Ebay private seller - Returns policy

I've been selling on ebay for about 10 years. Intermittently, things from the house, clothes mainly. Nothing of huge value.

I've always had a 'returns accepted' policy, but have never had a buyer ask for a return before.

One's just requested a return, which from what I can see, ebay's automated systems deal with, and as soon I receive the item back I have to refund.

Two Qs if anyone can help:

- when I make the refund, do I have to refund the postage, or just the item cost?

- is a 'returns accepted' policy any advantage for a small private seller?

My sense, especially over these last months, is of selling becoming a lot more hassle. 
[eg I list as 'no bids accepted' and get offers. It means I have to email them and then you get this time-wasting, purposeless to and fro with them. 
Or, I send something RM signed for second class and the buyer starts asking where the item is when RM have had an unsuccessful delivery].

So on the returns policy, I'm thinking of changing mine to 'no returns' but am unsure of the pros and cons of this - any thoughts please?


  • se2020
    se2020 Posts: 375
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    You have to refund in full. Both the item cost and postage.

    If you accept returns then the buyer can return for any reason at all but they pay for the return postage.

    If you do not accept returns then the only option for the buyer will be to open a 'not as described' dispute and then you will also have to pay for the return postage.

    Sellers very rarely win a NAD dispute and loosing one also puts a defect onto your eBay account.

    I find it easier & cheaper & less hassle just to accept returns rather than argue NAD cases.

    The amount of returns is certainly increasing and the reasons for return are getting worst.
    Last one I had included a message from the buyer saying "sorry, needed in a hurry so ordered 3 items and yours was not the first to arrive so no longer needed"

    Not the end of the world but does cost me in outward postage,  packaging and the ebay 30p fee plus the time dealing with it and relisting.
    I do block those buyers but that's a bit pointless as I sell assorted items so rarely get repeat buyers anyway. 
  • jlfrs01
    jlfrs01 Posts: 279
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    This is the eBat Returns Policy - https://www.ebay.co.uk/help/returns-refunds#returns-refunds-sellers

    You don't have to accept returns unless for the reasons outlined in the T's and C's and even then you can offer a partial refund which I often do as P&P just isn't the cost of sending out the item but my labour in packing it and then my time and fuel to drive to the Post Office and back. I'll usually only do this for someone who has "buyer's remorse", mainly because of the hassle of re-listing the item and the prospect of a lower selling price next time round.

    I've been selling on eBay for over 15 years and don't accept returns, it's never been an issue with anything I've ever listed.

    As for the methods of sending something out, if it's low value then I'll send conventional post, I still get a receipt of postage. If of value then usually signed-for. On the odd occasion I've used PacelForce (for big and expensive bulky items).
  • Thanks for all this help, very grateful. I think I'll keep on with 'returns accepted' for the moment, but pull it if I get more hassle than it's worth with relatively low value items.
    Thanks again.
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