I would like to tell a short story of my most recent purchase on ebay. It has become an eye opener for me as the final result, yes the dreaded negative feedback came as a complete surprise and the comment even more so. So buyer beware raises it's ugly head again.
I put in a best offer bid on a Kitchen cooker hood from what appeared to be a very reputable shop trader, very high number of sales, 99+ rating ...... must be good!
Even better they accepted my offer and I got an ebay bargain, next day delivery, great.
Contact the tiler and tell him to come in three days and the walls will be ready for him to complete my kitchen. Eight days later I sent a brief polite note, asking when they could estimate a delivery day. The reply came next day stating- the next day or give us your details if it does not arrive.
The next day comes and no sign of the cooker hood. Give it another day, then I sent another brief and polite note to the effect that no item had arrived, could they now chase up their carrier to find out the reason for delay.
As an experienced ebayer I knew that all the item details are included on communications so that reference to the item can be easily seen by seller and buyer alike - because ebay are good to us like that, they try to make our transactions nice and smooth.
I must admit, I had overlooked the fact that they had asked for my details, but as I say I thought they must already have them just as I had theirs.
There is a reply, another more imploring message requesting my details as they are unable to find any details about the transaction. So I send them every thing they asked for,with an additional reference to the PayPal transaction to combine with the item URL details on each message that has now been sent, in the hope that with all this information even a first time trader could not make a mistake.
The reply was that this reference number which was clearly identified as a Pay Pal reference, was not one of theirs and could I check it again. And was my address the one I always use?
This is when exasperation sets in. I don't have a completed kitchen, I don't have my item, I don't have my money, I do have a wife nipping my head as to why I did not go down to B&Q for it in the first place, I do have a plasterer and tiler waiting with annoyed looks each time I go to tell them it's not ready yet, I do have a supposedly professional company giving me for all intents and purposes the run around.
I send a reply pointing out that the reference given previous was Pay Pals - The address given was my only address and that if they were unable to supply the item ASAP, could they please make a refund.By now the combined effect of the above paragraph was starting to get me down and I needed settlement.
Oh Joy, In their next reply I get an apology over the confusion that I caused by giving them too much help by including an additional point of reference. Did I really want a refund or do I still want the item? ........ Yes - I want the item, Yes - I am Delighted and Thank you . I now know that in a couple of days i'll have my item, and life can go on.
Never a bad word or derogatory comment passed between the parties involved, they in the end found the details, kept up good communication and eventually got the item to me. These facts I put down in my comment when I filled out their feedback- (Got the item eventually,Quick comms when problem arose,All's well in the end)- I thought this was an appropriate comment. I did leave a Neutral Feedback as the delay and cost to me were as a direct result of the companies inability to comply with its listing.
The item is excellent just a bit late........ like 19 days! My kitchen will be finished in two days, I was now almost happy again. (~:Some say thats a rarity for me. :~)
Then the slap in the face............. I recieved a NEGATIVE feedback and a comment that states that I was rude to their customer help staff and that I should know better as I am experienced on ebay. What sort of signal will that send out to my prospective clients. One point off my score and it can't be retracted. The details will be on all my ebay listings for all to see. I was furious.
That'll teach me to ask for my money back and to hint at the fact that if you can't do the job pass it to some one who can. Also how dare I leave a NEUTRAL ! I wish I was the sort who can maliciously ruin peoples trading history. I have many words for this kind of person, none of which I would dare print here.
I mean what can you do - how polite should you be when some one is effectively ruining your day. Do we all need to start being petty and give out negative feedback because when me make a mistake and are not prepared to own up to it, we would rather bounce it back to the other party and make them out as the villain. If I had thought the way the people at this very successful company do, then I too would have left negative comments and feedback. After All I am the only victim of poor standards of service!
I'm glad to report that I am not that way inclined and hope that the vast majority of the ebay community are of the same mind. There is enough carry on with dodgy goods, non payers, cancelled listings poor descriptions and the like - lets all hope that incidents like this do not become the norm, and don't happen to you.
So Buyer Beware it is.
Good luck and Good Safe Trading to you all. Try a little understanding and always be professional in your dealings with other people and maybe just maybe they will reciprocate.
Ian - POWERHOUSE TOOLS UK - helio111