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Introducing Additional Product Identifiers

Introducing Additional Product Identifiers

To help buyers find items more easily, and provide you with better insights and an improved selling experience, the following changes regarding structured data—information like product identifiers and item specifics— will take place in the months ahead:

  • eBay to accept non-standard product identifiers. We will make selling even easier by enabling merchants to list using a wider range of product identifiers beginning February 2017, including:
    • Amazon standard identification numbers (ASIN)
    • Google product identifiers
    • Private label product identifiers (seller generated product identifier)
    • By February 2017, for most categories, newly-created listings will require at least one type of product identifier (e.g. UPC, GTIN, one of the above, etc.). Also, note that the options ‘Does not Apply’ and ‘NA’ will no longer be available for the majority of items.
    • To simplify the process of listing and relisting, you’ll be able to upload your entire catalog of products by end of October 2016. When you provide your product information to eBay through our new catalog-upload feature, we’ll create eBay product identifiers (ePIDs) for you, which help you build your brand on eBay. ePIDs offer sellers of private label and unbranded items access to the benefits and insights branded inventory currently enjoys.

    HOW YOU BENIFIT

    When you provide structured data—product identifiers and item specifics, or your product catalog—your listings are eligible for:

    • Improved search visibility on and off eBay via eBay Best Match, external search engines like Google and Bing!, and social networks.
    • Additional onsite visibility, as we’re introducing millions of new buyer facing pages and placements. When you list with the required structured data, your listings will be eligible for maximum visibility within all relevant pages, placements, and searches. These include:
      • The millions of new browse and product pages we’re building for buyers that enter eBay via channels like social networks and external search.
      • Participation in new merchandising and deal modules, such as eBay Deals, bargains, and other promotions.

    Participation in new merchandising and deal modules, such as eBay Deals, bargains, and other promotions.

    • Product reviews, which are only enabled for items that include an eBay product identifier. Over a million new product reviews are added monthly, providing buyers with the information needed to make purchasing decisions.
    • Search results, as your items will be surfaced when buyers search using the options found in the left hand navigation of search results:

    • We’ll be able to offer you better data, insights, and guidance. Listings that include product identifiers are eligible for:
      • More accurate pricing guidance at the time of listing
      • Buyer-facing trending price, which let buyers know that your item is competitively priced.
      • Additional information within eBay Seller Hub, such as:
        1. Tools to better manage your listings, returns, and cancellations
        2. Insights into sales, selling costs, and buyer traffic
        3. Business performance analytics
        4. Growth opportunities and competitive analysis

    WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

    All sellersshould list using structured data—product identifiers and item specifics—every time they list. It is highly recommended that you provide as much structured data as possible, regardless of the item condition, so your items can gain maximum visibility.
    Sellers in these select categories that list items in new or manufacturer-refurbished condition should be prepared to take the following actions:

    For new listings: Include at least one of the product identifier types below at the time of listing, as applicable:

    • Global Trade Item Number (GTIN)
    • Manufacturer Part Number (MPN)
    • eBay product identifier (ePID)
    • Available February 2017 Amazon standard identification number (ASIN)
    • Available February 2017 Google product identifier (CID)
    • Available February 2017 Private label product identifier (seller generated product identifier)

    NOTE: Only use another product identifier (like an ePID or ASIN) if you do not have access to the identifier from the brand manufacturer, or in cases where the item is not branded.

    • By February 2017, for most categories, newly-created listings will require at least one type of product identifier listed above. The option of using NA or Does not apply will no longer be acceptable as a product identifier. Some categories and item types will continue to be exempt.

    FAQ’S

    What are product identifiers?

    Most new, branded items have unique identifiers that help buyers recognize and find them, including the item’s brand, manufacturer part number (MPN), and global trade item number (GTIN). These GTINs can include an item’s Universal Product Code (UPC), European Article Number (EAN), or International Standard Book Number (ISBN) and eBay product identifiers (ePIDs). Now, in addition to these identifiers, we will soon accept a wider range of identifiers:

      • Available February 2017 Amazon standard identification numbers (ASINs)
      • Available February 2017 Google product identifiers (CID)
      • Available February 2017 Private label product identifiers (seller generated product identifier)

    Will this requirement be extended to additional categories in the future?

    Yes. As we continue to improve the buyer and seller experience we will extend this requirement to additional categories.

    I sell in a category that doesn’t require product identifiers. Should I include them anyway?

    Yes. We recommend that you include item specifics and product identifiers whenever available, so that you can benefit from the additional buyer entry points we can create with the provided data.
    In categories where product identifiers aren’t required, providing data like item specifics will still enable us to boost visibility for your listings. For example, if a buyer does a search based on color, providing the item specific of color empowers us to surface your item within that search.

    Can a listing have more than one product identifier?

    Yes, it’s possible for an item to have more than one product identifier. However, the product identifier associated with the item from the brand manufacturer (UPC, GTIN, MPN, etc.) should always be used. Only use another product identifier (like an ePID or ASIN) if you do not have access to the identifier from the brand manufacturer, or in cases where the item is not branded.

    I have a catalog of products I’d like to submit to eBay. How do I do that?

    This capability will be available by the end of October and, once available, we will provide specific guidance on how to upload your catalog.

    How do I know what item specifics I should add to my listing?

    You will see recommendations for item specifics when you list using tools such as eBay Seller Hub, Selling Manager, Selling Manager Pro, File Exchange, and the single item selling flow. These flows make it easy to both see and add the recommended item specifics to your listings.

    Will other product identifiers, like those used by Alibaba, also be accepted by eBay?

    Not all types of identifiers will be accepted once these changes are in effect, but know that eBay accepts more types of identifiers than other marketplaces, and we’ll continue to expand the types of identifiers we accept.

    Will I still be able to list using the product identifier options ‘NA’ or ‘Does not apply’?

    The product identifier options ‘NA’ and ‘Does Not Apply’ will be removed from the listing flow for most items (with a few exceptions). Existing Good ‘Til Cancelled listings with these options will need to be revised to include at least one type of identifier later in 2017.  We will provide specific timing in the first quarter, 2017 and give a minimum 90 day notice.

    What is a private label product identifier?

    A private label product identifier is an identifier created by the seller, specifically for products they manufacture or resell.

     

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