Problems with eBay product reviews

ebay product review problems

Published in Customer engagement

In the last couple of months as part of the Spring 2016 eBay Seller Updates, eBay has been introducing product reviews to some listings. However, we’ve noticed some eBay sellers are unhappy that they now have negative product reviews associated with their listings, despite the fact that the person leaving the review actually purchased the product from someone else.

What are product reviews on eBay?

A lot of buyers will research a product before they buy it and to help with this, and promote confidence in listings, product reviews are now shown on certain eBay listings. The reviews are displayed as a star rating at the top, and written reviews at the bottom of listings. Find out more about eBay product reviews here.

What’s the problem?

While the reasoning behind adding product reviews to eBay is good - it’s always great to help buyers make informed decisions - it doesn’t seem to be working appropriately for all eBay users. In theory reviews are associated with the specific product, not a listing or a seller, however, some buyers have left reviews complaining about delivery, warranty and other issues, which appear on all listings not just that of the buyer they purchased from. Sellers have also found they have reviews that either aren’t for the exact product they’re selling, or for a used or refurbished version of the product they sell.

Negative eBay product reviews

A review like this one would appear on all listings for this product, not just on the listing that this buyer purchased from. Though some eBay sellers have complained the product reviews do appear to be useful for a large number of products, it just seems that some buyers have misunderstood the purpose of the product reviews.

Positive eBay product reviews

How to remove product reviews from your eBay listing

Unfortunately, if you find yourself with a product review that’s not for your product, or otherwise inappropriate, there’s no quick way to remove existing product reviews from your eBay listing. You can contact customer service or report the review as inappropriate, but it’s not guaranteed that it will be taken off.

Update 25/05/2016:  We previously outlined how to turn off product reviews, however eBay has recently removed this option, thanks to Olivia Street for pointing this out to us. To report a review as inappropriate there will be a link to the right of the review, 'report', select this and then you can choose a reason why the review is inappropriate and click 'send'. eBay should then remove the review if they find it doesn't follow their guidelines.  

However, you can turn off product reviews in your settings. From your home page go to ‘Account Settings’, and then select ‘Site Preferences’ on the left hand side. Under ‘Sell your item form and listings’ there is an option for ‘Show product ratings on your listings, if available’, click edit on the right hand side.

On the next page change the selection to ‘Do not display product ratings on my listings’, then click ‘submit’. This won’t change any existing listings, but it will prevent product reviews from appearing on any new listings.

To find out more about product reviews and other eBay changes, read our blog about Spring 2016 eBay Seller Updates here

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About the author

Verity is a journalist and content producer at Zenstores.

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