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eBay Fast ‘N Free is the latest shipping option offered by eBay. The name is hard to type and can be confusing for companies when trying to figure out how to qualify. That’s because it’s part of a broader eBay program and makes demands of your shipping and fulfillment practices.

So, let’s break down what it is and how it works, who qualifies, and if it is a smart option for your business. First up is defining what the service is according to eBay and what it means for your customers.

What is eBay Fast ‘N Free?

The eBay Fast ‘N Free program is an ecommerce shipping option that allows you to highlight fast shipping on your product listings, pages, and your ads. When you’re in the program, eBay will automatically show a guaranteed delivery time based on your handling time, and it’ll list out the delivery and courier services you offer as well. 

Fast ‘N Free listings require the following criteria:

  • 4-day or less delivery time from you
  • You offer free shipping and an expedited delivery option
  • Shipping within the 48 contiguous US states (both you and your buyer)
  • Same-day or 1-day handling
  • No local pick up or freight as the default shipping option
  • Isn’t in the “Classified Ad” format (for ads where the listing shows up)

eBay says it applies the label automatically, so it covers the orders with a seller protection program. That means it’ll cover the listings’ liability, and if the delivery is late, eBay makes it right for the buyer. The shopper will see items covered here by the listing with a Fast ‘N Free logo and “guaranteed by” dates instead of “Estimated delivery.”

If the shipment is late, eBay protects you too. The company will remove any negative or neutral feedback left by the buyer regarding late delivery. However, you aren’t protected against defects or listing inaccuracies, and continued problems can get you kicked out of the program. Plus, eBay covers the cost of making it right for the shopper — either paying for return shipping if you accept returns or giving them a voucher to put toward their next eBay purchase.

You also get some of the standard eBay protections, such as coverage for when guaranteed items arrive late due to major and unexpected weather events.

Is it different from eBay Guaranteed Delivery?

Fast ‘N Free essentially is a subset of the eBay Guaranteed Delivery program because you’ll need to qualify for the Guaranteed Delivery option first. Here’s what you need first:

  • Set same-day or 1-day handling time. If you offer same-day handling, we recommend setting your same-day cutoffs to help eBay understand your timing.
  • State-eligible carrier services in listings that include options for 1-day shipping or expedited service. Generic listings such as standard, economy, expedited, and flat-rate freight do not meet this requirement. That means specific options from FedEx, USPS, or UPS.
  • Add a postal code to the item location. Get precise with your ZIP code.
  • A minimum of 97% on-time handling rates
  • Use eBay labels or other labels that share automatic tracking data
  • eBay Store subscriber with at least 100 transactions per year

While the eBay requirements don’t specifically say this anymore, they still seem to require an option on every Guaranteed Delivery product that gets it delivered in 3 days or less. That time frame is covered in the carrier options it views as “eligible,” but it’s good to have it stated directly.

How do I qualify?

Qualifying is relatively simple for Fast ‘N Free once you’re in the Guaranteed Delivery program. eBay only lists three requirements:

  1. Offer free delivery and an expedited delivery option
  2. Offer same-day or 1-day handling
  3. Always upload your item’s tracking details (automate this when possible!)

Most of the checking is done behind-the-scenes by eBay. There’s a secret sauce for applying the tag and how eBay calculates shipping times. According to sellers, the best thing you can do is both offer free shipping and a priority shipping option. Working with a 3PL like Red Stag can also help eBay trust that you meet its same-day or one-day handling requirement.

Who pays for Fast ‘N Free?

This is a common question we hear, and it’s really about how you manage your shop and the options you offer. 

In most cases, you pay for shipping because you have to offer a free shipping option. What that typically means, though, is that you’ll bake the cost of shipping into the price of your products. That way, you still have the revenue to cover the cost.

However, customers also get access to expedited shipping on these products. When they choose that option from your list, they pay the additional cost. It’s that easy.

Is it worthwhile?

For most companies, the Fast ‘N Free program is a significant help. Not only does the icon appear in your ads, but it also ensures that you’re in search results when someone selects a “Guaranteed Delivery” or free shipping option. People use these to narrow down searches, and you get to stay in the results.

The tag can also help your products stand out a bit more on the results page, but you’ll find that many, many products have it. You’ll often stand out the most (in an awful way) if you lack the badge.

Some people report that their Fast ‘N Free listings also get placed higher in search results. There’s no proven link to how much it helps in overall searches, but you do show up in more of them because your goods meet a more comprehensive range of restrictions and filters.

It’s a competitive advantage that doesn’t cost you anything to join.

How can Red Stag help?

Red Stag Fulfillment offers our own guaranteed shipping, which lets us reach 99% of Americans in three days or less, helping you qualify for eBay Guaranteed Delivery and Fast ‘N Free. Our timetables and tracking systems integrate quickly and meet eBay’s requirements while also making it a snap to give your customers updates as they happen.

We average more than 99.99% accurate and on-time shipments, keeping you in eBay’s good graces, too. Compare that to the industry average of 73%, and it means long-term savings and reliability for your company.

While all of that’s happening, you also save money on shipping. We work with major carriers every day and receive discounts due to our volume. Those discounts get passed along to you, meaning our customers save on their shipping costs on top of the labor, warehouse, service, and other savings we provide.It’s ecommerce fulfillment made easy. Plus, you can try us risk-free for 30 days. Get your assessment and see how much you could save while also becoming eligible for some of eBay’s most lucrative product tags.