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How To Remove Negative Feedback On eBay In 2024

Threecolts
Geri Mileva
Published
June 13, 2023
Modified
March 1, 2024
How To Remove Negative Feedback On eBay in 2024

While Amazon may be a household name when it comes to eCommerce, sites like eBay still hold considerable sway in online selling. Around 135 million people use eBay regularly as of 2022, with a little over 3 million shoppers on the platform per month.

With such high visibility, it’s important to present the best possible impression to any potential and current customers you may have. Customer feedback plays a huge role in determining whether people buy from you at all, with over 90% of customers avoiding stores that have high amounts of negative feedback.

While negative feedback alone isn’t enough to sink an eBay store, it can make all the difference when it comes to generating profit. Even if you do get negative feedback on your eBay store, it’s still possible to have it removed or appealed, with the help of eBay’s official review process.

Here’s our guide on everything you need to do to remove negative feedback on eBay—and how you can avoid similar situations in the future.

Why Customers are More Likely to Leave Negative Feedback

First, it’s crucial to understand the circumstances that would lead to customers giving you negative feedback. A bad experience with your brand is obviously the trigger, but there are specific factors that make customers far more likely to leave you negative feedback instead of positive ones:

People are more prone to remember bad experiences

Studies have shown that people’s brains are far more likely to not only pay attention to bad experiences but also remember bad experiences with more clarity. It’s a leftover evolutionary response and defense mechanism from when everything was still a potential threat or negative effect on a person.

This means that customers are already primed to be on the lookout and remember any bad experiences that they may have with a brand. Sometimes the degree of the bad experience doesn’t matter, only the fact that a bad experience happened at all. This makes the possibility of receiving negative feedback more likely.

Customers have an expectation for flawless service

Most businesses today have switched their approach from a one-size-fits-all to a heavily personalized experience when engaging with customers. It’s easy to understand why: personalization leads to a better experience, and happier customers mean more potential profits.

Around 77% of business leaders agree that personalization is key to happy customer engagement, and customers have higher expectations of customer service overall. Not meeting this expectation can make you an outlier with a typical customer’s brand engagements, increasing the likelihood that you’ll get negative feedback.

Organic interactions within a community

With over 95% of consumers reading reviews before they try or buy anything, online retailers always need to be aware of the potential community that forms around their brands or products. Some customers are highly engaged in their communities and can exert a lot of influence on the impressions of your store.

If they experience a negative interaction with your brand, they’re far more likely to leave negative feedback to inform others about their experience. Given the belief that negative reviews are usually more honest and less likely to be incentivized than positive reviews, customers are more willing to believe them. These factors mean that any negative interaction with your eBay business can potentially result in negative feedback, no matter how minor the issue.

2 Ways to Get Your Negative Feedback Removed on eBay

eBay itself does not penalize negative feedback and actively encourages users to leave feedback with sellers and products on its platform. However, they do also have ways of addressing feedback, both from the side of the customer and the side of the buyer.

If your seller profile has received negative feedback, here are two ways you can get it revised, appealed, or removed:

Appeal to eBay directly to remove customer feedback

This method relies on making an appeal to eBay by contacting them directly via your Seller Hub and asking them to review a specific instance of negative feedback. Note that said feedback must meet the following criteria to qualify for a review:

  • The transaction occurred within the past 90 days
  • The feedback violated eBay’s policies on abusive, vulgar, or threatening language
  • Your customer left negative feedback without paying for their item
  • There were cases of extortion or attempts to incentivize positive reviews from the client
  • Customer made an error (like giving a 1-star rating but with a positive review)

Appealing to eBay works best when it’s clear that the negative feedback is a case of customer misconduct and not any failure on your part regarding your products, services, or overall customer engagement. If it were a customer’s error, eBay may even remove the negative feedback automatically.

If you feel like you’ve gotten an unfair negative review, it’s best to contact eBay as soon as possible and explain (preferably with documentation) that you fulfilled all your responsibilities as an eBay seller. This builds a stronger case for your appeal and makes it more likely that eBay will rule in your favor.

Contact your customer to ask for a revision

This requires you to contact the customer who left negative feedback and ask them for a customer revision. However, eBay has very stringent requirements about what type of feedback can qualify for a buyer revision:

  • The transaction occurred in the last 30 days
  • The request must be part of the 5 feedback revision requests for every 1,000 reviews in the last 12 months
  • You resolved the issue the customer was complaining about
  • The review was made in error by the customer (like cases of accidental reviews)

Working with a customer to revise their feedback can result in more positive impressions of your brand once you’ve gone through the process, since it’s documented in their initial and revised feedback. It’s a great way to improve overall customer experience and can show your brand’s commitment to customer engagement.

However, given that eBay limits the number of times you can ask for feedback buyer revision, it’s important to choose which negative feedback you file for review. Once you’ve made sure that your case qualifies, you can easily ask for a revision request via your eBay Feedback Profile.

Contact your customer to ask for a revision

The Impact of Negative Feedback

Of course, there is the option to simply ignore negative feedback, but there’s plenty of evidence that shows doing this can do more harm than good.

Reading reviews have become a regular part of online shopping

The Pew Research Center found that a little over 80% of Americans either “sometimes” or “always” read reviews before buying anything—and it’s safe to assume that the actual number would be higher if you’re taking a global audience into account.

Reviews have become an important part of the buyer’s journey in any online marketplace, and negative feedback has a lot of sway over your impressions as a result. If you don’t address negative feedback, you’re actively sabotaging the way your customers will perceive you.

For marketplaces like eBay where the star rating system can make or break entire businesses, leaving negative feedback unaddressed can be considered as a step to closing down your storefront yourself.

One negative article can make you lose a significant number of customers

A marketing study by Moz found that the influence of even a single negative review can cause drastic effects. Around 22% of customers are more likely to bail on a brand with a single negative article about them, with the number jumping past 70% with just four negative articles.

Whether it’s a long-form comment or a simple 1-star review, it’s clear that these impressions matter. Customers are far more willing to do their own research, and they are likely to trust other customers over the impressions that a brand presents of itself.

For marketplaces like eBay, a single negative comment can lose you thousands in potential profits and may even drive away both existing and incoming customers.

Customers pay attention to how companies respond to negative feedback

According to a 2023 Local Customer Review Survey by Brightlocal, 88% of customers are far more likely to engage with a business that answers every feedback, positive or negative. This number dips to 60% if you only answer negative feedback, and even lower down to 12% if you don’t respond to any feedback at all. The meaning behind these numbers is simple: customers want to see that a business cares about their experience. 

If you get negative feedback on eBay, it’s crucial to act on it quickly and visibly to prevent any negative impressions from forming around your brand.

Ways to Effectively Address Negative Customer Feedback

Aside from asking eBay or the marketplace itself to remove, revise, or amend any negative feedback, there are also some effective strategies you can try to address feedback on your own:

  1. Acknowledge the complaint. Ignoring negative feedback isn’t just poor practice: it can backfire on your brand spectacularly both long and short-term. Acknowledging negative feedback is crucial—even something as simple as “we’re working on it” can often be enough to help your business save face.
  2. Be proactive about actions that may get you negative reviews. Some sellers may often wait until they get negative reviews before examining how they run their business. While this approach can work, it’s far more productive to regularly review how you conduct business and your overall customer experience. This lets you spend less time putting out fires through prevention.
  3. Prioritize negative experiences. Positive impressions can improve your standing on eBay, but paying attention to the negative impressions can cement your place in it. Prioritizing negative feedback not only gives customers the positive impression that you care about their experience but also improves your overall standing with eBay, making your listings and products more visible.
  4. Document and publicize concrete changes. Responding publicly to negative feedback is all well and good, but an even better option is to present what, how, and why you addressed specific negative feedback in that way. Not only does this improve customer impressions of you, but it’s actionable data you can integrate with future marketing campaigns.
  5. Involve your customers in the process. It’s easy to simply send a replacement for a faulty part or issue a refund for service, but involving your customer with how you address negative feedback is essential. This personalizes their experience with your brand and may even help them become promoters for your eBay store in the future.
  6. Optimize your feedback management systems. Tools like ChannelReply can offer you an easy way to manage all your customer support tickets in one place. Optimizing how you handle your feedback makes it easier to address the negative ones while increasing the likelihood that you get positive reviews because of your improved response time.

Most-Cited Reasons Why Customers Leave Negative Feedback

3 Most-Cited Reasons Why Customers Leave Negative Feedback

Negative feedback doesn't just "happen": there are specific triggers that prompt a customer to want to leave negative feedback. Market research from Corra shares three types of customer complaints that often result in negative feedback:

  • Service issues (52% of all complaints)
  • Product issues (31% of all complaints)
  • Company policy (16% of all complaints)

To understand these categories, we need to break down the common issues that most eBay sellers run into with each complaint:

Why customer service fails

In an ideal situation, a customer buys something from you, receives it, and enjoys their product with no issue. In that context, simply ensuring that your customer has a hassle-free experience with ordering and receiving their item may be enough.

Customer service becomes more of an issue when problems come up during the customer’s buying process. This is where attention to detail and to the customer drastically become more important. Given the many instances in the buyer’s journey where something can go wrong—there are more chances someone will have something to complain about.

If you don’t handle the customer’s complaints or concerns promptly, fail to respond entirely, or don’t meet commitments you’ve made, their expectations plummet. This makes them far more likely to leave negative reviews.

Where products can become defective

With the variety of ways you can run a business on marketplaces like eBay—from being a supplier to a dropshipper—product quality and control become essential. It’s not enough that you have a quality product: customers expect that as a standard. You need to outperform expectations by personalizing their experiences.

It’s no longer enough to simply fulfill a customer’s order. You need to optimize every step of the process from packaging, shipping, handling, and tracking to ensure that your products arrive in pristine condition. More than that, you need to offer support for situations where their product has a defect.

If you don’t partner with an experienced supplier, fail to do product quality checks before shipping, or mess up the fulfillment process, your overall product quality suffers. This doesn’t just make customers leave negative feedback—it may even encourage them to actively go against your brand.

What policies may backfire

Company policy can refer to many things: how your products are created, your outsourcing partners for fulfillment, or the overall policies you have that define your brand. However, the most important one to consider is how you handle concerns like refunds, returns, or cancellations.

If there’s one thing that customers may hate more than bad products and services that they already paid for, it’s getting charged for them when they didn’t want them to begin with. This makes addressing these types of complaints extremely important, especially for marketplaces like eBay that put a lot of emphasis on customer reviews.

If you do have to return, refund, repair, or cancel something for your customer, make sure that you do it as promptly and as hassle-free for them as possible. This can not only save your store from getting a negative review, but it may make them more likely to purchase from you in the future.

Tools to Help Boost Your eBay Business and Improve Customer Impressions

One of the most reliable ways to improve customer experience on marketplaces like eBay is to anticipate their needs, avoid potential pitfalls with engagement, and improve the overall management of your storefront. Fortunately, there are many tools available that can give you the functions and data necessary to optimize your online business.

eBay Seller Hub

If you want to keep your tools within eBay’s own infrastructure, the Seller Hub contains a variety of features that can help you keep your marketplace compliant with eBay’s rules and policies. The Seller Hub can help you see how many times your listing has been viewed by customers, check overall selling costs, and optimize your listings.

Seller Hub is free, with no subscriptions required. Some features are locked behind pro-level subscriptions, but you aren’t required to sign up for them. As long as you’re selling on eBay, you can take advantage of Seller Hub. The service is currently limited to US sellers, but there may be plans of making this service more available to other regions in the future.

Threecolts

Threecolts is a customizable business solution that can help you supercharge your online marketplace and make the management of your eBay store far easier. With powerful tools like DimeTyd for savings automation, SmartRepricer for profit-geared automated pricing, or ChannelReply for customer ticket management, it’s a comprehensive platform that can meet all your needs.

Threecolts products are user-friendly and are backed by a dedicated customer support team enabling you to focus on running the crucial parts of a business on eBay while enjoying the benefits of automated marketplace management. With an array of existing and upcoming features, it’s a smart management solution that’s well worth the investment.

Inkfrog

If you need help with improving your eBay listings, Inkfrog’s selection of multiple template listings can be a great solution. Features like product auto-fill help improve your SEO rankings on eBay, while HTML templates ensure that each of your listings is not only functional but also aesthetically pleasing.

Inkfrog can even help manage listings by syncing them with your inventory status, scheduling listings during peak shopping hours, and integrating directly with eBay’s messaging functions for easier customer engagement.

Sellbrite

If you want a simple tool that can help you manage multiple listings and inventories in different eCommerce sites, Sellbrite may be the solution for you. This platform can integrate marketplaces from eBay, Amazon, Etsy, Shopify, and much more in a single click, helping you reach new customers and manage your different marketplaces.

Some notable features of this platform include inventory synchronization across different channels, easier tracking of shipping and fulfillment, and automatic adjustment of your plan to accommodate growth or other changes in your online business.

Optimize Your Online Sales with Threecolts Today

Negative customer feedback is a reality for many online sellers. It's admittedly something that should be avoided, but it's something that can and does happen. Fortunately, platforms like eBay offer a robust way of removing negative feedback, letting you improve your overall rating and increase customer trust in your store.

A comprehensive marketplace management solution, Threecolts has helped thousands of customers optimize their businesses with features like automated pricing and customer response. If you want a set of tools that can help you avoid situations that get you negative feedback, consider Threecolts

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