Being on Poshmark is a lot like being in high school. There’s lots of community, drama, and excitement. As much as I enjoy selling and shopping the app, there are times I’ve also gotten frustrated; when I feel like I’ve been treated unfairly as the buyer or the seller. On this and the next few posts I want to talk about challenging experiences and what to learn from them. Get ready, it’s about to get deep!
This first case experience is on me as the seller:
I had listed an item and it had been online for a long time not selling. It didn’t really bother me because I’m typically in no rush to sell anything I have in my closet.
One day out of nowhere a buyer comes and just purchases the item outright. With few questions asked, it really caught me off guard. Nevertheless, I’ve had plenty of instances like this happen before, so as usual I packaged the item up and sent it on its way.
In eager anticipation (as I am with most of my packages), I waited for the buyer to spawn an awesome review gushing over how awesome the item was. It would be a 5 star for sure! Sad to say that review never came and what later ensued was a message from the buyer stating they received the item, but that they were heavily disappointed.
The item didn’t appear to their liking. They said it was not as described, that it looked dirty. Needless to say my first response was utter shock and panic. At this point I’ve had one 3 star review, over 100 items sold, and no one ever attempt to open a case on me.
In addition I double, triple, quadruple check everything that leaves my home. And I know for a fact I’ve never sold anything below my high standards so the claims felt more like excessive statements rather than truthful comments to me.
Not sure what to do at that point, I responded to the message, stating how I have high standards, sorry the item wasn’t to their liking and if they had to open a case, I would do whatever needed to help the situation (that doesn’t mean not fighting to justify my side of the story). The seller did open a case and ended up getting approval to return the item.
Coming from a strong retail background it’s not unusual to see people make comments on final sale items they want to return. This usually occurs when:
A. There is buyers remorse
B. The item does not fit how they anticipated
C. The idea of final sale is foreign
I worried a lot about my item while it was shipping back to me. I’ve heard stories of people doing things to items just so they could return or returning completely different items than what was sold and stealing them!
Thankfully that didn’t happen to me at all. The item was returned just as I had sent it out. I still did not see any issues with the item. Not even the claims about it being “dirty”. But I did find the mistake of where I had made the case not fall in my favor. I didn’t upload enough photos into my listing. Even though the seller bought off of the one I had provided, it wasn’t enough to satisfy.
In this case, once I got the steam to stop coming out of my ears, it really quit bothering me about what had happened. I still stand behind my item 100% (I would put 1000% but there is no such thing). I put the item back online and it will sell and go to a way more deserving customer. But there are some lessons to be learned in this experience that I would like to share:
1. The buyer is not always right even if they win a case. Again, this is my strong retail background talking, but if you’re a person of high integrity, and you know the kinds of items you sell and you can stand behind them, don’t let a buyer or anyone else make you think less of who you are or what you sell. I believe my buyer was being excessively picky and there’s really nothing that can be done about that. It’s easy to sit and mull over the one who returned something, but my Posh stats state just how much I’m rocking the game lol! I’d rather re-list and move on.
2. Put up as many photos as possible. As I stated before, this is where my error occurred. Because I prefer to use my own images, sometimes I don’t have time to put them all up and I’ll say something like “More pics coming soon” with the intent to catch up later. I typically do post more pics later, but with this particular item I simply forgot. Even if someone buys an item outright before you’ve posted all your photos, do yourself a favor and create a separate listing and tag the buyer. This way you can at least give them the opportunity to back out if there is something unexpected in a picture.
3. Don’t fly off the handle or throw out accusations. This one might be more difficult to do, but still try. I really had to keep it professional even though I wanted to basically go off lol! As a store owner, customer service is key. Besides, Posh has an outlet to respond in any case that is open between the buyer and seller. Use the proper channels to voice your side of the story. Even if you believe the other person is in the wrong it’s ok to voice it to Posh.
4. Try to understand the buyers point of view and take every opportunity to learn from whatever the outcome is. It’s not a win/lose so to speak if you gain some understanding on the go forward. There just might be some validity to what is being said. After the initial flush of anger has subsided, take a moment to reel in and put yourself in the sellers shoes. If the comments being made are within reason, just resolve for the next time.
5. Always go through proper channels to resolve any issues with a return. This protects both parties in the long run. If the buyer reaches out and forewarns you that they are going to open a case, just be as prepared as possible to respond through Posh’s channels so that everyone is protected.
It’s not easy being on the seller end of a return. Even though I learned some valuable lessons, there are more to be had. I’m sure the more I grow, the more likely it is that I’ll have to get used to someone being unhappy and wanting to return an item. Just as well learn from it as soon as possible to minimize it in the future.
So there you have it. My five minute rant about what it feels like to be on the short end of the stick when it comes to a case being opened against the seller. Questions, comments, or thoughts are welcome 😊. Next week I’ll share my insight from a buyers point of view in discussing what happened when I had to initiate opening a case. Happy Poshing!
**If you’d like to see my latest post on having cases opened on me, check out Case In Review: New Valuable Lessons From Poshmark As A Seller 2018 **