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Community Member
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Registered: ‎04-29-2007
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What should I do in this situation?

Yesterday I had a sale for a craft book with payment. I sent the usual thank you email and said I would mail it today.

 

An hour later, I have the same buyer purchase and pay again for the same book.

 

I have now sent 3 emails via eBay and her email address asking if she realizes she purchased the same book twice and if she wants them both, with no reply.

 

I don't know what to do, I have 3 options:

 

1) Send the first book and wait and see if she contacts me about the second.

 

2) Send both books

 

3) Just wait for a reply before I mail

Community Member
Posts: 433
Registered: ‎02-21-2005

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber

I am aware not everyone is comfortable doing so but, if you  do not want to (risk?) one being returned,  you could call up their contact information and simply phone them. I am sure that under these circumstances, they would not mind. 

Community Member
Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber

 

Are you able to call her and ask?  If you have a long-distance plan it might be feasible but otherwise the call would eat up your profits.

 

If it were me I would assume it was a mistake unless she indicated she wanted both.  As we get older our memories are not always very good.  It is possible that she had it in her Watch List intending to get it.  She bought it, and when she saw it was still available (because you originally had 4) she may have thought her payment didn't go through so just bought it again not realizing she was buying AGAIN.  

 

Without more info, like a reply from the buyer, that would be my guess.  

 

Can you wait a day or 2 and STILL be within your 'handling time' when (if) you finally hear back?  If it were me I would give it some time and if I did not hear back, I would send the first and refund the second with a note of apology saying that with no response I did not want to make her buy 2 identical books if she only wanted one.  

 

If, after I did that she finally said she wanted both, I would either mail the second one free or at the very least not charge for shipping.  

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to snoopwiz

 

We're both typing at once.  That was my first thought too, only on a $5 book it might depend where the buyer lives.  It would give an instant answer and a good idea anyway.  

 

Community Member
Posts: 5,155
Registered: ‎08-29-2005

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber

And of course, she may want one for herself and one for a gift.

 

Phone.

Community Member
Posts: 800
Registered: ‎04-29-2007

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to reallynicestamps

It would be a long distance call to the US, not something I really want to do. And guess what, she just purchased another book!! Not the same one, but no mention of the 3 messages that I sent, but obviously she has been on her computer. I will write again and than wait until the morning and decide what to do. I may call eBay, at least I can do that for free.

Community Member
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Registered: ‎08-15-2012

Re: What should I do in this situation?

[ Edited ]
in reply to triber

Although I understand your concern, if it were me, I would just ship them.

 

As a seller, I might wonder if your buyer really did want two of the same thing and a third of something else, but it's not for sellers to question the wants and needs of buyers.

 

As a buyer, I frequently purchase multiples of the same item, all at once or in stages because I have three sons and two nephews all the same general age who all want the same thing at the same time all the time. One of an item is often pointless for me. I need at least three. This pertains to books, toys, t-shirts, shoes or anything. 

 

Don't worry, if it turns out she doesn't want the second one, she can always ask to Return it, or sell it herself. Maybe she wants one to keep and one use. There is a myriad of possibilities. She might have a sister who loves the same things she does and returned to buy another for her. 

Community Member
Posts: 1,944
Registered: ‎01-29-2007

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to mjwl2006

I agree with mjwl2006.  If the buyer hasn't replied to your messages within a day or two I would just go ahead and ship.

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Registered: ‎10-14-2010

Re: What should I do in this situation?

[ Edited ]
in reply to westernstargifts

I have had a buyer who bought the same book one day after the other. Since I already shipped the first copy I messaged the buyer (in Europe) and asked her to confirm if she indeed wanted two copies and that I already shipped the first. In the message I also mentioned if I don't hear back in 5 days I'll assume she purchased the second book in error and will issue a full refund. Never heard back so I refunded after 5 days and cancelled with reason that buyer requested to cancel to get FVF back. Never heard back from buyer even after a couple months, no feedback whatsoever so I just shrugged and assumed the first copy arrived and all is well...

 

I didnt want to potentially deal with the buyer returning the book if she didn't want a second copy, since that's too much extra work for me considering the buyer is in Europe. Refunding is easier. I figured if she really wanted two, she could always just buy it again...

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Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to zee-chan

 

That's sort of how I see it.  The OP asked the board for opinions so I gave mine.  It is not based on my own experience as ME as a buyer but on this particular buyer, and also reading the buyer boards.   

 

What the others say is true, it could very well be someone who bought the first book for herself and then later thought to get one for her daughter.  Maybe she bought one for the first daughter then later bought one for the second daughter.   Any of those types of things are possible.  

 

When the buyer did not respond to the emails, yet later bought a 3rd book, this would not be a seller because sellers are generally pretty good about checking messages.  Didn't this buyer know enough to check the messages?  Maybe not.  She doesn't seem to be checking emails.  

 

The buyer does not seem to grasp the idea of combined shipping.  Doesn't she know she can get a reduction by contacting the seller to request multiples?  Maybe not, but a reseller certainly would.  

 

And the number of times we hear on the buyer boards that someone accidentally bought 2 of the same thing and don't know how to cancel one of the purchases!  I would not have thought it that easy, but apparently it is.  

 

All this suggests to me that THIS buyer is not particularly eBay savvy.  There are only 2 possibilities, either the buyer wants 2 of the same book or not.  Personally I don't see it as "second guessing" a buyer to consider that a person may have made a mistake, especially when I receive no confirmation that they wanted 2 the same.  People make mistakes, everyone does.  I would think if a buyer knowingly wanted 2 of the same thing they would buy both at once.  

 

If I have to make a mistake about shipping or not shipping, I would rather err on the side of the buyer's best interest.  I would send the one and refund the other.  Well, at this point I would send the first, the third, and cancel and refund on the duplicate plus the excess postage.  Just because a buyer pays 3x postage does not mean I could ever put it in my pocket.  I could never do anything to cheat another person.  

 

If I sent the duplicate and it was NOT wanted the buyer would probably be kind and accept that she made the mistake.  But if it is a mistake, she would rather have a refund.  To say she can just sell it herself seems unfair, when she obviously is not a seller.  I would never want to be seen as taking advantage of someone else's limitations.  If she DID want both books, I would quickly just mail her the other with a note of apology explaining such things.  

 

EBay will of course say to ship.  But eBay is no better at reading this buyer's mind than any of the people on this board.  EBay does not know what this buyer wants, and if the buyer wants only the one, eBay will not refund the other.   

 

 

Time will tell.  If it were me I would always have to do what I felt was the right and decent thing for the other person.  I have to do what is best for the buyer, and imo it is better to have 2 books sent one-after-the-other if she really wants 2, than to receive and be charged for 2 when she only wanted one.  

 

Without more info from the buyer confirming it one way or the other, the whole thing could easily go either way.  

 

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 5,386
Registered: ‎10-21-2008

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber

triber wrote:

It would be a long distance call to the US, not something I really want to do. And guess what, she just purchased another book!! Not the same one, but no mention of the 3 messages that I sent, but obviously she has been on her computer. I will write again and than wait until the morning and decide what to do. I may call eBay, at least I can do that for free.


I agree with 'mj' and 'westernstar'  -- I wouldn't try to second guess the buyer's intentions.  If the buyer doesn't respond within a couple of days, but has paid in full for the items, I'd just go ahead and ship.  I don't really see the point in spending time calling eBay.  They'll probably tell you to ship, regardless.  

 

I presume these aren't items of high value if they're craft books?  If it does turn out the buyer didn't want two after all, you can simply refund her the price of the extra book immediately and ask her to return it at her convenience by regular mail, bypassing all the hassle of an eBay-managed return. 

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to i.am.vivian

I suppose another option would be to mail all 3 with a very nice note saying if she didn't want 2 copies of that book to 'please contact me about it', and have a picture of the 'contact seller' link showing where it is so she will know for sure how to use it, maybe another showing where to find messages received.  Then if she did NOT want 2  I'd just refund it and not burden her with 'return for refund', not when I shipped 2 knowing she might not want both.  

 

 

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Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to rose-dee

rose-dee wrote:

I presume these aren't items of high value if they're craft books? 


 

We're all typing at once.   :-)   Yes, $5 knitting books.  So not a big deal if the seller loses, but IMO the buyer should never feel overcharged or taken advantage of.  So the seller could ship all 3 and just take the loss on the extra if it is not wanted.  

 

Community Member
Posts: 7,720
Registered: ‎08-15-2012

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber
I get buyers buying two of the same item accidetally ALL the time. New buyers who see it's still listed and then keep buying all quantity until it's gone. But they always pay for only the one they want.
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Community Member
Posts: 800
Registered: ‎04-29-2007

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to mjwl2006

Thank you for all the helpful suggestions, I appreciate it. I decided to take the advice and mail all three books together. I sent the buyer and email and said that as I hadn't heard to the contrary, I was mailing all the books, and I sent a refund for a shipping reductions. I decided that 4 emails was enough.

 

In the past you could look at a buyers purchases and it could give an idea if they sometimes purchased more than one copy of a book.

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 800
Registered: ‎04-29-2007

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber

Well, you might guess what has happened, I finally got a reply from the buyer "Please don't mail the other book, it was a mistake". I told her she can return it, it might not be worth the postage.

Community Member
Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber

 

At this point, maybe go with rose-dee's suggestion, which I think would be the kindest and most decent thing, 

 

" If it does turn out the buyer didn't want two after all, you can simply refund her the price of the extra book immediately and ask her to return it at her convenience by regular mail,"

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 7,720
Registered: ‎08-15-2012

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber
Oh GOOD GRIEF.

Do you think this was a perhaps deliberate attempt to get two for the price of one? I'm wondering. I've never had a situation play out like this before.

Remember, YOU as the seller did NOTHING WRONG. The buyer bought and paid, you shipped. If this was The River or Floormart, the question would never have arisen. You pay, you get. Period.
Community Member
Posts: 7,720
Registered: ‎08-15-2012

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to triber
As to the refund-without-return: no. I would NOT do that. She bought, she paid, you shipped. There was ample opportunity to cancel prior to shipment. You are, in my opinion, 100 per cent in the clear. This situation as it has played out has a certain odor to it. It does not pass my sniff test.
Community Member
Posts: 1,325
Registered: ‎12-26-2011

Re: What should I do in this situation?

in reply to mjwl2006

 

The buyer bought them both, that's true.  Accidentally bought 2 by mistake, as it turns out, but did pay for both.  

 

"You bought, you paid, I shipped", Yes, well, that's one way to be, alright.