eBay Feedback 2.0: Some Thoughts

Once again, eBay University (9th June in London) proved to be an engaging and enjoyable day out. I led four sessions, sold a stack of books and learnt a lot. A day with eBay sellers is never wasted and I started early last Saturday: an eager eBayer spotted my eBay Uni shirt and started chatting to me on the bus before I even arrived.

The UK/US visibility issue was (IMHO) causing more concern than it warrants (2 bucks to the pound, nuff said) and there was also great interest about the benefits of adding video to listings, especially after one seller confessed his page views and sales had enjoyed a huge boost when he started including vids.

But most the fascinating discussion for me involved Feedback 2.0 (y’know, the yellow stars) and took place in the reasonably intimate ‘Strategy Review’ session. Here’s my digest of the views expressed:

– Less feedback is being left. Sellers perceive that less feedback is being left, probably because it’s more of a hassle to leave now that all the extra info is required.

– With the new system, there is a perception that the written comments being left are more brief. Buyers are instead giving their view using anonymised stars meaning sellers can’t benefit from glowing comments.

– What’s reasonable? The way in which ratings are described irk. For instance, the postage cost rating asks buyers to assess whether the postage costs were reasonable. A rating of ‘Reasonable’ is a four-star rating and not top marks. One seller complained: ‘If they don’t think the postage cost is reasonable, they could shop elsewhere.”

– One-sided nature of the changes: From a seller’s perspective it feels unfair that buyers have the right to give much more information than sellers can give in return. In particular sellers would welcome the opportunity to note when a buyers was a late payer, or even a non-payer.

– It’s here to stay: It was widely accepted that despite the current implementation being a test, Feedback 2.0 was here to stay.

5 thoughts on “eBay Feedback 2.0: Some Thoughts”

  1. Good news from eBay Live! Brian Burke confirmed that from the trial sites (UK, Aus, IE) that DSR’s are filled in 80% of feedbacks left.

    Also feedback leaving rates overall haven’t changed – in 83% of transactions one partner leaves feedback and in over 70% of transactions both partners leave feedback. This is pretty much the same as prior to the introduction of Feedback 2.0

    For the postage rating of 4 stars for “Reasonable” Bill Cobb suggested that look at this when it was pointed out that “Reasonable Postage charges” are about as good as you can expect – bettter than reasonable means the seller hasn’t charged enough!

    Feedback was discussed in terms of the buyer – ie to enable good sellers to differentiate themselves from bad sellers with DSRs with examples given to show it working.

    For those still coming to terms with Feedback 2.0 they should be prepared for more changes in the future as Feedbackk 3.0 is definately on the table

  2. I think that Feedback 2.0 was a bit of a sticking plaster for eBay’s rather flawed feedback system.

    As a buyer, I think taht you have done your job if you have paid for an item, and there is a good arguement for giving automatic positive feedback under these circumstances

  3. After several months with FB 2.0 on the US site I can’t honestly tell you it makes things better. There still is very little differentiation between sellers.

  4. Feedback 2.0 enables the buyers predict seller behaviour for instance the item could be honestly described but the seller might be lazy at posting.

    In case if I am being offered an item at same price from two different sellers then I might discriminate on the basis of factor which matters the most related to the particular transaction.

    Similarly, at times I am quite lazy at posting items as a seller but since feedback 2.0 has been launched I am a bit cautious. If I continue with my laziness then I might not get a price premium for an item which is time specific e.g concert ticket.

    Additionally it also allows buyers to leave an honest feedback without the fear of retaliatory negative.

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