eBay Update: Introducing A Report A Catalog Error Option

Time To Clean Up The eBay Catalog

eBay is asking sellers to help clean up their product catalog. It is also an open door to reporting the competition which can be a bad thing. To be blunt, eBay knows that their product catalog has flaws. Products and / or incorrect information appears on eBay’s product pages that should not be there, often for a variety of reasons. These reasons range from matching product keywords or in all likelihood it could be that a seller has inadvertently (or purposefully) entered an incorrect UPC code (the number by the bar code), product identifiers, item specifics, etc.

Regardless of the reason for the incorrect information in the eBay product catalog, eBay implemented the following: “Effective immediately, if you see an item that doesn’t belong on an eBay product page, you can flag it to be reviewed and possibly removed“. It was further explained “If you believe the item doesn’t belong on the page, click the flag symbol and “submit.” We’ll review and remove it, if necessary. Once removed, the item will still be available on the site for purchase, but will no longer be associated with this particular product. By letting us know about irrelevant items on our product pages, you’ll help buyers see the most relevant listings. Plus, you’ll improve the eBay experience for everyone in our community“.

It is not clear on how these reviews will work. Many long time eBay sellers, like myself, spend many hours writing our own descriptions, key words, product features, etc. I can only hope that this will not be an automated process. In my opinion, eBay should have human eyes review the reported information. If it becomes an automated process, I fear that sellers could easily abuse the feature. If my content is removed, will I have an opportunity to appeal the decision?

If this really is a conscious decision by eBay to improve their catalog, can eBayers earn a “Trusted” badge? If someone spends the time to help eBay, can it get to a point where their reported content gets automatically removed? I ask this because I question if eBay has enough staff to manually review each and every reported item for improper content. I do believe that eBay is legitimately trying to clean up their catalog. After all, a cleaner eBay will give my products a better chance at selling. My only concern with this new reporting feature is that it may lead to an easy way to trim your competition.

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