eBay call for catalogue help with Product Experts Program

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eBay.com are calling on category expert sellers to assist them in a new Product Experts Program to build out the product catalogue which will power the new eBay Product Based Shopping Experience.

The Product Based Shoping Experience is scheduled to be rolling out across eBay from September. The new shopping experience already live in a small number of categories but if the roll out goes ahead in September it will impact significant numbers of sellers on the marketplace.

eBay are asking three questions of sellers who re potentially interested in being a part of the Product Experts Program:

  • Are you a frequent buyer & seller in one of the listed categories?
  • Do people consult your opinion before buying those products?
  • Are you passionate about a community powered selling platform?

The main aim is for experts to assist in improving the product catalogue (adding images, enriching description, correcting titles, and/or updating item specifics) in your vertical/category of expertise for your use and the community’s use.

“The Product Experts Program (PEP) invites you to pour your far-reaching product knowledge into ebay’s catalog & in return have the opportunity to help shape the future of the category’s structured data experience.

We invite you to apply to PEP & share a bit about your expertise.”
– eBay

As one has come to expect, sellers who commented on the post on the eBay forums immediately asked why they should help build out a catalogue which will also benefit their competitors and if they’d get paid for assisting. Addressing the question of monetary compensation the answer is a flat no – eBay doubtless recognise that any amount would be derisory for serious sellers and if you don’t want to assist that’s not a problem.

The benefits will come in other forms and will doubtless include early access to the catalogue, the ability to influence the catalogue entries for the products you sell, and where there are two competing opinions on the future of the category, as a member of the eBay Products Experts Program your input will be heavily weighted against non-members.

eBay Product Experts Program categories of interest

The categories that eBay are immediately interested in for eBay.com are:

  • Cardio Equipment
  • Cell Phones & Smartphones
  • Computers/Tablets, Networking Tablets & eBook Readers
  • Humidifiers
  • Internet & Media Streamers
  • Major Appliances
  • Portable Fans
  • Programmable Thermostats
  • Small Kitchen Appliances
  • Space Heaters
  • TVs
  • Voice-Enabled Smart Assistants

How to apply for the Product Experts Program

Applying to become a member of the eBay Product Experts Program is simple, you simply fill out a 7 question form on Survey Monkey detailing your areas of expertise and confirming that you’re willing to assist.

22 Responses

  1. SO ,
    what might you get if you pay nothing?
    typical ebay ethos of we you a favour, by letting you do us a favour,

  2. Could help, but won’t

    A ‘product based shopping experience’ via a catalogue format is the biggest stinker of an idea they’ve had for ages

    This could be up there with the time Rakuten decided to rebrand Play.com

  3. hahahahaha.
    where you gonna find an expert on ebay?
    you may have 40 years experience in your industry, letters after your name, peer-reviewed papers published and acclaimed, and know more than anyone in the world about your chosen subject.
    when it comes down to it, your opinion is worth less than Joe-cant-spell-the-name-of-the-product-correctly, in any decision ebay make, and they’re not in the least bit ashamed of that fact.
    ebay don’t have experts, ebay has mugs, i’m one of them.

  4. Mr Patterson – just changing subject – do you know at what percentage of returns you need- to receive the new 4% extra charge ? Many Thanks

  5. “there is a system in place where ebay customer service staff can feed back your opinions to the folk making the decisions. ebay have had certain “initiatives” rolled back in the past due to seller feedback. It does not fall on deaf ears…”

    Seems to be an extra word in the last sentence. It should obviously read, “It does fall on deaf ears…”

    You don’t need to look any further for evidence than the postage tables. It took ages to get eBay to introduce regional UK tables, and way longer to get an international table, which after about 2 years of working on it, eBay had to withdraw a few months after release because it was a total disaster. I had 1200 listings, many of which had the same shipping rates, but eBay managed to produce 2,400 postage tables. The whole process of creating them was one of abject stupidity. Just about every bit of e-commerce software has shipping tables. Some are better than others but most do a reasonable job. So all eBay had to do was consult sellers, ask them what software had the best shipping tables, and then copy it. But eBay, being eBay, decided to re-invent the wheel. The problem was that they had no idea what they were doing and were too dumb to contact postal services and couriers and ask them how their pricing worked. So they produced a single table that could accommodate only one kind of rate. If they had contacted courier services they would have found that they don’t usually work like that. Some are by box rate, some are by weight/dimensional weight. In the EU most parcels sent under contract within the EU mainland will be a box rate. Anything outside EU mainland is by weight/dimensional weight. So its impossible to enter EU mainland and outside EU mainland rates on the table. You have to choose one or the other. The ones you don’t enter are left as “contact seller for shipping rates” which causes lots of people to switch to Amazon or any other site that tells them the shipping cost. As if this isn’t bad enough, eBay grouped countries by continent, which is totally different to how couriers work, who work by zones that are not defined by continental location. Most other e-commerce software allows you to group countries into zones that match courier pricing. As eBay couldn’t be bothered to ask couriers how they did their pricing, instead of having to enter prices for a small number of zones, you have to enter the price for every single country individually. Its no wonder Amazon is growing fast and eBay is hardly moving.

    Over the years I’ve spoken to many support staff about what a disaster the shipping tables are. Most of them have no idea that they don’t work. They say, “oh, you must be doing something wrong. Let me show you how to do it.” After half an hour they have to admit there’s no way you can do it, and say, “you’re right, its a disaster. I’ll pass this on to the relevant department.” The years pass by. Loads of orders are lost due to the inability to display shipping costs for a large part of the world. eBay does nothing (other than overloading you with work making changes to your listings – which makes it more expensive to list on eBay than on Amazon). More years go by. Nothing changes. And all because eBay decided to re-invent the wheel, without having any idea what a wheel was.

  6. Another postage glitch on eBay- we sell antiques by auction format with stated two working days dispatch . However if the parcels are not posted Monday we get dings on our account (mainly to North America). The platform continues to count Sunday as a working day and eBay.com WILL NOT remove these as they claim they can’t- as it would affect other areas of the international metrics calculations. We would go to 3 day dispatch but have had complaints before claiming it’s taking too long in handling. You just can’t win!!

  7. eBay is becoming less relevant because they quit caring about sellers several years ago. They’ve never grasped without sellers you don’t have buyers. They don’t have the young market or women because they’re shopping on Poshmark. Why? Because eBay sellers are headed there in droves and of course taking their merchandise with them.
    Also why would anyone opt to help with these ridiculous product pages? Do all their work creating the catalog AND sign on to be an expert catalog checker for free! Come the f*#k on. You guys are no longer the only game in town.
    Return to your roots and embrace the online yard sale. You will NEVER be Amazon, nor does anyone want you to be. Product pages don’t work for lots, vintage, used clothing, used shoes, retro toys and much more. It’s not gonna happen. Even your big rival Amazon doesn’t fool with used or vintage. With the exception of books and a handful of other items.

    Also your advertising executive needs to be fired. The ads are lame and don’t speak to any buyer period. For goodness sake just come up with a catchy jingle like wayfair if nothing else. eBay feels like a sinking ship, please get rid of this CEO before he completely ruins this company.


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