Why do you get better customer services on eBay?

This is something that has been obvious to me for quite a while now, especially through dealing with the main online sales channels on a daily basis.

But last week I bought something on the same day from Amazon and eBay, both small items that would both fit in a small package (Unfortunately I didn’t think to do a direct comparison and see if I could find the same seller on both channels. This is however on my to do list in the future)

I ordered and paid for both items before 10:30 in the morning.

So I had received both of my order confirmation emails that same day. Now here comes the difference The item I bought on eBay came with a FREE next day delivery, paying the same amount for delivery on Amazon I got the Free Super Saver Delivery, also known as 3-5 days. So delivery is a noticeable difference already.

The next big difference is communication. eBay make it incredibly easy for the buyers to get in touch with the sellers. Whereas not so much on Amazon. In my experience you get a much more complete service from not just eBay but the individual sellers than from Amazon or their third party sellers.

When I sit and think about it the customer service I get from buying on eBay compared to Amazon is quite large. (I do realise that it is much easier to sell on eBay and as such you can get more cowboy sellers…but if you know what. To look for in sellers these are easily avoided). So what is the main reason for this? In my opinion, it all boils down to Feedback!

EBay have been incredibly clever by nurturing the feedback system, like they have. It used to be the buyers that were scared on eBay. Now it is the sellers. EBay offer so many benefits to encourage sellers to sell well on eBay and these benefits can be very quickly lost if you get a couple of low dsr’s.  It all boils down to a power change on eBay, it used to be the buyers that should of been scared and the sellers held the majority of the power.  This has now changed and the buyers and sellers both no the power is firmly in the buyers hands.  So the only way to avoid low dsr’s is to be the best seller you can be.

Needless to say Amazon don’t have this problem, they don’t have the same feedback culture and as they are largely a retailer themselves they have a slightly more seller oriented position on sales.  So although you will get better customer services on eBay, why then is Amazon still so popular?  The next part of this post will look at the differences between buyers and why both Amazon and eBay can co-exist in the same field.

2 replies
  1. Mark Bolitho
    Mark Bolitho says:

    Hi Dave

    Interesting. I hear what you’re saying about feedback, but even so I’m surprised as I know from recent reading that the number 1 metric at Amazon is ‘delivery on promise’.

    That simply means ‘did we do what we said we would do’ and so doesn’t impact on delivery charges or setup of service per se, but it does indicate there’s huge importance placed on customer service.

    I expect there are other instances where Amazon comes out on top, and expect your next post will look at differentiators.


    • DaveF
      DaveF says:

      Hi Mark

      Yes you are spot on, not for one second would I insinuate the service on Amazon is bad, but to get a like for like service, especially with regards delivery, you have to pay extra. Whereas on eBay it is becoming more and more common for there to be a free next day delivery or similar expedited service. Whereas on Amazon you have the standard free super saver delivery which is 3-5 working days.

      Don’t get me wrong, there are a few points where Amazon beats eBay but in terms of customer service i feel personally and professionally eBay clinches it. I have one key reason why this is, and for people who sell on both eBay and Amazon, it will come as no surprise. That is what the new post is going to look at 😉

      Thanks for the comment



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