(Slightly) good news for custom made item eBay sellers

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Seller of custom made items on eBay will be delighted to hear that eBay appear to be listening to your concerns.

You can now send larger images through eBay messages (although they are still compressed). The change has only been noticed in the past few days, so it’s worth running some tests to see if you can get good enough quality images for your requirements.

Previously eBay were massively compressing images. In May we wrote about a 5312px by 2988px image which was compressed to 500px by 281px and this useless for just about any requirement. Our latest test shows that the same 5312px by 2988px image sent through eBay today is now only compressed to 1600px by 900px.

The image above shows the original image size, the compressed image size after being sent through eBay messages back in May this year and the size after being sent through eBay images today. Previously images were being compressed to less than 0.9% of the original size (measured by pixels). Today images are being compressed to around 9% of the original size.

This is good and bad news, it shows that eBay are listening to seller’s concerns and that some sellers printing relatively small items may actually be able to use the compressed images. The bad news is that if you’re printing 3m canvas posters (yes I have bought several banners on eBay in the past) then a 1600px image isn’t really ideal and you need a bigger original image to print.

Bravo to eBay for listening, but please can you go further? Sellers need to be able to receive full size images and yes that does mean transmitting quite large files without compressing them. Alternatively there needs to be some relaxation to the current sanctions being imposed on sellers who have already completed a sale and just need to give their email address to their buyer so that they can receive the images.

The larger images also don’t solve the problem of sending contact information in eBay messages. If I want my phone number printed on a dog collar tag, or if I want my address, phone and email numbers printed on the business cards or flyers I’m about to purchase then I need to be able to send this information to the seller without either of us getting banned from selling on eBay for 7 days.

Good to see some progress, further work still required. For those sellers printing smaller items an image only compressed to 9% of the original file size might work. For sellers who need better quality images, compressing to 9% is just as bad as compressing to 0.9% – if the file quality is too still to low then this change won’t help them at all.

5 Responses

  1. Yeah, agreed, it’s a tiny movement that doesn’t really help out much if at all, unless you plan on sending over 300dpi business cards without contact information on there?!

    I mean, I guess novelty badges and keyrings are okay but you’re still getting compression and reduction on even 6 x 4 inch photos.

  2. Actually it shows, once again, that they haven’t listened to what sellers are saying. If they had, they would know that a file compressed to 9% is just as useless.

    Their lack of any solution to sellers of personalised items is a shambolic way to treat their customers – but eBay refuse to even acknowledge that sellers are their customers. We are treated with utter contempt. It is no longer a suitable platform from which to sell custom items.

    There are currently over 250,000 listings requiring a photo to be emailed and most of those still have email address in listing, which according to ebay will prevent the item from being re-listed in October… or September, depending on which announcement you choose to read – they can’t even be consistent with the date.

  3. I have done a picture test with the improved image upload system and it is definitely a lot sharper, but still not good enough for large scale photo prints.

    I sell photo panels on eBay so I am looking for the best possible image quality, unfortunately, this improved system makes photographic images appear washed out when compared to the original. I could add extra vibrancy back into the image in order to match the original, but this is difficult if I do not have the original image to compare it to. Ultimately the customer will blame my printing technology and possibly leave negative feedback. Time to move over to Etsy.

  4. i did notice the change the other day, the result ain’t all the way solution, don’t have this problem via etsy.
    i was told off ebay though that i’m allowed to send my contact details/email address once they have bought off me, so they can email the image over, still scared when i send it though :O

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