The 2018 will be a year full of updates and changes for the eBay marketplace.
After the news about the use of a new platform for payments instead of Paypal, the marketplace should introduce some innovation in product ID.
Product-Based Shopping Experience, that’s the name of the new mode of product navigation in eBay. Which means no more listings but a single product sheet, as for Amazon.
This update was thought to improve users shopping experience and to help them find easily the products they are searching for.
The fist platforms involved are US, UK, AU and CA. By May 2018, this type of navigation will involve some brands like Dyson, Amazon, Apple and Google.
On one hand, the situation could be complicated because to link the products it will be necessary to use a specific code, as for ASIN in Amazon. This code is named ePID (eBay Product Identifier) and it is specific for each product.
On the other hand, the big brands should have more control on their own products, because the brand itself will define the attributes useful to list products on eBay.
From now on, you will hear talking about “products” meaning “product sheets”.
ePID: Where and when to use it
Starting at August 2018, eBay will ask to revise all listings in order to standardise them.
Each eBay category will have a checkbox which establishes if the transfer to ePID is active (or required), inactive. Inside each category, each brand will be able to modify this property.
In a nutshell, some products will be listed without ePID even if in that category is compulsory. Or, on the other hand, the brand will be able to ask for the ePID even if in that category is not compulsory.
The requisite for product identifier is still existing, so each seller should send also an identifier (EAN, UPC, ISBN, Brand+MPN).
If the listing is inside a category where ePID is compulsory, or the brand decides to make the ePID compulsory, the product sheet is not editable until the correct ePID is added.
The listings that will not be linked to a product sheet, will become invisible.
There will be no need to add ePID in product variations: it is enough to have the code with the product father. The product variations should have the established identifiers (EAN, UPC,...)
It seems that the single listings will co-exist, so much so eBay said that the seller will be able to keep sending the images (that will be found inside the listing page, but not in the product sheet).
Let’s see some preview that you can verify online.
On eBay.com you can find the very first version of Product-Based Shopping Experience. If you search an item, on the right you will find the button “Group Similar Listing”.
If you click on this button, eBay will gather the listings in products, with prices of different sellers.
If you select one of those prices, you will be redirected to the product with the price you clicked. The title is taken from the eBay catalogue, with attributes and images.
If you click on "See details" you will find the listing made by the seller.
Sellers will be given the possibility to link their products to already existing sheets. The goal is to have all the single listings linked to a single product sheet. In this way, the information will be shared by all sellers (images, titles, descriptions and GTIN codes).
Each seller will add the images inside the product sheet or directly inside the listing.
It is important to remind you that not every category or brand should have a product sheet. As a consequence, the single listings are still used.
Here you have the brands and categories involved for now:
A tool for ePID research is given by eBay, but enabled only for US and DE.
The process of listings will not change so much at the end, because the listing must be made in any case. What is changed, is the possibility to link that product to a product sheet or not.
For now, when you create a new listing, you will have the possibility to check your product with keywords or identifiers.