Your customer’s voice

The recent bidorbuy survey revealed that one of the pet peeves buyers have are the sellers who do not put telephone number in their profile. Buyers would like to be able to call the seller, especially if it is a first-time transaction between the two. After all, buyers on online auction sites and marketplaces are often advised against paying the seller who has no rating, is not verified, sells expensive gadgets, and on top of all that cannot be reached by phone.

Because of all those reasons, one is indeed inclined to be only too ready to denounce the sellers who do not supply their phone number. But then, look at it from the seller’s point of view, and the perception changes.

The majority of bidorbuy sellers are home-based businesses. That means that their home number or their cell number is at the same time their business number. Now imagine an overly eager or simply insomniac buyer who happens to be browsing bidorbuy at about two in the morning. On the spur of the moment, he (or she) decides to buy something. He (or she) presses the buy now button and receives an automated email with the seller’s details. Excited about his or her new acquisition, the customer forgets that some people sleep and starts dialing the number included in the message…

Put yourself into the awoken seller’s shoes and admit: how many midnight phone calls would you endure before you went into your bidorbuy profile and deleted your phone number? It would probably take only one.

And while it is quite acceptable to advise buyers not to entrust their money to a seller who has no ratings, is not verified, sells expensive items at unbelievable discounts, lists a hosts of items for a short period and cannot be reached by phone, we leave it up to you to decide how to appraise the sellers who do have rating and are verified and answer to your email queries, but do not supply their telephone number.

As for sellers who do not enter their banks details, making it possible for buyers to pay via internet straight away, even in the middle of the night if they feel so disposed – they have no excuse other than forgetfulness. There really is no reason why a buyer should be made to write an email requesting the seller’s bank information, and then wait for the seller to wake up and respond. A situation like that is enough to make any buyer reach for a telephone!

Sellers please note: with the introduction of bobPay-EFT, a whole new world of fast online payments has opened up for you. Do make sure to read and implement bidorbuy recommendations when you select to accept bobPay-EFT (find the recommendations at the end of the article).


  1. silliusmillius53 says:

    Another thing I might add would be the concept of duty & VAT being charged on goods being shipped into the country. If an item is sold as a “fixed Price” item then that is what it should be, a Fixed Price! Surely the suppliers are importing the goods into their company and then selling it on to an end buyer. As they are the primary importer, surely the customs duty is their responsibility. If an item is being purchased from a South African supplier, then I would expect the item to be free of duty and inclusive of all taxes/duties etc. I was under the impression that displaying a price by a commercial seller needs to state that VAT is included from a legal prespective.

  2. I’m looking for my phone code i lost it

  3. To silliusmillius53:
    All items listed on bidorbuy include VAT, whether they are sold at fixed price or on auction. A local seller can not charge the customer for VAT and / or custom duties separately, over and above the fixed price or the highest bid price. If a local seller asks you to add VAT or customs duty to the price of an item, please report such behaviour to However, if a South African buyer buys from a seller outside South Africa on bidorbuy, the buyer will be responsible for all custom charges – which may include custom duty and / or custom VAT. A buyer would do well to inquire about such charges with SA Customs before placing an order or a bid on an item sold by a seller outside South Africa. Also note that a seller may be drop-shipping from a supplier outside South Africa – in which case the buyer would also be liable for customs duties and / or customs VAT. The seller should state this clearly in the listing.

  4. Regarding your phone code, Vusi – we really cannot help you. You should probably contact your service provider, or the manufacturer, or the seller from whom you bought the phone.