I am a big gold/silver and jewelry seller and I have a beef with the 14 Day return policy to maintain top rated seller status. As we all know gold bullion/coin and jewelry prices depend completely on the spot gold price of the day. And gold prices can be very volatile in a 14 day period. Giving the buyer 14 days to return the item is like forcing the seller to write a put option to the buyer at no cost in case gold prices drop.
So I'll be buying plenty of gold from the so-called top rated sellers and take full advantage of them. If gold goes up in the 14 days, I sell the gold elsewhere and pocket a nice profit. If gold stays flat or down, I return it and get my money back. All in all, I get free money to gamble in the precious metal market. Oh and is it truly 14 days? I could send a complain through ebay on the 14th day stating that I will return the item and actually hold on to it a little longer. Afterall, there is no 1 day handling time requirement for buyers to return items. So it's very possible that the duration of the put option is more like 21 days or 30 days.
I've personally instituted a 5% restocking fee for this very reason. At least I put a price on the put option that eBay is forcing me to write. But again, when I actually do charge the 5% restocking fee, I most likely will get retribution from the buyer via low DSR and negative feedbacks.
eBay should do something about this. Gold coin and jewelry account for a large chunk of eBay revenues. This will force sellers to seek other venues or increase price dramatically to cover themselves. If any eBay staff reads this, please consider it carefully. My suggestion is that not to implement the 14 day return policy for certain categories such as gold/silver/platinum coin and Solid Gold/Silver/Platinum Jewelries.
What do you think?