When most people sit down to create an eBay listing, they think about how to describe their item, how to format the listing, how many pictures to add etc.
But one thing people rarely think about is how to create search engine-friendly listings!
However without proper SEO, your listing description doesn’t have a chance of getting found in Google.
And with millions of people searching in Google for the products you sell, you want to make sure that people to find your eBay listings BOTH on eBay and off!
Fortunately, creating an eBay listing that is also search-engine friendly needn’t be time intensive or require any special HTML coding.
You can do it by simply thinking differently about what you put on your listing description page!
7 Quick Tips for Creating Search-Engine Friendly eBay Listings
Many people don’t realize that an eBay listing description is just a simple HTML web page hosted on eBay.
It’s no different from any other webpage. It’s open to the search engines to come and crawl it and index it.
But the search engines will only crawl and index your page if you set it up properly! All you need to do is follow these 7 quick tips!
First, Think Keywords. (Make this one shift, it will transform the way you do business online!) What are 5 to 7 primary keywords that people might use to search for your item. For example, let’s say you’re selling window planters. Some keywords associated with window planters would be:
Keep in mind that keywords are different from adjectives! Many eBay sellers use adjectives to describe their products: cute, pretty, fun, etc. in lieu of keywords.
People will search online for a “wrought iron 24″ window box”. They won’t search for a “Cute window box! You’ll love it!”
And while it’s fine to embelish your product descriptions with a few well-placed adjectives, using them in place of keywords will not give you any SEO benefits.
Your Listing Title. Now that you have identified 5-7 keywords, it’s time to use them! And the first place the search engines crawl when they arrive at your eBay listing page is your listing title.
You have 55 characters in your eBay listing title to jam pack with relevant, searchable keywords. (Remember, people who search ON eBay will be searching using these keywords too.)
Take your core keywords and create a listing title. Your title does not have to read like the cover of a book. It should only be a “string” of keywords placed in a sensical order.
“NEW Home Beauty Wrought Iron 24″ window box planter”
This title will give both the search engines and eBay’s search engine everything they need for the right buyer to find your item!
Create a 200 Word of Keyword Rich Description. When describing your item, you want to create a description of at least 200 words with keywords used naturally througout the description. Lead with a sentence that includes your most relevant keywords and continue with a description that surrounds the item with relevant keyword phrases.
This brand new Home Beauty wrought iron window box is the perfect planter for spring!
Classic wrought iron window planters in the hot new lattice look style are all the rage for spring this year! An outdoor window box lends style and pizzazz to any window! Or use as an indoor flower box, transform a deck, embellish a fence or brighten up a bare wall.
See how I’ve naturally included the keywords “wrought iron, lattice look, window box and planter” in the very first sentence in my description. This reinforces with Google what this page is all about!
Next follow up with a supporting cast of keywords and color commentary.
A bullet pointed list of features gives Google more keywords to index:
- Brand: Home Beauty Window Box
- Style: Wrought Iron
- Size: 24 inches long x 6 inches wide.
- Capacity: Fits 4 small to medium plants
- Fasteners: Easy fasten system!
Easy to care for, these sturdy planters are riveted for lasting strength and durability. All seams are hand-soldered and sanded to a smooth finish.
Lacquered top coat protects against the elements.
No assembly required! Just plant, display and enjoy!
Finally, anchor it with a keyword rich summary sentence.
Just like you learned in school! Start your listing with an opening statement and close with a summary statement.
“This beautiful wrought iron flower box makes the perfect planter box for spring!”
From here you can go on to finish up your listing with your shipping and customer service information.
This keyword rich listing description weighs in at about 149 words. Keep in mind that you don’t have to meet the 200 word description every time. If you’ve said it all in 149 words. Stop there. If it takes 300 words to accurately describe your produce, keep going!
It’s the format above that’s the secret to listing description SEO! And you can use this time and time again in every listing!
Don’t Keyword Spam Your Listings. When Google crawls a listing they are looking for “conversational content”. Naturally flowing content on a subject. (Yes, even for product sales.) What they don’t want is a string of rigid keywords and they definitely don’t want keyword spamming! (nor does eBay.
So don’t just stuff keywords into your listing description page and call it good. Google will tell you otherwise by not indexing your page. And eBay will pull your listing.
Make it Visible. The practice of using hidden text to bait the search engines is so 1990’s, you’d think that no one would even do this anymore. But just the other day, I was working with a client whose local SEO company had just put hidden text (text in the same color as their web page background) on their webpage. So just in case you might be considering this outdated tactic… don’t do it! Neither Google nor eBay will go for it!
Bold the Headers. Did you notice in the description above that I bolded the words “Product Description” and “Product Features”. I did this both for aesthetic reasons and SEO purposes. The search engines pay special attention to words that are bolded. Now this doesn’t mean that you should bold your entire listing description!
But you should bold subject headers in your listing. Also make those headers one size bigger than your text body font. (But never bigger than a 16 pt font)
Use the Alt Tag Attribute on Your Images. If you host your own eBay photos, you can use the “Alt tag” feature on the photo to add relevant keywords “behind the scenes” of you photo. Alt tags are visible only to the search engines. Google will crawl you image looking for alt tags.
For example, if you place pictures of the window box into your listing, use the alt tag attribute on your photo. You should also name your photo with a relevant keyword. So instead of naming it wp123.jpg, call it “windowbox.jpg”. This gives you one more SEO reinforcement on your page.
How to Create an Image Alt Tag Attribute:
<img src=”http://yourdomain.com/windowbox.jpg” alt=”window box”>
Make This Your Standard Format
Once you make the mindset shift to creating SEO optimized eBay listings, you’ll be able to easily use the simple format above for everything you list! And after creating about 10 listings or so, designing a search engine friendly listing will become second nature.
Most importantly, you’ll be confident that you’re getting the most out of every listing description you create and they’ll be properly positioned for maximum visibility potential in the search engines.
To learn more about listing SEO and find out the other components that go into Creating an eBay Listing That Sells! don’t miss this weekend’s Biz Deal of the Day!
Great simple information that all eBay sellers should pay attention to.
Yes, I did learn something this format it is great. I have done most of this in my listings but this outline serves as a guide for me to not forgot key points to cover in my listings. It’s all about the SEO!
Wonderful info! Easy guide to bringing more customers to your listing 🙂
Great step by step advice. But when I pasted the link from your email into my browser, it took me to an ad/website for some eCommerce company.
Glad you found the post! Some ISPs can break the link functionality in emails. And it seems to happen at random.
Frustrating for sure!
This is brilliant! I very much appreciate you sharing your experience and insights. All too often I list something on Ebay trying to do it as quickly as possible thinking that’s the best way to maximize my time. However, after reading your article I know I’ve been shortchanging my product and profitability. Thank you for your help. Steve
My hunch is, eBay listing won’t last long enough for search engine to find it. And if it ever does shows up in search result, it might end up on page 10 at best. email@example.com
There are so many variables with eBay listings, your search engine visibility will also depend to a certain extent on what you sell, how niched it is, whether you run a 1 day listing versus a 30 day GTC (good till cancel listing), etc.
But if you’re taking the time to write a listing anyway, creating it in a way that will maximize the SEO, systematizing it – so that you can create a listing that follows the same format every time (without having to think about it), and easily optimizing the listing by following the formula means that you can be confident that you’ve done everything you can to maximize your investment of both time and money in each listing.
It’s the same with eBay’s Best Match – you don’t really know for sure whether or not your item will be displayed in search. But you do want to do everything that is in your control to optimize it for Best Match.
Lisa, I sell unique, one of a kind items. Do you think it is worth it for me to write a couple hundreds words for each of my listings? I can’t see doing this for all my items. Thoughts?
By the time you write a 2-3 line description & add a bullet-pointed list of features, it’s easy to create3 a 200 word listing (especially for collectibles.)
However, the rule of thumb for writing a good listing is to give the customers enough information to tell them enough to give them exactly what they need to know, and no more.
With collectibles, depending on the level of detail, that can be a little or a lot!
But the most important thing is to write your description with primary keywords and supporting keywords to make the listing search engine friendly.
I talk about this quite a bit in my “How to Create a Listing That Sells!” course.
You want to make it readable, but pay attention to using keywords that describe your product.
How do you add alt tag? Is there anywhere in a picture’s feature that you can do this? Or do you need to run a certain program?
Thanks for the this Lisa. I’ve never taken eBay seriously but have just started using it to help drive traffic to my R/C car website. I’ll take your advise and improve my eBay listings.
Really excellent tips, i am an SEO specialist myself but couldn’t get some of my ebay products rank higher in the internal search. this is really useful.
I love your simple & clear instructions. I’m wondering if the advice in this post is still relevant as of now (2016)? I just want to make sure before I begin revising all my listings. Thanks!