Raising the Bar New regulations change what it means to be a great seller--and powerseller.

Sellerstandards received an overhaul this year, becoming more stringent and encouraging sellers and PowerSellers to provide the best possible service to their customers.

Two key changes were made for all sellers to discourage bad seller behavior. First, listings exposure in eBay searches is decreased for sellers who have had high buyer dissatisfaction rates and low Detailed Seller Ratings, or DSRs, over the past 30 days. Second, all sellers with a high buyer dissatisfaction rate, who have feedback scores of less than 100, or who list in five categories with higher buyer complaint rates (consumer electronics, computers, cell phones, video games and gift cards) will be required to offer a safer payment option--either PayPal or direct credit card payments to their merchant accounts. Sellers who continue to deliver high buyer dissatisfaction rates in successive months risk permanent suspension from eBay.

Changes have also been made to add greater meaning and impact to the PowerSeller icon.

PowerSeller status is now based on DSRs: A seller must achieve and maintain a minimum score of 4.6 in all four DSR criteria over a 12-month period to become a PowerSeller or remain in the program. The criteria are:

  1. Describing items accurately
  2. Communicating effectively with buyers
  3. Shipping in a timely manner
  4. Charging fair and accurate shipping costs

"These four DSRs are an excellent proxy for buyer satisfaction," says Todd Lutwak, senior director of eBay's seller development team.

A very small percentage of sellers create a high percentage of dissatisfied customers. According to Jim Ambach, vice president of eBay's seller experience team, eBay considers a buyer dissatisfied if:

  • The buyer leaves a 1 or 2 DSR rating on any of the attributes.
  • A seller gets complaints from buyers about items being "significantly not as described" or "item not received."
  • A seller receives negative or neutral feedback from a buyer.

"If a seller has any of these activities in the past 30 days, these will cumulatively count as dissatisfied customers for that seller," Ambach said in a recent statement.

In the past, PowerSellers have only been required to have a certain level of sales and a 98 percent positive feedback rating. These criteria haven't proven to be strong enough indicators that buyers will consistently have positive experiences when buying from PowerSellers.

"The change benefits sellers because the better the experience they're providing for buyers, the more they'll reap the rewards," says Lutwak. "The bar is set high because it's matched with Power-Sellers who are already providing excellent customer service. So while it's high, it's achievable."

Editor's Pick

She's Been Coding Since Age 7 and Presented Her Life-Saving App to Tim Cook Last Year. Now 17, She's on Track to Solve Even Bigger Problems.
I Helped Grow 4 Unicorns Over 10 Years That Generated $18 Billion in Online Revenues. Here's What I've Learned.
Want to Break Bad Habits and Supercharge Your Business? Use This Technique.
Don't Have Any Clients But Need Customer Testimonials? Follow These 3 Tricks To Boost Your Rep.
Why Are Some Wines More Expensive Than Others? A Top Winemaker Gives a Full-Bodied Explanation.

Related Topics

Business News

Woman Goes Viral For Brow-Raising Email Signature About Working Moms: 'Everyone Is Feeling This'

The email signature was created in response to pressure to answer emails within 24 hours.

Money & Finance

The Ultimate Guide to Equity Compensation

This is a quick guide for employees to understand and familiarize themselves with the most important aspects of equity compensation.


7 Strategies to Master the Art of Mergers and Acquisitions

By following these best practices, parties can increase the likelihood of reaching a successful M&A deal that benefits all stakeholders.

Business News

California Colleges Are Flooded With 'Ghost Students' Attempting to Steal Financial Aid

About 20% of applications for California community colleges are fraudulent, according to the State Chancellor's Office.

Science & Technology

How AI Is Transforming the Accounting Industry — and What the Future Will Look Like

It's time to harness the power of AI and transform bookkeeping.