Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Dec 4 2012 21:16:32

No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

By: Ina Steiner

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In October, we asked if users would like to see seller tools on EcommerceBytes, and a resounding 94% responded "Yes." So we're happy to announce that the first application in our new "Seller Tool Kit" is now live!

eBay Power Search lets you use wildcard searching on eBay and lets you search for the most watched items in your niche. Third-party developer Michelle Waldorf created the eBay Power Search app based on her Watched Item search tool on WatchedItem.com.

eBay Power Search covers all eBay U.S. and international sites, and includes only active listings. The search app fills in some gaps and will be welcomed by sellers (and buyers) who miss having the ability to use wildcard searching. You can learn more about the tool and its feature that lets you search most-watched items in Wednesday's EcommerceBytes newsletter.

We have more tools in the pipeline, some we're developing and others that will be co-branded efforts, such as eBay Power Search. As each one rolls out, we will announce them right here on EcommerceBytes. Our hope is to give users the most comprehensive library of quality free tools available.

We are keeping the survey open so that you can send us your ideas, and there's a link to email David directly with suggestion on the top right corner of the new search tool page.

A huge "Thank You" to all those who filled out the survey. I haven't been able to respond to each person due to the overwhelming response, but the expressions of support for this project and the developer interest is gratifying.




Comments (14) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 09:03:12 2012

Congratulations and thank you. Those eBay jackasses might wake up yet.

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

This user has validated their user name. by: permacrisis

Wed Dec 5 09:52:10 2012

It's a start.

Hopefully with enough of this API toe-dipping, you folks will say "Ahh, the hell with it" and just launch an auction site.

We thee pray!

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Wed Dec 5 10:27:19 2012

Brilliant! Nicely done!  

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: CK2 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 10:32:48 2012

Fast, easy, accurate, and inviting display. It even shows all the variations' item-level photos and exact pricing for listings with variations. A+

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 10:51:34 2012

I plan on using it............Looks great

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: Steevo This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 11:26:32 2012

No completeds.  That's too bad, we didn't renew Terapeak because their data was so awful. They are in way over their heads.  

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: BackInBlack This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 11:29:33 2012

So now at least more sophisticated users *might* be able to have their own workaround for the coughing, sputtering search engine now in place. Yay. Still doesn't help *buyers* find your item.

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 19:28:06 2012

If it helps find items and if eCommerce is willing to work towards a better search feature then we should ALL stand up and cheer.  IF all of the "kinks" or features have not been fixed or perfected surely noting what is needed and sending suggestions to Ina and David would result in a functional and innovative way to search and buy.

Kudos to David and Ina!!!

And--I SECOND the thought of the David and Ina Auction House!!!!!!

PLLLLLEEEEAAAAASSSSSEEEEEE!!!!!!!

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

This user has validated their user name. by: WatchCount.com
Web Site

Wed Dec 5 20:24:00 2012

That's a handy tool that I expect many eBayers to find useful.

We have a similar search feature over at WatchCount.com , but it works a little differently -- it'll show wildcard-enabled search results *directly on eBay* using classic/complete/proper wildcard processing, the way you're used to.

Here's how: On our home page, just enter your search terms with wildcards/asterisks as you normally would, then click the "Show Me...!" button.

Whether or not you're interested in our Most Watched Items search results (which currently handle the wildcard properly), you'll see a note and SPECIAL LINK at the top of search results -- that link will take you to eBay and show you your wildcard search on eBay properly, processing the wildcard syntax as you intended it, the way it used to be.

... A nice example of the differences between old and new wildcard handling on eBay: search for "18* -18" (without quotes) in the Books category. That aims to include listings with titles that include years in the 1800's, but eliminate the simple number 18. When performing that search on eBay itself under the new wildcard processing system, you get zero results, since eBay ignores the wildcard and then negates the 18. With our special to-eBay search link, you'll get the results you intended, many of them with the year 18xx in the title.

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: NullApps This user has validated their user name.
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Thu Dec 6 00:25:27 2012

If you look closely at WatchCount's site you'll notice that the hack is the ''&_pppn=v3'' appended to your search URL on eBay.

Enjoy.

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: exdwh This user has validated their user name.

Thu Dec 6 12:58:45 2012

Both of the above suggestions fail for the following search: "100 74*00" should find "100 74ALS00" in "Electrical & Test Equipment".

--David

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: NullApps This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Fri Dec 7 07:02:42 2012

@ exdwh

You're right.  The API these guys are using is obviously the old Shopping API.  I'm not sure how Shopping works but I think it is a separate system.  The Finding API is built on top of the same search that exists on the site.  That _pppn trick looks like it is using whatever eBay had a few months back.  Did you happen to run that same search before eBay retired wildcards?  Did it work as expected or was it broken just like these searches are?

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: exdwh This user has validated their user name.

Fri Dec 7 07:45:40 2012

@NullApps,

No, I'm not sure my example ever worked as expected in eBay search.

With all the 'intelligence' eBay has added, the only way to get accurate results is to browse by specific categories/attributes and then analyze the titles in code.

Nobody is going to give away a tool that actually works. It's too valuable to power buyers.

--David

Perminate Link for No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...   No Wildcard Search on eBay? Not so Fast...

by: abprules This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon Mar 4 14:57:21 2013

Sounds like a good idea but when I did a search for something we have listed, it didn't show up? Just curious how the ''behind the scenes'' searches are working.  



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