Archive for the ‘search rankings’ Tag

How to increase ranking on eBay search results?

March 3rd 2008, Jamie Lannone: “As most buyers and sellers know, eBay’s Best Match sort option is an important Finding innovation that helps buyers find relevant items quickly and easily.”

The question is why “Best Match” is the default search method on eBay, what is it and how sellers can use it to their own benefit. That is the theme of this post.

What is “Best Match”?

eBay “Best Match” does something more than just comparing the similar titles to the search terms. “Best Match” sorts the listings based on several cues gathered with two main aims of “conversion” and “good buyer experience”.

Why “Best Match”?

eBay introduced “Best Match” to its search results to:

  • Increase conversions: The main aim of eBay is to increase successful visits. This is calculated by using a ratio of search results to conversions (or ‘successful hits’). The more a listing is successful, the higher it is in the search results.
  • Provide a good buyer experience: Furthermore eBay buyer/customer satisfaction is taken into account in the search results (this will again result in higher conversion rates). eBay’s means of measuring buyer satisfaction are mentioned later in this article.

What are the cues that eBay uses for “Best Match”?

  • Search history to conversions ratio: As eBay says “This is tailored for each buying situation”. That means eBay takes advantage of all the stored historical data from age, gender, location, purchase history of all the buyers for the best conversion rates in the search results, and consequently make more money. In essence, if buyers running a particular search often end up viewing, bidding on, and/or buying a certain type of item more often, it will bolster the search rankings.
  • DSR (Detailed Seller Ratings): This is the second most important cue for eBay search sorting system. Basically the sellers that have DSR of over 4.7 and overall feedback of 98%, they stay higher in the search results. For those of you who don’t know DSR, it is a score from 1-5 rated by buyer comprising of four areas: item as described, communication, delivery time and postage, and packaging. In some cases eBay gives more weight to some of these factors which I will discuss later in the post. Only last 30 days are considered in this factor.

In the event that the decision cannot be made based on the above factors to break the tie, eBay considers the following factors:

  • Feedback: The overall feedback is used from the last 90 days.
  • SNDA (Significantly not as described): The number of ‘significantly not as described’ disputes/complaints.
  • INR (Item not received): The number of ‘item not received’ disputes/complaints.

It can be assumed that eBay gives more weight to SNDA than to INR and feedback. Statistically, if eBay received SNDA 9 times more than the other two, finally eBay will:

  • Degrade a listing if shipping and handling in DSR is less than 4.5

One might ask if the powerseller status will increase the visibility. eBay is not giving more attention to powersellers in the search results but as a result of higher sales the search results will automatically be biased to powersellers.

How can you increase your visibility on eBay?

Considering the factors above, here is a list of what you can do:

  • Communication: Try to communicate with your buyers, let them know when you receive the payment, send the package and just try to be helpful. (Scrobbld we will take care of this for you)
  • Good listings: Write an accurate description, take pictures of your items and try to make it look as nice as possible. Tip: Use HTML to customise the look and feel of your listings.
  • Return policy: Offer a return policy even if you don’t have one.
  • Reasonable shipping and packaging rates: Avoid charging customers on postage. Charge reasonable postage fees, this will increase your visibility. Also consider offering free shipping and combined shipping (sending more than one items as one package).
  • Shipping options: If you can offer more shipping options or international shipping, put them on your description as well as the shipping options section of the listing.

Good luck and see you on eBay!

UPDATE: Please note that our blog has moved to A new way to manage your eBay and PayPal orders.


1. Rewards and Standards

2. Rewards & Standards FAQ 2008

3. The Seller Sourcebook Blog: eBay Changing Search Results Again – Best Match Default

4. eBay Strategies: eBay Changes Strategies: DSR Best Practices