eBay’s Gold Standard: Titles

No primary category set

ListSmartAltViz recently announced ListSmart, which currently in private beta, to help sellers optimise their listings. Their aim is to uncover the ‘Gold Standard’ secret sauce of eBay listings. Using their ListSmart engine, AltViz have mined the data of over 15 million eBay listings and 5,000 sellers to quantify the performance impact of listing aspects.

In their first article they looked at listing content and features, the second instalment examined images and the third looked at Item Specifics.

Today in the final article they examine how to create effective titles in 80 characters or less.

Effective Titles in 80 Characters or Less

Titles are very important when selling on eBay because they influence two things: buyer choice and appearance in search results:

  • The title is the first thing a buyer sees before buying your item so it must grab their attention; and
  • A good title can help boost search rankings, while a poor quality title may cause a listing to rarely be seen in search results. What is not seen, is definitely not bought!

To dive deeper into the anatomy of top performing titles, ListSmart analysed the top 2% listings in each category based on sales performance. We extracted the common attributes of these top performing titles from which we obtained an interesting dataset from which we extracted valuable insights.

They looked at which type of information is present in the titles of top selling listings in each category by comparing title content to Item Specifics content. Highlights of the analysis are summarised in the graphic below which shows the top 5 Item Specifics used in the titles of top selling eBay listings. They have called out the three most common Item Specifics that show up in titles (coloured below in yellow, green and blue).


You can see from the table above that the Item Specifics used in the titles of top selling listings often echo the particulars of that category (e.g. “Denomination” for the Coins category).

You can read further analysis on the ListSmart website along with a breakdown of some real life titles. If you want to discover titles that work this is essential reading.

3 Responses

  1. First thing a buyer sees is the picture. Not the title. Also I remember Tamebay reporting that eBay say….

    We must remove BR from all listings to be mobile compliant to only 800 characters and that = 50 characters.

    BR = HTML Break. Cant print it here.

  2. 93% of items in certain categories contain the EAN in the title??? i doubt it massively.
    and it’s a revelation that having the brand and mpn in the title is a good idea? i think if i was selling apple iphones, i’d consider using the words “apple” and “iphone” in my title. maybe i’m ahead of my time.


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