eBay: Where Are All The Fixed price Listings?

It may be lack of seller tools or lack of seller interest, but the new Fixed Price Listing format and fees are not taking off.

According to Medved –a company that tracks eBay listings, the number of Fixed Price (FP) listings stood at 16,700,000, 24 hours after the new FP fees and format went into effect.  A week ago eBay was averaging about 16,100,000. That is a gain of about 600,000 listings, or 3.7%.

Everyone, including eBay, expected a much greater bump. Only eBay knows what is going on behind the scenes. It may be that FP listings are way up, but sellers have reduced their auction-style listings. Or perhaps sellers are concerned about the site being swamped with listings and are taking a wait-and-see attitude.  There is also the possibility that smaller sellers with eBay stores, are canceling their store listings and moving them to FP because FP listings come up in search.

Another, more likely explanation is that most of the medium and large sellers use various listing tools –both software like eBay’s Turbo Lister, and online systems like InkFrog, Vendio, Auctiva and others. I don’t know about InkFrog and Auctiva but Vendio, the system I use, has not been updated to work with the new SYI form. I spoke to a seller who uses Turbo Lister yesterday, and the new format has not been integrated there either.

If eBay’s own tools are not ready, it is no surprise that third-party tools have not been integrated.

I have about 70 listings I would like to launch in the new format, but I am waiting for Vendio to complete the integration. Right now, I would have to list each item individually using the eBay Sell Your Item form. I just don’t have that much time. So I will wait until Vendio updates their system. I have spoken with two other sellers who are doing the same thing I am.

The new FP listing format and fees look very attractive. You can list an unlimited quantity of media items for 15-cents and other items for 35-cents for an entire month. Listings can be set up so they are essentially permanent by selecting the Good Til Cancelled (GTC) feature. And unlike store listings, FP listings come up in search with auction items.

As part of the new format, eBay has changed the search algorithm so they now score FP listings separate from auction-style listings. eBay’s Best Match search ranks time ending soonest as a leading factor in bringing up search results. Since FP listings are essentially permanent, the new search will ignore the time ending when serving up FP results.

Given all of this, I suspect it will take a week or more until we really know if the new FP listing format will be successful. Certainly, there are sellers trying it. If it produces sales, then I suspect we will see an increase in the total number of listings. If not, eBay will have to scratch their heads and think of something else.

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