The eBay Top Rated Seller TRS Badge Gives Me Something to Think About

Posted on October 20, 2009. Filed under: eBay | Tags: , , , |


When I logged into one of my eBay selling accounts today, I saw the notice that I am a Top Rated Seller.  So, I celebrated by eating lunch (a rather common activity that I try to do on a daily basis) and thinking about what the Top Rated Seller Badge means to me.

1. I sell on multiple eBay accounts.  On one selling ID, eBay says I am a TRS (Top Rated Seller) but on another selling ID, eBay says I am an ASS (Above Standard Seller).  I am the same person offering the same great service on all accounts.  The difference, though, is the type of product I sell and the luck of the draw this month in getting some rational buyers on one account versus slow-paying buyers on another account who don’t like it that I asked nicely to be paid after 7-10 days and that I would also have the nerve to ask them to pay the shipping charges stated in my listing.

2. On the selling ID where eBay identifies me as a Top Rated Seller, I will likely receive 15% discount on fees based on my average DSR ratings as a Powerseller not the 20% discount based on my low DSR ratings as a Top Rated Seller.  I am identified as a Top Rated seller today but I won’t be eligible for the discount benefits until sometime in 2010 at which time I may or may not be a TRS.

3. I was evaluated today and it was determined that I qualify as as Top Rated Seller and that is what shows on my Seller Dashboard that only I can see.  However, the TRS badge does not appear in my listings that everyone else sees.  Maybe potential buyers will be told about the great news later?

4. Telling potential buyers later that I qualified for TRS today may be too late to make a difference.  Today I was a told that I am now a Top Rated Seller but at the same time I was told I was at risk for losing my Top Rated Seller status next month.  Should I be motivated by the little warning flag on my TRS status to work harder? 




Now, I am obviously poking fun at the eBay Top Rated Seller badge.  I really just find it funny that eBay would think a reward program where the benefits are so confusing and poorly described and that is based on anonymous feedback for things like shipping cost, that a potential buyer is aware of in advance, would motivate business people to make changes to try and earn the badge. 

I don’t need to collect colorful little badges next to my listings or collect cute little snowmen figures that eBay generated online for sellers during the holidays.  I just need to collect money.  As an ecommerce merchant, the thing I want most is money.  And in return I’ll provide a great product with fantastic customer service for which I’ll keep a small portion of the money for myself after I pay eBay, PayPal, the manufacturer, the post office, the office supply store, the insurance company, the taxman, the electric and phone company, the warehouse landlord, and so on.   Just like the eBay snowmen given out during the holidays, the TRS badge provides me with a little comic relief and not much else.

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10 Responses to “The eBay Top Rated Seller TRS Badge Gives Me Something to Think About”

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Really, it’s like a teacher trying to manage an elementary school classroom by handing out gold stars and demerits at random. Even little kids would make fun of her, and we are not little kids.

I wonder how many eBay users think that the Top Rated Seller badge is a form of paid advertising? I know I would. It certainly doesn’t correspond to any visible degree of the merit on the part of the seller, so it’s rational to assume that money changed hands. What do you think?

Nadine, I would most likely assume the same thing – paid advertising on the part of the seller. And I would even wonder if the seller had to increase their selling price slightly to cover the extra cost of advertising.

I just don’t want to be excluded from searches anymore. I’ve never dropped below the requirements for TRS, and yet they took the badge off my account 10/1 and I still don’t have it back, despite my dashboard saying I’m a Top Rated Seller. Numerous discussions with eBay’s Live Help just told me to wait until 10/15, wait until 10/20… ::sigh::

I really wouldn’t care except the fact that I am being excluded from searches. That is not cool.

Cheapskirt, my guess is that you don’t currently meet the requirements to be a Powerseller which prevents you from being a Top Rated Seller. eBay has given out conflicting information — originally eBay said that they would open the Powerseller program up in 2010 to include sellers who don’t meet the current requirements. But because eBay included those same people in the September beta tests and yet excluded them when the TRS program went into effect October 2009, it created confusion. When enough sellers complained publicly, some eBay employees then said that invitations would be sent out the week of October 11th. Who knows where the real truth lies?

Does anybody have any clue whether having the Top Rated Seller badge makes any difference to sales or not?

What about merit badges from Camp Ebay, too?

It’s rather simple really. The 2 DSR about shipping are there to get people to post items as “Free Shipping” and to use UPS or Postal Service to ship items. I’m quite sure eBay has a deal with those two companies to get some of the profits.

EVERYONE knows there’s no such thing as “Free Shipping.” We just move the cost to the item price and therefor more eBay fees. Reward for that is higher placement, and a small reminder at the DSR page asking buyers to rate accordingly. Shouldn’t that be like automatic 5 stars?

And if I can prove I can ship within the time stated in my listing, say with USPS or UPS, shouldn’t the Shipping Time get 5 stars automatically as well?

There are buyers who still thinks “How quickly did the seller ship the item” means “How long it took for it to arrive” and that just sucks since I’m a international seller.

But it is eBay’s playground… they can do whatever they want. If we want to use them to make money, we have to play by their rules. And their rules are not to make sellers happy, but to make as much money off us as possible. Keep this in mind and you’ll see why they do things the way they do.

[…] Confusion abounds about this new status and the eBay community is abuzz with what the Top Rated Seller status means – and doesn’t mean. During a recent phone conversation with a representative from eBay – during which I was assured that my data indicates I will most likely be a Top Rated Seller once again as soon as I am reevaluated next month – I struggled to understand the benefits and drawbacks of what this new status means to those of us who are consistent eBay Power Sellers. […]

[…] Confusion abounds about this new status and the eBay community is abuzz with what the Top Rated Seller status means – and doesn’t mean. During a recent phone conversation with a representative from eBay – during which I was assured that my data indicates I will most likely be a Top Rated Seller once again as soon as I am reevaluatednext month – I struggled to understand the benefits and drawbacks of what this new status means to those of us who are consistent eBay Power Sellers. […]

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