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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Dealing with the "eBay Police"

We've all gotten them. Those helpful folks that want to let you know something is wrong with your item, or it is priced too high. I woke up yesterday morning and saw that I had a new eBay message. As long as it's not a username I recognize from a recent sale, I get excited about eBay messages. This one was no different ... until I opened it.

"Do you honestly think someone would want to put their foot inside of this shoe? And you are asking $35.99 for them?? It almost seems against the board of health to present/sell a shoe so dirty."

How do I respond to that? So many options flitted through my head. Let's consider them:

  1. "No, I'm actually asking $39.99 for them. They just happen to be 10% off at the moment."
  2. "See that little Make Offer button? If $34.99 is too much, feel free to let me know how much YOU would like to buy them for."
  3. "Considering I have made a rather successful business of selling pre-owned shoes on eBay, people must not mind it too much."
  4. "Have you looked at the Birkenstocks that sell on eBay for high money?"
When we get smart remarks like this (and "I can buy this new for the same price!"), it is so tempting to reply with something equally smart. So how did I respond in this case?

Why waste my time? I have better things to do - like shipping all these "used" items that other people bought over the weekend. I refuse to give these people the satisfaction of being disturbed. It's not their business how I run my business.

There will always be people who are critical of our business practices, but I've put a lot of time and effort into building my store. Guess what? For the most part, I've figured out what I'm doing. So what if I have one pair of shoes that looks dirtier than most of my other ones? Either they'll sell eventually, or I'll knock them down to half off and get rid of them that way.

Don't let these self-proclaimed eBay police intidimate you. YOU run your business the way YOU want to run it. That's the beauty of being our own bosses. We don't have to do things the way other people tell us to.

Come join us on eBay Underground, where we're discussing our best finds and time management tips this week!


  1. Love this post! I get those messages and it takes everything I have from not reaching my hand through that screen.... plus it really hurts your hand when you try this.... not that I every have...I mean I had a friend that tried this...yeah that's it, I had a FRIEND that tried that.

  2. Yes, I have received a similar email or two. It could be jealousy or just ignorance. Whatever the reason, hard to believe that someone actually takes the time to write such a message. They just have too much time on their hands. I quickly delete and just as quickly forget about it.

  3. I received a downright hostile message about a discontinued item I had listed on Amazon at a high price. The writer couldn't believe I had the nerve to ask that much -- and she ended by telling me to "get real." I didn't respond, but there was a certain feeling of "Schadenfreude" selling out quickly -- AT my asking price.

  4. hahaha, same thing happened to me just the other day! I had a lady email me to tell me that she could buy the used shorts i was selling new for just a few dollars more at the store. Funny thing was, the very next day, they sold! So I emailed her to tell her I was sorry, but the item she had just inquired about had just sold. People definitely have too much time on their hands for that.