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Attract more buyers—and win more sales—with extended holiday returns
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An extra generous return policy is a great way to capture buyer interest—and close the sale. Buyers shopping for gifts in November want to know that their purchases can still be returned after the December holidays. And they’re more likely to buy from sellers who guarantee it!
  • With the new extended holiday return policy, you give buyers until January 31 to return any item purchased between November 1 and December 31.
  • You can choose to add a holiday return policy to all or just some of your existing listings. And of course you can also add it to any new listings, too.
  • Extended holiday returns enrollment will be open to all sellers starting on September 3, 2014 – in plenty of time to update your listings before peak selling season. Buyers will see you’re offering extended holiday returns on your listings between November 1 – December 31, 2014.
  • The extended holiday return option will be required for a listing to qualify for Top Rated Plus benefits from November 1 through December 31, so be sure to enroll prior to November 1 to maximize your discount.
  • Starting September 3, 2014, you can add a holiday return policy to all of your eligible listings with the click of a button. eBay will post a message on the community announcement board, and notify eBay Top Rated Sellers directly, when enrollment is live.
  • Consider using eBay hassle-free returns for the easiest, most cost-effective way to manage returns. Returns are virtually automated for you and your buyer: buyers print their own return shipping label and tracking is uploaded automatically. And unlike other return methods, the return shipping cost never exceeds the original outbound ship price. Your final value fees are automatically refunded and you can relist the item for free.
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Extended Holiday Returns FAQ
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Why has eBay created the holiday returns option?
The holiday returns policy is designed to help sellers meet the service expectations of today's online shoppers—especially during the holiday season when buyers want more time to return their items. It's a great way to attract buyer interest and boost sales.
Do I have to offer holiday returns?
Offering holiday returns is completely optional for all sellers. Note, if you're a Top Rated Seller, from November 1 through December 31 only listings with the extended holiday return policy will qualify for the Top Rated Plus discounts and seal. (Bullion, Gift Cards, Tickets, and Business & Industrial categories are excluded from the holiday returns requirement for Top Rated Plus discounts).
Who is eligible to offer holiday returns?
Any seller can offer buyers an extended return window during the holiday season.
Will eBay hassle-free returns support the holiday return policy?
Yes, eBay hassle-free returns supports the holiday return option. Once enrollment is open on September 3, 2014, you will be able to enroll all of your listings at one time with a click of a button – or be more selective by applying holiday returns to groups of listings through your bulk listing tools. You can also apply holiday returns on single listings using the “sell your item” interface through My eBay.
How long is the holiday return period?
Sellers who offer an extended holiday return policy will be expected to accept returns through January 31, 2015, for items sold between November 1 and December 31, 2014.
Will a buyer be able to open an eBay Money Back Guarantee case after the January 31 cut-off for holiday returns?
For the vast majority of transactions, buyers will not be able to open an eBay Money Back Guarantee case after the January 31 cut-off for holiday returns. In general, buyers have 30 days after the delivery date (or latest estimated delivery date if actual is not available) to open a case. Opening a case would be allowed after January 31 for the situations where the item was ordered at the end of December and delivered in early January.
When can I start offering holiday returns?
You can add a holiday return policy to your listings starting September 3, 2014.  The January 31 return date and visual “extended holiday return” advertising on the view-item pages will only be displayed to your buyers from November 1 (when the holiday returns period begins) until December 31 (when it ends). It will appear again on November 1, 2015.
Can I set up my listings to offer holiday returns automatically when I list or relist?
Yes, you'll be able to add holiday returns automatically to all your listings, including relists.
I'm an eBay Top Rated Seller. How do holiday returns affect my Top Rated Plus eligibility?
The extended holiday return policy will be required for your listings to qualify for Top Rated Plus benefits (20% discount on final value fees and the Top Rated Plus seal) for transactions from November 1 through December 31.
Will any categories be exempted from this requirement for Top Rated Plus discounts?
Yes, the following categories are exempted from the extended holiday returns requirement:
•              Bullion > Silver
•              Bullion > Gold
•              Bullion > Platinum & Palladium
•              Business & Industrial
•              Gift Cards
•              Tickets
Note that you will receive Top Rated Plus discounts for listings in these categories as long as they meet all the other requirements, however the Top Rated Plus seal does not appear.
What are the other requirements for Top Rated Plus listings?
In addition to offering the extended holiday return option for the months of November and December, to qualify for Top Rated Plus benefits listings must be from a Top Rated Seller and offer one-day or same-day handling. Listings also have to include a 14-day or longer money-back return policy in the remaining (non-holiday) months.
Do I need to accept holiday returns on ALL my listings to keep my Top Rated Plus benefits?
You can decide on which items you'd like to offer holiday returns. But only those listings that offer the holiday returns option will qualify for Top Rated Plus benefits in November and December.
What happens if I offer a 14-day, 30-day, or 60-day money-back return policy during the period of November 1 through December 31 but not the extended holiday return policy? Will I lose my discount?
If you offer a 14-day, 30-day, or 60-day money-back return policy during November 1 through December 31 and do not offer the extended holiday return policy, your listing will not be eligible for Top Rated Plus benefits during those months. However, with a 14-day (or longer) money-back policy you will regain eligibility for the Top Rated Plus benefits starting January 1 of the next year and will remain eligible until November 1 of that year when the next holiday return period begins.
Who pays for holiday return shipping?
As with any return policy, the seller’s return policy determines whether the buyer or seller pays return shipping.