|Purchase date:||May 2014|
|Buyer's name:||Crystal Sandy|
|Buyer's address||225 Kingsberry Road, Holdenville, OK 74848|
|Buyer's country:||United States|
|Category:||Clothing, Shoes & Accessories|
Without a single attempt to email me or contact me FIRST in any way, this novice buyer (her numerical feedback score was only 96) left negative feedback - the first negative feedback I have ever received in my 8 years on eBay, which ruined my perfect 100% score. Here's what happened...
Admittedly, two boxes I was shipping out that week had their shipping labels switched and each buyer got the other girl's purchase. It was the first time in 14 years I had EVER made that mistake and I was embarrassed and upset that I'd made such a silly error. However, as a former online business owner with a reputation for excellent product quality and packaging designs, and "above and beyond" customer service, I would have corrected my error by not only paying for both buyers' return shipping but also by sending the unhappy buyer a free gift with the correct bag and even offering her a partial or complete refund for her purchase. My Web business was successful in large part because of my firm belief in superior service before, during, and after a sale; I have never left a customer unhappy or dissatisfied without doing everything in my power to please her, and I had years of great online ratings and reviews to back it up. But this buyer never gave me a chance to address the situation. She went straight for the feedback page and never emailed me ONCE, hence my utter confusion when reading her feedback. It should have been obvious to her that there had been a simple mixup of shipping addresses, rather than a true case of "item not as described" such as misleading photos or a lack of disclosure about an item's condition. There had been no deception of any kind, just an accidental switching of labels....a very simple fix!
Crystal Sandy's ("csandy08" at the time of the transaction) hasty and emotional decision to go straight to leaving bad feedback without first attempting to communicate with the seller - or even notify the seller that there'd been a mixup - demonstrates her lack of understanding about eBay's feedback system and when and why to leave bad feedback for another party, and her disregard for the ethics and norms of doing business, which apply to both buyers AND sellers in any business transaction, on or off the Internet.
When asked to consider withdrawing her erroneous feedback (if that is even possible thru contacting eBay), she ignored the request. She was completely unaffected by my upset at having 8 years of my perfect eBay reputation ruined unnecessarily.
What she failed to understand was that eBay's negative feedback option is intended to be used only after attempts to resolve an issue with the other party fail. It's not intended to be used as a punishment tool by people too lazy to go through the traditional steps of resolution which, if a buyer is PATIENT, usually ends with the buyer being pleased and maybe even ahead of the game since most sellers are eager to please their buyers, as would have been the case in my transaction given that I would have not only sent the buyer the correct bag, but I'd have been delighted to refund her money just for her inconvenience; I wouldn't miss the 40 bucks, she would have been happy, and I'd have had one more feedback point, which is a still gain for me even if it's not monetary.