Significant eBay Search Issue Uncovered, Could Be Hurting Sellers

Chris CrumeCommerce & Retail

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There's yet another issue happening on eBay that likely isn't going to sit too well with sellers that many probably aren't aware is even happening.

The finding comes from eCommerce news blog and eBay watchdog eCommerceBytes, which reports that eBay's search engine is having issues specifically with its Item Specifics and filters. Ina Steiner writes:

I worked with a seller today to try to understand what she discovered with her listings, and the results are disturbing. For some of the examples she supplied me (clothing), if I filtered search results using all the item specifics she had set in a particular listing, eBay search excluded her listing from search results - even though some other sellers' listings appeared.
This is exactly the opposite of how it's supposed to work - the seller is being penalized for using Item Specifics when listing her products. And in these cases, she wasn't alone.

All in all, she says there are two major problems that are happening. Items in listings are reportedly being excluded from searches using when using Item Specific attributes and specific attributes that are being used may be excluded from filters. Either way, it means reduced visibility in cases where users are actually looking for specific things.

Some readers have commented on Stein's blog that this has been an issue for years or suggested that this is by design.

To eBay's credit, it did recently announce a new seller requirement for product identifiers aimed at making it easier for sellers to find specific items they're looking for. This won't necessarily apply to all types of items, however.

Earlier this week, we reported on another controversial feature eBay has begun to roll out globally, which sellers have also taken issue with. This one lets customers say whether or not they received the item they purchased on or before a specific estimated delivery date.

Image via eBay

Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.