Avoiding eBay scams, seller friendly payment processors?

arglebargle

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Jul 15, 2018
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Hey all,

I'm moving in a couple of months and it's officially time to SELL ALL THE THINGS that have accumulated in my garage and basement over the last 10 years. I haven't actively sold online in years and I understand eBay and Paypal are focused on buyer protection these days leaving sellers exposed to scams by malicious buyers.

How do you deal with this, are any of the alternate payment processors safer to use? How does Google Pay compare to Paypal here?

I'm tempted to list items on eBay "for parts or repair", is this plus tracked shipping enough to protect myself from buyer scamming?

Is there anything else I should look into or know about?

Cheers, and thanks!
 

T_Minus

Build. Break. Fix. Repeat
Feb 15, 2015
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For Parts Repair = Sell for very low $

I would try to sell on the forums first then ebay but even if you dro priced 50% you'll get more than "Parts only" ebay listings on the forum.
 

BlueFox

Well-Known Member
Oct 26, 2015
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PayPal is really the only thing for eBay unless you are an actual business and have your own payment processor. Google Pay isn't allowed last I checked as there's no buyer protection. I've personally only had a couple attempts at people scamming me in the 20 years I've used eBay (one buying, one selling), but both worked out. Given I've had ~500 transactions on there, I think that's pretty low.

If you're not selling popular consumer items (iPhones, laptops, handbags, etc), you'll probably encounter far fewer problems than you might imagine. No one is vocal with all the successful sales after all.

There's not really a whole lot to do I think. Just take some decent photos (I bought $2 of white fabric to use as a backdrop myself), log serial numbers, and use eBay's shipping tools (it's cheaper anyway). I also don't ship internationally on eBay and I think that has helped (legitimate ones will just use a freight forwarder). So far so good here.
 

pricklypunter

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Nov 10, 2015
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Ebay + Paypal

The best advice I can give is be straight and honest with buyers, take lots of good quality photos of the gear and put them in the listing, noting serial numbers, any defects etc. Pack stuff well and use a good shipping method that is insured where it's warranted and make it clear in your listing that you will work with anyone that has an issue with whatever you have sold them, to make things right, but also make it clear that you have no tolerance for dishonest buyers. Be chatty, good communication is key, there's nothing worse than a seller that either doesn't answer questions or worse, ignores you after the sale if there's an issue.

No matter what, you will have folks lowball you, keep calm, don't be offended, it's the nature of the game, learn to haggle and come to a fair price that you and the buyer can live with :)
 

Aestr

Well-Known Member
Oct 22, 2014
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Agreed that you h e limited options and the occurrence of PayPal scams aren’t as bad as stories may lead you to believe. The only other thing I do these days is get signature receipt. More than anything it stops carriers from dropping parcels on doorsteps that get taken by porch pirates. I think package theft is a bigger risk than scams and even though you aren’t at fault, it’s not worth the hassle for an extra $2.50.
 

T_Minus

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Feb 15, 2015
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Stop being ignorant, being a good seller has nothing to do with ebay scammers.
 

pricklypunter

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Nov 10, 2015
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True, but it will, more often than not, make it easy for ebay to take a more favourable view of any claim made. There will of course, always be ways for folks to be dishonest with one another, ebay is no different in that regard. When this happens, there is an adjudication process to be followed with a third party making a final decision. As in any other real life process, there is always a winner and loser. Winners generally have the more evidential case. Being a good seller doesn't just mean that you are good to deal with, fair and open minded, it also means that you're well prepared to defend yourself when you need to :)
 
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T_Minus

Build. Break. Fix. Repeat
Feb 15, 2015
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Sell to someone on a stolen ebay account, you're screwed out of the $ and item.
Sell to someone on a stolen PP account, you're screwed out of the $ and item.
Sell something to someone and they change their mind a month later you're out the sale, time, and shipping $.
Sell something to someone they got the item, claim they got something else like rags... I've had this happen numerous times on ebay, seller always loses out. I just had this happen to me last week on items I personally purchased, seller sent a different item in the actual items box.

All those scams on amazon they're on ebay, except the seller is YOU and YOU are the one out the money. The average seller\person can't afford to handle returns like PayPal wishes and Amazon does. Have you heard\read about the "groups" scamming amazon out of hundreds of thousands of dollars for false claims, same as on ebay except it's YOU who is the loser.

I could go on and on.

Not once could I have done something different as a seller to prevent someone pulling a scam on me.


I personally go in waves selling on ebay because of the bad experiences lost time and lost money.
 

arglebargle

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Jul 15, 2018
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Sell to someone on a stolen ebay account, you're screwed out of the $ and item.
Sell to someone on a stolen PP account, you're screwed out of the $ and item.
Sell something to someone and they change their mind a month later you're out the sale, time, and shipping $.
Sell something to someone they got the item, claim they got something else like rags... I've had this happen numerous times on ebay, seller always loses out. I just had this happen to me last week on items I personally purchased, seller sent a different item in the actual items box.

All those scams on amazon they're on ebay, except the seller is YOU and YOU are the one out the money. The average seller\person can't afford to handle returns like PayPal wishes and Amazon does. Have you heard\read about the "groups" scamming amazon out of hundreds of thousands of dollars for false claims, same as on ebay except it's YOU who is the loser.

I could go on and on.

Not once could I have done something different as a seller to prevent someone pulling a scam on me.


I personally go in waves selling on ebay because of the bad experiences lost time and lost money.
These negative experiences are exactly why I made this thread. I'd like to collect best practices and advice from other sellers who've found strategies to minimize these risks. I'm also completely willing to avoid eBay entirely, if I can manage to sell everything without needing to use it.

In truth I've been selling on eBay and Craigslist since the early 2000s. I stopped around 10 years ago due to my job taking up most of my free time and then procrastinated starting up again because of all of the negative seller experiences I was reading even back then.

So yeah, let's talk effective ways to minimize the scam attack surface. I've got a lot of things in my garage and basement that I need gone before I move and I'd prefer to get all of it sold with a minimum amount of hassle from eBay/Paypal.
 

T_Minus

Build. Break. Fix. Repeat
Feb 15, 2015
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These negative experiences are exactly why I made this thread. I'd like to collect best practices and advice from other sellers who've found strategies to minimize these risks. I'm also completely willing to avoid eBay entirely, if I can manage to sell everything without needing to use it.

In truth I've been selling on eBay and Craigslist since the early 2000s. I stopped around 10 years ago due to my job taking up most of my free time and then procrastinated starting up again because of all of the negative seller experiences I was reading even back then.

So yeah, let's talk effective ways to minimize the scam attack surface. I've got a lot of things in my garage and basement that I need gone before I move and I'd prefer to get all of it sold with a minimum amount of hassle from eBay/Paypal.
One thing to make sure of is that they're paypal account is VERIFIED and their address is VERIFIED.
If not, and you ship to it your ONLY protection is ebay seller protection. Ebay will tell you this too.

You can also contact them via ebay message, and then as a seller you will have their address, and ebay contact information AND e-mail it's not easily found on ebay vs. getting it out of paypal but you must, and compare to paypal to verify they're the same. Beyond that you can ask ebay to check the account and make sure the same PP is used on their account before, and ask ebay to 'verify' because you're not too sure about the transaction, they can do some checks and let you know their thoughts, but again, depending on their paypal setup you may be reliant on ebay seller protection NOT ebay + paypal protection.

Contacting their ebay email and their ebay message and verifying they're the real person, then calling them on the ebay phone # they have or googling their address to make sure the names match up , etc....

This isn't a sure thing either way :/

Ebay store accounts (imho) get slightly better support and lower % fees so well worth it too.
 

Terry Kennedy

Well-Known Member
Jun 25, 2015
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www.glaver.org
Is there anything else I should look into or know about?
These are much more on the technical side of things, but you might want to read these 2 blog posts of mine:

A few words of advice for used equipment sellers
[URL='https://www.glaver.org/blog/?p=703']A few more words of advice for used equipment sellers

A recent anecdote (as a buyer) - just because it sounds like a scam doesn't mean it is a scam. I purchased two Epson printers from eBay (link to actual listing) for $414, "local pickup only". The printers are both current models and the combined price new is $7490. I figured at worst eBay / Paypal would refund me if it was a scam. The seller gave me the location (in Indianapolis, 700 miles one-way from here). It was a large commercial printing operation - good sign. After about 2 weeks, he asked when I was going to pick them up, because he had to get them out of there - also a good sign, since if he just wanted my money he wouldn't nag me to come pick up imaginary printers. I rented a cargo van and drove the 700 miles. When I showed up at the location and said "I'm here to pick up the printers you sold me on eBay", nobody had any idea what I was talking about - uh-oh! I contacted the seller and he talked to the people at the site and straightened things out - the seller was a broker who had purchased a package deal on dozens of printers, all HP except for these 2 Epsons and didn't want the Epsons, so he flipped them on eBay. With things straightened out, the people at the print shop helped me load them into the van (their forklift was very useful!) and I brought them home early last week. They're now happily running in my server room.[/URL]
 

Luke07

New Member
Aug 25, 2021
2
0
1
Hey all,

I'm moving in a couple of months and it's officially time to SELL ALL THE THINGS that have accumulated in my garage and basement over the last 10 years. I haven't actively sold online in years and I understand eBay and Paypal are focused on buyer protection these days leaving sellers exposed to scams by malicious buyers.

How do you deal with this, are any of the alternate payment processors safer to use? How does Google Pay compare to Paypal here?

I'm tempted to list items on eBay "for parts or repair", is this plus tracked shipping enough to protect myself from buyer scamming?

Is there anything else I should look into or know about recurring payment methods?

Cheers, and thanks!
It's not a significant concern if you're only dealing with under $1k in payments per day. But the real issue arises when you're dealing with $5k+ in sales per day and have money in your PayPal account that you may spend or pay for stuff. eBay payments are held in a way that prevents the money from being deposited into your bank until several days later. So the only thing you can do is make sure you have enough money in your bank account. The issue is that your bank is likewise quite slow in making deposits available; it might take up to 24 hours for deposits to be made available. PayPal made using the funds you got much faster and easier.
 
Last edited:

zer0sum

Active Member
Mar 8, 2013
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I've also found over the years there are always buyers on Ebay that will scam you, and there is almost no protection for the seller :(

Your only real option is Facebook marketplace, Craigslist etc. and then taking payments through Cash, Venmo, Apple Pay, Paypal, but you have to make sure it's just a person to person payment.