eBay released a note to sellers Tuesday evening acknowledging widespread issues with shipping delays among all carriers caused by new regional COVID lockdowns and record parcel volumes at USPS, UPS and FedEx that are straining logistics networks.

“We are aware shipping is causing concern for both buyers and sellers this holiday season and we are working to reduce frustration where we can. While there is some unpredictability in delivery reliability, most items are still arriving on time. We’re managing estimated delivery dates, continuing to give sellers credit for meeting their stated handling time, and advising buyers to anticipate potential delays.”

Because this situation is out of seller’s control, eBay is protecting seller performance ratings for late arriving shipments as long as the seller shipped the item as promised in the listing.

eBay said that sellers will receive credit for shipping on time when any one of the following happens:

  • Tracking shows a physical carrier scan any time within the stated handling time of the seller’s listing.
  • Buyer answers “Yes” to item arrived on-time when leaving feedback.
  • Tracking shows a delivery scan within the latest delivery date for the shipping service selected.  

Even in cases where a buyer may see a faster delivery estimate, a seller’s shipment will be considered on time if it arrives by the latest day for the shipping service.

For example, if a seller uses a standard shipping service with a 1-5 day delivery time, adds the stated handling time of 2 days, the item needs to arrive within 7 working days. If the package is delivered any time during this period, eBay will recognize that the seller shipped on-time.

eBay clarified that for most late shipments, sellers do not need to contact eBay to receive credit, “If you meet one or more of the above requirements, we’ll automatically reflect on-time shipping for the transaction. You will not need to contact eBay customer support. We continue to monitor and evaluate carrier transit time and delays and we’ll make adjustments where necessary.”

eBay is updating estimated delivery dates to buyers 

Furthermore, eBay said that it is updating estimated delivery dates to provide buyers with the best information possible. However, the company also said that sellers need to continue to meet handling times, ship as quickly as possible, work with buyers when an issue arises, and keep inventory up to date.

eBay reminder on Item ‘Not Received’ procedure

eBay also noted that a buyer can only open an “item not received” request after the estimated delivery date plus 1 day. When a request is opened the seller has 3 business days to respond before the buyer can ask eBay to step in.

For international shipments, if tracking on the item shows movement within the past 10 calendar days and the parcel is in the destination country, eBay will keep the request open for 10 more days from the time the buyer asked eBay to step in to allow additional time for the item to be delivered. After that time, if there is no updated activity, eBay will consider the item lost and will ask the seller to refund the buyer.

Buyer notice before purchase

eBay is also letting buyers know there may be delivery delays, encouraging them to be patient, to pay attention to estimated delivery dates on listings, and to continue supporting small businesses.

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