Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Wed Feb 11 2015 22:33:14

eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

By: Ina Steiner

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When visitors click through to an eBay listing, they can see photos and structured data at the top, followed by the seller's description. eBay turned on a switch on Wednesday evening in which some visitors can no longer see the description unless they click a separate button.

According to one user, clicking the button brought up a popup box containing the description. The user then had to close the box before they could see other parts of the listing page.

A seller wrote on the eBay discussion boards that she was "heartbroken" at the way the listing page now looks for her. "I spend so much time writing descriptions and taking great pictures. Loading them to the web, writing the HTML. I'm kind of heartbroken that the listing page looks so bad now."

She continued, "I just listed 2 antiques for more than a hundred each - who the heck is going to continue buying that kind of piece when the listing page is so ugly and difficult to read?"

Another eBay user was not so polite, tweeting, "eBay now wants to hide item descriptions behind a mouse click. What the actual fuck?"

They continued to vent on Twitter, "Whoever proposed that idea, and those who saw its implemention on the site for testing, have clearly never used the site before," and added, "eBay is frustrating."

However, not all users are seeing the new feature, which appears to be a test eBay is running. We asked eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore tonight if that was the case.

See Thursday's EcommerceBytes Newflash for more details, and let us know what you think.

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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: brokentoys19 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 16 23:09:53 2015

RE: "eBay to Protect Sellers Hurt by Hidden Descriptions"

oh please! Protect sellers? really? That trollbait was exposed and known as pure fantasy since 2008 at least. How many times will they try that?

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: 10 year seller This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 00:11:44 2015

Maybe after the split from Paypal they'll sell eBay to Jack MA,(alibaba).

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

This user has validated their user name. by: Unicorns and Rainbows

Tue Feb 17 14:29:18 2015

"So, according to a follow-up posted by Ina today, some eBay mis-manager surnamed "Terrell" promises - please, suppress laughter! - that eBay "will remove any -FB that it identifies [sic]" as resulting from the hidden description F/U."

Yes, that is Jeff, their Community Manager.  Trouble is, when you call Customer Service, they will tell you they've never heard of Jeff Terrell, and have never heard of whatever it is he's saying this week.  

Of course the buyer is never going to say the hidden description was what caused the problem anyhow, so the entire claim they'll "protect" you from this is pointless (other than the minimal propaganda value).

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: cybewings This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 18 16:14:26 2015

HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE! I am going to lose sales hand over fist! Who thought this up? Fire Them!!!! You have to click on another link, the page will not open up all the way, you have to SCROLL AND SCROLL AND SCROLL to see anything! HORRIBLE! EBAY SALES WILL PLUMMET! YOU HAVE SOMETHING LIKE 3 SECONDS TO GET ATTENTION TO YOUR AUCTION. FOLKS ARE GOING TO BE ONTO SOMETHING ELSE, THIS IS HORRIBLE! SHUT THIS FEATURE DOWN!

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: Red Ink Diary This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 20 08:45:15 2015

I was price comparing on Monday and literally could not find a description. If I still actually bought stuff on eBay I would have emailed the seller but I don't, so I didn't. Later in the day (same project) I found the button

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: Red Ink Diary This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 20 08:47:51 2015

cybewings (above) is exactly right. Purely due to orneriness I eventually found the description but there was no prize for persistence.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 20 08:49:03 2015

As one of the UNWILLING LAB RATS I can assure you that as of 6:45 am FRIDAY 20th the TEST is still on-going.  Awful doesn't half cover the situation. LOOKING at what this Click-Wall HIDES from interested buyers is yet another reason to KILL the Mobile APP... let along NEVER let this abomination take over the MAIN site.  Looking at how little I see of my own OR more importantly OTHER seller's ads I am amazed that MOBILE BUYERS haven't triggered SO SO MANY Defects that ALL of us sellers haven't been Kicked Off of EBay over misunderstandings.  I just broke my own "rule" and DID place an eBay order an hour ago. I was already SET to buy when I SNAPPED to the need to go to the BOTTOM of the PAGE and penetrate the Click-Wall.  Glad I did. BUT NOT for the REASON you might expect.  The CLICK-WALL was hiding that the SELLER had glowingly GOOD feedback up in the Stratosphere of 5 MILLION feedback AND will be shipping from CALIFORNIA, not Mainland China. GREAT SELLER might well have MISSED out on my purchase had I continued to SEARCH after finding WHAT I wanted at a GREAT price and reasonable postage.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: North Korebay This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 24 00:03:07 2015

In this episode of toiletbay, the fascist new world order flexes one of its many satanic artificial economic shut down branches of full spectrum dominance to help make sure you are too poor to afford raising a family! Tune in to the hilarious antics of fiddling as rome burns, and marrying your horse like Caligula buy your fiddles on ebay. The new tyrant is found at the top of a corporation, not a country. Their goal is to make you give up, to make you hate yourself. Then you will be as sick and twisted as they are.

I bet only ebay employees can see your "listed" items in cantseeme search. They can buy your thousand dollar item for 99 cents because its invisible to everyone else, then they resell it with 100% visibility. Ebay is the fusion of economics with satanism. Ebay hates humanity and all of life and wants to prolong maximum suffering. This is supported by the truest evidence that exists, direct observation. Ebay is socialism, ebay hates the individual, ebay was vulnerable to the heart bleed bug. The only type of profit left for people who are not in on the epic scam is negative and called a loss. Your buyer will demand 2 refunds on the same item, steal it, and leave negative feedback, and probably be a secret agent working for ebay. Good luck, this is literally war. This is what war looks like in modern times. It is done with computer bits and automation and the force of government. Every other job has been artificially destroyed too, I wonder when they will start passing out the suicide kits. It is not genocide if they make life so miserable that we all voluntarily kill ourselves right?

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: ignatz This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 24 13:33:22 2015

And as usual, Lil' Jeff provides meaningless blither-blather, parroting the company line rather than contributing any actual thoughts to the issue.
So the idjits at ebay want to "simplify" the buying experience?  How about this for a listing screen:

--------------------------
Video game ---> $19.99
BUY NOW!              
--------------------------

That's so simply, even the geniuses who run ebay can understand it!

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: helensue This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 24 17:15:13 2015

My ebay pages and listings have been messed up like others, but last week I called customer service and after 30 minutes on the phone, I was told to try Internet Explorer and sure enough I can see descriptions now??

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: wonderswhy This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 25 05:35:24 2015

Its so damn disgusting anymore, you take the time to create a nice listing and ebay shites all over you. I had to re-do some of the item specifics as that's what's showing. Its all aimed to the big sellers and box stores. If a buyer doesn't read the listing how will they find the info on shipping discounts, that little green print on the shipping & pmt info you can hardly see to begin with.

So now Ex: if I sell 2 items @ $5. each =$10 with S&H of $ 2. + .25 for each additional item = $12.25.
A listing for same thing with so called free shipping on 2 items @ $8. = $16. the customer is paying more $3.75

Buyers do not watch this, don't pay attention or read & if they'd buy 3 items with free shipping they would lose $6.50.

Of course ebay always makes out on the % on sale. I get so damn tired of them suggesting I use free shipping, who in H do they think they are kidding, I'm not going to do this to my buyers so ebay can make more money, what gluttons they are.

With all the millions being paid to all of the exec's in this world, what else can they buy with their millions? Are any islands still for sale?
We sure are slaves to the system.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: helensue This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 25 11:47:07 2015

Well said wonderswhy, I agree completely. I buy beautiful templates (I sell dolls) and now they look like crap!! I've been a TRS for 3 years and I haven't listed anything in 2 weeks. Sales are way down too

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: helensue This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 25 16:07:04 2015

Well i can't believe I finally figured out how to fix problem.  Hope it works for everyone.
On Chrome go to tools and clear browsing data + everything in the box except passwords.  It was so simple and worked immediately

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

This user has validated their user name. by: iBuyers

Thu Feb 26 08:46:04 2015

Good news, we are a eBay Top Customer Care Managed Account, and have been told by our friend who is a TCC agent this will not be fully implemented because of the overwhelming resistance from buyers and sellers.
Hopefully that is the truth, but he is usually correct.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: AnyWho This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 26 12:17:50 2015

Bonanza has been doing this for several months. It's insane.

What's even crazier is how I've noticed ebay and bonanza copying each other's features over the last couple years. Why copy a STUPID IDEA?

As a buyer, it's very frustrating to not see the item description I was hoping to see when I clicked to get to that listing in the first place.

I now must hunt and search EVEN HARDER to find that little "see description" link. Absolutely, utterly, nonsensically crazy for no reason.

Oh wait, the reason might be so buyers see all the other ads and photos on that page that are not related to that page at all. Hmmm...

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

This user has validated their user name. by: baconsdozen
Web Site

Mon Mar 2 15:37:30 2015

Ebay has gotten tired of alienating its sellers so it's now doing the same to the few people left who actually look at things for sale on the site.
Up the creek without a paddle.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: fwi123 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Mar 6 08:44:25 2015

This insane idea is still in effect. How long is ebay going to keep this up? It's not helping sales.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: Mark4 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Mar 6 13:19:00 2015

Ebay is unreal. if anyone needs a reason why there marketplace is failing here it is. We fired ebay after the defect policy came out. We move all of our stock to Bonanza.com and Amazon, our sales have doubled. Seriouly, if you are reading this, know that you don't need ebay anymore, bonanza.com is awesome. that is where the ebay sellers and buyers are flocking to in droves. The sales and traffic have been great.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Fri Mar 6 14:07:50 2015

LAB RAT #0010005011 here reporting that I'm no longer in the FIRST TEST, but strongly suspect I am now in PHASE TWO.  PHASE TWO..if true .. shows itself in that USING MY MODERN DELL LAPTOP running Windows 8.1 I can NO LONGER ZOOM any of the pictures in REAL WORLD eBay listings. Not only NOT MY OWN, but also NOT ANYONE ELSE's. Is anyone ELSE having this particular TWISTED problem?  I actually RELY upon using the ZOOM and could CARE LESS if MOBILE users can Pinch / Expand the photos on THEIR ITSY BITSY TINY screens.  I expect to be in the minority but for myself.. if the MOBILE APP blew up and CEASED functioning this afternoon I would NOT mourn it for even a milli-second. Someone else on eCommerceByte EKG has reported a problem with THUMBNAILS... any chance that is an attempt to describe the SAME thing I have of no longer being able to ZOOM?  ZOOM blows a pic up MUCH MORE than the "click here" and have all the pics increase only about 50 percent. CD or DVD back covers often have SIGNIFICANT INFO, but in AGATE PRINT font size.

Perminate Link for eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions   eBay Forces Shoppers to Click to View Item Descriptions

by: inreallifeseller This user has validated their user name.

Fri Mar 6 16:39:05 2015

I have a friend that works at eBay. From what I was told, many people internally weren't aware of this change--at least at the agent or supervisor level. There are actually a lot of little features they test on the site but don't bother to mention to the people that have to work on the phones. In this case, they were in the dark about the issue until they came across it themselves or spoke with someone on the phone calling to complain about it.

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