How to Collect Payment from eBay Buyers

eBay buyers don't pay
It can be frustrating when eBay buyers don't pay. GettyImages

eBay is a lot of work. It takes time to find great items to sell, photograph them, edit photos, list the item, and pack it for shipping. eBay has a wonderful feature called Immediate Payment, where buyers must pay via Paypal before the sale is completed. Unfortunately, Immediate Payment doesn't work on auctions or when a Best Offer is accepted. Here are a few ways to collect payment from eBay buyers who are also slow payers.


Sign up for the Unpaid Item Assistant Now

Any automation you can incorporate into your business will save time, money, and frustration. The Unpaid Item Assistant is an automated setting that will open an Unpaid Item Case against the buyer within the number of days the seller sets. Sellers can designate the time period as low as two days from the date of purchase. After the designated time period passes, the buyer will receive email notification that an Unpaid Item Case has been opened and they must pay for their item within four days to avoid a strike against their account. Unpaid Item Assistant is free for sellers and saves a great deal of time when working with buyers. When the buyer pays, the Unpaid Item Case drops off and the seller receives an email that the case has been closed.

If the buyer does not pay, the seller receives an email that Final Value Fees will be credited back to their account.

After a certain number of unpaid item strikes, the buyer is removed from eBay. It is really important that all sellers file unpaid item cases against buyers who don't pay. If we all work together, non-payers will be removed from eBay systematically. eBay changed the game in 2008 when they removed the ability for sellers to leave negatives for buyers.

The only way to remove non-payers from eBay is for sellers to make a commitment to filing UPIs whenever a buyer doesn't pay.

Send an invoice as soon as the auction is over or the Best Offer is accepted

Just go to your eBay summary page, choose the sold listings tab, and the sales record will come up. Choose the option to send an invoice. The buyer will receive the invoice immediately via email. Some buyers will pay right away. Others may reply with a reason their payment is delayed, such as waiting for a paycheck from their job, or they will pay as soon as they get back to their computer. Here are the complete instructions for sending an eBay invoice

If the buyer doesn't pay after filing an UPI case, and the item was an auction listing, send Second Chance Offers to other bidders.

Another great eBay feature to increase sales and overcome non-paying bidders is the Second Chance Offer feature. If there were multiple bidders on an auction, and the first bidder doesn't pay or decides to retract his bid, eBay allows the seller to contact the next bidder in line and offer the item to him at his highest bid. Second Chance Offer can also be used if the seller has multiples of the same item and wants to offer them to the next-in-line bidders.

This feature is easy to use. On the eBay Summary page, click on the sold item. Second Chance Offer is easily visible.

Don't forget to relist the item after receiving the notification that the buyer has not paid

If you have gone through all the steps to collect payment and the buyer has not paid, just keep moving forward. Non-paying customers are a part of doing business. Don't take it personally. Once you see the Final Value Fees have been credited to your account, relist the item. The next person why buys the item is a totally different customer and your experience will probably be completely different.

Most sellers agree that the majority of customers pay quickly and are a pleasure to work with. 

Updated on July 26, 2016 by Suzanne A. Wells.