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EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 1707 - January 17, 2008 - ISSN 1539-5065    2 of 3

eBay Officially Announces Best-Match Test

By Ina Steiner
January 17, 2008

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eBay officially announced what users have already noticed - the company has been testing Best Match as the default sot order in search results. eBay announced on Wednesday that over the next few days, it will run a test where Best Match will be the default sort order in the following five categories: Consumer Electronics; Computers & Networking; Cameras & Photos; Cell Phones & PDAs; and Toys and Hobbies.

Rather than displaying results by time ending or by price, Best Match tries to serve up the most relevant searches for shoppers. Best Match uses historical buyer behavior, and eBay announced in June it would also use seller performance factors in Best Match. So far users remain skeptical, with some saying eBay's attempts at Finding 2.0 actually make it more difficult for them to find what they are looking for.

Buyers and sellers have been discussing the test for over a week on various threads on the Search board (http://forums.ebay.com/db1/forum.jspa?forumID=80). Some users say the test actually affects all categories, including collectibles. One user suggested clearing cookies on their computers to get out of the test.

eBay said users can change the sort order by using the Sort By dropdown menu and can customize the sort options from "Customize Display" if they want their preferred sort option to be the default option, though some users have reported having difficulties using these features since the testing began.

A discussion of Best Match testing is also going on in the AuctionBytes Blog (http://blog.auctionbytes.com/cgi-bin/blog/blog.pl?/pl/2008/1/1199896239.html ).


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 ina@ecommercebytes.com.

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