Working with returns

Working with returns

How Returns Work?

STEP 1

Get notified

We’ll let you know when a return is requested

STEP 2

Track the Return 

Follow its progress on My eBay or Seller Hub

STEP 3

Complete the Return

Issue a refund, replacement, or exchange

How Returns Work?

STEP 1

Get notified

We’ll let you know when a return is requested

STEP 2

Track the Return

Follow its progress on My eBay or Seller Hub

STEP 3

Complete the Return

Issue a refund, replacement, or exchange

We strive to deliver a returns experience that is consistent and competitive with a modern marketplace.  Our five return policy options help streamline the returns experience for our buyers. You may choose to offer any of the following:

No returns accepted

30-day buyer-paid returns

30-day free returns

60-day buyer-paid returns

60-day free returns

We strive to deliver a returns experience that is consistent and competitive with a modern marketplace.  Our five return policy options help streamline the returns experience for our buyers. You may choose to offer any of the following:

  • No returns accepted
  • 30-day buyer-paid returns
  • 30-day free returns
  • 60-day buyer-paid returns
  • 60-day free returns

Want to Attract Buyers – Then offer Free Returns!

Buyers are always looking for sellers who offer free shipping and free returns.

Did you know that “Free Returns” is one of the filters chosen by the buyers when they are refining their search results? –  Adopt the policy that gives you more conversion.

Want to Attract Buyers – Then offer Free Returns!

Buyers are always looking for sellers who offer free shipping and free returns

Did you know that “Free Returns” is one of the filters chosen by the buyers when they are refining their search results? – Adopt the policy that gives you more conversion.

If you currently offer

And you go over to

Your sales will increase by*

No returns

30-day free returns

15%

No returns

60-day free returns

25%

14-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

30-day free returns

10%

14-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

60-day free returns

20%

30-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

30-day free returns

5%

30-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

60-day free returns

13%

* Conversion lift seen based on Q3 2017 data. Individual results may vary. eBay does not guarantee that each seller will experience the same lift or any lift at all. The term Free returns refers to when the seller pays return shipping no matter the reason for return, with no restocking fee.

If you currently offer

And you go over to

Your sales will increase by*

No returns

30-day free returns

15%

No returns

60-day free returns

25%

14-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

30-day free returns

10%

14-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

60-day free returns

20%

30-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

30-day free returns

5%

30-day returns (buyer pays return shipping)

60-day free returns

13%

* Conversion lift seen based on Q3 2017 data. Individual results may vary. eBay does not guarantee that each seller will experience the same lift or any lift at all. The term Free returns refers to when the seller pays return shipping no matter the reason for return, with no restocking fee.

Simplify Customer Service

eBay automates some steps—like return acceptance when your policy allows for returns due to “buyer’s remorse”.
You can customize other steps—like when you issue immediate refunds. This can simplify the entire process for both you and buyers.

Let’s learn about customizing and optimizing returns:

1. Choose when to give immediate refunds: For instance, maybe you want to always offer immediate refunds for clothes that don’t fit—create return rules to let that happen. Your life just got easier!

2. Partial refund option: You can offer a partial refund if a returned item is damaged, missing parts, or otherwise not in the same condition as when you shipped it.

3. Enjoy automatic acceptance:  Automatic acceptance of returns simplifies the returns process. 

When you are OK with buyers paying to ship back items they no longer want, requests for returns are accepted automatically and we’ll provide the buyer with a return shipping label.

In some situations, you may still have 3 business days to provide your own return label before one is automatically sent to the buyer. This usually occurs if the request is outside your return policy window or for certain return reasons.

No return requests due to buyer’s remorse will be accepted automatically if your policy doesn’t permit them.

4. Offer replacements and exchanges: Offering replacements, items identical to the original, and exchanges, items that are different, can help buyers feel better about their purchase. Just be sure to have plenty of stock when offering either of these options. You can even allow the buyer to keep the original item in cases when you don’t want it back.

Simplify Customer Service

eBay automates some steps—like return acceptance when your policy allows for returns due to “buyer’s remorse”.
You can customize other steps—like when you issue immediate refunds. This can simplify the entire process for both you and buyers.

Let’s learn about customizing and optimizing returns

Choose when to give immediate refunds

For instance, maybe you want to always offer immediate refunds for clothes that don’t fit—create return rules to let that happen. Your life just got easier!

Partial refund option

You can offer a partial refund if a returned item is damaged, missing parts, or otherwise not in the same condition as when you shipped it.

Enjoy automatic acceptance

Automatic acceptance of returns simplifies the returns process.

– When you are OK with buyers paying to ship back items they no longer want, requests for returns are accepted automatically and we’ll provide the buyer with a return shipping label.

In some situations, you may still have 3 business days to provide your own return label before one is automatically sent to the buyer. This usually occurs if the request is outside of your return policy window or for certain return reasons.

No return requests due to buyer’s remorse will be accepted automatically if your policy doesn’t permit them.

Offer replacements and exchanges

Offering replacements, items identical to the original, and exchanges, items that are different, can help buyers feel better about their purchase. Just be sure to have plenty of stock when offering either of these options.

You can even allow the buyer to keep the original item in cases when you don’t want it back.

Best Practices to Keep Returns to a Minimum

Buyer will always be buyers… Out of excitement, a product is purchased but later the buyer discovers that it is not their size or it is not what they had thought would be received when they first saw the listing.  There are however some “best practices” that many eBay sellers follow so that they can i) offer returns, but ii) keep those returns to a minimum.

So, how do you do it?

Prevent “Item Not Received” Requests

As delivery expectations continue to rise, buyers want to be able to track orders and receive them on time. Invalid tracking numbers and use of shipping services that are not integrated with eBay can lead to increased "Item Not Received" buyer requests.

  • Upload accurate tracking information in the correct fields to reduce the possibility of an " Item Not Received" request by up to 60%*.
  • Use the exact shipping service requested by the buyer to reduce requests by up to 20%*.
  • Ship within your stated handling time to reduce requests by up to 65%*.

* Information based on internal analysis of listings between January 1, 2017 – September 30, 2017.

Prevent “Item Not As Described” Requests

Reduce the Number of Items that Arrive Damaged

  • Improve your packaging to prevent damage during shipment.
  • Inspect refurbished and used items more closely for hidden defects and damage. Call these out clearly in your listing description and photos.
Reduce the Number of Items that Don't work or are Defective
  • Ensure new items are described accurately, sealed, and are in their original packaging.
  • Inspect refurbished and used items more closely for hidden defects and damage. Call these out clearly in your listing description and photos.
  • Remove products with high rates of manufacturing defects from your inventory.
Make Sure You Aren't Missing Parts
  • Inspect packages more closely to ensure all items ordered are included and correct.
  • Check open box items to ensure all components are present and function as expected.
  • Use checklists for items with many parts, or for multiple items in a combined shipment.
Make Sure You Aren't Sending the Wrong Items
  • Inspect packages more closely to ensure all items ordered are included and correct.
  • Check open box items to ensure all components are correct.
  • Use checklists for items with many parts, or for multiple items in a combined shipment.
Make Sure Your Product is Authentic
  • It is illegal to sell counterfeits, fakes, or replicas of brand name items. We don't allow these to be sold on eBay. Please refer to our policy on counterfeit and replica items.
  • Misusing brand names and keywords to manipulate search results can also result in false buyer expectations. Don't make comparisons or reference brands that aren't the same brand you're selling.
Ensure Your Products Match Their Descriptions or Photos
  • Clearly and accurately describe your items and return policies.
  • Use lots of high-quality photos and Item Specifics in your listings to set the right buyer expectations. Photos help buyers to see exactly what they're getting as well as specific details they may be looking for.
  • When selling used items, photos are especially important because they let the buyer see the actual condition of the item along with other details like color.
  • Specify your item's condition using structured specifics and ensure the selected condition is accurate and consistent with the rest of the item description.

Returns Best Practices:

  • Make sure that the products shipped match the item description and photos.
  • If certain products have high rates of manufacturing defects, take them off the inventory.
  • Check and recheck the product before packing it, to ensure that the correct product is actually being dispatched.
  • Have a checklist prepared to confirm that all parts/items are actually packed i.e. to avoid missing parts.
  • Invest in secure packing to avoid product damage during shipment.
  • Have the returned items checked before issuing a refund.
  • Be quick in issuing refunds – preferably within 2 days of receiving a return.
  • Ask eBay to help you to resolve the issues  if you and the buyer haven’t been able to come to an agreement on the buyer’s return issues.
  • Keep a valid return address on file, and if you have multiple addresses manage them through your “preferences”