Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Sept 15 2014 20:22:59

eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay is testing a new ad program for sellers to let them advertise their listings on the eBay website. Some sellers may remember that eBay for many years let sellers pay extra to feature their listings at the top of search results. The Promoted Listings program is different:

"Promoted listings gives you another way to attract more buyers to your items - search results. This service - which is completely optional - gives sellers like you the chance for more buyers to see your items in new places on eBay."

Here's what we know about eBay Promoted Listings:

- Beta participation is by invitation only; it appears to be limited to eBay Stores subscribers only.

- There is no cost to participate in the beta. During the beta period, each selected seller will be allocated a free budget.

- Should sellers choose to spend more than the free budget allotted, they may be charged for the service.

- The beta testing will run from October 1 - December 31st, 2014.

eBay further explained:

"When you set up a campaign, the listings you select to promote are eligible to appear on key eBay pages, in addition to search results. A reports dashboard lets you see your campaign performance, so you can optimize quickly and easily. As a beta participant, you'll also have an opportunity to provide feedback on a brand new eBay service."

If a seller does a good job creating listings, and the marketplace has a robust search engine in place, that should be the end of the story as far as many sellers are concerned. But other sellers have been happy to pay for ads on eBay.

How do we know?

eBay has had other programs in the past, including eBay Keywords that launched in 2003 and was terminated in 2006, and the AdCommerce program.

Here's what it said when it discontinued AdCommerce in 2010: "Our goal is to keep the focus in eBay search results on surfacing the items most relevant to a buyer's search from sellers delivering the best value and service."

And when it discontinued the Featured First program in 2010, eBay explained it was "so that the listings most relevant to a buyer's search from sellers who provide great value and service are surfaced consistently at the top of search results-the underlying goal of Best Match."

Does the resurrection of ad programs for sellers mean eBay is disappointed with Cassini search? Are you one of the sellers who would happily pay eBay to get more exposure for your listings? Does the new program level the playing field for sellers who compete with big brands who get extra exposure on eBay?

Look for Tuesday's Newsflash story for more details, and let us know what you think!




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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Mon Sep 15 21:08:48 2014



This program should come as no surprise to sellers.

Beyond the test, the program appears to be nothing more than eBay management's latest attempt to squeeze more money out of sellers.

If eBay's search engine was even average, sellers would not need to spend more to gain visibility.

eBay management appears satisfied that their minimally effective search engine is just fine as long as they can entice sellers to spend more to get actual visibility and pay more for the privilege of actually having their items seen.

The question becomes, what stops eBay from downgrading sellers visibility in order to motivate them to dump more money into eBay's coffers?

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: laurengrace

Mon Sep 15 21:35:26 2014

During the test, they lure you in, fix it to actually work so that sellers will pay to get their listing seen.A company that manipulates search the way they do, can not be trusted with any more of your money. When you pay for listings, they dont even come up when you use specific search terms. Ofcourse, they will probably stop hiding your listings during the test, to make you think that their promoted ads will work. Take advantage of the test, by all means..Just dont fall for it and rely on it. Just as soon as you get comfortable, they will pull the rug out from underneath you.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 21:52:38 2014

Why have sellers pay only ONCE to have listings shown, when you can lie steal and cheat them into paying TWICE for the same exposure?

Its not easy being sleazy

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Patricia This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 22:55:37 2014

I totally agree with Ric.  Its just another way to shake money out of sellers.  They need to get off their lazy arrogant tushes and sink some of their offshore wealth into some honest advertising.  Right now, at least to most of us, their site is near worthless.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Mon Sep 15 22:58:26 2014

eBay has already stated that they can't guarantee that a listing paid for by a seller will ever be seen by anyone. So now they want sellers to pay even more so potential buyers can actually see the items. Provided there isn't a hack, outage, meltdown, or implosion that day.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: frustrated This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 23:08:53 2014

I used it before along with the banner ads.

It increased my sales by FAR FAR more than I ever spent!!

FAR MORE.

I suggested to them to bring this back, it worked like CRAZY.

But then, this was before Cassini.

Now when I look at my ended listings, about 3% of them don't even show as "Completed"

Go figure.

BTW you ALL were opted into Global Seller Program, if you care to check your "Third Party Authorizations" (on the 15th, same day as the outage, what a coincidence)

If you revoke it, they opt you back in, so go look the next day also!!

Fair warning!

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

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

Mon Sep 15 23:09:57 2014

I saw this coming a year ago- and announced it on my two FB former ebay sellers groups as well as on the ebay discussion boards. I predicted that once eBay granted itself permission to hide your listings in the October 26, 2013 user agreement, they would then devise a way to charge small sellers for increased visibility of their items. And here it is, folks, just as predicted.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Massachusets Howler This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 23:16:57 2014

Spend the $$ on Google adwords??- you would be sadly mistaken!

Ebay is PATHETIC- an EMBARASSMENT.
Extract yourself. Escape.
MH

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: RubyJules This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 23:29:45 2014

Also, with eBay news today "eBay Enterprise & FICO Improve the Purchase Journey" I have a feeling they will be using the FICO scores as another way to rid the site of sellers they feel are a risk to customers because of their scores.Designed and built from the ground up, in strategic partnership with FICO, a predictive analytics and decision management software company, the platform combines the commerce insights, demand generation delivery technologies and intellectual property of EBay Enterprise with FICO’s analytics technologies and products." I can see eBay determining the sellers they feel offer the most value to them in advertising revenue, the ones they determine are a risk to them because of a seller's FICO score, etc. I totally feel they are going too far.....

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Quality First This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 23:30:23 2014

Like @frustrated I used the program in the past for special items and consistently made huge returns on the $20 investment.

If it works like before that would be great.  If it's ''improved'', then.......

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Baby Gurl This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 23:36:33 2014

@frustrated - I looked at my acct. I see Ebay Inc. authorized on 9/14/14. Does that mean Global Shipping or would it say that specifically?

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Baby Gurl This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 15 23:37:58 2014

Regarding the subject matter: I feel it is unfair to only invite certain members to do this for free during this upcoming 4th quarter when we have all suffered all year long at the hands of ebay's debacles. Even if I am invited to participate, I feel it is unfair to everyone else.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: imbloated This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 16 00:11:06 2014

Yes, unfair to invite only stores or only certain sellers! Of course it is! It is an objective fact. It skews everyone else away from traffic that we paid equally for when we listed items.  

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Tiffee Jasso This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 16 00:32:15 2014

On the 15th of September, Ebay's new policy kicks in for Global shipping. If you read the fine print, a seller now has to pay the buyer for all fees and taxes, etc., or otherwise all money the buyer paid, for any returns or sales that go wrong and that includes any fees the Global center charged. Go figure that one.
As for paying for ads, yes ther are sellers who will try it. Also Ebay needs to make up for the subscription fees that are rapidly disappearing due to poor sales for most sellers.  

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Xander This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 16 00:32:56 2014

Unfair? Yes, of course ebay is unfair but that does not matter. Those who use ebay have agreed to their practices. If you don't like it, tell them by leaving otherwise you agree by staying.

This is the way ebay works these days, fair or not.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

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

Tue Sep 16 00:47:17 2014

So, if you advertise, will eBay then guarantee that buyers will see your ads?

Unbelievable; desperate; unscrupulous ...

The eBay executive suite—where the incompetent mingle with the disingenuous, the malevolent and the outright criminal, and the just plain stupid ... http://bit.ly/11F2eas


Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Runs.With.Scissors This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 16 01:04:55 2014

@frustrated:
  I just checked.  None of our several ebay id's are opted into global selling (at least not yet).
 ''Offer the Global Shipping Program''=NO, and there are no recent (new) ''Third Party Authorizations'' on our accounts.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Sep 16 02:31:01 2014

Just ridiculous!!  First, let us see some value for our current fees.  Most of 2014 has been horrible for sales.  Multiple reasons for that, but the result is the same.  Wouldn't it be refreshing for Ebay just to spend their time and resources in correcting the CURRENT issues before moving on to other things.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Paul W This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 16 02:57:27 2014

''BTW you ALL were opted into Global Seller Program, if you care to check your ''Third Party Authorizations'' (on the 15th, same day as the outage, what a coincidence)''

This is NOT true.

Perminate Link for eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers   eBay's New Ad Program for Sellers

by: Massachusets Howler This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 16 03:57:12 2014

This is not good for unique 1-of-a kind items.
MH

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