Instead of linking you to the announcement, I'm going to just copy and past the announcement here:
Rewards & Standards
Rewards for great sellersHow are great sellers measured? Customers decide. They give sellers more stars in detailed Feedback if they are satisfied. These Detailed Seller Ratings (DSRs), along with other indicators of customer satisfaction, will influence seller rewards and standards.
PowerSeller Rewards & Standards
Coming Soon: Seller Dashboard
Search visibility will be tied to customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction is reflected in a combination of DSRs, Feedback, and fewer complaints filed of an item being "significantly not as described" (SNAD) or "item not received" (INR). In March 2008, Best Match will become the default sort in search to give more buyers the results they want and will:
Increase exposure for sellers with DSRs 4.6 and above and at least 95% customer satisfaction in the last 30 days.
Decrease exposure for sellers with low customer satisfaction or Shipping & Handling DSRs. PowerSeller Rewards & StandardsWe're taking steps to give new meaning to PowerSeller status on eBay. Starting July, a score of 4.5 or more on all DSRs (based on the last 12 months) will be required for membership in the PowerSeller program. We will reward PowerSellers with fee discounts and other benefits for their record of excellent customer service.
PowerSeller discounts on Final Value Fees (or Transaction Services Fees)
DSRs of 4.6 or more (based on the last 30 days): 5% Final Value Fee discount
DSRs of 4.8 or more (based on the last 30 days): 15% Final Value Fee discount
Expanded seller protection from PayPal beginning February 2008
Protection for any shipping address, not just a confirmed address
Unlimited annual coverage, not just $5,000 per year
Global coverage, extended to 190 countries around the world
Expanded and Extended Unpaid Item (UPI) Protection Program
Expanding to single-item fixed price listings
Extending refund of Feature Fees permanently
To help ensure more buyers are protected, in some cases we'll require sellers to offer either PayPal or a merchant credit card to customers. PayPal buyer protection covers most qualified transactions up to $2000.00 USD.
Sellers will only be required to provide this safe payment option to customers in certain situations:
For listings in riskier categories, like computers and cell phones
If the seller has 5% or more dissatisfied customers
If the seller has less than 100 Feedback
In a small number of cases (fewer than 5% of all payments on eBay), PayPal will hold payment funds until either the buyer has left positive Feedback or 21 days have passed without a claim.Feedback ChangesThe eBay Feedback system was designed to provide a simple, honest, accurate record of member experiences. Focusing on customer service includes doing everything we can to grow customer confidence in our sellers.
- Buyers will only be able to receive positive Feedback.
- Positive repeat customer Feedback will count (up to 1 Feedback from the same buyer per week.)
- Feedback more than 12-months old won't count towards your Feedback percentage.
When a buyer doesn't respond to the Unpaid Item (UPI) process the negative or neutral Feedback they have left for that transaction will be removed.
- When a member is suspended, all their negative and neutral Feedback will be removed.
- Buyers must wait 3 days before leaving negative or neutral Feedback for sellers with an established track record, to encourage communication.
- All Feedback must be left within 60 days (compared to 90 days today) of listing end to encourage timely Feedback and discourage abuse.
Coming Soon: Seller Dashboard
See how you're doing, at-a-glance! Changes in Feedback and measures tied to Detailed Seller Ratings (DSRs) and the percentage of satisfied customers will help sellers understand and manage their role in serving and growing their customer base. We want to help sellers know where they stand. Soon, we'll be making available a personalized tool to help you understand your:
Policy violations and potential risk of restriction
Buyer satisfaction (comprised of a combination of: DSRs, Feedback, INR and SNAD complaints)