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How does eBay and Amazon handle conflict resolution between customer and vendor?

The biggest challenges in today’s marketplaces come across are conflicts between customers and vendors. Where marketplaces are responsible both for buyers and sellers, it's a resolution and not just “customer is always right approach” can be followed. For running a successful marketplace, it is very important to keep the vendors as well as customers happy, it is a double responsibility.

The types of conflicts could arise due to, package damage or missing package, delay in shipment or the product does not turn out as ordered, sometimes it’s the vendors who suffer when the customers return used product, tears down the tag, damages the products and then returns them. All these are serious issues which are not resolved, results in serious damage to the reputation of the marketplace or losing out on customers and in some cases vendors. Equilibrium has to be maintained by the marketplace which is much tough a job than it looks like.

Let’s see how these marketplaces handle conflict resolution between customer and vendor:-


it is of absolute importance to talk about resolving the issue. eBay’s Resolution Centre is a tool that caused for communication and can be found within the My Account section of. It uses to help customers and vendors track, resolve, manage and close any existing disputes.

Information posted in this tool is accessible by the vendors, customers and Customer Support of eBay. Vendors can use the eBay Resolution Centre to report a customer, who has purchased an item but hasn’t paid for it, while Customer can use the tool if they have paid for an item but haven’t received it, or the item was very different from the description of the item.

Related: eBay and Amazon – are the only options for online selling?

Termination/restriction in case of no cooperation

Any vendor that fails to cooperate in good faith to resolve a buyer's complaint can have its account privileges restricted or terminated. Amazon expects its sellers to respond to e-mails concerning complaints against them within a time frame of 10 days. Also, Amazon Payments can put a hold on funds in a vendor’s account if he does not respond in a timely manner to a dispute or does not fulfill a commitment made to resolve a conflict within a reasonable amount of time.

Coverage offered

Under the Amazon Guarantee, customers who use Amazon Payments for qualified purchases of goods are eligible to get compensated up to $2,500 of the price of purchased good, including shipping charges. For other items and services, customers can submit a claim for the marketplace assistance to resolve their dispute with the vendor, but customers will not be eligible to receive a refund of any part of the purchase price.

Stair Step Approach

These Marketplaces follow a stair- step approach for dispute resolution, implying that technology assisted negotiation is used in the first step and the second step that follows uses human evaluation. The high-level automation helps the systems to initiate or even close millions of cases each year.

Despite all the approaches in resolving conflicts by big marketplaces like Amazon and eBay it is very important to keep in mind that a rigorous approach towards avoiding conflicts is of utmost importance. There are set of rules which are followed by different marketplaces to avoid conflict, therefore the lesson learned is “prevention is better than cure”.