Buying and Selling on eBay: Tips, Tricks, Problems & Questions

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by HansderHund, Jul 27, 2012.

  1. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Senior member

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    Please give details about the bolded part.
     


  2. TheNeedMachine

    TheNeedMachine Senior member

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    Ditto that - in going through stuff I didn't feel like listing originally, I found a few things I'd rather keep for myself than sell at cost or spend the time listing to only make a few $. Other things I now know better than to list to begin with and will just redonate and get the receipt. Fighting the urge to think "well, maybe someone will want this thing" and not even bothering with a lot of stuff.


    Another ditto - I started doing that recently and it's been a decent time-saver. I do it by category - dress shirts, or casual long-sleeve shirts, etc...plus I'm sort of anal and like seeing them all orderly in my scheduled / active listings now.

    Another thing I started doing, since I almost never get buyers who buy multiple items, is packing an item as soon as it has a bid, with a note on it letting me know what it is / what I paid (for later record-keeping). There was a user here who pre-packed everything whether it had bids or was even listed yet, and Wes who has his secondary rack for items with bids but cannot pack until paid due to buyers purchasing multiples...this has been a happy medium for me and saves me a lot of time Sunday nights / Mondays after auctions end.


    I like this as well. Once you get into a groove it's easy to keep going. And,. I'm not too particularly upset if something doesn't sell or gets no bids - it sits in my "unsold" area for when I get one of the eBay "list a million for free" promos and I can relist a slew of stuff in no time.


    I would wait for the buyer to contact me (you) re: the reason for return. If that doesn't happen, and their SNAD time expires, they don't get a refund. Apparently they think you are Zappo's. You won't teach them a lesson, but if they did not open a case, did not ship it back with a tracking # etc, you don't owe them a refund at the moment.
     


  3. TheNeedMachine

    TheNeedMachine Senior member

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    As a seller, I had an eBay user recently ask me if I could make him a better price on a $65 tie. I wrote back saying I will not make much on it at the current price, due to free shipping and it comes with a tie keep so I would have to pack it special etc and not use free USPS supplies - I'm sorry but the price is the price on this particular tie. The guy wrote back asking if I would accept $40 for it with shipping - basically saying "I don't care if you lose money on it - I want you to pay me to take this tie off your hands". I blocked him because it was a jerky thing to do on his part, in my mind.

    As a buyer, I have dealt with sellers that have so many things listed that they cannot keep up with questions and simply ignore them all - that might have been the case here - no idea. But it's one thing to ignore vs. go out of your way to block someone.
     


  4. suited

    suited Senior member

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    I thought all Buy It Now items remained listed until the buyer actually made payment? Definitely not the case for me - maybe I misunderstood that policy.

    I had one buyer go completely ape shit because I told him I needed to ship his item to the confirmed address. His messages bordered on harassment (with absolutely zero provocation from me), so I went ahead and reported him. Add these two names to your block list:

    heemel
    vachill
     


  5. PJShep

    PJShep Active Member

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    On the 18th I sent the seller a message asking, how many items were in the lot in total? Also, what are the sizes? Are they all linen? Do any have any stains, flaws, damage or defects of any kind? And how many are monogrammed? I received no reply so sent another message on the 21st stating that she had not replied and repeating the questions. Still no reply so on the 23rd I sent a third message stating, "I'd love to bid on this if you'd only answer my questions!!!! :)" Still no reply. Now it's the 25th, the day the auction ends. So I send another message stating:

    "I'm sorry that you are unable to answer my questions. However, I would like it noted that if I bid on this item and win that I would like it to be shipped USPS First Class Mail Intl / First Class Package Intl Service rather than Priority Mail.

    Thanks so much!"


    Finally, I get a message from the seller saying that she was away and that she would answer my questions when she gets home. So I ask,

    "Thanks for your response. So do you mean that while you are away, even though you have internet access, you don't reply to buyers' questions? This item ends in less than 9 hours. Will you be home in time to answer my questions?

    Kind regards"


    Then she finally answers some of my questions but not all. I ask again about the size of the items. She says she can't measure them because there in the "original state", meaning there in boxes, I assume. So I ask her to measure the boxes, which she does and provides me with the measurements. I'm happy, I think everything's fine and I go to bid....and I'm blocked!

    I realize that tone doesn't always translate well in emails, so I made sure to say thank you and include [​IMG]'s to show I was not angry in any way. But to no avail! Was I considered a "difficult" buyer because I wanted answers to my questions? I would very much appreciate your thoughts!
     


  6. PJShep

    PJShep Active Member

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    Obviously.
     


  7. capnwes

    capnwes Senior member

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    Perhaps it is just her international settings blocking you.

    Or she gave you bogus answers to your questions to get you off her back and then blocked you rather than take a return when you found out the measurements were made up.

    Speculation of course.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2013


  8. masaccio

    masaccio Senior member

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    I don't think using smileys excuses being rude. Nothing in your messages is outright offensive, and speaking like this with your friends whom you know well and who have a history with you is one thing, but this is a perfect stranger.

    In the bolded passages above you are passive-aggressive ("I'm sorry you are unable to answer my questions..."), you make a demand that she change the terms of the transaction (First Class vs. Priority), you feign incredulity about her business practice while being away, and you've come here to tell the story yet you ask us to believe that you were not angry.

    I am only a very occasional seller and a more frequent buyer. As a seller I wouldn't have blocked you--I would probably have to work too hard to figure out how--but I could certainly see why another seller might. Or, as Wes says, it could be completely unrelated to your exchange.
     


  9. PJShep

    PJShep Active Member

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    Man, you don't hold any punches, do you? Your observations of me are less than flattering, but if there's something I can learn from them, I'll accept them. Passive-aggressive? I've never been called that before but I suppose it's possible. And I suppose someone could assume that I was not sincere when I said, "I'm sorry you are unable to answer my questions..." even though I was. Anyway, this is not about defending myself, just trying to figure what I could have done differently. If I had held back, said nothing, accepted the fact that the seller didn't reply after 4 days and still didn't answer all of my questions when she did reply, would it have gone differently? Maybe I wouldn't have been blocked. I just wouldn't have bid because I wouldn't know exactly what I was bidding on.
     


  10. capnwes

    capnwes Senior member

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    You may well have not intended to sound that way. It's tough to translate emotion out of written text and can easily be misinterpreted 10 different ways by the recipient. Be careful of your wording and try to re-read before you send, as if you were the stranger on the other end reading it for the first time. Also, considering international transactions (I don't know where you or the seller are located), many times the ebay translation tools can be a little rough. If she were non-english speaking, who knows how it showed up on the other end.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2013


  11. jebarne

    jebarne Senior member

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    I haven't tried yet. I recall reading you could. I will give it a shot over the weekend.
     


  12. Koala-T

    Koala-T Senior member

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    I appreciate any feedback. I've looked around for the option but havent found anything obvious.
     


  13. PJShep

    PJShep Active Member

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    I agree. I'm in Canada...she's in the US. Maybe she didn't like me saying "eh", eh?
     


  14. capnwes

    capnwes Senior member

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    [​IMG]

    Maybe she's just a dumb American and she actually did you a favor by blocking you.
     


  15. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Senior member

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    Here are a few observations about your messages to the seller:

    1. That's a lot of questions. None of them are answered in the auction description? You get a pass on this one because the auction seems to have been lacking in detail.
    2. You are dictating shipping method to the seller.
    3. Much of that seems passive aggressive to me. Maybe it wasn't meant that way, but that's how it strikes me.

    I would have blocked you for the reasons mentioned in 2 and 3. And that doesn't mean that I was angry or that I think you are a bad guy. It just means that you strike me as a high maintenance customer, and my personality is not properly geared to deal with high maintenance customers. As George Costanza once said "It's not you. It's me."


    Here are a few general observations about doing business on ebay (Not related to PJShep, just running off on a tangent):

    1. There are many who ask irrelevant questions, and sometimes quite a lot of them. Don't be that guy.
    Example:
    What is the length of the shirt? Stupid question unless you are extremely tall or extremely short. BB knows how long to make the shirt tail on a 16-33 Slim. It fits the middle 98% on the bell curve.
    If you have to ask that question, ask it like this so it becomes a non-dumbass question: "I have short arms and a freakishly long torso. What is the length of the shirt from the bottom of the collar to the end of the tail?"

    2. The vast majority of measurement requests do not lead to a sale. So if you want a measurement, request it in a polite way.

    3. Yesterday a guy asked for 4 measurements on a shirt. I had already provided actual measurements for neck, sleeve, and P2P. One of the measurements he asked for was P2P. I ignored his request. If you can't take the time to read the description I will not take the time to give you extra measurements on a shirt.

    4. Politeness goes a long way. I often see something like this "I'll give you $XXX for it." Sometimes I see this "I can pay $XXX for this item. It is a great shirt and I understand if the offer doesn't work for you. I appreciate your consideration." One of those guys has a chance to do a deal on the item. The other doesn't. And if I received offers from those two guys at the same time I would sell the item to the second guy even if he offered less. I shit you not. It has happened.

    5. If I see a pattern of unsolicited lowball offers from a buyer I will block him. There are jerkoffs who constantly run around ebay making lowball offers on non OBO listings. I am not talking about OBO listings. I mean regular listings. This is a time-waster and it is against ebay rules.

    6. There is an old sales saying that describes my attitude toward a transaction (on ebay or SF). Always want a deal. Never need a deal. So don't be rude, don't be demanding, don't ask stupid questions, don't conduct yourself in a dishonest or unethical manner, don't be high maintenance. If you do these things too often or too hard you can join my No Soup For You list. It's not personal, it's just business.

    About #6, don't take it that I am a real hardass. I'm not. But I am firmly convinced that almost any business would be better off firing the 5% of their customers who are the most difficult. And my percentage that I have fired is way less than 1%. Like I said, not personal, just business.


    ***Disclaimer: I am not suggesting that the way I run my business is the best way or is the way you should run yours.***
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2013


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