9 min article

Seller standards policy

Our seller performance requirements are intended to help ensure that buyers have a great experience on eBay. Your seller level indicates whether you're meeting or exceeding our minimum standards.

Every month we take a look at how much you've sold recently, and how many of those sales resulted in a poor experience for the buyer. We measure individual performance on areas within your control – fulfilling orders on time and resolving any buyer issues promptly. We also have some safeguards in place to protect sellers and ensure fair evaluation.

It's important to check your Seller Dashboard on a regular basis so you can see how your performance is tracking, and, if needed, take action before the next evaluation. Use the button below to see your current seller level, as well as what it would be if we evaluated you today.

View Seller Dashboard - opens in new window or tab

If your current or projected seller level has dropped, it's important to focus on minimising cases closed without seller resolution and transaction cancellations as soon as possible – this will help to reduce your percentage rates at the next evaluation. For more help, read our article on Monitoring and improving your seller performance.

What is the policy?

All sellers are required to maintain the following minimum performance standard for their listings on eBay.com.au within their evaluation period:

We evaluate your performance on the 20th of each month based on your recent sales, and assign you one of the following seller levels:

  • Top Rated means you're exceeding our performance expectations, as well as having an established sales history and complying with other eBay policies.
  • Above Standard means you're meeting our expectations.
  • Below Standard means that your performance has fallen below our minimum standards and as a result, we may place limitations on your selling activity until your performance improves.

If you are Top Rated, this will be shown in your Feedback profile. Otherwise, other eBay members can't see your seller level.

Different performance thresholds may apply on other eBay sites or if you're selling to overseas buyers. To understand how your performance is evaluated when selling internationally, please read our Global seller performance policy.

How we calculate your seller level

On the 20th of each month, we take a look at your recent transactions to work out your:

To make sure we're getting a fair picture, we'll adjust how far we look back (the "evaluation period") depending on how much you've sold recently:

  • If you had more than 400 transactions in the past 3 months, we'll count all those transactions.
  • If you had fewer than 400 transactions in the past 3 months, we'll count all your transactions from the last 12 months.

To help understand how evaluations work, please see our calculation examples below.

Another way in which we evaluate seller performance is by looking at the number of times your buyers reported an issue, regardless of whether the issue was resolved, and comparing your rates to similar sellers. This is explained in our Service metrics policy.

Cases closed without seller resolution

What this means

When a buyer reports that an item hasn't arrived or requests a return, the seller is responsible for providing a resolution.

 

A case closed without seller resolution means that the seller didn't resolve the buyer's issue, eBay stepped in to review the case, and the seller was found responsible.

 

For full details of actions, time frames, requirements for sellers and how eBay decides the outcome of a case, please read our eBay Money Back Guarantee policy.

Minimum requirements

You're allowed 2 cases closed without seller resolution within an evaluation period, or 0.3% of your transactions – whichever is higher.

 

Transaction defect rate

What this means

We count a transaction defect when either of these things happen:

  • The seller cancels the order unexpectedly (e.g. because it was out of stock, or because they sold it to someone else)
  • The buyer reports an issue, but the seller doesn't resolve it (a case closed without seller resolution, as defined in the section above)

Minimum requirements

You're allowed up to 2% of transactions with defects within an evaluation period.

 

You'll only be evaluated as Below Standard if your transaction defects are associated with more than 4 different buyers.

 

Late shipment rate

What this means

We help set buyers' expectations by showing them an expected delivery date for their order. To help ensure items arrive on time, sellers are responsible for sending items within their stated handling time, using the delivery service selected by the buyer.

 

How we count a late shipment depends on whether you've uploaded tracking information from an integrated carrier.

 

With tracking, we'll count an item as late when:

  • The delivery scan is after the expected delivery date AND
  • There is no carrier scan within your handling time.

If there is no tracking information available:

  1. When the buyer leaves Feedback, we'll ask them if the item arrived on time.
  2. If the buyer confirms the item arrived after the expected delivery date, it will be counted as late.

Minimum requirements

A high late shipment rate on its own won't cause your account to be evaluated as Below Standard, but a low rate is required for Top Rated status.

 

Calculation examples


Sales volume vs. transaction defects
These examples illustrate how we apply the minimum performance thresholds as a proportion of your sales to determine your seller level.

See sales volume/transaction defect examples

Jon – occasional seller

Jon is an occasional seller, so we look back at all of his transactions over the last 12 months. He's had 3 cases closed without seller resolution, which is relatively high compared to how many times he's sold an item. Unfortunately, it means he's not meeting our minimum seller performance requirements.

Evaluation period

12 months (100 transactions)

Cases closed without seller resolution

3 of 100 transactions
(3%)

not allowed icon This is more than 2 cases, and more than 0.3% of transactions.

Transaction defect rate

  • 0 transactions cancelled for being out of stock
  • 3 cases closed without seller resolution

3%
(3 of 100 transactions)

not allowed icon This is more than 2% of transactions.

Late shipment rate

5%
(5 of 100 transactions)

allowed icon There are no minimum requirements for late shipment rate.

Seller level

Below Standard

 

Trudy – small business seller

Trudy runs a small business on eBay, so we only need to look back at the last 3 months to get a fair picture of performance. She's also had 3 cases closed without seller resolution and a few problems with stock which meant she had to cancel some orders. Despite these issues, when taken as a proportion of the total number of transactions, Trudy is meeting our minimum performance requirements.

Evaluation period

3 months (1,000 transactions)

Cases closed without seller resolution

3 of 1,000 transactions
(0.3%)

allowed icon This is more than 2 cases, but it isn't more than 0.3% of transactions.

Transaction defect rate

  • 4 transactions cancelled for being out of stock
  • 3 cases closed without seller resolution

0.7%
(7 of 1,000 transactions)

allowed icon This is less than 2% of transactions.

Late shipment rate

1.0%
(10 of 1,000 transactions)

allowed icon There are no minimum requirements for late shipment rate.

Seller level

Above Standard

 


Transaction defects vs. unique buyers
These examples illustrate how we factor in the number of unique buyers when applying the minimum performance thresholds. This ensures you're protected from having your evaluation skewed by just one or two buyers.

See transaction defect/unique buyer examples

Fabric Revolutions – small business

Fabric Revolutions is a popular handcraft store on eBay with a lot of loyal customers. One day the manager found a damaged bolt of fabric but didn't get a chance to update their listing until the following day. In the meantime, two buyers had bought from the listing. One was the coordinator of a virtual sewing club, so they had placed multiple orders to be sent separately to each of their participants.

Evaluation period

3 months (1,000 transactions)

Cases closed without seller resolution

0

allowed icon This is less than 2, and less than 0.3% of transactions.

Transaction defect rate

  • 25 transactions cancelled for being out of stock
  • 0 cases closed without seller resolution

2.5%
(25 of 1,000 transactions)

 

Unique buyers: 2

allowed icon Although this is more than 2% of transactions, it doesn't affect the seller rating because there are fewer than 4 buyers involved.

Late shipment rate

0.8%
(8 of 1,000 transactions)

allowed icon There are no minimum requirements for late shipment rate.

Seller level

Above Standard

 

Sam – small business

Sam sells bike parts on eBay. They realised that some of the parts in one batch of stock had been mislabelled, and had to cancel a number of sales. Unfortunately, this means Sam's defect rate has exceeded our minimum requirements. Their late shipment rate is also high, but this isn't what's causing them to be rated Below Standard.

Evaluation period

12 months (1,000 transactions)

Cases closed without seller resolution

0

allowed icon This is less than 2, and less than 0.3% of transactions.

Transaction defect rate

  • 25 transactions cancelled for being out of stock
  • 0 cases closed without seller resolution

2.5%
(25 of 1,000 transactions)

 

Unique buyers: 25

not allowed icon This is more than 2% of transactions, involving more than 4 different buyers.

Late shipment rate

3.0%
(30 of 1,000 transactions)

allowed icon There are no minimum requirements for late shipment rate.

Seller level

Below Standard

 

Requirements to become Top Rated

To become a Top Rated seller on eBay.com.au, you need to be an active seller who's performing well above our minimum standards, as well as having an established sales history and complying with other eBay policies.

We'll automatically upgrade you to Top Rated status on the 1st of the following month if you meet all of the criteria below at your seller performance evaluation.

Top Rated seller requirements

Seller performance evaluation

  • Cases closed without seller resolution: No more than 2 (or 0.3% of transactions)
  • Transaction defect rate: No more than 0.5%, associated with no more than 3 different buyers
  • Late shipment rate: No more than 5 (or 5% of transactions)

Selling activity

  • Your eBay account has been active for at least 90 days
  • You have at least 100 transactions and AU $1,000 in sales during the last 12 months
  • You're complying with eBay's Selling practices policy

What happens if you are Below Standard

If your evaluation on the 20th of the month shows that you are not meeting our minimum standards, we may put limitations on your selling activity until your performance improves. To see what you can do to bring your level back to Above Standard, read our article on Monitoring and improving your seller performance.

Some limitations are applied straight away after the evaluation, while others take effect from the 1st of the following month. If your seller level improves at a future evaluation, the same time frames will apply for limitations to be removed.

Directly after the evaluation:

  • Your items may be placed lower in Best Match search results
  • Your selling limits may decrease
  • You'll be blocked from using Promoted Listings, and won't be able to create new campaigns or edit existing campaigns
  • You'll no longer be eligible for an eBay Plus badge on your listings
  • You'll be unable to give a partial refund if an item is returned used or damaged

From the 1st day of the month following the evaluation:

If your account, has been evaluated as Below Standard for more than 2 consecutive months:

  • We may downgrade your Store to the Basic level
  • We may restrict you from selling on your account and related accounts, or from registering a new account

In addition to the above, we may take action at any time if we have urgent concerns about your account; for example, if we've detected fraud or if your selling practices pose a threat to the buyer experience. The actions we take will be proportional to the nature of the issue we have identified and what is reasonably required to protect the interests of all eBay users and eBay as provider of the services.

Fair evaluation, seller protections and appeals

Our seller standards evaluations are intended to look at your performance as a whole. We don't want your seller level to be skewed by just one unfortunate transaction or difficult buyer, and we want you to be able to focus on providing great service to trustworthy, reliable customers.

Fair evaluation and seller protections

To measure your overall performance as accurately and fairly as possible:

  • We adjust the evaluation period according to how much you sell to make sure we're getting a fair sample (see How we calculate your seller level).
  • We only count transactions where the buyer has paid.
  • There can only be one defect per transaction.
  • For your transaction defect and late shipment rates, we take into account how many unique buyers are involved.

Additionally, we have some safeguards in place to protect your ratings and help you in case you have a problem. For example:

  • If we determine that a buyer has violated our Abusive buyer policy, we'll automatically remove any associated defects.
  • We remove defects and/or late shipments when things happen that are outside of your control, such as severe weather or carrier disruptions.
  • We won't count a late shipment if an item arrives after the estimated date, but tracking shows you sent it on time.

Learn more about our seller protections.

Appeals

You can appeal a case closed without seller resolution within 30 days of eBay's decision on the case. For more information, please refer to the eBay Money Back Guarantee policy.

Transaction defects may be eligible for removal in certain circumstances. If the removal of a defect means that you are again meeting the minimum standards, your seller level will be adjusted at the next evaluation. Learn more about appealing a defect.

You can appeal a late shipment if you uploaded valid tracking information showing that the item arrived by the expected delivery date, or that there was a carrier scan within your stated handling time.

Tip
Visit Seller Help to resolve any incorrect defects or improper Feedback.

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