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An ebay seller practice to watch-out for


Black Knight
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I hope I can share this with you on here as I know a fair number of BMers buy on ebay.

Two sort-of scams happened to me recenly. Both similar but different.

Its the changing of the details on a listing after you've bought the item

 

Normally, you buy one item and it arrives with you.

The listing for the item doesn't change once you bid or buy it.

 

But

I've had listings change on more than 3 items after I've bought it

How?

They are multi-stock-listings

When you buy off these the seller can 'up-date' the listing. Often its just to say how many remain in stock but some sellers are changing what they actually supply.

 

First I must tell you that I make leather goods, thus I buy certain items in quantity

Case 1. I bought an item from a seller based in China

The item arrived but was broken. Too broken to use or repair. No problem I thought, I can get my money, over £20 back through ebay.

But when I tried the seller had changed that particular item on the listing to a small cheap item worth less than £2.50, but using the same wording to describe it.

I got back £2.35

 

Case 2.

I make board games. For these I need dice. I saw some nice dice for sale by a Chinese ebay seller. They were listed as 5 for £4.  I bought a set of 5

Yesterday I received one die (aka a dice).

So I went onto ebay. The seller had up-dated the listing. Where it had said how many it now said 1 rather than 5.

 

I've had this happen a few times before.

eg I buy rivets for the leather work (yes, I'm an actual rivet counter), I buy them by the hundreds. I've bought quantities where it said it was in multiples of 100. So I've bought 2 lots. I should have received 200 but I got two lots of 50 making 100, 1/2 the amount. The listings had been changed to say Quantity; 50 sometime after I'd bought

 

As ebay looks at the listing as it is at the time you complain you can do nothing about it.

I now keep a written record of these sellers who change things so I don't accidentally buy from them again. 

BTW, I've mentioned Chinese sellers but I've had it happen with UK and US sellers as well.

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I'm a buyer on eBay, strangely it seems to be my main shopping outlet for non-food items, I've also sold the odd model kit or two on eBay.

 

My thoughts on this are -

 

Look at a seller's feedback before you buy.

 

I've often been about to buy something, that I'm perhaps a little wary of buying (because the seller seems iffy (and I'm very wary of sellers outside of the UK as well as those overseas sellers with a UK warehouse) or the item is too cheap) only to check a seller's feedback and see that people aren't happy with them or what they're receiving from the seller.

 

Test the water, don't place large value orders for stuff from sellers you haven't used before - buy small value amounts first, like a couple of quid's worth, and I mean literally a couple of quid or so, don't go throwing £20 at a seller you're unsure of.  Applies to any online marketplace really, not just eBay.

Edited by RobL
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3 minutes ago, Black Knight said:

yes, but 

a. how do you know in advance that things will go awry?

b. which seller will do this if you have no experience of that seller?

Tedious as it may seem you may need to take a screen shot of every prospective purchase until or unless you’re 1000% certain of the seller(s)’ bona fides.

 

 

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On paypal only the heading title appears on the details.

eg, with rivets the heading on ebay would say; Black Double Headed Rivets. That is what appears on the paypal.  The title plus that I'd bought two off

Its in the description that the quantity is quoted and this doesn't translate to paypal.

btw - I'm not a beginner at this. I've been dealing on ebay for nearly 20 years and have about 10,000 feedbacks. On average I do 350 deals per year, many for multiple items.

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That's pretty shady practice, and something should be done about it, as it's clearly deliberate.  @Black Knight, have you tried to educate them on the subject, or are they just not interested/robotic/off-script to do anything about it? :hmmm:

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The change to price one does seem shocking - I'd have thought that a complaint to eBay should work on that one as the paypal and invoice data should still be there.

 

I will take note of these multiple item listings now, I've seen them occasionally and thought they were odd.

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This is the other side of the coin worse luck,gone are the days of popping to your local hardware/corner shop to buy something like this thanks to the internet...I buy diecast and dvd's/books from ebay and from the UK only and luckily have never had a problem but i suppose it's only a matter of time before something goes pear shaped.....

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1 hour ago, Mike said:

That's pretty shady practice, and something should be done about it, as it's clearly deliberate.  @Black Knight, have you tried to educate them on the subject, or are they just not interested/robotic/off-script to do anything about it? :hmmm:

ebay just go on a script.

I can't complain that what I received did not match the item description as when ebay looks at the listing it says I got what I ordered

eg. ~If I tell ebay I received 1 die and should have got 5 when ebay looks at the listing it says 1 - so I got what was listed. 

There doesn't seem to be anyway of having a record pre-change except as suggested by a screen-grab at the time I buy.

I have complained to ebay about this but they've been very deaf

 

On the point of the price change one; I tried both ebay and paypal. paypal shifted it off to ebay who looked at the ebay listing and 'awarded' me a 'full' refund. As the amount was below £50 my credit card wasn't interested either.

 

There was a previous problem of a certain seller putting up a false tracking info and false receipt of good/delivery info. I got caught twice on that one. Nothing was sent out but ebay had this seller's records to say it was delivered. There must have been plenty of complaints as that seller was later 'no longer registered'

 

I keep a written record of who I buy my leather work goods from and I can see that quite a number of sellers use two or more accounts. Not just China sellers. I also buy a lot of books. There is one English seller has 3 different names accounts, another uses 2 names. Prices on the books, or special offers can vary between them too. But I'll add I've not had any problem with my favourite book sellers.

With different accounts but the same seller it sort of messes up the idea of checking feedback before buying, eg if one seller has 99.2% and another has 99.8% you'd go for the 99.8 but they might be the same company!

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7 hours ago, Black Knight said:

I hope I can share this with you on here as I know a fair number of BMers buy on ebay.

Two sort-of scams happened to me recenly. Both similar but different.

Its the changing of the details on a listing after you've bought the item

 

Normally, you buy one item and it arrives with you.

The listing for the item doesn't change once you bid or buy it.

 

But

I've had listings change on more than 3 items after I've bought it

How?

They are multi-stock-listings

When you buy off these the seller can 'up-date' the listing. Often its just to say how many remain in stock but some sellers are changing what they actually supply.

 

First I must tell you that I make leather goods, thus I buy certain items in quantity

Case 1. I bought an item from a seller based in China

The item arrived but was broken. Too broken to use or repair. No problem I thought, I can get my money, over £20 back through ebay.

But when I tried the seller had changed that particular item on the listing to a small cheap item worth less than £2.50, but using the same wording to describe it.

I got back £2.35

 

Case 2.

I make board games. For these I need dice. I saw some nice dice for sale by a Chinese ebay seller. They were listed as 5 for £4.  I bought a set of 5

Yesterday I received one die (aka a dice).

So I went onto ebay. The seller had up-dated the listing. Where it had said how many it now said 1 rather than 5.

 

I've had this happen a few times before.

eg I buy rivets for the leather work (yes, I'm an actual rivet counter), I buy them by the hundreds. I've bought quantities where it said it was in multiples of 100. So I've bought 2 lots. I should have received 200 but I got two lots of 50 making 100, 1/2 the amount. The listings had been changed to say Quantity; 50 sometime after I'd bought

 

As ebay looks at the listing as it is at the time you complain you can do nothing about it.

I now keep a written record of these sellers who change things so I don't accidentally buy from them again. 

BTW, I've mentioned Chinese sellers but I've had it happen with UK and US sellers as well.

Doesn't make sense. The seller shouldn't be able to retrospectively change the original listing which is what your 'email receipt' should refer to and what eBay should be refunding regardless of what the seller suggests. Ultimately its eBay that it liable and they are responsible for resolving as per what your purchase email described. 

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18 hours ago, lasermonkey said:

Hmm, maybe a screen shot when purchasing might help if things go awry?

17 hours ago, Black Knight said:

yes, but 

a. how do you know in advance that things will go awry?

b. which seller will do this if you have no experience of that seller?

I would do what @stever219 recommended. Take a screen shot of every transaction. When the deal works out good delete it. If it doesn't then you have a record. After awhile you should have a decent number of sellers that you've dealt with and are trustworthy. So you can then stop the practice or limit it to new sellers. 

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This is one of the reasons I am trying to wean myself off eBay and Amazon. I am trying to use dealers I trust via their website and often the prices are cheaper or delivery is less. 

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21 hours ago, Tony C said:

The problem I've experienced is that eBay aren't interested in the buyer, only the seller!

You say that (and I'm sure your experience leads you to believe that ) but my experience is that they aren't interested in the seller either. I had someone recently raise a claim to return a jigsaw puzzle because it was broken on arrival (I kid you not!). I had to go along with it but it took them over 14 days to actually get around to posting the item back after making the claim, well it was a 1000 piece jigsaw after all and they can be quite tricky to do! They were at it, make a claim the day it arrives, do the jigsaw puzzle then return it afterwards and it's cost them nothing. I pointed all this out to eBay and they went with the buyer even though there was absolutely nothing wrong with the puzzle when it eventually arrived back with me.

 

Duncan B

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33 minutes ago, Duncan B said:

You say that (and I'm sure your experience leads you to believe that ) but my experience is that they aren't interested in the seller either....

Duncan B

 

Whilst I do sell on eBay, I'm an individual not a company and haven't had any issues to this effect so you are most likely to be right!

 

I guess being an online entity with no face-to-face contact, they can do as they please and as will all large corporations, the only real winners, are the shareholders and owners!

 

Whilst I do buy from dealers direct, I would also love to see an alternative auction site to eBay...

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24 minutes ago, Tony C said:

. . .  I would also love to see an alternative auction site to eBay...

There is. Its called ebid

I've been a member of it for nearly 6 years

Its rather pathetic and the site is not user-friendly.

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Hard to imagine any site could make many improvements. Trying to mediate between buyer and seller is never going to be easy and one side will usually be aggrieved.

 

Does anyone sell via Amazon? I get the impression it is aimed more at corporate sellers. Are they better or worse to deal with?

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19 hours ago, Tim R-T-C said:

Hard to imagine any site could make many improvements. Trying to mediate between buyer and seller is never going to be easy and one side will usually be aggrieved.

 

Does anyone sell via Amazon? I get the impression it is aimed more at corporate sellers. Are they better or worse to deal with?

A friend and his wife have a little business selling on Amazon selling toys, useful gadgets and smelly candles. They were on eBay but got messed about by some buyers so closed the account and web trade soley on Amazon now. Amazon takes a bigger cut but they have had virtually zero returns or problem customers. Overall he reckons the higher fees are worth it for the lack of hassle.

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