New seller tools: transaction impressions and auto-crop

Tonight we launched two new features to help our sellers be more effective, and to save the time.  Here's the skinny!

Transaction Impressions

It is a well-documented problem that a simple "positive," "negative," "neutral" rating often does little to help a seller know whether they made their buyer satisfied.  Basically, as long as a buyer is left closer to "satisfied" than "furious," they are probably going to leave "positive" feedback, and a learning opportunity is lost for the seller. 

We wanted to fix this, so our sellers can have access to more meaningful insights on how to keep their customers happy.  Thus we have launched a new feature we're calling "Transaction Impressions."  After a buyer leaves their standard pos/neu/negative feedback, here's what they'll now see:

What we want to do is to give them an opportunity to provide more details about their satisfaction with the transaction.  For example, if a seller is shipping their items from Thailand but hasn't mentioned it prominently in their description, their Transaction Impressions will help them notice a pattern of buyers whose expectations weren't met.  Below is how the seller would see the above information:

Of course, we've listened carefully to our seller community and understand that some sellers are wary of feedback systems that can be used against them unfairly.  Specifically, we know that there is a segment of our sellers that would not want Bonanza to introduce a system akin to eBay's "DSR" system, because said system allows buyers to leave feedback that in some cases is beyond the seller's control (i.e., how long it takes USPS to deliver), and in some cases, is graded on a curve that ultimately weeds out great sellers.

Rather than using this detailed information to punish our good sellers, we are using it to provide them detailed feedback -- feedback that is only visible to the seller themselves -- so that they can basically take a free walk in the shoes of their buyer.  Unlike DSRs, these ratings do not factor into Bonanza search, nor are they used to evict sellers that do not meet a certain threshold (though, as always, a history of repeated negative feedback may become grounds to remove a seller from Bonanza). 

We think the net result here is that you get all of the good with none of the bad.  You can hear when customers are satisfied, you can start a dialog with them if they aren't, or you can even ignore the Transaction Impressions if you feel that you're dealing with an unreasonable buyer.  As a business, we have found that our best improvements come when we listen to our community, and get specific feedback on what they want improved.  Thus, it only made sense that we should give our sellers access to the same kind of feedback (except in their case, from their buyers) that we've relied to build Bonanza to what it is today.

Again, to be perfectly clear, the "Transaction Impressions" left by buyers are completely separate from standard feedback (the buyer can't leave it until they've left standard feedback), and they do not affect your standing in search in any way.  They can only be seen by the seller themselves.  And what you choose to do with their data is ultimately up to you.

Image Auto-Cropping

Speaking of improvements that we've made by listening to the community, today also marks the launch of a new experimental feature we're calling "Crop to the Whole Image," (when we don't call ilt "Keep Entire Image in Crop," or something else).  I think that it's probably been about two years now since this feature was first requested, and in our recent forum thread asking for feature suggestions, this was one that came up time and time again. 

So here you have it!   Now, if you have experimental features enabled and you go to your advanced booth settings, you can choose an option to automatically keep your entire image in the thumbnail that gets shown in your booth.  If you have no idea what I am talking about, take a look at this help page.  The first picture (where the giraffe's head and legs are cut off) is what will happen by default if you upload a tall picture to your booth.  But if you enable the "Keep Entire Image in Crop" option, you will get the bottom picture on that help page (the one where you can see the whole giraffe, but there is gray on the left and right of it). 

Apparently, judging by the forum thread, this is going to save a lot of people a lof of time.  We can only hope that you will use that time to go sell some lemonade or brownies to save enough money to come hang out with us in Vegas in June.  What's fair is fair, right?

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