Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Sept 9 2013 21:33:19

Will User Generated Content Bring Shoppers to eBay?

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay quietly replaced the Reviews & Guides feature with a new platform called eBay Buying Guides and is on a campaign to purge it of what it considers to be low-quality guides.

As with most changes eBay implements, there are elements that sellers will cheer and some they will jeer. The video explaining eBay's new Buying Guides make it appear that this is a very powerful but easy to use publishing platform - sellers can add photos and videos very easily, for example.



Presumably the guides will also have better SEO features in order to draw more and better traffic from search engines such as Google, as shoppers find the guides in search results when researching product information.

Another plus - eBay is allowing sellers to promote 4 listings in each guide they publish.

However, some sellers have already complained that some useful guides have disappeared in the company's quest to purge spam or rant postings posing as guides.

Others question the quality of the new guides that eBay commissioned to seed the new feature - vintage clothing sellers were vocal in their criticism of guides in that category.

eBay is also placing its own guides above those written by users, though it promises that will change in time after the purging of what it deems poor quality guides.

Guides are designed to be general overviews for shoppers researching a type of product - and eBay also allows users to publish reviews, which are opinions about particular brands.

You can learn more about the new eBay Buying Guides in Tuesday's EcommerceBytes newsletter, visit eBay Buying Guides, and let us know what you think of the old guides and the new. And let us know what you think of reviews that show up on eBay listings.




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Perminate Link for Will User Generated Content Bring Shoppers to eBay?   Will User Generated Content Bring Shoppers to eBay?

by: NetWatch This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 9 23:04:55 2013

The experiences I had as a small seller on ebay starting back in April triggered by a couple of low DSRs (1's and 2's) destroyed my faith in ebay and left an extremely bad taste in my mouth. Keep in mind I've been selling here since 1999 (14 years) and have 4625 positive feedbacks. After they slapped 21-day holds on my Paypal funds and put Seller Limitations on me, I lost any desire to "comply' "acquiesce" or "cooperate" with them. When I read much much worse accounts on the ebay discussion boards of much worse experiences happening to other ebay sellers, my resolve was cemented. What I experienced was quite mild compared to what some small sellers have experienced, and I simply want ebay to be held accountable for the adverse impact they have had and are having on many good decent honest sellers, and I am far from alone in this sentiment. Peoples lives have been disrupted in many, many cases by egregious unfair ebay actions. While it is true that Michael Moore going to Flint, Michigan and doing a documentary about all of the laid-off General Motors workers did not result in GM coming back to Flint and rehiring them, it served as a public expose of corporate corruption. I think a number of suspended ebay sellers who have suffered unwarranted and severe financial setbacks because of ebay are entitled to see ebay's corporate corruption exposed.

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

Mon Sep 9 23:45:02 2013

Oh, that eBay! Cutting-edge, innovative and trendsetting!

When it comes to original ideas, don't ever accuse eBay of being a ''me-too!'' company.

I'm guessing that the REST of eBay is now in such perfect bug-free condition that they can actually afford to take a break an concentrate on ''vital'' matters like buying guides. (After all, eBay IS the go-to destination when someone wants to research product information, right? Right?)

:^/

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 00:12:34 2013

Personally, I dont work for FREE ... so until I can do more research and get proven results - call me Ishmael ... I mean skeptical.

eBays catalog and details are incorrect in MANY places - Im not fixing THEM for free either.

Of course, if they are wrong and you use them and you get an SNAD ... YOU ARE SOL!

Until that mentality ends, I think I'll sit this one out.

After all its another hairbrained JD scheme - that means it wont work and/or last long!

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by: blaumann2 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 00:16:02 2013

I went to ebay.com/gds and got page not available. NICE
Where can I go to see some guides that exist?

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by: PowerSeller2007 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 00:20:10 2013

ebay they seller to divulge secret through the buying guides. It is ready to sell your item and kick you out.

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

Tue Sep 10 00:52:52 2013

Hmmm.let me see if I've got this right.

Ebay is removing "unreliable" guides presumably written by rabble rousing, noisy sellers and replacing them new guides written by rabble rousing, noisy sellers.

In the meantime, their platform is collapsing one function at a time.

This must be some of that "excess delivery capacity" between The Ho's ears.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue Sep 10 01:30:17 2013

Looks like little more than another eBay distraction.

Here is what will eventually happen with these new guides.

eBay guides will appear first.

Diamond's Guides will appear second.

Anchor stores next.

Then all other sellers will appear under those.

If you are a small seller without a store or TRS, then rest assured your guides will appear with your listings, at the bottom of the list!!.

Sellers have something else to look forward to... Guides will poof when the product they create a guide for is offered by a Diamond or a Branded store.


I can hear JD and his hand picked millionaire yes men saying: "Let the sellers busy themselves making up guides and hopefully it will keep the distracted from the declining marketplace traffic."



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This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Tue Sep 10 05:32:53 2013

Totally stupid / useless waste of binary code.

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by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 06:49:44 2013

ebay is just a waste of time for 90% of the sellers. All by design.
Smoke & Mirrors. Stay distracted while the ship sinks.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Ina

Tue Sep 10 07:39:03 2013

I've seen some excellent guides on eBay written by sellers who have indepth knowledge of collectibles and vintage items in particular.

In fact, our collectibles editor Michele Alice has included a number of guides in her compilations of helpful resources at the bottom of her columns, which I can only presume she found through searches on Google etc.

The couple of eBay-commissioned guides I've read are more vanilla - a lot of words, but very generic - and were likely written to be search-engine bait. Putting those reviews before the high-quality user-generated content may prove to be a mistake.

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by: Just My Humble View This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 08:37:53 2013

The eBay guides that I read this morning were also lacking. There were nicely written pretty words, but little substance, and seriously incomplete coverage of even the ''high points''.

To make a comparison, I read a few of the user-written guides in the same category. Not necessarily as pretty, but definitely more substantive -- and far more helpful to a potential buyer.

It would be nice if they would send some of the guides back to the writers for editing, though. No matter how informative, a guide with incomplete sentences, no punctuation, or all caps is annoying and difficult to read. I doubt I would click through to the products offered, expecting the listings to be written the same way.

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by: brokentoys19 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 10:07:36 2013

will there be reviews for ebay's new escort services? They seem very popular on the forums these days. Nice photos too.  

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by: mamie14425 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 10 12:25:14 2013

We don't have the time to waste on this....give us metrics and show us how this benefits our bottom line.....''Show us the money''.....and time is money!!

Perminate Link for Will User Generated Content Bring Shoppers to eBay?   Will User Generated Content Bring Shoppers to eBay?

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

Tue Sep 10 14:36:29 2013

Giving sellers metrics is verboten heresy.

Long time sellers will remember many marketing claims ebafia regularly made such as using this listing bell or that listing whistle increase sales "on average" of X percent.

Being the curious sort that I am I regularly called them and even emailed Negged Meg once and asked for the marketing studies' results that they used to make these claims.

Of course, being the supreme organization of lies and secrets, they refused every one of my requests under the guise that these  'studies' were "proprietary" information.

Most of you have already learned the drill -- if their lips are moving...

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This user has validated their user name. by: WOODJUNGLE! ON EBAY

Tue Sep 10 14:54:05 2013

If was going to try to generate traffic to increase business, it would be to MY SITE.  I pay ebay because THEY are supposed to  be bringing traffic to THEIR site.  They never cease...

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

Thu Sep 12 09:59:23 2013

Will the last seller leaving ebay please turn off the lights?.

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

Fri Sep 13 08:57:23 2013

eBay is just trying to exploit the "blogging" promoting ideas used successfully by sellers in the past few years. It is too bad they have something in the Review/Guide, but never manage to evolve it in something more interesting.  



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