Author Topic: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)  (Read 7927 times)

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Offline Halcyon

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Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« on: July 22, 2015, 09:35:15 am »
I know we have a thread going at the moment on ebay rants but this one is specifically about buyers/bidders on ebay. I am becoming very annoyed and frustrated with the average ebay user. I say "average" as just like in real life, the average person seems to be a complete moron when it comes to certain things, like common sense or reading things. I'd like to think you guys reading this are in the above-average group.

I'm by no means a huge seller on ebay or looking to make money. Lately I've been using it as a tool to de-clutter some old electronics and IT gear so I don't have to move it to my new place. Since joining years ago, I might have sold a few hundred things, large and small.

<rant>

But fuck me... are people really this stupid?! I write in clear, plain English, use 12 point font and bold/colours to highlight important bits. I don't dribble on, I don't make up my own stupid "terms and conditions" that no one reads anyway. Just honest, straight to the point and factual information. I do however place my own restrictions on shipping large and heavy items. Not only do I specify the "pickup only" option in the listing configuration itself, but I clearly state when an item is for pickup only, give a clear location and the reason why.

In the past, I've specified the freight option and clearly listed the dimensions and weight of the item (so people can obtain their own quotes). If they don't ask me, I default to using Pack and Send (although they are on the pricier side, they do a pretty good job, especially with fragile gear). But hey, I give people the option to either accept my quote before making a bid or use their own courier.

But no, instead 50-60% of bids I get on a large/heavy item, I can guarantee either one of these things happen:
1. The buyer has no intention of paying and just ignores reminder messages,
2. The buyer doesn't read the listing, bids, then asks to ship a 'pick-up only' item to them interstate,
3. The buyer still doesn't read the listing, doesn't ask or obtain their own freight quote, then refuses to pay because it costs too much.

 :palm:

I've tried everything, from bright red, bold text saying "Please read the entire listing before bidding" to repeating key points throughout hoping they will catch at least one of them, but no. The idiots still mindlessly just bid. I could probably create a listing simply saying "You aren't buying anything, you are just giving me your money in exchange for nothing" and some clown would probably actually still bid on that!

Then going through the whole process of opening an unpaid item case against them just takes time and barely penalises them at all. No one actually sees those negative strikes against their account.

</rant>

 |O
« Last Edit: July 22, 2015, 09:46:53 am by Halcyon »
 

Online wraper

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2015, 10:09:54 am »
Did you switch on unpaid item assistant to auto file a case after a few days?. At least makes a life a bit easier.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2015, 10:24:32 am »
Did you switch on unpaid item assistant to auto file a case after a few days?. At least makes a life a bit easier.

I have but I still have to wait out the minimum four days, then I have to relist the item again.
 

Offline Deathwish

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2015, 10:30:10 am »
Stick it on the sale that non payers will also be hit with a commercial Lien for your time.
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Offline EEVblog

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2015, 10:52:14 am »
I tweeted the other day that I've found a new level of stupid, people who reply to Gumtree ads  :palm:
(Gumtree is the free version of ebay in Oz, owned by ebay)
 

Offline BradC

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2015, 10:55:43 am »
I tweeted the other day that I've found a new level of stupid, people who reply to Gumtree ads  :palm:
(Gumtree is the free version of ebay in Oz, owned by ebay)

I've actually had more good than bad with gumtree ads, but I'm generally pretty "honest" in the add about what I will accept.
 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2015, 08:15:32 pm »
Halcyon, I feel your pain.  Mine wasn't on ebay but QRZ.com a ham radio website.  I ended up with the job of listing a load of old ham radio gear that was donated to the club I belong to.  I stated in the adds that I would only respond to emails to my personal email address listed, and not to leave messages attached to the posts and I also said that the only accepted payment was Post Office money order, no checks and no paypal.  Of course a bunch of people sent private messages from the add website which were promptly ignored and another bunch kept asking if I would take check or paypal. |O |O |O.  The funny thing is that I have sold stuff on the site personally, also stating money order only and only contact by my email address directly and have never had a problem.  It must be related to the position of the moon and earth.  That or, as SWMBO would say, they were passing out the crazy wafers again.
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Offline TerraHertz

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2015, 07:57:02 am »
But fuck me... are people really this stupid?!

Yes, yes they are. The average person is a complete moron in my experience.  Most smart people (eg in forums like this) get a distorted view of average intelligence by only associating with preselected subsets of 'average'. But talk to anyone who has worked in retail, or phone help desks, or anything with exposure to the whole bell curve, and you'll hit a far more depressing reality.

Just by being able to type and read a coherent sentence in a forum, you've already eliminated maybe 30% of the population from consideration.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2015, 07:58:45 am by TerraHertz »
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Offline XOIIO

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2015, 08:19:19 am »
But fuck me... are people really this stupid?!

Yes, yes they are. The average person is a complete moron in my experience.  Most smart people (eg in forums like this) get a distorted view of average intelligence by only associating with preselected subsets of 'average'. But talk to anyone who has worked in retail, or phone help desks, or anything with exposure to the whole bell curve, and you'll hit a far more depressing reality.

Just by being able to type and read a coherent sentence in a forum, you've already eliminated maybe 30% of the population from consideration.

No kidding, one person I started working with is actually into electronics, designing solar systems and other such things, and god it is refreshing to have an actual interesting and intellectual conversation with someone in person.

I'm glad I was born into this era, if society keeps things up, it's going to end up like idocracy.

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2015, 08:35:58 am »
...it is refreshing to have an actual interesting and intellectual conversation with someone in person.


What's that like?
 

Offline Mechanical Menace

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2015, 08:40:27 am »
Yes, yes they are. The average person is a complete moron in my experience.  Most smart people (eg in forums like this) get a distorted view of average intelligence by only associating with preselected subsets of 'average'.

I think you're giving the average person too much credit. They aren't morons. It's not that they aren't capable of better it's that they're just too lazy to think. I'm pretty certain that if I can work something out anyone without severe mental deficiencies can.
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Online nctnico

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2015, 08:42:06 am »
I've tried everything, from bright red, bold text saying "Please read the entire listing before bidding" to repeating key points throughout hoping
I have had similar problems selling things locally or giving them away for free. What helped me is to increase the starting/asking price. Certainly no more for free (*). This way people don't bid or call without reading the entire text.

(*) This sometimes gets funny. Years ago I needed to get rid of about 200 concrete tiles from the garden so I posted them for 10 cents each and pickup only. Someone came, took the tiles away and left without paying. I did not really care since my goal was to get rid of the tiles and not having to bother with people who want to take just 5 pieces or find out that 200 tiles (about 9kg each) are too heavy for their car.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2015, 08:52:02 am by nctnico »
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Offline XOIIO

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #12 on: July 23, 2015, 08:49:40 am »
...it is refreshing to have an actual interesting and intellectual conversation with someone in person.


What's that like?

It's weird, it's like they are a regular person but you don't get the urge to mush their head in when they talk.

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #13 on: July 23, 2015, 09:00:40 am »
As I say at work: It's hard to soar like an eagle when you're surrounded by pelicans.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2015, 09:30:18 am »
As I say at work: It's hard to soar like an eagle when you're surrounded by pelicans.

I think the expression is "It's hard to soar like an eagle when you're surrounded by turkeys."
But I haven't seen the people you work with. Perhaps they have big mouths.

I work for the Government. So, yes.
 

Online nctnico

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #15 on: July 23, 2015, 06:51:03 pm »
One other thing. People don't change. Human nature is a constant. People are the same now as they were 2000 years ago and will be 2000 years hence.
I have to disagree. A lot depends on how people are brought up. For example: in Europe you'll find significant differences in how people drive their cars.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #16 on: July 23, 2015, 07:17:27 pm »
Who was it that said "there are only 2 things that continuously increase, Entropy and human stupidity, and I am not too sure about Entropy"?
 

Offline Bassman59

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #17 on: July 23, 2015, 10:00:47 pm »
Who was it that said "there are only 2 things that continuously increase, Entropy and human stupidity, and I am not too sure about Entropy"?

Albert Einstein is alleged to have said, "There are only two things that are infinite, the universe and stupidity, and I'm not sure about the universe."
 

Offline kingofkya

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #18 on: July 23, 2015, 10:19:45 pm »
Just to pile on on new levels of stupid.

I just had to modify some software to prevent clients from useing password and 123456 as there email logins.... There wasen't just one client using it ether try nearly 100.

Theses same clients will want a PCI or hippa compliance of there stuff checked....

 

Offline Stray Electron

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #19 on: July 23, 2015, 10:37:04 pm »
  I really can't say why but I just haven't had those kinds of problems with E-bay buyers.  But I sell mostly test equipment and other specialized equipment so perhaps I attract a different level of buyers.  The last problem that I had like that was from a buyer in Israel probably over ten years ago.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #20 on: July 23, 2015, 11:00:29 pm »
Just to pile on on new levels of stupid.

I just had to modify some software to prevent clients from useing password and 123456 as there email logins.... There wasen't just one client using it ether try nearly 100.

Theses same clients will want a PCI or hippa compliance of there stuff checked....


Did you create a custom error message in the case of a stupid password? "Error: Try again stupid!"
 

Offline eas

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2015, 01:19:27 am »
I've met very few people who aren't morons if you look at them in the right/wrong light.

I have very little patience for engineers ranting about all the morons in the world. As a group, engineers and academics seem to be the two best equipped and most inclined to build durable impenetrable fortresses to protect themselves against seeing the blindingly obvious. A useful heuristic when it comes to human behavior: If you keep finding yourself in situations where you can't begin to understand why people you interact with keep doing the same stupid shit, maybe the problem is in the mirror.

Ah, but look what I've done, I'm ranting in someone else's rant. Apologies. I hate it when people do that to me.

I actually appreciate the insight about the pains of selling on ebay. I'm soon going to be selling some stuff on ebay myself, and I've started trying to figure out what I can do to make the experience as painless as possible for everyone involved. I've already concluded that a lot of ebay is itself crummy, which places limits on what a seller can do to make things suck less. Even so, I'm not sure what a better alternative would be for selling some test equipment I've fixed up.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #22 on: July 31, 2015, 03:22:19 am »
I actually appreciate the insight about the pains of selling on ebay. I'm soon going to be selling some stuff on ebay myself, and I've started trying to figure out what I can do to make the experience as painless as possible for everyone involved.

From my experience, these are my suggestions

Be honest and concise when describing your items
At times you might be tempted to omit, downplay or otherwise try and cover up imperfections, damage, missing parts etc... in order to get the maximum price but it only leads to trouble. Be open and honest when describing your items. If there is something physically wrong with the item, clearly point it out in your description and photograph that part (I use my camera in macro mode to get in nice and close). If you can't test the item and you don't know whether it works, then say so. If the buyer doesn't read it or take notice, that's their problem. At least you were open and upfront about it and the buyer isn't entitled to make a claim against you. Also be clear in your listing if you don't offer shipping or pick up. Many buyers will assume you'll ship an item to them or allow them to pick it up. I post most things and don't allow strangers to come to my place (the only exception is if the item is very large or heavy).

Utilise the 'Buyer Requirements' options in your listing (see attached image)
Restrict who can bid on your items by enabling the "Buyer Requirements" options right down the very bottom of the page when you're creating/editing your listing. By default they are disabled but I suggest you ramp them up to the most restrictive settings possible to prevent dishonest or otherwise terrible eBay users from bidding on your items. It's not fool proof and some will still slip through the cracks, but this will help filter out those with a bad track record.

Package items properly!
Assume your items will be tossed around by postal workers or couriers. Assume it will roll around in the back of a truck. Package accordingly. Utilise foam, bubble wrap or even scrunched up newspaper works well. It's also just as important to seal and secure the box properly.

Pay extra for insurance
By all means pass this cost onto the buyer and make it clear in your listing that items will be shipped with insurance. Best practise is that all items are covered against loss or damage, after all, it's not good enough to simply say you shipped it. Insurance is there to cover you and the buyer.

Only ever ship to the address shown on the user's PayPal account!
The policy states that you are entitled to seller protection under certain circumstances and one of them is you must ship the item to the address that is contained in the "Notification of instant payment" e-mail from PayPal. You can pretty much disregard the address listed on their eBay account. If the two addresses differ, then make further enquiries (I had a situation where the buyer had updated their eBay account but not their PayPal account). On large boxes, especially when shipping internationally, I always place multiple shipping labels on difference sides of the box in case one gets torn or obliterated.

If a buyer doesn't pay, don't just wear it, open a case against them.
Once an item sells, you cop a "final value fee". Why should you be charged for something that isn't your fault? Contact the buyer first and if there is no response, lodge an "unpaid item" case against them. I only wait the minimum amount of time once the case is opened (4 days) before I close it and obtain the refund of the fees.

If something doesn't feel right to you, go with your gut
This isn't a racist thing, but my gut instinct has served me well in the past. Beware of users who bid on big ticket items with very low feedback, have only recently joined and live in "odd" countries, as you might end up being scammed. Always use a postal service that requires a signature upon delivery and pay for insurance to cover against loss or damage. Also, photograph the item inside the packaging and take note of the total weight (including packaging). I had a bloke from Ukraine or somewhere similar claim that the package was "missing an item" and demanded a refund/discount. When I contacted the courier company that delivered the package, they confirmed that the weight upon the last scan of the item had not changed since it was posted, which meant that the item was untouched and the buyer was lying. I presented this evidence to him and the large "missing" item was quickly "discovered" inside the box. Even a blind person would have found it in the first place!

Know your consumer rights
Buyers aren't always entitled to return or refund an item, even if it's faulty. For example, in Australia, consumer law dictates that if an item is purchased at an auction (including online auctions) then consumer laws don't apply and there are no warranties attached. However if the buyer purchases the item (for example, by using the 'Buy it now' feature) then some consumer rights might apply and you may be required to accept a return and issue a refund for an item that is faulty, not fit for purpose, not of reasonable quality or "not as advertised".

Know how to obtain the buyers phone number and other contact information
I ran into an issue recently where the eBay messaging function was playing up and not all messages were getting through to the buyer or were being delayed for up to 24 hours. If you sold an item, you can easily obtain the buyer's phone number and e-mail address, here's how:

1. At the top of the eBay site on most pages there will be an 'Advanced' hyperlink next to the search box, click that.
2. On the left-hand side, click "Find Contact Information".
3. Provide the user's ID and the item number of the item you sold them and click Search.
4. The buyer's contact details will be e-mailed to you. Your information registered in eBay will also be sent to the buyer.

I could go on but these are my main tips.

« Last Edit: July 31, 2015, 04:01:00 am by Halcyon »
 

Offline ccs46

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Re: Ebay bidder rant (I'm pissed off)
« Reply #23 on: July 31, 2015, 01:38:11 pm »

One other thing. People don't change. Human nature is a constant. People are the same now as they were 2000 years ago and will be 2000 years hence.
I have to disagree. A lot depends on how people are brought up. For example: in Europe you'll find significant differences in how people drive their cars.
People still drive their cars like shit in Europe, just like they do in the rest of the world.


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