Selling on eBay can be a highly profitable and lucrative business. Ever wonder how some of eBay’s top sellers earned their places at the top? There’s no one magic formula, but there are some solid strategies that you can use to take your eBay business to the next level.
For starters, you want to be a sales phenomenon. There are many ways to increase your sales on eBay, and one of them is being recognised as an eBay Top Seller. Here, we’ll outline why you should strive to become an eBay Top Rated Seller in 2023 and how it can benefit your business.
Look no further than our guide, which breaks down the simple steps you can take to grow your eBay business by becoming an eBay Top Rated Seller.
eBay sellers in 2023
eBay is one of the world’s leading online marketplaces and ecommerce platforms with over 19 million sellers on the platform worldwide. The platform also has more than 185 million buyers. That’s a lot of potential customers to get in front of!
eBay provides a great opportunity for sellers to get their products out on a trusted marketplace, and into the hands of buyers.
In order to do so, it’s important to boost your visibility. But how? The best way of doing that is by becoming qualified for the eBay Top Rated Seller Program. Here’s what it is and what you need to do to achieve this coveted status.
Explaining the eBay Top Rated Seller Program
The eBay Top Rated Seller Program is a special program that eBay runs to support sellers who deliver excellent customer service. Because customer service is a top priority for eBay, it incentivises its sellers to adhere to excellent customer service standards by offering its Top Rated Seller Program as a way of rewarding great sellers.
Top Rated Sellers receive exclusive benefits from eBay, which include improved listings visibility, better conversion, money savings, and extra protection against abusive buying behaviour.
All of these special benefits are rewards, but they also help eBay sellers make even more sales – which is not only great for a seller’s bottom line, but can also lead to additional eBay recognition and reward schemes, such as Top Rated Plus and Power Seller statuses.
Becoming a Top Rated Seller rewards high-performing eBay sellers and helps them get on the road to eBay selling success. Let’s have a look at the benefits of achieving Top Rated Seller status.
The benefits of being an eBay Top Rated Seller
eBay rewards its Top Rated Sellers by offering them numerous benefits that aid in the growth of their business. Here are the different ways that those rewards are realised:
Visibility is one of the most important aspects of running a successful eBay business. There are many sellers competing in the marketplace and to make the most sales, you need to be seen!
Top Rated Sellers are often propelled higher up in the search rankings, meaning that when a customer searches for an item, your listing is more likely to appear higher in the search results if you are a Top Rated Seller.
Being higher up in the search results means that you increase the amount of people who see your listing and are likely to click on it to make a purchase.
In addition, if eBay recognises you as a Top Rated Seller, the company will add a badge to your profile showing that you’re a legitimate and trustworthy seller. This official eBay recognition also helps towards making sure people choose your listing over a competitor’s.
Lowered seller fees
As a private seller, listing on eBay is free. However, it is only free for a limited number of listings, and then fees are incurred. This is the case whether you’re a one-off seller or running an eBay store.
One of the benefits of being an eBay Top Rated Seller is that this status gets you a discount on seller fees. At up to 10% off final value fees, the discount can be quite a significant saving.
Additionally, eBay rewards its Top Sellers by offering credits towards Promoted Listings each quarter. This means less fees to pay for advertising and promotions, while giving you a boost through eBay’s Promoted Listings.
Enhanced seller protection
Becoming an eBay Top Rated Seller also gives you the assurance of enhanced seller protection, which includes:
- Automatic protection against high-risk buyers: eBay’s automated detection systems monitor against suspicious and fraudulent buyers.
- eBay Money Back Guarantee: eBay will refund final value fees for refunds processed within three business days of a case being opened, and can step in to resolve issues with a buyer when a mutual agreement between buyer and seller cannot be reached.
How do I find out if I’m an eBay Top Rated Seller?
To check your eBay seller status, you must log into your Seller Dashboard. There, you can view your seller level and other insights about your account standing, including transaction defect rate and late delivery rate (two metrics which could work against you in achieving Top Rated Seller Status).
Check back each month, as the Dashboard will update automatically to flag which listings are available for Top Rated benefits and will also provide you with insights as to how you can improve your status.
How can I become a Top Rated Seller on eBay?
Now that you know all about the Top Rated Seller program on eBay, what can you as a seller do to increase your chances of being chosen to participate in the programme?
To become a Top Rated Seller, you must meet the following guidelines:
- Your eBay account must have been active for at least 90 days.
- You must have had 100 or more transactions and £1,000 in sales during the last 12 months.
- You must have a defect rate of less than or equal to 0.5%, with three or fewer defects from unique buyers.
- Your cases must be closed without seller resolution less than or equal to 0.3%, and two or fewer cases.
- You must have a late shipment rate less than or equal to 3%, and five or fewer late shipments.
- Your tracking must be uploaded within your stated handling time, and carrier validation for 95% of transactions.
Once you meet all of those guidelines, eBay will automatically upgrade you to the Top Rated Seller status at your next evaluation.
Furthermore, if on top of the above you also offer:
- Same-day or one-business-day handling
- A 30-day or longer free return period with money back option
Then you will further be eligible for eBay’s Top Rated Plus program, which offers further benefits.
What is the difference between a Top Rated Seller and a Power Seller?
You may have heard the term “eBay Power Seller” and may be wondering how it differs from being an eBay Top Rated Seller. In short, the two were very similar. The Power Seller label existed before the Top Rated Seller program and it was so popular, well-liked and recognisable by sellers and shoppers alike that eBay decided to keep it, even after launching the Top Rated Seller program.
While the two were similar, being a Power Seller required a seller to meet all of the criteria for the Top Rated Seller program listed above, plus they must have had a 98% or higher positive feedback score and must have sold at least £1,000 spread over 100 transactions in a 12 month period.
Today, this is moot, as eBay retired its Power Seller program in 2021, with the rationale that “Because the Top Rated Seller program offers more meaningful seller recognition as well as a wider set of benefits, we have made the decision to simplify our seller programs and retire the PowerSeller program and badge as of June 20, 2021.”
Hence, the Top Rated Seller program is today the main benefit and credibility program that eBay sellers should focus their attention on.
Becoming a Top Rated Seller takes strategy
There are so many benefits to becoming an eBay Top Rated Seller that each seller should strive to become one! However, it doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process that takes time, investment and the commitment to playing a long game.
Once you’ve had an active eBay account for more than 90 days, you can begin to plan how you will achieve the other criteria for becoming a Top Rated Seller. It may seem like a lot to do, but by breaking down each requirement into an achievable goal, you can make it. Here are some of our suggestions:
- To achieve the 100 or more transactions and £1,000 in sales within 12 months, use a planning system to devise your product pipeline. What do you plan to sell, and how will you market your products? Will you invest in advertising or update keywords to improve your search rankings?
- Ensure that you check all of your products for defects before shipping. This will cut down on the number of returns and will ensure that you meet the criteria of having a defect rate of less than or equal to 0.5%, with three or fewer defects from unique buyers.
- When you do have return requests, action them quickly and without question (unless there’s an exceptional case). You should be willing to offer refunds and process them swiftly. This will help you meet the criteria that requires that your cases are closed without seller resolution less than or equal to 0.3%, and two or fewer cases.
- Always ship on time. This is incredibly important. Exceeding customer expectations when it comes to shipping is ideal! Because remember – for Top Rated Seller, you must have a late shipment rate less than or equal to 3%, and five or fewer late shipments.
- Do your administrative work. Make sure you’re uploading tracking information in the system. Not only will this reassure your customers and help improve your feedback, but will also meet the criteria for Top Rated Seller that requires tracking to be uploaded within your stated handling time, along with carrier validation.
Finally, remember that the Top Rated Seller program isn’t a one-time achievement. In order to maintain your status, you must continue to provide the highest level of service, requisite with the criteria, on an ongoing basis.
Top Rated Sellers and eBay’s Premium Service
Once you are a Top Rated Seller, you are eligible to use eBay’s Premium Service. This is yet another benefit that eBay will give you.
With your Top Rated Seller badge, you are able to provide eBay Premium Service to individual listings. This earns you a lot of credibility because it shows prospective buyers that you offer best-in-class fulfilment and delivery options. It reassures buyers that they should choose to shop with you on eBay, versus with a competitor.
You can choose to add the Premium Service to all or some of your listings. For each listing that you add Premium Service, you will need to ensure that you offer:
- A 30-calendar-day return policy
- Free domestic delivery within three business days
- Delivery within two business days for less than £10
- Tracked delivery (with valid tracking number) for items that cost £20 or more
Why apply Premium Service to your listings if it means you need to do more for your customers?
Well, because the benefits to you as the seller become even greater! By applying Premium Service to a listing, you get maximum visibility in eBay’s Best Match search results, plus you receive a 10% discount off your final value fees. All very well worth it in our book!
Increase your sales by becoming an eBay Top Rated Seller
The main benefit of working hard to become an ebay Top Rated Seller is that it has the potential to help you grow your business and increase your sales.
It’s a known fact that, in order to improve the visibility of your listings on eBay, you must adhere to their rules around Best Match. Being a Top Rated Seller does just that and increases your visibility.
Also, being a Top Rated Seller looks good to customers. When they see the Top Rated Seller badge on your listing, they know that they can trust you as the seller to deliver quality products on time.
Becoming a Top Rated Seller is a long-term process. It gives you the opportunity to truly build and grow your business on eBay. So what are you waiting for? Start growing your eBay business today by creating the right strategy for becoming an eBay Top Rated Seller.