Handling Negative eBay Feedback the Smart Way

by John Hansen

You can’t make everyone happy. That’s true in life and it’s certainly true on eBay. No matter how hard you try to do everything just right, you will occasionally encounter negative feedback from eBay buyers.

It’s disheartening, but it’s inevitable. Even the best powersellers in the business occasionally encounter someone who feels it’s necessary to leave negative feedback. Once you see that ugly review on the screen, anger and frustration won’t help you. It’s time to start thinking about the smart way to respond to the negative feedback. Here are three steps that will help you rebound quickly from negative reviews.

Luckily, eBay allows you to publish a response to the negative comment. This provides you with an opportunity to tell your side of the story and to supply any additional information or commentary that you think could be helpful to those who may review your sales history.

Resist the urge to make a snarky, rude or argumentative response to your critic. If you were at fault in any way, accept responsibility for your error and apologize. Provide an indication that it was an unfortunate situation that is unlikely to emerge in future transactions. You want people to see that you’re reasonable, responsive and dedicated to great transactions.

If you weren’t at fault and the negative commenter’s critique is baseless, you don’t need to accept any fault. Instead, factually outline what happened and why you feel the negative review was unjustified. Maintain an even, direct tone and don’t fall into the trap of getting into the online equivalent of a screaming match with the dissatisfied buyer.

Future buyers may be reluctant to deal with someone who has a sales history littered with frequent episodes of negative feedback. However, most people are reasonable enough to understand that accidents happen and that some buyers are simply unreasonable. As such, most future customers won’t find themselves too concerned about an anomalous piece of negative feedback. You should react to negative remarks, but you don’t need to overreact.

The best way to cure any negative symptoms associated with poor feedback is by diluting its impact with additional sales and remarks that are more positive. Make a point of generating more sales (and more happy customers) right away. You’ll soon bury the negative remark, reducing its potential impact on your bottom line.

Negative feedback can be frustrating, but you don’t need to let it ruin your eBay experience. A level head, an honest response and more good work on your part will allow you to walk away from negative incidents unscathed.

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