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Mon Aug 27 2007 14:12:55

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

By: Ina Steiner

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Another Wall Street Analyst gives eBay kudos for its Best Match sort of search results that brings back search results by seller quality instead of strictly by relevance. Scott Devitt of Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. wrote in a research report on Monday:

We believe services such as eBay's Best Match will offer best distribution to those that deserve it - the best merchants. There is a pure Darwin characteristic to the Internet that eBay fought for a long time and, finally, the company is gravitating toward providing a marketplace in which consumers can have a safe and satisfying experience. eBay's recent changes are a wake up call for merchants who do not provide the absolute best experience for their customers.

See our previous post, "Analyst Believes Best Match Will Rejuvenate eBay," which garnered 20 comments from readers debating whether Best Match - which may become the default sort order - is good or bad for smaller sellers.




Comments (11) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: Patricia

Mon Aug 27 20:53:35 2007

I believe we're seeing the beginning to the end of ebay's monopoly of the online auction business.  Just about every seller I know is now listing elsewhere or looking into listing elsewhere.  It is my biggest hope that one whale of a class action suit is levied against ebay when they institute this best match policy.  I think we've had just about enough of the nonsensical policies and the outright favoritism to the high volume sellers.

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: Sun

Tue Aug 28 15:21:44 2007

I don't think this is the end of eBay. Best Match along with a reduction in listing fees will see great improvement in eBay. Excellent sellers (e.g. ones with great feedback) need a bump in the search rankings so buyers can have a risk-free transaction.

eBay's current format of visibility by sheer listing volume and listing time is a bad concept for buyers since there is no quality control. Hopefully, best match will lead to a sink of volume sellers that provide poor service.

Price is important, but it needs to be tempered with good customer service for a healthy repeat-business marketplace. Best Match will be the single most important motivator to improve seller quality on eBay (if implemented correctly).

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: LOL

Wed Aug 29 00:14:15 2007

what was the last improvement that was implemented correctly from its inception on the site

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: abby

Wed Aug 29 23:42:20 2007

I am hoping to keep up with my sales in spite of or maybe even because of this new MATCH system. Time will tell..."Changes, theres been a few" (too many lately) I do not really see how eBay benefits from this one?
P.S. INA-Love following your eBay reports!

abbys808 -eBay site

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: sandy

Fri Sep 7 21:44:50 2007

I'm not entirely sure that the ''best'' merchants will surface under the eBay system.  What will surface is merchants who sell high volume.  There are currently a number of ''high volume'' sellers who get a substantial number of negative feedback, but are able to maintain decent overall ratings because of the volume they sell.  That doesn't make them ''good merchants, offering a satisfying buying experience to their customers''. The other problem is that sellers are rated on things over which they don't have complete control....like shipping costs.  USPS's recent price hike has made it very difficult for sellers to get a decent rating in this area.  Shipping time can also be a problem, since that too is controled by the shipper.  I do think it's important that sellers are held accountable and offer outstanding service.  I'm just not sure that the way eBay is measuring that service, is the best way.

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: Greg Martin

Thu Oct 4 01:55:18 2007

This new default search result method is a disaster.  I buy and sell on eBay, and I couldn't figure out why my search results kept appearing out of order.  In some cases, I'm robbing sellers blind while in others I'm being outbid by three times the amount something is worth.  And believe me, I know what I'm doing.  I have an MBA with and emphasis in Decision Science, and I work in predictive modeling in the insurance industry, so I know databases and how to search for keywords in titles and descriptions in eBay.  Lately, I have actually felt sorry for some of the sellers in the auctions I have won.  I'm also worried that my auctions will perform poorly as I gear up for my annual Christmas season auction.  Will I get robbed blind?  Who knows.  With a 100% positive rating of 250+, I hope I'm ok.  If that's not good enough, when it comes time to sell, I might as well lay back and enjoy it because I'm gettin' hosed.  My advice to sellers is to keep your eye on the upper right portion of the screen and keep setting it to "Ending Soonest."  My advice to sellers is to try and find another place to sell your stuff.  Unless you're stupid, who wouldn't?  You'd think that eBay would make enough money through effective cost reductions that come with growth and scale economies, but apparently that's not good enough.  It's greedy corporate policies like this that cause people to vote for Democrats.  Well, that's just my opinion.  I could be wrong.  Sellers - good luck figuring out this new curveball.

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: Greg Martin

Thu Oct 4 02:16:01 2007

While I'm on a roll, one more thing...

I noticed that eBay posted a memo from Esteban Kozak saying that "Best Match" is a completely optional way of searching.  Don't buy into this.  It's the new DEFAULT way of searching.  That's why it's a disaster.  Unless you buy constantly, like most sellers do, it's likely you won't notice what changed.  Buyers should be able to defeat this new system by setting their preferences by through the "Customize your display" option.  That should help realign the laws of physics in database searches so that you can see what's ending soonest.  More advice?  As most sellers know, it's buyers and sellers vs. eBay and the post office.  Make sure you hit the "View Seller's Other Items" button regularly so that you can combine shipping on multiple purchases from a single vendor.  Of course, eBay could care less either way because they always get their insertion and final value fees.  While it's now impossible to sell smart, at least people can still buy smart.

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: A

Mon Mar 3 22:47:07 2008

If anyone knows of any other selling sites besides ebay, please let me know.  As a customer of ebay, paying about $400-$700 in fees, I would like to give them a negative comment.  They sent me an email saying that my 99.6 percent rating was below the threshold.  I wonder what their positive feedback score would be based on customer satisfaction.  Probably about a 20% because most sellers can't wait for the competition to push them out of the market.    

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: A

Mon Mar 3 22:52:26 2008

Also, did everyone catch the slick campaign to raise rates?  They advertised lower listing fees, while final value fees made a huge increase.  I have good feedback, but it looks like they don't want the small person to sell anything.  Notice how the first listings have sellers with thousands of feedbacks.  They are like the wal-mart of the internet.  Soon the small guy will be forced out.

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

by: kp

Sun Apr 13 16:12:42 2008

Ebay's best match is the worst idea from ebay yet. and they have had many! items ending in 1 minute are hidden on page 50. How can buyers compare when only 2 or 3 sellers are on the first and second pages? Consider someone who has a feedback of 50 with 100% positive feedback. They are showing up on page 1, 2, 3, etc. Now, consider the seller with 15,000 positive feedback with 30 negatives. 30 negs out of over 15,000 feedbacks is EXCELLENT. However, their items on on page 20 and back! Fair? I don't think so! The veteran seller is being punished.

eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?   eBay's Best Match to Promote Natural Evolution?

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

Sun Apr 13 18:22:43 2008

Every day it becomes clearer why Wall Street is in the sorry shape that it is -- unchecked greed, an unwillingness or inability to look beneath the surface, a penchant for swallowing corporate press releases hook, line, and sinker without investigaiton or critical analysis, and their incestuous relationships with the corporations they're supposed to be objectively evaluating.

Best Match probably would create natural seller selection IF it worked properly.

But Best Match doesn't work properly, and had any of these financial whiz kids bothered to spend 15 minutes on the ebay site checking things for themselves or if they actually knew anything about how ebay works, they would have seen the self made disaster that ebay continues to create for itself.

1. Seller scores are often figured improperly and erratically.
2. Refresh the screen and receive a different result each time.
3. Some high volume sellers receive even lower FVFs than qualifying Powersellers because of PESA's b*tching and moaning thus putting them artificially higher in the Best Match search than their feedback and DSRs merit.

No wonder DYI investment sites have proliferated in the last few years with idiots like these giving insider, self serving 'advice.'

Are Bob Peck and Scott Devitt smart enough to spell Jeffrey Skilling or Ken Lay? Bears Stearns and Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc., and the others who think ebay is such a good investment should go the way of Arthur Andersen.

These ebay recommendations border on criminal.



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