The ebay Diaries – Day One

After spending far too much time on ebay recently I’ve decided to get some use out of this time by writing about it.

Today’s installment is about the evils of blurred photographs. As you may have seen in one of the previous posts, there are a number of bad things to buy on ebay. One of the top ten is “things with blurred photos”. There are quite a lot of them.

When I used ebay as part of my business I used a scanner. In fact I wore a scanner out through constant use. They weren’t perfect, but the images were, on average, a lot better than most of the ones you see these days. They were very good for flat things like banknotes and postcards and generally good for things like coins and badges

The poor qualty would not be a big deal apart from one thing – more and more sellers are saying they don’t give refunds and that the picture forms part of the description.

I’ve always tended to avoid people who don’t give refunds because I consider it poor customer service. If you can’t trust them to stand by their product can you trust them to pack things properly or post them promptly?

I’ve always had an unconditional refunds policy and over all that time I’ve only ever had two things retuned. People are generally trustworthy and don’t abuse your terms of service.

People who don’t trust their customers are, in my experience, less trustworthy than average. (I’ll pick my words carefully there, but it’s a principle I always adhere to.)

Fortunately, unless things have changed, there are ways to get a refund despite this, though I’ve never needed to use them yet.

With a blurred picture it isn’t possible to see faults, and with a no refund policy this could make for a really bad buying experience. Personally, I think you should always tell customers if there is a fault.

In going through ebay this morning I’ve already spotted several broken or repaired items which aren’t noted as such, and where it’s difficult to spot the problem. The main clue is that they are often on “Buy it Now” and the price is suspiciously reasonable.

Having said that I’ve just bought a very reasonably priced job lot on a “Buy it Now”, so fingers crossed…




22 thoughts on “The ebay Diaries – Day One

  1. Helen

    I don’t give refunds on Ebay for the simple reason I couldn’t afford to pay back P&P. It doesn’t have anything to do with trust and what I sell is either in excellent condition or I explain the scratches (e.g. on a pair of tap shoes). That said, these days if I sell something I use Gumtree. That way, the person sees it for real on my doorstep before they buy.

    1. quercuscommunity

      If you are describing the article accurately that’s fair enough. 🙂

      If, like some of the sellers on ebay, you are covering up a fault with poor photography and not mentioning the faults, ot;s a different matter.

      1. Helen

        To be honest, I’d recommend Gumtree as there are no fees, although of course it depends what you’re buying/selling and from/to whom. I’m only selling clutter that is in very good condition. The rest I simply give away as it’s too much hassle for too little gain….

  2. beatingthebounds

    I think I’m probably a bit too dim to make much use of ebay – although years ago we did buy our trailer tent that way, a big purchase which has worked out very well. I bought a copy of Heaton Cooper’s ‘Tarns of the Lake District’ (not on ebay) recently and was surprised to get it for lass than half of what I’ve seen it for before. I didn’t think to check that all of the colour plates were there. They aren’t. Actually, I’m happy to have a copy with some of the plates, but no longer trust the shop where I have long been a customer. Big mistake on their part.


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