Simplify your terms and conditions

You know that huge chunk of text in your default listing template? It’s time to trim that monster down to make it less intimidating.

Here’s what to do:

Read over all your terms and conditions that you list in the listing itself. Keep in mind that your buyers are less likely than ever to actually read your description text and see how much of it you can trim down. You can often consolidate multiple terms into a single sentence. You want it to be both short and simple but also friendly. Instead of a large paragraph of text, try to separate it out into a bulleted list to make it friendlier to the eyes.

Remove any threats or other nasty warnings. Your customer is innocent until proven guilty and not to blame for the sins of any buyer you’ve encountered before. A negative attitude in your listings will cost you much more in sales from good people put off than it will ever save you from imagined fraud.

How much of what you list in your terms is even necessary anymore? Many of us eBay old-timers crafted our terms many site updates ago, and we’re qualifying things that aren’t even relevant anymore. You really don’t need to cover for every single eventuality in your terms, but if you must, make sure that info is well below the description so you’ll at least have a chance to pitch your item to your buyer before you potentially scare the buyer off with disclaimers.

Too Long; Didn’t Read.

Why are we doing this?

Over complicated terms and conditions, or even a large, intimidating block of text, turn buyers off. With so many buyers browsing on their mobile, they’ve never been less interested in your text. A shorter, simpler text presentation at least increases the chances that they’ll actually read it and not be turned off by it.

If you’ve done some buying on eBay, you know that some sellers are downright mean and nasty in their listing text, especially in their terms and conditions. This isn’t just unprofessional, it’s downright stupid! No one wants to do business with a seller that is not only advertising their history of bad transactions but their bad attitude at the same time.

Your listings are a seduction. You want to tell the buyer enough to get them interested in committing to buying from you. You don’t start out a first date detailing every detail of your past relationships–good or bad–and your listing text is the same way.