Banned from Purchasing from an eBay Store - Computer Alliance after returning an item

Just wondering if others have had a similar experience with any ebay sellers after you return an item?

Here is what happened..

I purchased a full size razer keyboard from CA and when it arrived it was too big for my desk, i'm an ebay plus member so i have free returns and thought i will return it as its not suitable and will instead purchase the tenkey less version. I messaged them regarding swapping and paying the difference which was never replied to.

I purchased the tenkey less version also from CA (there was 20% off at the time of these sales) and put through a request to return the full size one the same day it arrived. I was then told because i opened the box they wouldn't provide me with a full refund only partial and i replied that its not used and eventually had to go through ebay support and was able to get my full refund.

Fast forward to today browsing the ebay plus sales and i tried to add an item to the cart from CA and it doesn't allow me i get an error, i speak with ebay support and they said there are some buyer requirements set which can be preventing me and to contact the seller. I contacted CA and i got this reply:

"Look like there was some issue with returning a keyboard in the past. Better you buy elsewhere"

Has anyone else had an issue like this before? I find it ridiculous that because i returned an item they ban me from any future purchases, it doesn't sound like good business practice to me, what happens if something happens to an item that's under warranty would they also just ban the user from any future purchases because its an inconvenience to them?

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Computer Alliance
Computer Alliance

Comments

  • +33 votes

    Not the best service just quietly.

    This should be addressed with eBay as Computer Alliance has partnered with eBay for the plus service to provide you with a premium service which you payed for the privilege to return items hassle free.

    That's my 2 cents

    •  

      Computer Alliance has partnered with eBay for the plus service

      No they haven't. That's not how eBay Plus works. They can't opt in or out. It's eBay selecting items randomly that "qualify".

      • +3 votes

        Incorrect. Agreeing to the terms of service IS how eBay works. They "opt in" by selling on eBay. They "opt out" by not selling on eBay.

        • +5 votes

          I'm not sure you read my post correctly as you've basically agreed with me.

          Sure they can "opt out" by not using eBay all together, but we are talking about eBay Plus. A seller can't opt in or out of specifically eBay Plus.

          It's part of the user agreement terms and conditions. They can't "opt in", they haven't "partnered", eBay Plus is just eBay selecting qualifying items. There is no change from a seller's POV. They choose whether to allow returns or not. It's essentially eBay paying for the return postage (from the pool of membership fees).

          • +6 votes

            @zeggie: I read it correctly but what I’m trying to emphasise is that a user agreement IS a choice and if you don’t want to honour free change of mind refunds well then maybe eBay isn’t the place for your store.

            That’s not to say I side with OP because I think it’s really pushing the boundaries of change of mind refunds to send back non-faulty, but open and used products.

            But the policy is there. It’s not difficult to understand. It’s been in place for months now. Handling plus customers is a part of the trade.

            I get that you can’t opt out. But tough luck.

            • +1 vote

              @haemolysis: If they want the benefit of selling in the eBay marketplace, then they must abide by the benefits that eBay Plus provides to members. Otherwise, they can just sell directly. In choosing to expand into the eBay environment, then they must honour Ebay's requirements.

            • +6 votes

              @haemolysis: I think the free returns means free return postage, not a free pass on returning used items.

      • +3 votes

        I dont think you should get a full refund for change of mind / buyer error if you've opened it. It's no longer brand new sealed. So I think they were within their rights.

        •  

          I dont think you should get a full refund even if you have not open it. Most sellers list items as free post but there are no such thing as free post. So if buyer return it in brand new condition ebay will just do a full refund and the seller will have to absorb the postage cost which i find is unfair.

    • +33 votes

      eBay imposed Plus on the sellers. Change of mind returns are costly, not every seller likes to absorb the costs.

      • +14 votes

        I don't think you or most people understand how eBay plus works.

        eBay only applies the plus symbol to an item if it already qualifies for it. Eg the seller has to post within 2 days, postage costs under a certain amount and they accept returns.

        If all those are within a listing, eBay will apply a Plus logo and cover the postage costs and return costs. The seller absorbs nothing, and gets the benefit of buyers not paying for postage and returns.

        In this instance, as with all returns, eBay clearly states that "you must return it in the same condition as you received it"
        https://www.ebay.com.au/help/buying/buying-ebay-plus/buying-...

        The OP opened the package, returned it in not the same condition as he received it, and still got his money back.
        I'd be happy with that service if it was me.

        • +8 votes

          The seller absorbs nothing, and gets the benefit of buyers not paying for postage and returns.

          The seller has lost money, because they can't re-sell the item for the same price given it is now an open box. All because OP failed to understand how big a full size keyboard is (and didn't bother to look at the dimensions).

          • +1 vote

            @kapone: That's right. I said that in my post. The OP is in the wrong.

            I was responding to claims that eBay plus was a scam. Which it's not.

  • +66 votes

    Why are you insisting on throwing your hard-earned dollars towards a company that clearly doesn't appreciate your business?

    Vote with your dollars - shop elsewhere and move on.

    • +3 votes

      Not much to appreciate when OP takes back the money they throw at the business later for no good reason…

      • +20 votes

        OP being an eBay Plus subscriber is a good enough reason - They paid for the flexibility to order, check if it is suitable at home and make a judgement call.

        Personally I would have checked dimensions first but I don't begrudge people using a service that is offered.

        • +10 votes

          I think most would have checked dimensions..

          They have found a difficult customer and don't want to go through the same ordeal again..

          • -2 votes

            @berger:

            I think most would have checked dimensions..

            I wouldn't check dimensions. I would have seen a sale (or acceptable price), ordered it before my hype dies down, realise it doesn't fit when it arrives and return it because that's the option offered - exactly like Op.

            paracaps has a good point.

            • +4 votes

              @S2: If I thought there might be a space issue, I would check the dimensions first. If you don't, that's on you. You shouldn't force a return because you couldn't be bothered checking, that's not even covered by ACL (change of mind), it's excluded under the 'I'm a (profanity)' clause.

  • +49 votes

    They have the right to sell to whom they want to. As with most eBay stores if they receive a dispute they auto ban the buyer.

    End of the day it's possibly poor form on their behalf but just move on and buy from someone who appreciates your business?

    On a side note how small is your desk that a keyboard won't fit lol?

    •  

      It's a corner desk (L Shape) so the part for the keyboard/mouse isn't massive, with a full size keyboard it didn't leave a lot of room for mouse movement

      • -1 vote

        what are the models of the two keyboards?

        can you provide links for the two keyboards that you bought?

      • +11 votes

        If its that important you should have checked dimensions.

      • +6 votes

        If you have a limited size desk, then you should have some common sense and check dimensions before even buying it.

    • +2 votes

      As with most eBay stores if they receive a dispute

      Lodging an item return isn't really a 'dispute', and I've personally returned a lot of items purchased via eBay over the years and have never been automatically banned.

  •  

    Seriously, just make a new account.

    • +1 vote

      He already has eBay Plus in his account. He cannot make use of sales or free shipping from another account. He can sign up for the free trial I guess.

    •  

      I just want to point out to anyone reading multiple accounts are allowed, but I just want to point out that using another account to get around a ban is against the rules.

  • +96 votes

    I find it ridiculous that because i returned an item they ban me from any future purchases

    I find it ridiculous you didn't check the size of the keyboard you were buying, opened the box, and forced a return anyway.

    You're not entitled to be able to buy from anywhere.

    what happens if something happens to an item that's under warranty

    But that's not what happened, was it?

    • -50 votes

      Do you work at computer alliance HighAndDry? Haha

      • +31 votes

        I don't even think I've bought from them (my go-to's are MSY and MWave mostly). But why the F wouldn't you even check something would fit before buying it?

        • +1 vote

          re msy, how many times have you ordered online, pay in store, and never received an update to your "order"

          also how many times have you rocked up to the store only to be met with "no stock" encouraging you to purchase an alternative and more expensive product?

          i've experienced both of these enough times to only consider them as a last resort, maybe you go to a different msy store but then again you did mention mwave so probably not

          • +5 votes

            @desync: MSY has terrible customer service, I can't argue with that. But I used them quite a while back and their reputation was already like that so I'd call up beforehand, make sure they had all my parts, and only then would I rock up.

            But yeah - I moved to buying more from MWave later just because MWave's online system and inventory management were just far far better.

            • +2 votes

              @HighAndDry: yeah mwaves alright, had a issue with them charging me a 20% restocking fee for an item i never bothered to pickup lol, didn't even think it was legal at the time.. thought that was a bit extreme and quite poor of them but used them plenty of times since and they've been great, especially with warranty jobs.. some times the wait time on "ready" prepaid pickups are a pain though… but they do seem to be improving

              • +1 vote

                @desync:

                a 20% restocking fee for an item i never bothered to pickup lol

                Haha well their better inventory management and integration has to be funded I guess. Their product range and stock levels are also a lot better - makes it easier now that I can't be bothered to save a dollar here or there (I know, flame away…) it's convenient if I'm buying a lot of things/parts at the same time to not have to drive around Sydney picking them up.

                • +1 vote

                  @HighAndDry: have you tried price matching at mwave? had success with them in the past, i guess it would depend on how popular the item is and how quick you want to pick it up but yeah, i agree.. time and convenience is often not valued properly here on ozbargain.. for the sake a marginal percentage difference i complete agree

                  • +2 votes

                    @desync: I haven't actually - I'm embarrassed I didn't even know they had a price-match policy. But their prices are good, within a few dollars at most, if not same or cheaper, and I figure I like their better service, I ought to pay for it. And if I'm not willing, I'll go to the cheaper place instead.

                    • +2 votes

                      @HighAndDry: they had a usb3 dock priced at +25% more than msy, asked for a better deal rather than a match, they just matched it straight away, but yeah, for a few bucks they are worth it

              • +1 vote

                @desync: Mwave took 2 months to do my refund. Kept making excuses such as I gave them the wrong card and then bank details bla2.

        •  

          Because its easier to blame someone else for your problems.

    • +7 votes

      It's ebays fault really when you get down to it. They give the impression that with ebay plus, you can buy things, and if you don't like them send them back within 30 days for a full refund.

      Computer alliance is also at fault for not understanding what they were signing up to. Sellers voluntarily join the ebay plus program, with one of the conditions being they accept returns. Sounds like they signed up to get the benefits without understanding their responsibilities.

      • +26 votes

        and if you don't like them send them back within 30 days for a full refund.

        While eBay's marketing could be better, eBay plus just allows for free returns for change of mind (which normally you're not entitled to), not if the product has been opened, unsealed, or not in its original condition.

        OP hasn't just changed his mind and returned it - that would be fine. He's opened it.

        • -11 votes

          Thats so absurd that I don't even believe you believe it.

          Its like saying you can return clothes as long as they're not used, but once you've tried it on you can't return it anymore.
          How are you supposed to know if its suitable, if you can't try it out?

          • +14 votes

            @outlander:

            Its like saying you can return clothes as long as they're not used, but once you've tried it on you can't return it anymore.

            Legally, that's EXACTLY how it is. Online clothing stores know that people won't buy as much if they're not allowed to return after trying it, so they voluntarily allow these returns.

            Neither eBay Plus nor Computer Alliance allow the same. Plus - a keyboard's size is not the same as the fit of a piece of clothing.

            How are you supposed to know if its suitable, if you can't try it out?

            It's a keyboard. It's a rectangle. OP has enough brains to use a ruler.

            • -11 votes

              @HighAndDry: If that's truly the case, then the law is wrong, and an ebay plus subscription is even more worthless than I originally thought.

              • +7 votes

                @outlander: Why does that make the law wrong?

                If you buy something, the default is that it's final. You're not entitled to change of mind returns in the first place.

                EBay Plus allows for change of mind returns, but their faq, here says:

                If you're returning an item because you changed your mind, you must return it in the same condition as you received it.

                Same condition means - returned unopened/sealed if it was received unopened/sealed. Ebay/the seller is willing to eat the cost of the return postage, but there's no reason they should eat the cost of a product being devalued because it can no longer be sold as new.

                • +1 vote

                  @HighAndDry: I think outlander is talking about Australian Consumer Law. And eBay is not above the law.

                  • +6 votes

                    @hey aj: Then they're even more wrong than I thought… because the ACL doesn't provide for change of mind returns at all.

                    • +2 votes

                      @HighAndDry: eBay Australia summarises it pretty well:

                      As an Australian consumer, you have a legal right to return items purchased from a business and to receive a repair, replacement or refund if the items:

                      • Are faulty or develop a fault within a reasonable period of time after purchase
                      • Aren't fit for purpose (i.e. they don't do what the seller said they would do)
                      • Don't match the seller's description or sample
                      • Are of unacceptable quality; or
                      • Fail to meet other mandatory consumer guarantees under the Australian Consumer Law.

                      You may be required to return the goods and to provide proof of purchase. Remember, your rights to a return, replacement or refund for faulty or non-compliant goods are in addition to any other rights under the seller's return policy or any warranty that comes with the goods.

                      Consumer guarantees don't apply if you:

                      • Simply changed your mind, found the product cheaper elsewhere, or decided you don't like or need the product
                      • Misused a product and have caused or contributed to the failure of the goods, for example, by damaging or misusing the goods.

                      Note: This information is general in nature and is not intended to constitute legal advice. Please visit the ACCC website for more information about consumer guarantees and your rights.

                      • +3 votes

                        @hey aj:

                        Consumer guarantees don't apply if you:

                        Simply changed your mind, found the product cheaper elsewhere, or decided you don't like or need the product

                        Yup. I think this is copy-pasted directly off of the ACCC website too.

                • -20 votes

                  @HighAndDry: Because you don't buy a keyboard for the box. You buy it for whats inside the box. Everything else is just packaging, but you can't get to bit you want without going through it. Considering everything nowdays has packaging on it, how are you supposed to evaluate the product in that instance?

                  I could understand a policy of Returns only accepted where the packaging wasn't damaged, just to stop the animalistic people who might tear apart a box instead of gently using a knife to slice open the seal, but a policy of returns only for unsealed boxes is of use to next to no-one, which makes it quite absurd.

                  • +4 votes

                    @outlander:

                    Because you don't buy a keyboard for the box.

                    If you bought a brand new keyboard and it didn't come with its original box, accessories, or manuals, I don't think you'd be happy about it.

                    but a policy of returns only for unsealed boxes is of use to next to no-one, which makes it quite absurd.

                    It's useful for people who change their minds. Plenty of people buy one thing, see something better - realise they don't need it - realise they need the money for other reasons - and change their mind without needing to open it.

                  • +5 votes

                    @outlander: I get what you are saying, outlander. But we need to address the context of the purchase in order to get a better understanding of how this would not, and cannot apply to this situation.

                    In a brick and mortar store, by the generosity of the business, you are able to evaluate products that are on demonstration. You can inspect the product and see for yourself what it would be like to own (to a certain extent). This is one of the benefits of this type of seller.

                    Now, in contrast, an online retailer does not allow you a demonstration of the product, its products are sitting in a warehouse in their boxes ready to be shipped to customers (they have no physical presence). This is one of the negatives of this type of seller, but the positives of generally lower prices, due to lower overheads, make up for this in a lot of customers' minds.

                    I am sure you are completely aware of these pro's and con's between the two and nothing I have said so far is news to anyone.

                    With the context out of the way. You cannot expect an online retailer to give you the perks of trying out a product and then returning it when they are operating in a way that does not cover the overheads of demo models or, as a result, having to sell "as new" products when a customer returns without a valid ACL reason.

                    Because an online seller does not facilitate one of the positive benefits of a brick and mortar store, the onus is on the customer to do their due diligence and research the product. To complain that you are not getting the same benefits from a brick and mortar store, but still wanted the more competitive price is not realistic.

                    • -6 votes

                      @hey aj:

                      Now, in contrast, an online retailer does not allow you a demonstration of the product, its products are sitting in a warehouse in their boxes ready to be shipped to customers (they have no physical presence). This is one of the negatives of this type of seller[1]

                      Very true, and that has always been the case in the past. Buy online, get cheaper prices in exchange for losing certain freedoms.
                      Except now, you have to factor in two things:

                      1. 'Online' is no longer a rinky dink small time operation anymore. The wild west is gone. Online shopping is fast becoming the normal way of doing things, and for the bigger sellers that means no more cowboy antics.

                      2. He bought through 'Ebay plus', a service that explicitly promotes being able to return products as one of its major perks.

                      I'd be more inclined to agree with you both (which is the view I used to hold) if there was a wealth of information online available for research, but there isn't. You can't find detailed schematics, or high definition pictures, or 3d models. Your lucky if you can get details on weight, and half the time whatever information is provided is bogus anyway. There's just no way to evaluate a product without access to it, and you're kidding yourself if you think you can, no matter how many reviews you watch or specifications sheet you read.

                      ps I respect your style. It's a very firm, de-escalating, non-aggressive method of talking. Bet it comes in handy ;)

                • +4 votes

                  @HighAndDry: Obviously OP can't read. Now CA has to absorb the cost of having an opened item. I'd block OP as well on future purchases,

      •  

        I find ebay plus to be a scam. The one time I tried to use it, their returns page failed to ever provide me the return shipping barcode. It doesn't provide most people value and their systems make it difficult to leverage the subscription.

        Also, I requested cancellation and then they still renewed me. Now they are trying to charge me for another subscription.. Terrible customer service, which is disappointing as I've been using ebay for a long time.

    • +1 vote

      I've spent last few days theorizing whether a mouse I want to purchase is the right size or not as I know once I open it im stuck with it,

      Full on taking my hand measurements and comparing to other users etc ROFL,

      I once purchased the Logitech G510, the one with 3 rows of macro keys it's width was wider than a…. I don't even know what, but I made sure it fit before I purchased it

  • +23 votes

    They can sell to who they want to.

    I banned a few customers when I ran a retail workshop as they were never happy no matter how much you did for them or the amount of hassle to get them to pay their account wasn't worth the time. (not saying you are like either example).

    Shop elsewhere as every purchase will leave a sour taste in your mouth.

  • +39 votes

    I think change of mind purchases should be at the discretion of the seller. It's something you shouldn't feel you're entitled too.

    It's unfortunate you went ahead and bought another keyboard without resolving your initial request. You say you never got a reply but perhaps patience was needed here.

    To you it's never been used, but the seller now has an opened unit.

    • +21 votes

      Agree, how would the OP feel if they bought a new keyboard and when it arrived it had obviously previously been opened. When they complained to the shop they were told 'its been opened but never been used'. This would be the basis for a new thread on poor service I guess.

      • +6 votes

        I was surprised that i had to scroll down this far to see this.
        The box has been opened. The business is now out of pocket in the sense they would have to sell as "opened box item" at a discount unless they are dodgy and try to reseal the box again.
        Maybe we should wait for another post from another OZB user that says bought a keyboard, was advertised as new, paid full price but arrived as opened box. When questioned, vendor says its new and has never been used….

  • +34 votes

    According to eBay you were within your rights to return the item. According to eBay they are within their rights to exclude you from being a customer for whatever reason they see fit. I don't see the issue

  •  

    Make a new ebay account

    • +7 votes

      Pls dont encourage OP, or else we might see another whiney post "I got banned on my alt account for returning item blahblah".

  •  

    What is your estimate of the cost of returning the item in postage and staff salary costs?

  • +7 votes

    Yea I was banned for cancelling an order. Fair enough. Messaged them and they unbanned me though.

    You though. You basically abused a refund process lol.

    • -3 votes

      OP was within his rights to bring his case to eBay when his discussions with CA didn't yield a satisfactory outcome. While CA are within their rights to refuse service provided they're not discriminating, it's still poor form and customer service from to just ban the OP without warning or right of appeal.

      OP, have you had any dealings / transactions with CA in the past?

      • +5 votes

        when his discussions with CA didn't yield a satisfactory outcome

        OP's not entitled to an outcome that's "satisfactory" to whatever their arbitrary standard is.

        While CA are within their rights to refuse service provided they're not discriminating, it's still poor form

        Same could be said for OP returning a perfectly working but opened product.

        • +2 votes

          eBay seemed to agree with OP, I think your beef is with the wrong person.

          Whether you like what happened or not, the system allows it and eBay sided with OP.

          • +3 votes

            @Nebargains: Or the seller just didn't bother to fight it.

            This is the EXACT same fallacy OP is falling for - this shop allowed me to return a used/opened/etc product once, why won't they do it again? Because they didn't have to in the first place.

          • +4 votes

            @Nebargains: eBay nearly always side with the buyer. Countless threads where sellers have been screwed over. It's eBay's entire image - secure, safe buying with protection.

            They'd rather piss off a seller than piss off a buyer who may never purchase again and move to Amazon.

      • +1 vote

        Had previously made purchases from them without issue over the last couple of years

      •  

        Within his rights is not mutually exclusive with being an entitled prick lol. The free return policy is for peace of mind as it is ebay backed rather than seller backed. I doubt it is designed for buying multiples of an item, trying em, and returning whichever one OP does not want

  • -1 vote

    How hard is it to give me a refund? I mean, the item can be resold but my desk cannot grow. The keyboard clearly did not increase my available desk space as per my choice of imagined item description.

    • +21 votes

      Would you be happy if you bought a new keyboard and got a used one? With the way things are packaged its impossible to put it back perfectly. Given very tight margins businesses cant afford shit like this.

      This is entirely you own fault. Dimensions are easily available but you were too lazy to check.

      • -5 votes

        Dimensions are confusing. I'm more a try it until it fits kind of person.

        • +10 votes

          then deal with the consequences.
          Americans expect to be able to send things back for bullshit excuses like this one.
          It does not work as well here, you're basically driving up prices for everyone else

          • +9 votes

            @kaos: Have we become dependant on the /s?

            • +2 votes

              @tshow: I have to say, in the context of this discussion where OP is sincerely saying precisely what you said, you almost had me there for a sec too.

              • +2 votes

                @HighAndDry: I would have thought "choice of imagined item description" was a dead giveaway but I guess in this day and age where we can "choose our own reality", it's a bit hard to know.

            •  

              @tshow: It's a bit ridiculous when an obviously facetious post is taken seriously.

          •  

            @kaos: This was always the trade off the migration to online marketplaces. I will still when I can view items (especially clothes, shoes etc) instore and purchase online because I can get it cheaper - Even if its purchased through the same company online. I'm not saying its the case with a keyboard, but there are often items you can't know ahead of time if they are suitable.

            I don't expect items to have a change of mind return available on them but if they do I don't begrudge people from using it - its incumbent on the business to determine what costs it can bear.

          • +1 vote

            @kaos: LOL so true Americans expect to be able to send shit back for ANY reason whatsoever.

            However with Ebay plus the big selling point is free returns. This is literally what it says so I think OP is within his rights.

            Returns are free for all eBay Plus orders. Regardless of the reason for the return or whether the seller's return policy normally states that buyers pay for return postage, as as an eBay Plus member, you can return it for free. You'll still need to indicate why you want to return the item (e.g. "Changed my mind"), then you'll get a free postage label with either Australia Post or ParcelPoint.

            If you need to return an order that wasn't an eBay Plus item, the seller's normal return policy applies.

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