eBay Shop by Product (Product Based Shopping Experience – PBSE) is to be expanded as eBay drive towards a simpler way of shopping for buyers. This is nothing new as eBay have previously announced the project but they are updating sellers so that they know what to expect for the rest of the year.
If you scroll to the bottom of this article, you’ll also find that eBay are to put steps in place to enable you to list immediately even if a product isn’t in the catalogue and, finally, from late August you’ll be able to match listings to catalogue entries with a single click as well as getting a page in the seller hub identifying which listings need updating.
eBay have heard concern from sellers in Collectibles that their more unique inventory would no longer be visible on eBay is a Shop by Product world. eBay have announced that they have no plans to incorporate Collectibles into the Shop by Product experience for the time being, and buyers will still find this inventory in the same way they have always done on eBay.
New eBay Shop by Product categories coming in early 2019
First up we’ll get the expansion plans out of the way – From October you’ll be able to match products that you sell in the following categories to eBay catalogue. You’ll be able to submit new products and suggest improvements to existing product details. In early 2019, eBay plan to require catalogue matches for products in these categories. Given the amount of categories included in Shop by Product, eBay say that they wanted to give you enough time to implement these changes.
- 3D Printers & Supplies
- Desktops & All-In-Ones
- DJ Equipment
- Electrical Equipment & Supplies
- Heating, Cooling & Air
- Home Telephones & Accessories
- Karaoke Entertainment
- Laptops & Netbooks
- Memory (RAM)
- Multipurpose Batteries & Power
- Portable Audio & Headphones (except Parts & Accessories)
- Pro Audio Equipment
- Surveillance & Smart Home Electronics (except Parts & Accessories)
- Test, Measurement & Inspection
- Tools & Workshop Equipment (except Parts & Accessories)
- TV, Video & Home Audio (except Parts & Accessories)
- Video Games & Consoles (except Video Games)
- Virtual Reality (except Parts & Accessories)
Previously announced eBay Shop by Product categories
Since the beginning of the year, eBay have been testing the new eBay Shop by Product experience so that your buyers can more easily compare available items and quickly decide which product to purchase. In spring eBay announced the test on a limited number of product lines and in Summer 2018’s business seller news, eBay informed you that they’d be rolling out Shop by Product to 12 categories.
- Cardio Equipment
- Cell Phones & Smartphones
- Computers/Tablets, Networking Tablets & eBook Readers
- Major Appliances
- Portable Fans
- Programmable Thermostats
- Small Kitchen Appliances
- Space Heaters
- TV, Video & Home Audio: Internet & media Streamers
- Voice-Enabled Smart Assistants
eBay have now defaulted to Shop by Product for the initial product lines (Amazon, Apple, Dyson, Google, Jawbone, Nest, Roku) that they began the test with. This new experience groups similar listings in these product lines in new search and product pages.
Match with 1-click
In late-August, this page in Seller Hub will show you any of your existing listings that require a catalogue match. If eBay have what you’re selling available in the catalogue, you’ll be able to match your listing with 1-click. Otherwise, you’ll need to search the eBay catalogue and possibly submit enhancements to existing product entries or create new products.
Once the page is live, you’ll also start receiving notifications via email and in Seller Hub. For eBay API users, similar functionality will be made available at the same time. eBay are working with service providers to make sure they enable these recommendations, along with the ability to submit changes to the eBay catalogue.
Quick edits to the catalogue
eBay expect the catalogue to be updated within 24 hours of you submitting a new product or an improvement to existing product details. You’ll have the possibility to automatically list your item once the catalogue has been updated so that there is no delay. This is a crucial step for sellers as it means that, whilst there’s an extra step to edit or update the catalogue, you will be able to complete listings first time around without waiting 24 hours for someone to OK the changes.
Worth noting that “match with 1-click” will stop working once it’s impossible to list without matching, so it’s really only any good for getting old inventory updated. If it were possible to list and then match — ie using PBSE as a marketing tool — then it would make sense on an ongoing basis. I’m prepared to bet that the tools, API and channel management software providers will not be all up to date for the launch.
At the point where eBay prevents listing of inventory simply to boost adoption of some experimental catalogue, it loses its core strength as a marketplace: selection — and selection comes from how easy it is to list. When it simply becomes too bothersome to list, inventory drifts away to marketplaces which are equally tricky to list on, but which offer higher velocity. The right answer seems to have been figured out for Collectibles. Time to realise it’s also true for the entire marketplace — or are we to see eBay retreat into its old niche?
PBSE. Preventing Buying and Selling on Ebay?
I dread the ‘no match, no listing’ dictat. I sell single second-hand items that may never have had EANs or appeared in any electronic catalogue. Or are variants that only hours of hard googling can find any trace of. I do that and I (and therefore eBay) have hundreds of happy five star buyers.
Even new famous brand products produce ludicrously inaccurate ‘matches’ from the lazy eBay incompetents’ threadbare lists. Or no match at all.
They think because they can ID every iPhone model, they can catalog every product on the market. They can’t even manage a tiny fraction of the current marketplace, let alone the decades of quirky legacy stuff. Which ironically is the very thing that makes eBay such a delight for a buyer to browse. They will destroy that in the fruitless aim of aping Amazon’s robot warehouse mentality.
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