Get Found on eBay – Use Item Specifics!

One of the best things you can do to make your listings findable on eBay is to utilize the provided option to include Item Specifics as fully as possible. Item Specifics are available in all categories now. Here is the announcement from eBay, which appeared on the site in early 2012.

At this time, all categories on all sites accept Custom Item Specifics which allow you to create your own item details, or use recommendations based on terms that have been successful for similar items in the past.

As all sellers know, getting your items FOUND on eBay is the first, most important, step to getting them sold. How do Item Specifics help get your item found?

First, let’s talk about the Google Search engine. Yes, even when listing on eBay, we need to be concerned about the ‘outside’ search engines as well as eBay’s internal, “Best Match” search. Google looks at each listing page and takes the important words as carrying more weight than other words on the page. What words are most important? The Title! What’s next? Item Specifics. Same word in both places? That is great for your placement of that term in the Google search.

More important, however, is the effect that your use of Item Specifics can have on your results in eBay’s internal seach, Best Match. Ebay uses the Item Specifics in several ways, one of the most important is to EXCLUDE items from search.

As an example, if I list a blue skirt and I include the word blue in the title but I do NOT include blue as an item specific, a buyer can choose to see only blue skirts and my item will NOT appear in their search results.

Here is a screenshot of how buyers can narrow down their searches by choosing color, style, brand, condition and other options. If your item doesn’t match their choices in the Item Specifics section, even if the match is in the title, they will never see your item.


Now that I have hopefully convinced you that it is worth the extra minute or two to use Item Specifics in your listings, let me show you how easy it is.

Item Specifics are easy to find as you list your item through eBay’s Sell Your Item (SYI) form. Most larger third party listing services will also have a dedicated spot for filling in these important parts of your description. Here is a screenshot from the eBay SYI form showing where you’ll find this area. As you can see, it is the next section under the main title information.

Item Specifics are so important that some sellers are finding their Good Till Cancelled (GTC) listings won’t renew without them. Ebay has made Item Specifics mandatory in some categories. Here is a screenshot of that table. Click on the screenshot to go to the full table on the eBay site.

This guest post is by Kat Simpson. Kat is a respected as a trusted eCommerce speaker, educator, and entrepreneur, Kat Simpson has been a successful eCommerce merchant for over 10 years; is a Certified eBay Education Specialist and Gold Level PowerSeller, who also maintains stores on Addoway, Bonanza,, and iOffer. Currently Kat is the co-host of popular weekly eCommerce Podcast FBARadio.

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