My God EBay is a nightmare for buying records

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by ATSMUSIC, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. ATSMUSIC

    ATSMUSIC Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    MD, USA
    I have ordered a lot of records off there and is amazing how many NM and MINT records have come to me looking like trash. I don't get it. Do most people just accept this garbage? I am about to give up. One seller today sent me a record better than described. So I guess it is just finding the good sellers. the problem is everyone has perfect feedback even though they do this. How is this possible?
     
    MikaelaArsenault and TeacFan like this.
  2. Trashman

    Trashman Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Grading is subjective, so not everyone will agree on what NM is... but you're right in saying that many people will over-exaggerate the condition of records in order to make a sale. The feedback percentage doesn't really tell you anything. For the most part, good feedback just means they delivered the goods in a timely manner. I will often scan the feedback for comments on the conditions of records, looking for statements like "conservatively grades his records" or something similar. If a seller has some negative and neutral feedback, reading that can also be telling. Were they just slow to ship a record? Or do other buyers complain about condition grading?

    When you find reliable sellers, put them in your favorites list and do your shopping from them.

    It also helps to adjust one's expectations down a grade (and bid accordingly). If someone says "NM" then I will expect something that should qualify as "VG+" or better. If it's worse than that, I will request a return. It's a hassle to return a record, but it's also a hassle for the seller too. If they get enough returns and have to issue enough refunds, they may begin to re-think their grading scale.

    Likewise, when I sell, I usually grade a notch lower than what I think it is. That way buyers will be pleasantly surprised when they receive the record... and nobody asks for a refund.
     
    Radio, andrewskyDE, Aftermath and 2 others like this.
  3. ATSMUSIC

    ATSMUSIC Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    MD, USA
    Thank you for the good advice how to tread through Ebay :)
     
  4. Sid Hartha

    Sid Hartha Forum Resident

    Location:
    The Midwest
    I seldom bother to check eBay anymore, as I've found discogs to be more reliable for grading, generally speaking.

    Though both are far from perfect. The key is to find the good sellers. I still come across the occasional bad apple.
     
    MYKE likes this.
  5. MYKE

    MYKE Offended By The Easily Offended

    Buying records off eBay, FOR ME, would be like checking Craigslist, or the dumpster next to Grimey's. :laugh:

    Discogs.
    .
     
  6. Mr Bass

    Mr Bass Forum Resident

    Location:
    Mid Atlantic
    I only buy occasionally from Ebay and half are classical records which tend to be less abused than pop records. I have had few problems perhaps because I observe two rules: a clear picture of the record and 100% Feedback. As noted, even mediocre sellers can still get a rating of 97 or 98 % so it isn't all that hard to get to 100%. But if they can't be bothered then I know there will be problems.

    I dislike the NM category and am a bit suspicious of it unless the description provides some confirmation such as "looks unplayed "etc. NM- and Exc have proved more reliable. I never get VG+ or below except for foreign 45s.

    One thing I'm unclear of with the OP is the statement that the records he gets "looked trashed". Are they Playing trashed or just looking that way to the OP?
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2017
  7. skimminstones

    skimminstones Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Bexley, UK
    Doesn't matter where you buy them from now, anything I buy from eBay or discogs I just accept it's going to be at least one, probably two gradings below what's advertised.

    I find it amazing how many people advertise as mint but have not played the record in ten or twenty years. Just by looking at it they say it plays perfectly. It's all crap frankly.
     
  8. Sid Hartha

    Sid Hartha Forum Resident

    Location:
    The Midwest
    Conversely, I've found that, on discogs, the difference between a seller rating of 4.5 and 5.0 to be vast.
     
    Mr Bass likes this.
  9. Sid Hartha

    Sid Hartha Forum Resident

    Location:
    The Midwest
    Incidentally, I'm now playing Renaldo & The Loaf's Arabic Yodelling - purchased off discogs a few weeks ago.

    The seller listed it as VG++. The record is stone mint.
     
    MYKE likes this.
  10. Brian Lux

    Brian Lux Forum Resident

    Location:
    Placerville, CA
    Yeah, buying records on eBay is a crap shoot, for sure. There are, however, several trustworthy vinyl sellers on eBay and once you get to know them, they're worth putting down to memory or on your "Sellers You Follow" list. Also, eBay's buyer protection works pretty well. You just can't be shy about letting the seller know when you are unsatisfied and are willing to send photos and show that you understand how grading works. I don't ask for it up front, but I've had sellers tell me, "Sorry for the mistake, I'll refund your money and you can keep the record." A few times I've had to return the LP but even then I've been given a shipping label.

    ^^^ And yes, Mr Bass, good point about seller ratings. A quick check of the feedback helps as well. I bought an item from a lady who had less than perfect because ONE buyer pushed the "negative feedback" button but by the comments they left you could tell the buyer meant to hit "positive feedback" (bummer for the good seller!)
     
  11. andrewskyDE

    andrewskyDE Forum Gangsta

    I must be lucky because everytime I ordered a vinyl LP from Ebay the condition was as mentioned by the seller or even better.
     
  12. Brian Lux

    Brian Lux Forum Resident

    Location:
    Placerville, CA
    I know records are rated one to five stars but are not sellers rated on a percentage (or am I miss-reading?)
     
  13. Sid Hartha

    Sid Hartha Forum Resident

    Location:
    The Midwest
    They present them as both - star rating as well as percentage. I watch the stars.
     
    Brian Lux likes this.
  14. Brian Lux

    Brian Lux Forum Resident

    Location:
    Placerville, CA

    I didn't know that! I'll look for them.

    Edit: Well, this is one of those "duh" moments. Yes, they are right there, in from of the percentages!
     

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