“Top Rated Sellers” on eBay explained
Understanding eBay’s “Top Rated Seller” status
Sellers who have the best customer service are rewarded by eBay through their Top Rated Seller program. Requirements vary between countries and eBay sites, but are generally focused on sellers having a minimum number of sales, consistent shipment tracking, low transaction issues, small number of late shipments, and of course – fast shipping options.
In order to become a Top Rated Seller on eBay, sellers must have:
-Been active for at least 90 days
-Have at least 100 or more transactions with a minimum of £1000 in sales over the last 12 months
-Less than 0.30% of Money Back Guarantee and PayPal Purchase Protection cases closed without seller resolution
-A maximum 0.5% of transactions with one or more transaction-related defects for last 3 months (12 months for sellers with less than 400 transactions)
-Less than 3% of transactions with late shipping
-Comply with eBay’s selling practices policy
For more details, check each eBay site’s seller performance standards page. Selling performance (daily and over the last evaluation period) can be checked easily via the Seller Dashboard.
It is also very important to keep in mind that sellers can become Top Rated Sellers in other countries if they meet the criteria for these countries. i.e. a UK seller using eBay.com can qualify to be a US Top Rated Seller based on sales to US buyers. They can also become a UK Top Rated Seller on eBay.co.uk, selling to UK buyers.
What are the benefits of becoming an eBay Top Rated Seller?
Well, aside from the satisfaction of being one of the best and most trusted sellers on eBay, you get some bonus rewards as well:
-discounts on shipping when using eBay labels
-improved “Best Match” search ranking, which offers more visibility (your listings end up higher in the search results)
-can be eligible to display a prominent eBay Premium Service badge on qualifying listings
In the last couple of years, there have been some changes to the Top Rated Seller program. Sellers are no longer required to have 98% or more positive feedback and buyers cannot refine searches using the criteria of “Top Rated Seller.”
Maintaining the Top Rated Seller status on eBay
It’s more difficult than you’d think – seriously. For most sellers, the hardest part of maintaining Top Rated Seller status is meeting eBay’s strict requirements for transaction defect, cases closed without seller resolution and late shipments. To consistently reach these standards, providing excellent customer service at every stage of the transaction is important.
Here are a few tips that can help you maintain your status:
When listing, give the buyer realistic expectations of the item. Describe everything, with accurate measurements and detailed photographs. Be sure to note any faults of the item as well. Make sure your return policy is easy to understand and be sure to not underestimate your handling time.
Also, when shipping, take the time to pack the item securely and safely using durable and appropriate materials. Consider including a return label in the package to save time later. Always use tracking and make sure the buyer has access to the tracking number promptly.
When communicating with the buyer, be sure to use polite and professional language at all times. Respond quickly to make the most of the time period before the buyer is able to contact eBay for assistance.
Top Rated Plus
What is it? Well, as a Top Rated Seller, you can qualify for these exclusive Top Rated Plus benefits if you offer same or 1-business-day handling time and 30-day or longer free returns:
-The Top Rated Plus seal will be displayed prominently in search results and in the listing description.
-A 10% discount will be applied to final value fees (this applies to the final item price only, not to shipping costs, or to any additional final value fees applied to sales in categories where you’re rated as “very high” in your service metrics for “item not as described” returns). (according to ebay.com help page)
To sum up
Even though many sellers are happy enough with achieving Top Rated status and are not willing to go the extra mile to attain Top Rated Plus, striving to be the best that you can be is crucial.
Your eBay status has far reaching consequences as to whether or not a customer feels comfortable buying from you and additionally can help save you money on eBay fees.
As such, if you’re a Top Rated Seller (or Plus!), we’d highly recommend trying to maintain the status, as it’s extremely important. Me personally, I’d always buy from a seller that has the golden badge next to their listing, and I’m sure I’m not the only one that feels that way.
Top Sellers, keep up the good work! You’re the reason why eBay is so great and why we like it so much!