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.
Tue Oct 23 2007 09:05:41

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

I heard two separate reports from sellers that eBay is cracking down on the term "like new" in listings, saying the term violates eBay's Keyword Spam policy. I looked at the policy, and while it says you can't say an item is like another item, it does not specifically prohibit the term "like new."

While reading over the policy, it occurs to me that it's good for sellers to take a look at the rules that are set out as a refresher.

I decided to take the tutorial on "Search and Browse Manipulation" (there's a link to it on the policy page), and I think every new seller should take it. I had to laugh at one screen that came up. One of the multiple-choice questions asks, "Why can my listings be canceled when other similar listings are still up?" Two of the choices are, because eBay favors large sellers and because "eBay is out to get you."

I am trying to figure out if that means eBay actually has a sense of humor!




 




Comments (36) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Jeff S

Tue Oct 23 10:16:29 2007

eBay's KWS policy is out--of--control.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Chris

Tue Oct 23 10:53:00 2007

The funniest one I ever heard of were listings ended because they offered "Next day delivery". They were cancelled on the grounds that they were not related to the UK fashion house http://www.next.co.uk/

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Peter Leeflang - CEO Leeflang Archive Corp

Tue Oct 23 11:33:28 2007

We should report Ebay staff for 'transaction interference'!

The whole concept of being 'a venue', is long gone.

With the degree of control Ebay has with sellers, we should be considered employees.

The IRS would love to hear about this, since they are very strict abou the 'control of work' issue, especially in the context of being an employee vs. being a contractor.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Alex

Tue Oct 23 16:06:20 2007

eBay is micromanaging every aspect of communication & the transaction. No - not ''just a venue.''

On the KWS issue - I think at least part of the problem, is many of the support people do not understand English well enough to make an informed devision on what is actually meant.


''I am trying to figure out if that means eBay actually has a sense of humor!''

God has a sense of humor. eBay, not so much....

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Boogiebob

Tue Oct 23 19:07:16 2007

You have got to be Kidding....This is a common phrase in the english language and these DO-DO birds have no legal right to ban it from use.

What a bunch of morons....

Give us a break eBay and use some common sense....

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: chipseo

Tue Oct 23 21:38:04 2007

I love it... eBay can come up with "keyword spamming" for just about anything they want.  They got us for keyword spamming when we did NOT used the manufactures name of our product but a more generic term.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: acme

Wed Oct 24 09:26:54 2007

Ina - that is incredibly funny - maybe if you select 'b' on the tutorial ebay automatically and proactively naru you! ;)

I think they have to have a sense of humor to deal with their 'customers' - just like the rest of us. Nice to see it shine through.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: john

Wed Oct 24 09:45:52 2007

on balance it's probably not a bad thing that eBay bans the phrase to rid buyers of the numerous sellers who grossly misuse the phrase. After all, what's the difference between, 'like new' and 'new'? It either is or it ain't.
john

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Kati

Wed Oct 24 09:51:51 2007

Banning "Like New" is quite a dumb idea! It is a commonly used phrase and is a good description term understood by most everyone.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Wed Oct 24 09:59:37 2007

Man, ebay needs some like new management!

Ebay IS out to get YOU and your money, and they do allow some large sellers to get away with things that others can't. The  true answer to their sorry little quiz is All of the Above.

It'd too bad all ebay hires are inexperienced and incestuous MBA dot commers without so much as a modicum of common sense, who know nothing about the reality of running a business, even less about selling, and whose only goal is the continuing enhancement of their stock option packages by ANY means necessary.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: tori

Wed Oct 24 10:13:03 2007

Of course 'like new'  is keyword spamming - if used in the title of the listing.

Someone wanting to buy a ''new widget'' is going to search for ''new widget'' and come up with pages of 'like new widget' if 'like new' is allowed in the title.
However, nothing wrong with saying 'like new' in the description.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: John

Wed Oct 24 10:15:55 2007

eBay reminds me of the "soup nazi" on Seinfeld show.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: John

Wed Oct 24 10:18:21 2007

If eBay had just one competitive online auction, their nonsense would be non-existent

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Jen

Wed Oct 24 10:28:29 2007

I sell clothing.  If the item doesn't have the tags and I can't honestly say if it's been worn, but it looks NEW, I use the word "like new".  I just don't feel right about saying New, which implies it has never been worn.  I've also had auctions canceled for using this term in the title.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Shreveport Web Host

Wed Oct 24 11:58:47 2007

I just love how they invented the phrase, ''keyword spamming''.  They use it limitlessly.
More and more courts are ruling that it's okay to use the trademarks of others to describe your items.  
Know your rights and use them!  For example, if you're selling a hamburger that tastes and looks like a McDonald's Big Mac, by all means in your description you should have ''tastes and looks like a McDonald's Big Mac''.  USE YOUR RIGHTS OR YOU WILL LOOSE THEM!

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Cheddar

Wed Oct 24 12:25:19 2007

Okay, so we can't use ''Like New'' on eBay, yet that's a condition category on their Half.com site... obviously they know it is a valid and common description.  They really need to change their item specifics from only having the option of ''New'' or ''Used'' and use the conditon descriptions from Half.com instead.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Dustin

Wed Oct 24 13:20:16 2007

This is the #1 reason I am growing my business off ebay. On ebay I sell mostly used items that we refurbish to new condition. So its not new, its not used, its like new. So out of the blue in my busiest month of the year they call me up and say that they are closing down my auctions. With all the auctions I have I say that it will take me 3 weeks working full time to fix that. They say too bad your the biggest in your category and we are making an example of you.

By the time we got it fixed we lost about 70,000 in ebay sales. I will not put any effort into a site that treats its top sellers like that and has that much control. What will it be next?

What amazed me was after that I started putting more effort into Amazon and they have an entire condition category from a drop down menu called "Used - Like New"

Then after I got all my ebay ads cleaned up I typed in "Like New" on ebay and over 70,000 ACTIVE auctions came up. Quality company that ebay.

1/2007 - 95% ebay 5% off ebay
10/2007 - 50% ebay 50% off ebay

And sales and ASP are up.


eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Alice

Wed Oct 24 14:44:10 2007

Like new actually has no meaning. If it's like new, it must be new. I use the description Near New for items that may have some very minor discrepancy.

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: joy

Wed Oct 24 15:27:51 2007

I sold books on half.com for a couple of years before trying my hand at ebay auctions recently. So I found it odd and a bit disconcerting that ebay bans a term on one site that is used as a primary listing category on it's other site. In spite of rarely using 'like-new' as a desciption myself, it does make me wonder what other little-known rules I might be breaking!  

eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?   eBay Bans Term 'Like New'?

by: Margaret

Wed Oct 24 15:33:18 2007

Here is a copy of an email I sent ebay today - certainly a waste of time, but felt good anyway.
About a month ago ebay arbitrarily whisked away a perfectly innocent listing of mine because it said like new ( which the purse most definately was) Now I read in the auctionbytes newsletter the following:
I heard two separate reports from sellers that eBay is cracking down on the term ''like new'' in listings, saying the term violates eBay's Keyword Spam policy. I looked at the policy, and while it says you can't say an item is like another item, it does not specifically prohibit the term ''like new.''
++++++
There are few things more upsetting on ebay ( and there are SO many things) than having a listing be destroyed  without a chance to fix it no matter how innocent.  
It takes such a long time to create an effective listing and then to see all the work go for naught. It makes one once again want to give up on even selling on Ebay. Who needs this treatment and aggravation.
 I think as long as ebay continues to treat sellers in the shabby way it does, ebay's listing will continue to decrease.
But once more I whistle in the wind because I will get an automated answer or no answer ( this happens more and more frequently now) and this email will be trashed like all the others because Ebay likes to pretend it cares but it doesn't

Click to view more comments
1 2  [Next Page]


Login is required to post comments.
To sign in to leave a comment using your AB Verify User Name, fill in the form below. If you have not yet signed up for AB Verify, or if you'd like more information, go to the Registration Page
.

Login for AB Verify
Be sure and use your email address and password to log in.

 
Email:
Password:
 
 Forgot Your Password?
 Even though you are signed in with the AuctionBytes Blog, you will have to sign in to the EcommerceBytes blog. But you can sign in with your existing AB Verify info.