Sina Tech, 10/10/11
Hangzhou-based B2C e-commerce site Taobao Mall today announced changes to its merchant management system. Merchants must now pay an advance deposit against any future contract violations, from which at least RMB 10,000 will be deducted and deposited in the consumer protection fund in the event the merchant fails to honor an agreement.
The existing annual RMB 6,000 technical services fee has been raised to RMB 30,000 or RMB 60,000, depending on the service level required. Taobao Mall will also refund part or all of the technical services fee if merchants reach specific targets for operational scale and service quality.
Taobao Mall also announced it will take a zero tolerance approach towards counterfeit products. Merchants found selling counterfeits will have their shops closed and lose their contract violation deposit, while affected consumers will receive five-fold compensation.
The new rules also require merchants to pay compensation for inaccurate product descriptions, late shipments, and other violations. In addition to refunding the full price of the product sold, merchants must also pay additional compensation. For example, if a shipment is late, the merchant must pay a 30% penalty, not to exceed RMB 500.
Editor's Note: According to a separate report from TechWeb, merchants must pay an advance deposit of either RMB 50,000, RMB 100,000, or RMB 150,000 against future agreement violations.