eBay Simplifies Australia

Sweeping changes to categories in eBay Australia were announced in January and took effect this week. As so often happens when improvements are made by committees of apparent non-users, it can be difficult to see the benefits or reasons for the changes.

Category Changes

eBay’s stated reason for wholesale removal of sub-categories; “Many categories have been simplified to avoid duplication with the Item Specifics on the Create your listing page”. This would logically imply that an item specifics structure exists in those categories which have been simplified. Unfortunately this is not the case in Australia.

For exampleBooks - Childrens Books has become one category losing all the subcategories including Fiction and Non-fiction. Antiquarian Books are lumped in there with the coloring books. Similarly Magazines has lost its Antique sub-category.
Biggest changes are to Collectables (Collectibles in the US) where postcards have lost their location sub-categories. This is interesting because in the UK each county has a sub-category and in the US the choice of subcategories is almost infinite.

Click image to enlarge

What this means to Australian sellers is that the title becomes even more important. If your buyer is a collector of NSW postcards with horses they will not find this one simply because the seller omitted the vital word.

A quote from the Discussion Board

“The removal of categories stands to undermine the market in the same way as buyers found all of the stores added into search overwhelming, and took about a month to adjust and actually find the items they wanted to bid on. Pulling the categories BEFORE even establishing an item specific structure that both buyers and sellers understand and use, stands to throw the entire marketplace unworkable for many users and lower competition and prices (and eBay’s own commission base / bottom line).”

eBay says “These improvements aim to make it easier to buy and sell on eBay.com.au.” Users may say ” You missed! Aim again.”

Y’all come back!

One comment.

  1. Thank you for covering this Henrietta. Amazingly it seems to have gone over the heads of most Australian sellers who are seriously affected by it.

    Effectively, in some areas of Ebay Australia, you now have to include your subcategories in your 55 letter title if you want your item to be found. NSW isn’t too bad, but Western Australia (a very strong seller) eats up a lot of the title, and leaves less room to put in the other details that are needed.

    Kind Regards, Kevin

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