|Sat Jan 4 2014 13:22:29|
Cracking the Code on eBay Cassini and Best Match Search
By: Ina Steiner
Once eBay changed the default sort order of listings in search results years ago, sellers found themselves in the hands of algorithms to determine the exposure of their listings. eBay decided what factors made a listing relevant, and it went one step further: it began using other criteria besides relevancy.
eBay began using Best Match to reward sellers for whatever behavior eBay wanted sellers to follow, from free shipping to generous return policies. All this has made optimizing listings very difficult for eBay sellers.
Then along came Cassini. eBay fully launched its new search engine platform in the U.S. in June, giving it new ways to manipulate search results. Since the summer, sellers have noticed certain techniques that give them a boost in Best Match - but often temporarily, some have reported.
So when a seller mentioned in an email to me that his sales were up 80% this year, I asked him what he was doing to achieve that growth rate. He wrote back describing 11 practices he uses that he believes attributes to his listings success on eBay.
Some of his techniques have been mentioned by other sellers, others are right out of eBay's list of best practices.
I talked to the seller by phone to learn more about his business and background. He gave me permission to publish his guide on the chance it could help others and as a basis for discussion, but he wished to remain anonymous.
You can read the guide in Sunday's EcommerceBytes Update newsletter. As I mention in my editorial:
"eBay is not a one-size-fits-all marketplace - conditions vary depending on category, listing format, quality of descriptions/titles/photos, the feedback ratings of the seller and other factors. Optimizing for algorithmic search engines is part science, part art. The best advice marketing experts give is to test everything - so read the article and do some testing and see what works for you."
Let us know what you think of the eleven tips detailed in "From the Trenches: An eBay Seller's Guide to Cassini Search," published in Sunday's EcommerceBytes Update newsletter.