eBay Opens Playground to Showcase New Search Technology
By Ina Steiner
eBay has been testing its new search technology, which it calls "finding," to a small percentage of buyers. It is now allowing all users to try it out on "The Playground," a site that utilizes new, "intelligent" search capability similar to eBay Express that interprets what the buyer is looking for.
The Playground gives users access to all the same listings found on eBay.com, but some features, such as Advanced Search and Completed Item Search, are not yet available.
Playground searches may bring back results that don't have search terms in the title because the search system uses additional information, such as item specifics.
eBay says it wants user feedback "on everything from the look and feel to whether you're finding the right items easily. Plus, all bids and purchases are binding, just like in the "regular" Finding experience, so you can get your shopping done at the same time you’re checking it out!"
eBay will be updating the Playground with new features and changes as it tries new things and as it receives feedback. Users can go back to the regular eBay site by simply closing their browser or clicking "Go to the regular eBay site" link.
Rebecca Nathenson is the product manager who put the Playground together and is called the Playground Monitor. The finding team consists of developers, product managers, quality assurance engineers, user interface designers, and content specialists. The development teams are headed by Technical Fellow Eric Billingsley and Sriram Samu; the product management team is headed by Jeff King; and the user experience group is led by Preston Smalley.
About the author:
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to email@example.com.
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