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For Seniors: How to Leave eBay Feedback with Style

eBay says to make feedback “factual and emotionless.” You won’t go wrong if you comment on the details (either good or bad) of the transaction. If you have any questions about what eBay says about feedback, click the Feedback link under the Account tab on your My eBay page. On the resulting page, click the Go to Feedback Forum link.

In the Feedback Forum, you can perform six feedback-related tasks:

  • Read feedback about an eBay user.

  • Leave feedback for many transactions at once. Here you see all pending feedback for all transactions within the past 90 days. You’re presented with a page of all your transactions for which you haven’t left feedback. Fill them in, one at a time, and with one click you can leave as many as 25 feedback comments at once.

  • Review and respond to existing feedback about you.

  • Review the feedback you have left for others. Here you may also leave follow-up feedback (after the initial feedback) if the situation changes.

  • Make your feedback profile public or private. Remember, if you make your feedback profile private, you may hinder your future business on eBay.

  • Check the Feedback FAQ to review any changes in the feedback system.

eBay likes to keep feedback comments simple. If you want to compliment, complain, or take the middle road, you have to do it in 80 characters or less. If you have a lot to say but you’re stumped about how to say it, the following table has a few examples for any occasion.

Appropriate Feedback Phrases
Positive Phrases Negative Phrases Neutral Phrases
Very professional Beware track record Slow to ship but item as described
Quick e-mail response Never responded Poor communication but item came OK
Exactly as described Not as described Item not as described but seller made good
Fast service Desperately slow shipping
A+++ Never sent item
Good communication
Highly recommended
Smooth transaction
Would deal with again
An asset to eBay
I’ll be back!

Anybody can sue anybody else for slander or libel. Be careful not to make any comments that could be libelous or slanderous. eBay is not responsible for your actions, so if you’re sued because of negative feedback (or anything else you’ve written), you’re on your own. The best way to keep yourself safe is to stick to the facts and don’t get personal.

If you’re angry, take a breather before you type your complaints and click the Leave Feedback button. If you’re convinced that negative feedback is necessary, try a cooling-off period before you send a comment. The seller may come through and make good.

Nasty feedback based on emotion can make you look vindictive (even if what you’re saying is true). If you do leave a negative comment that you later regret, you can’t remove it. You can go back to follow up and leave an explanation or a more positive comment (but it won’t change the initial feedback or rating), so think twice before you blast.

Speaking of safety features you should know about feedback:

  • Before you leave feedback, see what other people had to say about that person. Is your thinking in line with the comments others have left?

  • Your feedback comment can be left as long as the transaction remains on the eBay server. This is usually within 90 days of the end of the listing. After 90 days have passed, you must have the transaction number to leave feedback.

  • Before posting negative feedback, try to resolve the problem by e-mail or telephone. You may discover that your reaction to the transaction is based on a misunderstanding that can be easily resolved.

  • eBay users generally want to make each other happy, so use negative feedback only as a last resort.

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