further selling, loss of PowerSeller status and discounts, and in some cases account suspension.

How can I find out my current standing in relation to the new standard?
You can see a snapshot of your current low DSRs now through a link at the top of your Seller Dashboard.

What if I have less than 10 total DSRs and don't have access to a Seller Dashboard?
Sellers with less than 10 total DSRs and no access to a Seller Dashboard will be notified by email if their performance does not meet the minimum standards.

Are numbers of positive, neutral or negative Feedback included in the new minimum requirements? What about item not received claims, significantly not as described claims, and charge backs?
There is no other Feedback requirement for selling on eBay. (Note 98% positive Feedback is required for PowerSeller and Top-rated seller status). Buyer claims of Items Not Received or Item Not as Described are not included in the minimum requirements for selling on eBay.

However, sellers have always been expected to minimize the number of claims to comply with the eBay Seller Performance Standards policy. Sellers with excessive claims or excessive negative Feedback may be seen as violating this policy and have lowered standing in Best Match search results and limits placed on selling activity until performance improves. Starting in April, sellers will be able to monitor claims filed against them in their Seller Dashboard.

Will a seller's minimum average DSRs count toward the new minimum requirements?
No minimum average DSRs will not count toward the minimum standards. (They will continue to count toward PowerSeller and Top-rated seller status).

How are low DSRs calculated?
Get more details about how low DSRs are calculated.

Selling Practices policy

What is the Selling Practices policy?
The Selling Practices policy sets minimum standards of professionalism for all aspects of a listing and a transaction:
Item Details and Description—Sellers are responsible for providing accurate and consistent details regarding their items, including item condition and product details. For example, it would be a violation to select "New" in item specifics and say that it's refurbished in the item description. Also, listing descriptions must be professional in both language and tone.
Terms and Conditions—Sellers can include only relevant terms and conditions. Violations would include conflicting information in a listing, failure to uphold stated terms, or a disclaimer of seller responsibility to deliver the item as described in the listing.
Product Availability—Sellers are responsible for having items available for sale for the duration of the listing. Single quantity items or items in low supply should not be listed both on and off eBay simultaneously.
Shipping and Related Charges—Sellers will continue to be required to charge only reasonable shipping and handling fees.
Return Policy and Handling Time—As previously announced, sellers are required to specify their return policy and handling time in a listing. The new policy requires the information you specify to be accurate.
Appropriate language—Listings cannot include comments that undermine confidence in the marketplace, such as comments expressing negativity toward buyers or the selling process.

Can you provide some examples of unprofessional language and tone?
Here are a few examples unprofessional language and tone:

"Due to bad buyers on eBay, you must contact me prior to bidding or your bid will be cancelled and you will be reported to eBay!!"

"I have had so many bad transactions with zero Feedback buyers. So, if you are new, don't bid!"

"I will leave negative Feedback for all non-paying bidders."

"I am forced to use PayPal."

What's the purpose of the policy?
We know that as a seller, you want to provide smooth and satisfying transactions for all your customers. Clear guidelines and standards regarding professionalism on eBay will help you meet that goal. The new policy is designed to:
  • Ensure a professional shopping experience for buyers on all transactions
  • Clearly outline for sellers what aspects of the transaction they are accountable for
  • Help sellers take responsibility for their customer satisfaction
When does the Selling Practices policy take effect?
Compliance with the Selling Practices policy is required now for eBay Top-rated seller status and will be required for all sellers in April 2010.

What do I need to do to make sure I'm in compliance with the Selling Practices policy?
To make sure you're in compliance with the new Selling Practices policy:
  • Check any terms and conditions within a listing to make sure they're consistent.
  • Change any generic templates that include multiple or inconsistent conditions for the same item.
  • Include accurate information regarding shipping costs, handling time and return policy.
  • Keep in mind that you are responsible for your item until it arrives safely in the buyer's hands. Do not imply in any way that once the item is shipped you are not responsible for timely delivery or condition on arrival.