EBay Changes, Multi-Variation Fixed Price Listings Explained

Author xlxmarketing 19.6.2009. | 23:45


On June 15 eBay made some major changes to the way business is done on it's site, changes which will be both a blessing and a curse to eBay sellers of all sizes if not nearly as dramatic as the changes eBay made in 2008.

While Chanel Adviser CEO and EBay Strategy editor Scot Wingo has already looked over eBay's new policy in great detail (For the fantastic free white paper from listing manager, Chanel Adviser, copy and past this URL into your address bar: channeladvisor.com/ebayspring09 ) there are two things in particular which could affect your business in a big way:

  • Multi-Variation Fixed Price Listings

  • The new product page and value box

  • A new listing page with more cross-selling tools

So what are these two things and how will they change your business?

Putting Multiple Items Into One Listing


One of the most significant changes facing sellers is the introduction of a new listing type, the Multi-variation Fixed Price Listing.

With this sellers are able to put all of the variations of a specific product(for example color and size variations for clothes) into one low-cost, multi-quantity fixed price listing, while still being able to put different prices onto each variation.

The remaining quantities for each variation are automatically adjusted when they are bought and sold.

So, if you are reselling our portable game emulator and can't decide whether the market would like white or black you can list both, in the same listing for the same price and let the customer decide.


This change makes shopping easier for buyers as it will consolidate listing into one tasty bite while making listing on eBay less expensive for sellers as it reduces the fees they have to pay for multiple items.

While it might take a little time to change sourcing and catalog management systems this Multi-variation Fixed Price Listing offer more flexibility and scope for sales in the long run as the new system enables you to:

  • Manage online inventories easier

    • Inventory can be added at any time, even after purchases have been made so sellers can now keep topping up the quantity of their bestsellers without incurring extra initial fees.

  • Add many, many pictures without paying as much

    • Multiple sets of picture variations can be uploaded. Regardless of how many picture sets are used, sellers only need to pay for the one set that has the most pictures.

  • Have a listing that runs for a long time

    • It is now possible to run 30 day or Good ‘Til Canceled sales – to increase your recent sales. The same minimum 35c listing fee applies on eBay listings.

EBay listing software won't be ready for a while… October at the very earliest… and this might mean you have to 'make do' for a while.

Analysts think the Multi-variation Fixed Price Listing will have a compression effect on listings, with more SKUs (stock keeping units) becoming available in one single listing, where before only one could be listed.

EBay Powerseller and author of the eCommerce blog Colder Ice John Lawson put it another way, "…will probably become another death-blow (to online auctions) as the number of listings really dries up"

The Value Box


Selling 'hot products' like the iPhone or Nintendo Wii profitably and getting the same level of exposure as some of the bigger boys on eBay is only going to get tougher with a new change thatapesemulates Amazon’s product pages, placing a single “great seller” into a prominent “value box” much like the Amazon Buy Box.


The Value Box rewards sellers who have low or the lowest prices, low or free shipping for items, a history of consistent strong sales and great feedback from buyers.

To put yourself in for the running to be put on the Catalog Pages, sellers need to list products using eBay’s “product details” and include information like the UPC (Universal Product Code), brand and manufacturer.

You will also have to limit your image choices to a stock image associated with the listing. Although this will require some time and effort for sellers who have different work practices, it will help to streamline product information.

While smaller competitors will find themselves playing on a skewed playing field with brand name products there's still plenty of room to maneuver in more niche areas of electronics like solar gadgets; unbranded, unlocked phones, unbranded car DVD players and LED bulbs.

Listing Page Changes


There have also been a few changes rolled out on the item pages as well including:

  • Photo zooming on larger pictures

  • Real-time countdown for auctions

  • More prominent product details

  • An iFrame that houses custom templates

  • Built-in cross-merchandising

The product information has been placed at the top of the listing with information on the seller below, including A cross merchandising box which shows other listings and won't be good news to providers of eBay listing tools like Auction Pixie.

To Learn More Read…

    • The Chanel Advisor White

    • The official Multi Variation Fixed Price Listing page: pages.ebay.com/sell/variation/index.html

    • The official product page guide:pages.ebay.com/sell/productpage/index.html

    • Cooler Ice coverage:3rdpoblogs.com/colderice/search/eBay+spring+changes

    • EBay Strategies Blog coverage: ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2009/04/new-white-paper-ebay-spring-changes-analysis-and-recommendations.html


Just copy and paste the links into your address bar


So get the white paper now, and while you're at it, check out our massive list of alternatives to eBay to increase your visibility and reduce the risk of further eBay changes. Don't forget to take part in the poll below and leave your thoughts on how these changes will affect you.

ebay alternatives

Author xlxmarketing 19.6.2009. | 23:45
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