eBay is well known as a fair marketplace where both sellers and buyers are protected against fraud. Since I was young, I have used eBay frequently for many of my buying needs. I regularly have purchased phones, watches, and even coins on eBay. I have also sold hundreds of items to various people.
I recently purchased an iPhone X that had a cracked screen from someone. I repaired the screen and posted the phone on eBay, expecting to get a small profit for my work.
The phone sold for $440. Compare this to an iPhone X with a screen that had not been repaired, which would easily sell for $600. I was happy, however, as I was making a profit. The buyer messaged me prior to making payment and asked various questions regarding the condition of the phone. I happily answered all of the buyers questions to the best of my knowlege but became suspicious as the buyer should have asked questions BEFORE buying the item.
Regardless, I shipped the phone and thought nothing of it. The day the phone arrived is when the nightmare began.
The buyer claimed that he was unhappy with phone and that it was "Not as described." The eBay description does CLEARLY describe the phone in detail and I informed the buyer of this and that returns are not accepted. The buyer insisted, going on to cite tiny scratches on the screen and other various "defects" that were already described in the listing. I informed the buyer that I do not accept returns and that he should have read the description prior to buying the phone.
The buyer opened an "Item not as described" case against me. Following this, I expected that there would be some recourse or seller protection through eBay to combat this as the item was *clearly* exactly as described even by the buyer's admission. I found, however, that eBay almost always sides with the buyers on this and if you refuse a return, eBay will force the return and take your money.
This means that, as a seller, any buyer can force you to accept a return on an item and even pay the shipping for that return even if nothing is wrong with it. This can significantly waste your money and time and cause a huge headache.
I was forced to accept the buyer's return and even pay shipping for it because eBay would not side with me regardless of messages or what the description of the phone said.
I have used eBay extensively in the past and always thought that there was adequite protection on both the buyer and seller's side. From what I have found, eBay almost always sides with the BUYER even if the seller has proof and documentation that they are correct.
I did some research and found out that this is very common and not an isolated incident.
To conclude, I will finish selling the things I have planned to sell on eBay and then will quit using the eBay platform entirely as it is unreliable and unpredictable as a seller.