eBay UK greets latest stage in its evolution: Top-rated Sellers

Sellers rewarded for providing finest customer service

eBay UK today unveils a major development in its ongoing evolution: the brand new Top-rated Sellers programme. The programme, set to launch in October 2009, will reward Top-rated Sellers with better listing positions and discounts in return for providing the highest level of customer service.

Based on the existing Feedback system, sellers will be motivated to become Top-Rated by receiving higher visibility in search results as well as discounts on their fees*.

Mark Lewis, Country Manager for eBay in the UK said: “As e-commerce and the needs of buyers and sellers have evolved, so eBay has focused on improving three key aspects of what consumers want online - value, selection and trust. This is an exciting and significant stage in eBay UK’s 10 year evolution. We aim to ensure that sellers are delivering an even better experience for consumers - an experience more reliable and desirable than that available on the high street.

The introduction of the Top-rated Sellers programme will be accompanied by a series of other improvements to the customer experience including free shipping on all items in the Media category (e.g. DVDs etc) and speedier resolution of any disputes.

This development follows a series of eBay UK milestones designed to reward sellers: in June 2003, the PowerSeller programme was introduced to recognise those sellers that had become major retailers in their own right, followed by discounts to help them offer even better value in January 2008.

In tandem, eBay UK still prides itself on creating trust between sellers and buyers of any scale.

Lewis added: “Small sellers and hobby sellers continue to play an important role in making eBay UK a place to buy and sell, and we will continue to support them with promotions including free listings and reduced fees.

“eBay UK has constantly evolved to ensure that it keeps connecting buyers and sellers of all shapes and sizes in the most effective way possible. The site enables sellers to offer - and buyers to find - practically anything they want, at a great price, in a trusted environment.”

How will the Top-Rated Seller programme work?
Only sellers with an average score of at least 4.6 out of a possible 5 will be awarded Top-Rated Seller status, based on the four areas of feedback (i.e. the Detailed Seller Ratings):

  • whether the item received was as described;
  • communication with the buyer;
  • dispatch time; and
  • postage and packaging charges.

To root out examples of bad customer service, sellers will be ineligible for the programme if they receive bad feedback (scores of 1 or 2) on any of the criteria on five or more transactions* out of every 1000.

Following the trial in the last three months of the year, the Top-rated Sellers programme will come into full force on 16 January 2010. To ensure that the Top-rated Sellers programme becomes a hallmark for the highest possible levels of customer service, eBay will review the minimum standards quarterly to see whether they can be improved even further. eBay will support its sellers throughout the process to guarantee that as many as possible earn the new certification.

Notes to Editors:

* Top-rated Sellers must have carried out at least 100 transactions in the past 12 months and have PowerSeller status.