AuctionBytes Blog
Covering auctions, collectibles and marketplace selling.

AuctionBytes Blog The AuctionBytes Blog has been giving a voice to online merchants since its launch in 2005. Named one of the world's top 30 blogs in 2008 by "Blogging Heroes." Weigh in with your thoughts on the joys and pitfalls of selling online.
Fri Dec 6 2019 00:38:45

Is AI Creating Inaccurate Attributes in Etsy Listings?

By: Ina Steiner

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A seller is blaming Etsy's use of Artificial Intelligence for problems in search. In a post on the Etsy boards, she said she found inaccurate attributes in her listings she hadn't added. These attributes caused her items to show up in searches that didn't apply to her products, which had the potential to mislead shoppers, she said.

Specifically, she found "outdoor" in the attribute field for "Room." That's a problem, since her pillows appeared in search results for the term "outdoor pillows," she explained. "I specifically avoid using the term, because there are special fabrics that are meant to be ... Read More

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Wed Dec 4 2019 15:54:54

Impact of New Amazon Star Rating Flow on Sellers

By: Ina Steiner

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Amazon was a pioneer when it came to a retailer offering shoppers the opportunity to leave product reviews, including negative ratings. It was a gamble that paid off - that practice is credited with helping boost the popularity of the marketplace in early years, since shoppers used reviews to help them decide whether to buy a particular product sight unseen, something we now take for granted.

But these days, Amazon has been battling the problem of fake reviews left for products on its marketplace. A consultant noted this week a change Amazon made in September and highlighted ... Read More

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Sun Dec 1 2019 21:08:02

Sellers Raise Questions about Amazon Sensitivity Filters

By: Ina Steiner

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Could some sellers be abusing Amazon "sensitivity filters" for product reviews to harm rival sellers? One EcommerceBytes reader raised the issue today:

"I discovered recently that Amazon is now hiding three of my reviews, all for health products. They are only available for "private viewing" not public. The explanation on my profile page is "hidden by sensitivity filter.""

He was concerned that some sellers might be using the feature as a trick to block positive reviews of rival products - but digging into the issue, that does not appear to be the case.

Amazon explains how the sensitivity filter works on Read More

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Wed Nov 27 2019 17:49:08

Etsy Advice to Sellers on Dealing with a Negative Review

By: Ina Steiner


Etsy shared some advice for sellers in a post on Monday titled, "What to do when you receive a negative review," though it wasn't well received by some sellers who are sensitive about new Etsy policies.

The moderator advised sellers, "One of the most important things to remember is that you have a chance to potentially turn around bad reviews. This can take shape in a few ways, but we always first recommend trying to work with a buyer via Messages before posting a public review response." 

Buyers can change or remove bad reviews, she said - "Either way, you'll always be able ... Read More

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Mon Nov 25 2019 20:11:02

Beware Amazon Impersonators Targeting Sellers

By: Ina Steiner


Fraudsters are targeting sellers in various emails purporting to be from Amazon or its supposed partners. Phishing emails are nothing new, but they may be ramping up for the holidays.

Here are two emails that readers forwarded to us in the past two days to warn other sellers. The first seller said the email he received looked official with all the Amazon logos but was not sent from an Amazon address. "Please warn everyone not to click on anything in this email," they advised:

Greetings from Amazon
We have placed a hold on your Amazon account and all pending ... Read More

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