To try and make my diecast collecting hobby self-sustaining I have been selling diecast cars through ebay for the last 6 months or so. 99% of transactions have gone perfectly and I have been very happy.
My feedback is very very good, and that pleases me. I go to great lengths to bubblewrap cars, I use foam peanuts and proper Australia Post packaging. I have gone out of my way to not engage in 'postal gouging'. My attitude is 'I want you to receive a tiny car in the same way that I would like to receive one'. I have seen very shonky packaging, boxed sets sent with no bubblewrap or peanuts so I always over protect the items. I have only had one report of a car arriving broken, and that was a piece that came adrift from a 1:18 Bburago Ferrari F50 in transit. Fortunately the person was able to clip the part back on the model. I was pretty distressed when i heard about that, and now I pop foam peanuts inside the models own packaging to avoid this.
On a few occasions items have not arrived at the buyers end. This is unfortunate for both buyer and seller.
Usually I hear nothing from the people who buy my tiny cars, in about 5% of sales, they let me know the car has arrived. Happily I have several repeat customers.
Once I sent the wrong cars to buyers, a case of switched addresses. This took a week or so to resolve, but it was. The person expecting their yellow jag was a bit surprised to receive a golden volkswagen!
When it goes wrong I usually get an an email from the buyer asking if I have sent the item. I then go through my Australia Post receipts (which list the postcode and date) and tell them when the item was mailed. Almost always the items turns up, one parcel took 3 weeks, others mailed that same day arrived 2 days later.
Twice they haven't. Once it was a 1:18 scale Biante XY GT. The buyer wasn't happy, and neither was I. I had only just started selling my cars and hadnt used registered post. After an 'investigation' Ebay refunded them the 140 dollars, plus the 14 dollars postage, and kept the fee they deduct from the sale as their commission. So I was out 140 plus 14 plus 9 (fee) plus the original cost of the model way back when. It put a real crimp in my very small revenues.
Im sure the person who was expecting their car to arrive was disappointed as well.
After that experience with Paypal I insisted that all sales over 20 dollars went 'registered mail' from that date, and I started to keep much better records - photographing parcels with the postal sticker applied at the post office and keeping the receipts listing postcodes.
One of the problems with the Paypal dispute resolution process is that they have very restrictive views on what constitutes 'proof'. See below:
This is where it is important that you keep receipts listing postcodes and photos of parcels showing addresses and postal stickers.
Im also not convinced that Paypal actually read any notes or evidence that sellers provide (outside the above three categories). They do not provide any decision making reasoning back to you. It is an imperfect process.
My advice to all sellers is to use registered mail and/or postal insurance. This raises your postage and handling charge, and takes extra time to fill out paperwork, but does protect you. Also, photograph all addressed parcels and receipts for postage (showing postcodes).
I am genuinely dismayed when an item does not arrive but Im also convinced that we have to be responsible for decisions we take. That includes choosing not to register and insure items that are purchased online.
Im interested in your ebay buying/selling experiences - particularly if you have gone through teh paypal dispute process as a buyer or seller. Please leave a comment.