Setting up an eBay profile and arranging listings on the digital shelves of this popular platform can be a great way to sell your products and earn good money doing so. That said, the tricky part is that many other people think so, too.
To sell well on eBay, you have to stick out from the sea of other seller accounts, and your listings have to be visible, which may not seem like much, but it’s the first step to success on this platform.
The reason visibility and relevance are so important on eBay is that customers’ attention spans keep getting shorter and shorter all the time.
To attract the attention of an online buyer, your listing has to: 1) be one of the first listings to pop up when they type the product they’re looking for, and 2) be well-written enough to make the potential customer consider spending their hard-earned money on it.
In this article, we’ll present a full guide on optimizing your listings to get better traction and more sales as an eBay seller.
As you will see, eBay SEO (search engine optimization) shares many common traits of SEO on other platforms. It requires a comprehensive and multi-faceted approach to work well for your business.
Here’s the deal.
How SEO Works on eBay?
On eBay, there are multiple ways to improve your store’s standing in the sea of other similar stores.
eBay is a selling platform that’s seen slow but steady progress over the last decade. It’s safe to say that this online marketplace is here to stay as a major venue for buying and selling merchandise.
On the Internet, every word and image counts when it comes to concocting your profile and a steady presence. For this reason, it is essential to reevaluate every written word connected to your store to send the optimal message to the potential buyer.
Here are some of the eBay categories that you can improve using SEO:
Pricing – How you price your products profoundly affects how much money you can make.
The goal is to hit the sweet spot between beating your competition and making a profit. At first, you might be tempted to simply reduce your prices, but if you reduce them too far, the potential buyers will suspect that your product is low-quality.
To get the best effects, however, consider making a smaller profit in the beginning, to improve your ranking and make sales.
What’s important at this stage is to make sales and earn money. It doesn’t matter if you don’t make giant sums out of it immediately. Getting the wheels in motion should be your priority here.
Title – The title of your product will rank it on the search engine and inform the buyer what the product is about in more detail.
The image you accompany the title with will also play a role in this, as will any additional descriptions of the product. Incorporating keywords in your eBay listing title is an art form in itself.
What makes it tricky is that you’re supposed to find the perfect balance of striking the chord with the search engine on the one hand and still making it informative enough so that your customers know what the listing’s all about.
If coming up with optimized titles and other pieces of text regarding your eBay listings is not something you’re familiar with, you can always look for SEO expert advice that helps you figure this out, so you can direct your attention elsewhere.
Category – eBay’s search engine comes with extensive and detailed categories in which you can describe your product.
By placing your listings in a certain category, you’re entering a specialized section for that product that already has successful sellers in it with a proven track record. To beat them and attract buyers to your listing, you have to adjust the prices of your products.
Alternatively, you can also try picking a slightly different category with less traffic and bypass the heavy competition in the primary category for your product. By choosing ‘Collectibles > Breweriana, Beer > Labels’, for example, you enter the world of rare beer labels.
If you place your listing in the same category, with the change of the last entry, Labels to Posters, you can sell your label as a poster, with some changes to the size and formatting.
Images – … represent a major asset in your eBay listing, as they can attract buyers or turn them away, depending on how well your product photos are put together. Even if your product is high-value, a lazy photo of it with poor lighting can dampen the spirits of your potential buyers and make them want to go for a different product.
You don’t need to take photos yourself, either. You can refurbish some of the product photos that are already uploaded elsewhere online.
As long as the photos online are of the same product, pick the ones that are done the most professionally and that give your listing that flashy, attractive quality that many buyers base their purchasing decisions on, anyway.
Product Descriptions – … are an absolutely essential part of selling on eBay, as the more you can optimize these descriptions, the easier it will be for your customers to understand the parameters of your product.
There’s one tricky thing with eBay product descriptions: concocting a decent one takes quite a lot of time.
Now, while doing this would be time well spent, if you have a lot of products you’re selling, dedicating time to polishing each of the descriptions may not be possible without a team of helpers.
That said, there is a way to bypass this hurdle: use templates. Many eBay-based sellers routinely use templates, as they help create descriptions that look good.
Item specifics – On eBay, item specifics is a follow-up fill-in-the-blanks category that allows you to describe your product in more detail.
The goal of this mechanic is to allow customers to learn more about the product than they might have guessed from the images, the title, and the description alone.
If you’re not sure what piece of info to include for these slots, checking out what some of the higher-ranked competitors came up with for their listings can be quite helpful.
Alternatively, you can see what information sellers on other platforms, such as AliExpress, wrote in their item descriptions for the same product.
The more detailed these item specifications are, the more trustworthy your seller profile will be.
By showing that you care to take your time and describe each of the products you’re selling in detail, you’re showing that you will stand behind it in case they decide to buy it and something’s wrong with it, which happens all the time.
Sellers that are trustworthy and sure to address any issues that may present themselves and that will give back the money in case the product does not arrive in the shape and quality it was supposed to are more likely to retain customers after they’ve initially captured their attention.
Optimize Seller Presence
Presenting your products in the best possible way, both visually and in text, is essential for attracting customers. There’s much to be said about presenting yourself as a seller.
eBay is one of the platforms where you can make quite an attractive seller profile that can build your reputation and improve your online image. As a result, more people will visit your eBay store and potentially decide to make a purchase.
In this respect, your storefront is of great importance. You can treat it as a showcase in a store on the side of the street. If you put your best items here, present them well visually, and stick big, shiny price tags with reasonable numbers, you will surely start getting some customers.
There are two major ways to improve your presence on eBay as a seller – customer service optimization and to update your bio and other profile details.
Running an eBay store should be treated as running a corner store in your street in many ways.
While the quality of the goods is of utmost importance, your reputation in the neighborhood and how you handle crises and other unforeseen circumstances will earn you the trust and loyalty of your customers.
If things go awry with your shipment, taking responsibility and offering refunds and other assistance will show your customers that you’re accountable.
To achieve this, ensure your digital storefront is tidy, visually appealing, and clear enough about what you’re selling.
It also needs to show your customers that you care about what you’re doing by providing details about the products you’re selling, being responsive to their queries, and being respectful and mindful of the buyers that have already done business with you in the past.
Recommendations that satisfied customers give to their friends are a major source of new customers who can stick with you as their friends did before them.
eBay Bio (Store)
As a part of your eBay personal account, you have 250 characters worth of space where you can tell your story and do so in a way that will tell your audience of potential buyers why you’re doing what you’re doing.
Optimally, you should convince them that you do it because you are passionate about the stuff you’re selling.
Using high-resolution cover images and vibrant colors is also a great way to make your profile look more trustworthy and attractive.
All in all, selling on eBay is both easy and challenging at the same time.
The good news is that getting started is a piece of cake, and you don’t need to be already wealthy to set up an account. At the same time, getting to a high level on this platform can be a challenge simply because of the incredibly high competition already doing well here.
To get to the next level, using SEO as a tool for improving both your listings and your profile is an absolute must. It makes your profile more attractive and dramatically increases your chances of making sales.
Sophie Douglas is a digital marketing specialist and a journalist based in Columbus, Ohio. Her characters are passionate, innovative, and ambitious.
Before becoming a writer for DigitalStrategyOne, she wrote short stories and screenplays and directed short films.