eBay.com test new My eBay pages

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testing on some new features on My eBay pages. There will initially be two test groups – one who can opt out, and one who can’t – and you’ll know if you’re seeing the new beta version because the page will be primarily yellow rather than blue.

My eBay Beta screenshotAs I’m not in the test group myself, I’m going by what other people are saying here.The major feature change appears to be the introduction of lists within the watch list: rather than everything being in one list as it is now, you can break it up into ‘items I’m going to snipe’, ‘items I might BIN’, ‘items I’m researching to sell myself’, ‘items I might get Biddy for her birthday’ and so on. A screenshot suggests that lists are not limited to individual items, but can also contain saved searches and favourite sellers too.

This is a great way for items that you’ll be looking for over a period of time. But in assuming that buyers are going to research and search and browse and make lists, I think eBay are really overestimating the amount of effort that the average eBayer wants to put in on the average purchase. What about the buyer who wants to hit the site with a very specific want in mind, buy the first decently-priced one they find, pay, and forget about it: because that’s how the majority of ecommerce transactions go, and if eBay is really going to survive, behaving in a way that people are used to is essential.

Purple-Orange-Blue
Creative Commons License photo credit: code poet

Making it easy for people to come back and find items they were looking at yesterday or last week is great. But what about items you’re looking at now? I need to buy a new laptop battery today, and I’m going to browse through half a dozen sellers trying to find one who looks reliable and is in the EU. I can’t be bothered adding things to my watch list and then clicking through to My eBay and finding the link for watch lists (it’s not a feature I use that much) and considering which battery I’m going to pick. The “flow”, as eBay refer to the process of doing things on-site, is just too cumbersome here. I want, in fact, a shopping cart, like every other ecommerce site has got. When are eBay going to roll this out beyond eBay India?

If you’re one of the lucky Beta testers, let us know what you think in the comments below.

17 Responses

  1. wonder if they are going to add a
    whoops I forgot to bid on that ,because I was watching it column

  2. For me, the ‘Watch this item’ function was never a smart move by eBay !

    Why – because in the past buyers placed a bid to ‘mark’ an auction – a sort of place holder, and very often went back to bid to win, and their bid could also encourage bids from other buyers.

    Sellers don’t need window shoppers – they need buyers leaving deposits (bids)!

  3. Re New My eBay Page and new listing page
    I couldn’t find the blog about the new item pages, just wondering how this is going to affect people with listing templates etc such as frooition.

  4. Morning! How was the windy city?

    .. I have mixed feelings about shopping carts. On the one hand, I really *really* want one, as I do sympathise with buyers who find something else they prefer, but are ‘stuck’ due to the inflexibility of ‘buy it now’ with the current system. There’s no way of ‘substituting’.

    But part of me does wonder if a trend in ‘abandoned carts’ would decrease revenue for eBay sellers? I’m fairly sure that of the webby buyers that get past a homepage and decide to buy some stuff, a significant % are lost at the checkout. eBay has always given a little protection from this because of the mechanics (and inflexibility!) of this process.

    I *guess* a kind of halfway house would be sensible – add to cart – finished? – ‘commit to buy’ but I’m still not sure of the business impact on an ‘extra stage before I get my money’ :mrgreen:

    Georgie

  5. George, at the moment, it’s impossible to guess how many sales eBay sellers lose through “I’ll look a bit further and see if there’s anything I like better… oh dear, now I can’t find the thing I was looking at before”. So I don’t think abandoned shopping carts would make this any worse. Inflexibility doesn’t increase sales: if anything, I think the inflexibility pushes people off-site.

  6. PS I have a sneaking suspicion that’s the first time you’ve commented round here, me dear? Welcome to TameBay yada yada yada 😉

  7. lol.. is it?! I normally have far too much to say 😛 I think I said something before about renting bead caves?

    Yeh, I’d agree that inflexibility could push buyers elsewhere (like to my website -heehee)

    I get quite a few eBay emails like this though: ‘I bought this parrot but now I see this budgie which I’d like instead – and I can’t work out how to remove the parrot from my order’ – which of course they can’t do.

    What might be nice is cart functionality up to a certain point, allowing folks to swap and remove items, and then a ‘commit to buy – once you press this you can’t swap stuff around and you have to pay for it’ button on the whole cart?

    I’m still a bit cautious about another hoop to jump through though..

    Anyway. Over and out – I mustn’t make this posting lark a habit :mrgreen:

    gxx

  8. Beads everywhere whirly, but I believe Georgie likes cake too 😆

    I tend to agree with Georgie here, I wonder if this would also make the ‘I bought this large order by accident when my child/cat/dog/parrot used checkout’ type of problem.

    Would buyers use it like a watching section and leave it, as said above. I think items would have to be still available for sale until checkout/commit to otherwise stock could disappear to the shopping cart oblivion (or is that the same as the ‘Awaiting Payment is now?).

  9. I would envisage it as working like that, DBL – that putting an item in the shopping cart *doesn’t* remove it from stock. Essentially, it would allow combined instant payment on all BIN items.

  10. “Essentially, it would allow combined instant payment on all BIN items.”

    This functionality existed on eBay Express, so there’s no real reason why it couldn’t used on the main site, if they wanted to. But like GG I’m a little cautious of giving buyers any more hoops to jump through.

  11. Given the poorly conceived and appallingly executed new search processes and screens that are currently being inflicted upon eBay users, I am extremely suspicious of any more eBay “improvements”. Far too many of these developments seem to be because they are possible, rather than because they are needed. There again, if eBay is deliberately driving away the “fleamarket” sellers and buyers in favour of becoming an online shopping mall, I suppose shifting to a shopping basket approach goes along with the policy. As I count myself amongst the “fleamarket” buyers, who enjoy eBay for the excitement of the odd and quirky to be found there and the personal contact with sellers, if these pointless changes continue to be forced through I will be leaving to find somewhere more interesting and more fun to use.

  12. Do we sellers get a discount on seller fees for testing eBay’s nonsense? I think we should. And 50% of testers are FORCED to test. An outrage! I still hate the new SYI form that was forced upon us. Especially after using Firefox 3.0 that is not supported properly by eBay: With Firefox 3.0 I am not allowed to ship abroad so I had to switch to MS Explorer again. How retarded is that?

  13. I hate this beta. I am of the 50% who cannot opt out. Curse this new flashy design. I want my old menus back.

    Thankfully I can log into ebay.ca and it all looks normal again!!!

  14. I too am one of those that is forced to use the My eBay Beta.

    Since being forced to use the new My eBay Beta, I have posted extensively on the My eBay Discussion Board.

    I have also sent detailed information regarding what I dislike about the new format and how it does not service my needs to the feedback e-mail address eBay set up for receiving comments on the My eBay Beta test ([email protected]).

    In both locations, I have repeatedly asked to be removed from being forced to participate.
    So far, I have gotten nothing but platitudes and ‘take a deep breath’ type responses and comments.

    I am deeply dissatisfied with the new format (previous functionality/features missing or radically different & unusable, very poor use of space, silly ‘recommend’ or ‘random item’ listings added to previously useful functions like my saved searches, instead of all my listings on one page they are spread out over *many* [6+] pages, instead of fixed menus in a frame along the side of the page I have time delayed pull down menus, … the list goes on and on and I have informed eBay of every item I dislike and the difficulties this new format is causing me compared to the old format).

    Worse, despite my repeated requests to be allowed to ‘opt out’ of this Beta test, I have not received a response that will allow me to do that (I have received ‘too bad, you cannnot opt out’ type responses).
    eBay customer service did send me an e-mail with instructions on how to ‘opt out’ but the instructions they sent did not work for my account (they directly me to click on a link that does not appear on my eBay page).

    Words fail to describe how misused I feel by eBay.
    Less than 48 hours ago, I would have rated myself as ‘satisfied’ to ‘very satisfied’ with my 10 years of eBay experience (I started using eBay in July 1998).
    The last 24 hours have completely turned my opinion around.
    Because of eBay’s heavy handed implementation of this ‘beta’ test (a true beta test does not have mandatory participation), I am now extremely dissatisfied with eBay.
    I am not sure what, if anything, eBay could to do return my view of them to what it was less than 2 days ago.

    I can only hope that this forced participation has some major backlash and those who signed off on implementing it are made to sleep in the bed they made.

    DonMoody

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