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How to Reach eBay Customer Service

Published at Jan 07, 2016.

Keep getting a machine when you call the eBay customer service number? Not sure whether it’s okay to send them a question on Facebook? If you need help from eBay’s support team, here’s what you need to do to reach them via any channel:

Coronavirus update: As of April 3, 2020, eBay is still in the process of moving its support staff to home offices to keep them safe. This has left them understaffed. At the same time, the COVID-19 outbreak has increased online shopping. Expect long wait times and limited support options.

Looking for tips on providing great customer service on eBay instead? See our articles on improving your feedback score or setting up an eBay helpdesk. This article was last updated 4/13/2020.

How to Contact eBay via Email

If there's one positive side effect of the 2020 pandemic, it's that eBay has brought back email support. It just takes a few steps to email eBay. Start by visiting their help homepage.

eBay Customer Service Homepage

Once you're there, scroll down and click "Email us."

"Email Us" Button Below the Fold on the eBay Help Homepage

Note that on some help pages, it will appear in the blue options under "Other options for you" rather than in the white box under "Need more help?"

"Email Us" Button Hidden on eBay

When you click "Email us," it will take you to a menu where you can choose a topic. Choose the one that's closest to what you need to ask about.

eBay's First Layer of Support Menus

Next, choose a subtopic that puts you closer to your actual question.

eBay's Second Layer of Support Menus

You should then see another menu with an "Email us" button on the left. We strongly recommend checking the help articles first—it will help keep wait times down for everyone. But if you can't find the help you need, click "Email us."

"Email Us" Button on eBay

You'll then need to sign in to your eBay account, even if you're already signed in.

eBay Login Page

Finally, you'll be able to write your email in a simple form.

eBay Email Form

Click "Send" when you're done writing the email. You should get a reply from eBay within 24 hours.

Please be patient if you are trying to contact eBay during the COVID-19 pandemic. Remember that their customer service team is going through a lot of changes and that their support volumes for both buyers and sellers are extremely high.

How to Find the Right eBay Customer Service Number

Calling eBay Customer Support

Coronavirus update: eBay is not accepting phone calls at this time. If you attempt to call their support number, you will get a machine response. They have also removed their "Call Us" page. Last confirmed 4/13/2020. You can still contact eBay through email or social media.

The primary eBay customer service number is no secret: it is 1-866-540-3229. However, if you want to speak to a real human being anytime soon, you need a passcode and possibly even a different phone number. You might spend most of the day on hold if you call without getting these first.

To get the right number and a passcode, you need to:

  1. Sign in to your eBay account if you have one.
  2. Go to eBay’s Call Us page during eBay's business hours (5:00 AM to 10:00 PM Pacific Time).
  3. Select the topic you have a question about: selling, buying, your account, delivery and tracking, or returns and refunds.

    Select a Topic

  4. Choose a category for your question, such as “Paying for items.” Don’t worry if nothing matches your question perfectly—just pick whatever sounds closest.

    Select a Category

  5. You'll get a screen with a bunch of self-help options in the center, and a phone number and passcode on the left. If the self-help materials don't look helpful, call the number and, when prompted by the machine, enter your passcode using your phone’s keypad function. You should be talking to a live customer support agent in no time.

    Select a Subcategory

Let’s walk through an example.

How I Reached a Live eBay Customer Support Agent on the Phone

Calling Customer Service

Note: This section has been kept for posterity. Contacting eBay is much more straightforward now, as the instructions above show. But here's what it used to be like!

In “How to Make Money Selling on Amazon,” one of the methods I recommended was buying things in large multipacks at wholesalers like Costco, breaking them up into individual units, and then reselling them online. This is a common practice.

However, as I was discussing this on a recent road trip, someone spoke up and said “You can’t do that. They’re marked ‘Not for individual resale.’ It’s illegal.”

Yikes! I hadn’t really considered that possibility.

I searched the web for a while and it mostly sounded like it wasn’t illegal for small-time sellers. (These items are generally only marked “Not marked for individual resale,” and it sounds like this mostly applies to traditional stores and not consumer-to-consumer transactions.) However, some other things I saw left me wondering.

I decided to call eBay customer support to see if they could give me a solid answer. Here’s how I got ahold of them:

  1. I went to eBay's customer service page.
  2. Since I wanted to know about whether it was okay to sell an item, I selected “Selling” as the topic. 
  3. I didn’t have a selling problem and I wanted to ask about something I hadn't sold yet, so that left “Getting Started” as the only remaining category to choose. Update: This is now "Selling Basics."
  4. I didn’t see any subcategory under “Getting Started” that obviously applied to my question, so I took the most closely related option: “Can’t list an item.”
  5. The information provided did not answer my question, so I scrolled down further.
  6. I had two “Contact options”: “Call us” and “Ask the Community.” I clicked “Call us,” and as shown below, it gave me the primary customer service number and a passcode.

    The eBay Customer Service Number

  7. I dialed the number and got a recording asking me if I had a passcode. I dialed in the one on my screen, and it forwarded me to the eBay customer support team.
  8. I was put on hold, and loud, upbeat classical music began playing. There was a notification on the website saying there was a longer than usual wait time, so I settled in for a long wait.
  9. To my surprise, a cheerful customer support agent picked up the phone in less than a minute!

Not too hard!

So What Was the Answer?

For anybody wondering, the answer to the question of “Is it legal to sell things marked ‘Not marked for individual resale’ on eBay?” is: sometimes. The support agent I spoke to said that I’d need to ask about a specific item.

So, if you’re at your local Costco or Sam’s Club looking at a great deal on a huge multipack, step outside and call eBay support before you buy it and break it up. Just remember to bring your smartphone so you can get a passcode.

Can I Contact eBay via Chat?

When I originally wrote this article in 2016, eBay claimed to offer live chat support, but it was nowhere to be found even then. GetHuman also reports that there is no eBay live chat. If this option still exists, it's only available for certain questions, and you’ll have to jump through all of eBay’s hoops to get to them.

However, they do offer an automated chat assistant. To use this feature, you'll need to visit eBay's help center, then open a help article. Scroll down to the "Need more help?" section near the bottom of the page. 

If the chatbot is available, you'll see the option "Chat with our automated assistant." Clicking it will open the chat screen on the right.

How to Find and Use the eBay Support Chatbot

You'll then have the option to choose a specific issue. You can also try typing a message to the bot and hoping that it understands you. 

This might not be as good as getting help from a real human, but it can still save you time. You can at least get answers about something specific rather than having to read the whole article to find one little piece of information.

Can I Contact eBay via Social Media?

Perhaps the easiest way to reach eBay customer support is through social media.

Twitter

Ask eBay Twitter Account

eBay has a dedicated customer service Twitter account: @AskeBay. Follow them so they’ll have the option to direct message you, and then Tweet your question with @AskeBay inside. You should receive a response quickly.

Facebook

eBay's Facebook Account

Reaching eBay on Facebook is just as easy. Just visit the eBay Facebook page and send them a message. You should receive a response within one day.

If you live outside the US, you should reach out to the eBay account based in your country, such as the eBay.co.uk Facebook account.

Summary

Under normal circumstances, the fastest way to get an answer from eBay customer service is via phone. But email, Facebook and Twitter are the only ways to get help from a human at this time. Please only contact eBay if you can't find the answers you need in their help center. You'll help everyone else get the help they need!

Thanks for reading! If you found this article helpful, please help us back by sharing it with the buttons below. :-) And if you’re looking to provide great support to your own customers on eBay, you might also enjoy our articles on getting awesome feedback or understanding eBay’s return policy.

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