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Don't Let Negative Feedback On Ebay Get You Down

Remember the student in school who complained (or even cried) because they only got a ninety-nine percent mark on an assignment or test. Meanwhile, some of us were relieved (if not ecstatic) to have merely passed. I actually witnessed one case where the math student insisted that he was not wrong. On rechecking the test, the teacher realized the answer sheet was wrong and not the student. The student got one hundred percent correct. Realistically, however, most of us lesser mortals can't expect to get a perfect mark or score every time.

First of all, none of us are perfect. We all make mistakes. Secondly, unlike math, some subjects are more subjective in nature. In certain subjects, the answer to a question may not be simply right or wrong. The teacher may have more latitude in how your grades are calculated.

The teacher may even (consciously or subconsciously) increase or decrease your grade based on whether they like you (or your attitude) or not. Similarly, in business, you can't please everybody all of the time. In eBay or other Internet auctions, you will not be able to satisfy everyone. Even if you have one hundred percent positive feedback on eBay now, eventually it must fall. Not all of your customers will be happy with you all of the time. You might make a mistake resulting in an unhappy customer. Sometimes factors beyond your control (such as a lost shipment) may result in a negative feedback. Occasionally, you might even get a customer who is unreasonable. If he leaves you negative feedback, sometimes all you can do is leave a negative feedback in return. This is not so much as an act of retaliation; it is more a matter of presenting your side of the story.

Sometimes, a customer has a legitimate complaint. Other times the customer has jumped the gun and hasn't given you a fair chance to resolve matters. It is even possible that your customer is a sadist who takes delight in tormenting others. Regardless, you can make the offer to mutually agree to withdraw negative feedback from each other. If you both agree and follow eBay's procedure, the negative feedback will be removed from both of your total scores (thus improving both feedback ratings). The negative comments themselves won't be removed by eBay but neither will your response to defend yourself. Even if this tactic to remove negative feedback is not successful, at least you tried. Don't let your pride stand in the way of trying to make peace with the customer and reversing any negative feedback. If the customer won't agree, at least you've told your side of the story. Let your prospective customers decide if they want to do business with you or not.

I personally like it when I see an eBay seller with a perfect feedback rating. Realistically, however, I realize that you simply can't please everyone. Even if you did everything perfectly, there are still people who are just not reasonable. Thus, even if a seller has some negative feedback, if the overwwhelming majority are pleased with him, I tend to discount the few dissidents. I suggest you do the same in evaluating others as well as yourself.


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