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jayandmarie, eBays weltweit grösster Powerseller, zum Thema "Category Changes in Music"
What a complete, fooey-on-you fib. There is NOTHING easy about using 'Item Specifics'. This statement alone is an insult and an affront to full time eBay sellers in this category, and in other affected by Item Specifics.
By way of background, Item Specifics is that confusing and time consuming system used in some categories (tickets, clothing, music, DVDs, etc) to 'sort' and describe items. In addition to doing any other description or photo work, the seller must further click multiple boxes to plug into the auction sell page specific and irrelevant descriptive phrases for his item.
The basis for the 'Item Specifics' idea, they say, is to make it easier for buyers to find things on eBay. They say that trying to search items via the keywords and such that we use currently is inefficient.
I say this is hooey. This is another way, I believe, to create a system for auctions whereby results can be easily combind, analyzed, and sold. It is one further step toward homogenizing the site, and one further step toward the ultimate, fixed shipping-and-handling charges scale I envision before very long.
eBay's top sellers have been ADAMANT that this 'Item Specics' idea is lousy and have given it a clear thumbs-down. I have never used it, although I have tried it and given up. VHS seller Papier11 uses it only sparingly and was an early critic. GlacierBayDVD does not use it. It is a confusing and time-confusing mess, and is a ludicrous and insulting further complication for those of us trying to make a living for ourselves and eBay.
Existing simple auction templates will not work. For example, for each and every auction to sell a used music CD you will not have to choose:
  1. Type of CD (box Set, Full Length Album, Single Or EP)
  2. Genre (choose one of around 20 Genres of music)
  3. Sub-Genre (Acoustic, Electric, Vocalist, Other)
  4. Condition (Any, New)
If you think those four extra clicks (and deciding WHICH of them to click) isn't time consuming, recognize that this is only the beginning. We will soon see 6, then 10, then 20, then 50 item specific choices to make for every auction. We make pennies on these CDS. I do not have 2 - 5 minutes to add to the time I spend listing auctions.
In the past, we have always been able to use CATEGORY NUMBERS and TEMPLATES to achieve the above specialization for our items. Moreover, the Categories for Music are specialized and fun to browse. Rock, for example, has several sub categories (Alternative Rock, Acid Rock, Symphonic Rock, Classic Rock, Early Rock N Roll, Gothic Rock, Glam Rock, Grunge Rock, Hard Rock, New Wave, Surf, Other). This created relatively small categories (tens of thousands rather than hundreds of thousands) of listings. A rock fan could browse them, and enjoy them, and use them.
Instead, eBay expects one to search using the 'Item Specifics' function to find things you want. Don't let the above EBay announcement fool you. To put the Matchbox Twenty CD they mention into the category "Entertainment > Music > CDs > Rock > Alternative" is EASY to do: the category has a number. You put the item into a category number with a single drop down menu. A potential 17year old customer can browse this category easily and find CDs by Matchbox 20, Bush, The Cure, Radiohead, etc.
The new elimination of all subcategories in Music will create giant, unbrowseable categories filled with hundreds of thousands of listings. Browsing will end. No one wants to thumb through 500,000 unsorted CDs looking for items. If you visit a music store you will find that CDs are organized by categories. There is a REASON for this.
Don't think your category wont be affected. eBay is moving, I believe, toward a non-category system where everything on the site is found by searching, much like Amazon.com. You don't 'browse' Amazon, but you DO 'browse' eBay. Most of what I sell, I believe, is found by 'browsers' and not 'searchers'. I believe this is a short-sighted, disastrous decision. I have been hoping and praying for months that whoever's son-in-law is running this program within eBay will lose his job or give up on the project, but it hasn't yet happened.
If you haven't posted an item using 'item specifics', then try it. You think one or two drop down windows in an auction program is bad, try 5 - 8 drop down windows. The listing process slows to a halt, profits drop and we give up the ghost. I cannot ask my staff to add 5 or 6 further clicks to each auction they post. They cannot do it in the time they have, and I cannot afford to pay for it.
I suppose what eBay is trying first in music is to force sellers to use the Half.com / Muze database (which has a weak and useless 'Item Specifics' program built into it).
This is yet another move toward salvaging something useful out of the disastrous Half.com investment.
Dont think this is only a Music issue. Your category will be next.
(And, no, I had no warning or call or email or anything from eBay. I simply spotted it tonight on the announcements board. This is another change they are trying to sneak out, I believe.)
I am forwarding my post to several people within eBay and the industry. I am very concerned about this.
JAY
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