In Spring 2018’s business seller news, eBay announced the trial of a new Shop by Product experience. This includes sellers matching listings to the eBay catalogue and eBay can then display groups of similar listings together.
Shop by Product second wave
Starting in June for a limited number of product lines, eBay will test making Shop by Product the default shopping experience. Listings within these product lines that aren’t yet matched to the eBay catalogue may have minimal or no visibility to buyers. Yes, that’s right, if you’re not adding your products to the eBay catalogue as Shop by Product is rolled out you’ll be killing your sales.
As eBay start to test the experience they are also preparing to expand tests later in the year to a much larger range of products. They announced this earlier in the year so it’s no surprise, but what it does mean is that in preparation they’re asking sellers to match products in more categories to their catalogue. This will include a considerable larger range of products compared to the first wave of testing and so impact a greater number of sellers.
Cell Phones & Smartphones
Computers/Tablets, Networking Tablets & eBook Readers
Small Kitchen Appliances
TV, Video & Home Audio: Internet & media Streamers
Voice-Enabled Smart Assistants
From August 2018, you’ll need to match your Good ‘Til Cancelled listings with the catalogue in the categories above. eBay will also provide you the ability to suggest improvements to the catalogue for products that you feel aren’t accurately described, or are missing critical information. You’ll also be able to suggest new products to the catalogue if you have stock which isn’t already in the catalogue.
From September, you won’t be able to successfully revise an existing listing or complete a new one if you don’t use the catalogue.
What should you do now?
There are two options for sellers which will have dramatically different impacts on your eBay sales.
You could ignore the directive and add existing listings to the eBay catalogue as and when you edit them or your create a new listing. This is definitely the easiest course of action but you are likely to see a dramatic drop in sales and of course the full impact will start to hit you just as we enter Q4 – editing thousands of listings at the busiest time of year won’t be ideal.
The other option is to start matching your listings in August as soon as the tools are available. This has the added benefit that you can identify listings for which catalogue information is missing, incorrect or incomplete.
Our advice would be to start sooner rather than later as we’re only too well aware here at Tamebay that this is a mammoth task and a ton of work – of course this task will be considerably easier if you’ve already been adding GTINs to your eBay listings.
Which of your listings need editing?
First check out the Seller Release information to make sure you know what’s required and if it impacts your listings.
You’ll also start receiving email notifications about which of your listings need revising in order to display in the Shop by Product experience. Seller Hub will show recommendations on product matches for your listings to help you with your revisions, and eBay will be updating tools to help you suggest edits and new products in the catalogue.
Get some help
Speak to your multichannel management provider and ask if they can assist with some automation. eBay are working with channel partners to make sure they enable catalogue recommendations on product matches for your listings, along with the ability to make suggestions to the eBay catalogue.