|Mon Oct 4 2010 10:58:58|
eBay Sellers Test New Dupes-Policy Compliance Tool
By: Ina Steiner
Sellers worried about whether their listings comply with a just-announced eBay policy are starting to use a new tool designed to help them test their compliance. The new policy takes effect October 26, when eBay will begin automatically ending duplicate Fixed Price listings.
One seller who used the new compliance tool reported that one of their items was listed twice in the report despite that one of the listings had expired on September 23. The seller also noted that it appeared identical items listed in different categories were not considered duplicates by the tool despite having identical pictures and descriptions.
An AuctionBytes reader emailed, "It would appear that the "tool" is a nothing more than a report of results of an eBay scan. I might add 80 listings, but there is not a way for me to initiate a scan of my listings to see if there was any duplicates. There is no indication on the page when the next run by eBay will be, or how frequently they might execute the "tool.""
Some sellers posted feedback on Twitter in response to our inquiry about the new tool. @ayunigifts said, "Tried new tool - gave me no dups... either it works great, or it doesn't work at all, I'm not sure!! Will try again later"; @tenner3 said, "dupe list tool- surprisingly it worked very well"; and @Sweetebuys said, "I tried it Friday it works I have a couple of dupes. :)"
eBay launched the new duplicates listing policy on September 21, saying it would be enforced "to prevent search results from being dominated by multiple duplicate listings of the same item from the same seller."
High-volume sellers of commodity items will be most impacted by the policy, since they can only offer one listing per unique item, and are scrambling for a new listing strategy. The CEO of ChannelAdvisor, which powers many of eBay's largest sellers, wrote on his blog that he was very worried about eBay's "off-cycle emergency de-dupe effort" - a reference to the fact that eBay did not give sellers 60 days' notice of the change.
If eBay's duplicate listings policy sounds vaguely familiar, you may be thinking of its "Identical Listings" policy which it rolled back in November 2008. If eBay's high-volume sellers feel they are impacted by its new "Duplicate Listings" policy, history could repeat itself.
Update: Here's a link to the tool.