Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Fri Oct 12 2012 11:28:51

eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay will emphasize Product rather than Seller information on new eBay View Item page, to be rolled out in the coming weeks. eBay is changing the page that showcases items for sale, and in addition to new design features such as a sleeker font, eBay is moving key elements of the page to emphasize the product and de-emphasize the seller.

Larger photos and product attributes greet visitors to the product page - and notably, item condition is now found first, right at the top of the right column. (Sellers won't object to the concept of giving item condition visibility, as it will help sellers of used and refurbished goods as it helps to manage buyer expectations.) Shipping cost, expected delivery date, and return policy site directly above the seller User ID.



Other key changes include:

- A section for Item specifics is now above the fold.

- The "Add to Watch List" is easier to see.

- The link to a seller's eBay Store has been moved down below the fold.

- The link to "Save this seller" has also been moved down below the fold.

- The link to "See other items" remains above the fold, however.

- eBay had previously removed the Item number from above the fold, and annoyingly, it remains below the fold.

eBay is also adding an element that scrolls down the page with you that links to key sections of the page, letting you jump directly to certain sections.

eBay is again taking a page out of Amazon's book in emphasizing product over sellers. It's interesting to note that Buy.com has done the opposite in Japan where its parent, Rakuten, competes with Amazon and is emphasizing the seller over the product.

Buy.com is now adopting that approach in the U.S. Consumers can purchase much the same product as at Amazon, Buy says, "but we hope they prefer to buy from people rather than a faceless Internet." See Buy Bets Big on Third Party Merchants.

What do you think of the new View Item page? And which approach do you think eBay should take? Celebrate the uniqueness of its third-party sellers - like Buy.com? Or minimize who the shopper is actually buying from - like Amazon.com?





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Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Fri Oct 12 12:01:21 2012

Well if I didn't feel invisible before now.....  

I don't like the miniscule seller / store name. It should be a larger font to stand out a bit more. As a seller, I have some loyal buyers. As a buyer looking at search results, I have several fave sellers I like to deal with. When I find myself asking - ''Who's the seller''  I don't like to spend a lot of time looking for a name. I know I'm not used to the new listing pages yet, but I find the Seller / Store names to be almost invisible to the untrained eye.

Repeat & Multiple sales help sellers. You'd think eBay would encourage them in the name of more FVF's.
I've always thought ''Sellers other items'' or ''Store'' Should stick out like a sore thumb, in the hopes a buyer would check it out. I was trying to ''Save'' a Seller just yesterday & could not find the link. I gave up!

On the positive side: I like the item specifics in their new spot. So many people don't use them. With the sparse & insufficient info that so many listings have these days, I look at item specifics more often in hopes the seller used those for missing info.  

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

by: Mr. Me This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 12 12:06:17 2012

of course ...... e-bay sellers are little more than faceless wal-mart employees..... poorly paid, expendable worker-bees

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Fri Oct 12 15:14:50 2012

eBay pushes sellers to achieve Top Rated Seller status then wants to downgrade those achievements and downplay the seller by hiding the seller and their reputation from buyers.

This is the latest step made by clueless management that has never completed a single sale under the systems and policies they impose.

eBay wants buyers to think they are buying from eBay, but still put sellers on the hook for customer service, returns etc. Taking all of the credit but having no skin in the game is eBay's idea of a successful business model.

eBay invests millions in programmers time to change things that do not need to be changed solely for the sake of making buyers uncomfortable.

If eBay were run by intelligent leadership, they would be assigning programmers to go through eBay's existing systems and repair the various glitches and recurring technical failures that plague the site before making changes solely for the sake of making changes.

This latest iteration of the item page will confuse buyers who were just starting be comfortable with the changes eBay imposed a few months ago.

eBay's schizophrenic ADD riddled management needs to learn that changing everything every few months does nothing to improve sales, but instead, serves to confuse buyers and drive away business.

Not to worry though, in another 6 to 18 months, the newest latest and greatest item page format will come out and change everything back to the way it was simply because eBay can not leave anything alone.



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This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Fri Oct 12 15:38:12 2012

@Ric ''eBay pushes sellers to achieve Top Rated Seller status then wants to downgrade those achievements and downplay the seller by hiding the seller and their reputation from buyers.''

Have you noticed the TRS badge is getting closer to looking like a micro-dot! LOL - it just keeps getting smaller & smaller. Aren't they supposed to be rolling out a new SUPER TRS Badge before long? Hopefully it will be a bit larger in the interest of those that still care!

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Fri Oct 12 16:05:53 2012

Aesthetically... it's an attractive layout. Well organized and easy to read (from what I can see in Ina's screen capture.)

The de-emphasis on individual sellers (and their reputation, and their stores) should ALSO BE ACCOMPANIED by a de-emphasis on DSR's.

BETTER YET... just eliminate them entirely!!

If eBay sellers are to be folded-in and blended-in to a homogeneous mixture... where we will have NO identity, NO personality, NO history, NO chance of building a good individual reputation, NO chance of easily acquiring repeat customers... then the DSR's no longer make sense. (Or, more accurately... the DSR's make LESS sense now than they ever did in the past!)

PREDICTION: In the coming year, our HTML templates will be prohibited. All product descriptions will need to be in plain ASCII only. (We'll be lucky if we're able to add bold or italics.) Everything will be generic... another one-size-fits-all approach.

eBay wants buyers to think to themselves ''I bought it FROM eBay'' rather than ''I bought it from Annie ON eBay''. --- It appears that eBay is well on its way to achieving that goal.

I got out just in time! It's annoying and frustrating to see how eBay has abandoned sellers and how little regard--and respect--eBay has for sellers. BUT, at the same time... I have a GREAT SENSE OF RELIEF in knowing that my presence on eBay is my CHOICE, and not my NEED. Three years ago, I was in panic-mode. Now, I'm just in ''shaking-my-head-mode'' for each new change that comes down the pike.

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This user has validated their user name. by: permacrisis

Fri Oct 12 16:31:49 2012

Bravo, Annie!

I especially agree with the "I bought it FROM ebay" part.

I've said it elsewhere... just another step on the road to the 100% Final Value Fee.  

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

by: rqtball This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 12 16:35:49 2012

Does not look bad....BUT if this is coming out in the next few weeks that means it will be out right during the holiday season!

Wait till after xmas...there will be bugs in it, buyers will be confused.

Not good for us sellers to make a major change like this right before the holidays..

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Fri Oct 12 17:26:41 2012

As predominantly little more than an eBay watcher now, it irritates me that it now takes about 27 clicks to get to and from “Completed listings” … grrrr! At least this new page has not yet arrived in AU, and the AU page also still has many more list sorting options …

Regardless, if you understand that eBay is directed by of a bunch of narcissistic sociopaths, you may come to understand why they care nothing for any of their users—their only thought is for the “bottom line” on which their bonuses are based … These headless turkeys literally are incapable of seeing the forest for the trees …

eBay / PayPal / Donahoe: Dead Men Walking

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

by: Susan Averello This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Fri Oct 12 21:31:14 2012

From a buyer's point of view, the item is what I'm looking for. In all the years I've bought on Ebay, I have always just said - I got it on Ebay (sorry guys, never remember the seller) But it's the same when I buy on Etsy or Artfire (and I have sold on both)
It's a harsh truth but the average buyer doesn't care that much who the seller is. Even when I have gotten custom made goods on Etsy/ AF, when people say where did you get, the easy answer is the name of the venue, just like you say "This?  I got it at a craftshow

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Fri Oct 12 22:00:01 2012

Caring about who the seller is is probably relative to what you are looking to buy. A lot of my purchases are REPEAT purchases from a given seller. In some instances I've bought from the same seller for years. Just this week I purchased my 4th item in a 2 month period from a single seller I recently discovered. On more than one occasion I've referred people to a couple of the sellers I repeatedly use. (Sometimes I wish I had their business cards to hand out!)  

I do routine searches more often that I go to my ''Favorite'' sellers page. Often, during the course of looking at the search results I run across something that someone I have bought from has listed. That is why being able to see someone's name is important to some of us.

On the flip side, I have a lot of repeat buyers. They may be finding me through search results, too, as far as I know so I'd like for my username /store to be noticable.  As many have stated: eBay is not one size fits all - a varied experience for buyers as well as sellers.

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

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

Fri Oct 12 23:00:28 2012

Another example of ebafia's lack of respect, contempt, an utter disdain for the legions of peons who pay their million dollar salaries.

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Spartacus

Sat Oct 13 00:13:29 2012

@Susan Averello, sorry but you couldn't be any further from the truth. Sure, every merchant has occasional buyers but in the case of merchants who deal in OOAK and collectibles, repeat buyers are the name of the game.

As an example, I led all my repeat eBay buyers to my website which is now the ONLY place I do business and my business is better than when I was using eBay and Amazon.

I'm actually considering setting up an eBay store again, just for the purpose of leads.  

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: eBankrupted

Sat Oct 13 05:40:27 2012

So we all were trained to earn that feedback and DSR/TRS seller status and our seller reputation would be the main detail that buyers focus on when considering a purchase. What seems weird now is that ebay actually seemed to set us up for failure, but we didn’t fail. Now that TRS sellers walked the plank and overcame the bloodletting, we fall through a new false floor to now find the seller identities and branding we worked to hard to achieve to be completely anonymized without consent or input.

Ebay _was_ unique, and so were it’s sellers. Ebay has now decided that it’s more important to covet and imitate Amazon’s identity than to stay loyal to what made ebay unique?

(In theory) I Expect Amazon to buy ebay by hostile takeover once EBAY INTERNATIONAL AG (a Swiss company) runs short of alleged pyramid revenue that accounted for the alleged cash sandbagging that allegedly cooks the books for Wall Street each quarter..?

…In the meantime know that ebay is now your competition, and massage your customer base accordingly. There is no future on ebay. Your seller sandcastle can be washed away overnight when they put you ‘below the fold’ altogether. They don’t want you; they want your manufacturers. Do not comply. I repeat; do not comply.

Addendum; Collectible vintage, made-in-the-USA sellers should avoid 'Setify' like the plague, or share the same fate as the new item sellers are now feeling. Ebay will find a way to financially screw you too. The recent collectible China ‘Ming’ era promotion was a direct slap in the face of those on this blog? Think about the timing of that and draw your own conclusions. You are having an impact.

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Sat Oct 13 07:08:15 2012

Spartacus writes: ''I'm actually considering setting up an eBay store again, just for the purpose of leads.''

That's precisely what I'm NOW doing. Except... I'm not listing in the store format. I'll spend a dollar each month for a couple of GTC listings. And when eBay has one of their ''List Free'' promotions, then I'll add additional inventory.

It's a low-commitment way to meet new customers and to drive sales off-eBay. It's also low-stress! --- If it sells, it sells. If not, then 'oh-well'... no big deal.

When I was a child, I'd go fishing with my dad and brother. Looking back, I recall that their ''strategy'' was to PARK a couple of poles at the edge of the dock (baited hook with a bobber) and just leave it there in case some passing fish wanted to take a nibble.

''Here, Annie. Just watch this bobber. Don't touch it! If it moves or goes underwater, call me or Daddy.'' (What fun, eh?)

THEIR MAIN FOCUS was casting and reeling out where the majority of ''big-fish'' were found. They didn't spend all their time and effort focusing on the shallow-water smaller fish that wandered around the water's edge. BUT... THEY DIDN'T IGNORE THEM EITHER.

That's my philosophy too. My *eBay* sales are now the equivalent of lazily fishing around the edge of pond... waiting for a fish to discover the cricket on the hook.

In contrast, my *website* sales are the equivalent of casting-and-reeling out in the body of the lake/pond. A little more effort... more activity... deeper water, bigger fish, BIGGER rewards.

Plus... it's a LOT more fun, a LOT more exciting, and definitely MORE REWARDING and SATISFYING.

Perminate Link for eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page   eBay De-emphasizes Sellers on New Listing Page

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

Sat Oct 13 08:41:12 2012

Why doesn't ebay just change their name to Amazon Too?  This is another ill conceived move by ebay. They need to get back to what made them unique and a fun place for buyers to shop.

I talk too more people everyday that say they no longer shop on ebay because of the constant changes and making it hard to do business with individual sellers.

ebay needs to spen more time correcting the software bugs than diminishing the buyer experience.

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

Sat Oct 13 08:45:39 2012

That was a really good analogy Annie.
Like.
:)

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rocky

Sat Oct 13 11:34:07 2012

Thanks, Annie.  That was a good analogy.  I use eBay auctions as loss-leaders to fish for the bigger buyers and the truly dedicated collectors.  As for eBay de-emphasizing the seller -- so be it.  I am an occasional buyer and can't tell you who sold me what!  Bottom line:  So What.  I will browse a seller's inventory but only after finding an item I'm hunting for, just to save on shipping or to see if I can find a similar bargain in the seller's Store or at auction.   I have regular buyers and have converted most of them to other venues (whew!).  I'm in the process of moving all the low-end merchandise to other sites and leaving only the items that are geared toward the specialist collector or items that warrant ''free'' 1-day shipping.  As has been pointed out above, a buyer says they bought on eBay, not from seller XYZ.  A similar situation arises from there being so many cookie-cutter small stores at shopping malls.  When asked where someone got the latest trinket, it came ''from the mall''.  Which faceless store sold it gets lost.  No problemo!

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

Sat Oct 13 11:41:27 2012

Henry! I just visited your eBay Store.  I see that Vendio/Auctiva is down for you too.  What's wrong with these folks!?  I use Vendio (same thing) and my images won't load.  Aren't things hard enough as it is?  Sheesh.

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by: Patricia This user has validated their user name.

Sat Oct 13 13:31:41 2012

"sleeker font"???  How about a more "readable font" and not a "microscopic size font"????  Its a trying time these days when huge spreads of white space with the tiniest print available is so stupidly the norm!

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This user has validated their user name. by: Island_Sam

Sun Oct 14 12:18:14 2012

Ebay is killing my business

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