Is 95.4% feedback an indication that the seller is a good seller? Is that seller better than a seller with 84%? Not necessarily!!! Why! and more importantly how can you tell the difference?
1. Some sellers ask buyers to change negative feedback.
Some sellers ask buyers who give negative feedback to change this to positive. I was asked to do this by a seller and changed the feedback to neutral. Neutral's don't affect the scores. Hence you need also to look at the number of neutrals a seller has.
2. It depends how many feedbacks the seller has.
The feedback is a percentage and as a result the impact of each negative feedback overall goes down as the person's number of feedbacks go up. (I can't explain this fully - maths not my strong point!). Using my feedback as an example, I once got a negative which knocked my feedback score down from 99.9% to 99.8%, whereas someone else at the same time had one negative feedback which knocked their feedback score from 100% to 95%. Why? At that stage, my life long feedback score was 2163 and theirs was 197. Ebay has now changed the percentage score to 12 monthly, however the same principle applies. The more a seller sells, the less impact a single negative has on them.
I tend to consider a feedback score of 95.4% in a seller with 1000 feedbacks over 12 months not a good feedback score. I would look at the negatives to see what the buyers are saying and how the seller has responded. It is easier to check why a person with 20 feedbacks has a 84% score and I do so routinely. I would suggest you do this. Sometimes a seller has just had a bad experience, or has got something wrong on one occasion and following feedbacks show the buyer/seller has learnt from their mistakes.
5. Buyers (especially the British!) don't like to leave negatives!
Most buyers are nice genuine people and don't like to complain, or are afraid to. Plus it takes time to complain and some people don't have the time or can't be bothered. The people who complain and leave negatives are often the ones who could be bothered or who are unreasonable. The ones who are unhappy often just don't leave feedback at all. Others leave neutrals which don't show in the score, however indicates that the buyer wasn't happy with something.
6. Buyers sometimes leave unfair negatives.
Some people just don't play fair and although they have received an item as described and quickly, they may not like to item for some reason which isn't the fault of the seller (i.e. expecting an item costing 99p to be of the same quality as an item costing £50.
You can check this out by reading the negative feedbacks and making your own decision.
How does this help you?
Hopefully this guide has given you a few of the many reasons why feedback % scores alone do not show you how reliable a seller (or buyer) is and you will be able to make an informed decision about whether to buy or sell from a buyer based on the information given.