Selling on eBay can start as a small business venture or a hobby and eventually grow into a thriving online business. If you depend on you eBay for your income, an account suspension is the last thing you want to happen. Unfortunately, it happens to the best seller — it being eBay suspended accounts.
If you breach company policies, eBay will immediately have your account suspended. Suspension results in business interruption, which triggers a chain of implications for the seller. You’ll lose buyers and income.
To avoid suspension, familiarize yourself with eBay’s policies. But these policies are extensive and often changing, which is why even the most conscientious seller can make an innocent mistake and get suspended.
If your eBay account has been suspended, do not lose hope. Instead, learn where you went wrong and what you can do about it.
Why Would My Account Be Suspended?
There are many reasons behind suspended eBay accounts, but the most common causes for suspension include:
- Problematic transactions. eBay knows when your transactions are often problematic — late deliveries, late shipments, negative feedback, exchange or refund requests and customer complaints via eBay’s customer service. If you accumulate many problematic transactions, eBay will restrict your selling.
- Delivery failures. Listings are promises to customers. When a customer orders from you, the customer and eBay expect you to deliver an item in good condition and within a specific time. If you fail to deliver good items on time repeatedly, eBay will have your account suspended
- Selling outside of eBay. eBay makes money with your business and they’d rather you make all of your transactions within the website. For this reason, it’s against their rules to offer a shopper a sale outside of the website — even if the customer requests it.
- Contact information swap with customers. eBay only allows customer communication using their message system. It discourages sellers from offering their buyers other ways to communicate with them. If you share other contact information — email addresses, phone numbers or non-eBay websites — anywhere on eBay, the company will detect this and suspend your account.
- Intellectual property theft. Profiting from other’s intellectual property can land you an instant suspension. When you use other sellers’ ideas, this includes using their item descriptions or photographs, posing them off as yours. This also means you’re not allowed to offer fakes of legitimate products.
- Listing of banned items. There are laws concerning banned items and eBay considers these items as restricted. If you’re caught selling these items, they will restrict your account.
- There are also eBay rules that prevent sellers from saying certain things to buyers. For example, sellers cannot harass or threaten their customers (and vice versa). If you violate any of eBay’s communication or product safety policies, say hello to your suspended eBay account
- Incurred fees. There are fees that come with selling on eBay. If you incur fees and fail to pay them on time, they will suspend your account.
- Questionably large volumes of inventory. eBay knows what you sell and how much of it you sell. For example, if you normally sell a hundred pieces of t-shirts, eBay will question you if you suddenly list thousands in your inventory. The company may assume that you’ve been hacked. To protect your buyers, they will restrict your account.
So, simply put, if you don’t want to have your eBay account suspended, don’t:
- Sell knock-offs or fakes
- Fail to satisfy customers on their first transaction
- Fail to deliver quality products on time
- Give buyers other means to reach you outside of eBay
- Fail to pay your eBay fees on time
- Steal ideas, images or listings
- Break the law
- Break eBay rules
Naturally, some sellers aren’t for all of eBay’s rules, but the online selling platform’s effectiveness as a marketplace depends on trust. Everyone wins as long as sellers and buyers trust eBay’s marketplace. The practices mentioned put trust at risk, so eBay does damage control by suspending the accounts of sellers and buyers.
What Happens If Your eBay Account is Suspended
If eBay suspended your account and you still have listings, you cannot edit them. Buyers can cancel their orders, but you can’t get in touch with them. You have no access to eBay Messages until eBay lifts the suspension on your account. Depending on the reason behind your suspension, eBay can also end your listings early. If you committed a policy violation, they will remove your listings.
You’ll know eBay suspended your account when they send you an email. The email informs you of the action that eBay has taken against your account. Apart from suspension, eBay can also restrict or hold your account.
eBay will hold your account for minor issues, like expired payment method. Once you correct the problem, eBay will restore your account ASAP.
When eBay restricts your account, it means you’re not meeting their standards. As a result, eBay will lower your listings’ ranks on the search results. They can also restrict the seller from selling certain products or from selling on the platform at all.
Suspensions are the most severe penalties. It prevents eBay users from selling, buying or leaving feedback until eBay lifts the suspension. eBay suspends accounts for bigger issues, such as being flagged for suspicious activity or selling illegal products.
As mentioned, eBay will send you an email when you commit violations but you still have to look out for fake suspension notices or phishing emails. Before you contact eBay about your suspension, check the legitimacy of the notice you received.
To confirm the suspension’s legitimacy, always check your eBay messages. If a copy of your notice isn’t in eBay’s message system, eBay did not send you that email.
How Do I Recover My Suspended eBay Account?
So eBay suspended your account. The steps to recovering it may not be as easy as changing your eBay username, but they are straightforward.
The steps for account recovery depends on the reasons eBay suspended your account in the first place. eBay always includes the reason for suspension in the email, as well as what you can do to resolve the issue.
Although eBay offers an explanation, here are some steps you can take to speed up the recovery of your account.
- Fix the problem. Carefully read eBay’s email to determine your next steps. For example, eBay suspended your account because you used copyrighted photos for your listings. eBay will instruct you on how to fix this issue, which includes removing the copyrighted photos or deleting your listings. Once you’ve edited or deleted the problematic listings, get in touch with eBay and let them know that you’ve dealt with the issue.
- Talk to eBay. But what if you think your account’s suspension is a mistake? If you think your account was wrongly suspended, you never received instructions on how to recover your account, or unsure of your next step, contact eBay ASAP. You can call eBay or visit their customer service center online. eBay representatives are available seven days a week from 5 AM to 10 PM Pacific Time. Before you contact eBay, gather all the information a customer representative may ask from you. This includes your user ID, email address and the suspension email’s reference number. During your call, ask questions that will help you understand the suspension better, as well as how to rectify the issue.
- Wait for eBay to restore your account. Once you’ve contacted eBay, they will tell you to wait out your suspension. But if eBay suspended your account indefinitely, you may have to wait a year before you call eBay again about reinstating your account.
How Long Do eBay Suspensions Last?
Most eBay account suspensions last for a minimum of 7 days. It can also last for 10 days or up to a month or indefinitely, depending on the severity of your case. If you do not address the issue, eBay can permanently suspend your account.
An account suspension isn’t the end of your business’s journey. If eBay suspended your account do not panic; there is always an easy fix. They make more time and steps to fix the issue but you can still recover your account.