eBay Cassini Algorithm Basics – What You Should Know Before Listing on eBay

The key concept for understanding eBay search going forward is that its development is oriented toward using all of the data available to eBay to meet the immediate needs of eBay shoppers as they search for products to buy. eBay's goal is to treat search as a way to connect every shopper to the listings and sellers that are most interesting to them, as quickly and as painlessly as possible.

For years, eBay search results were about showing shoppers as many options and matching listing titles as would fit in a browser window.

Four major factors will drive eBay's search ranking technology moving forward:

· Relevance. Shoppers should quickly see the results that they intend to see and/or want to see, rather than having to dig through results that don't matter to them.

· Value. Shoppers should always find that items in their eBay search results represent a good overall value.

· Trust. Shoppers should see listings that they can trust, from sellers that are likely to serve them well and to generate return business for eBay and eBay sellers.

· Convenience. Shoppers shouldn't have to work harder than is necessary for a pleasant and positive transaction, from the initial search all the way through to fulfillment.

To emphasize these factors, eBay's new Cassini search ranks results in a more sophisticated, data-intensive way than eBay search has done in the past. For years the listing title has been king at eBay, but with Cassini other dimensions of the listing and selling process can also play significantly into rankings—not just listing titles, but also catalog entries and item specifics, complete item descriptions, seller performance and customer satisfaction, as well as the performance of particular listings and products over time.

eBay is not focused on showing you, any other particular seller, or even any particular product to shoppers in response to a search. Instead, eBay wants to show every shopper the listings that aremost likely to result in a completed sale with a high-satisfaction outcome. With Cassini, eBay will acomplish this using real data about buyer and seller behavior and sellers should bear in mind that eBay has a lot of data about buyer and seller behavior on its hands.

Best Practices and Key Concepts for eBay Search

With this overview of Cassini in mind, there are some clear best practices and relevant tips about eBay search positioning that sellers need to understand. While the specific calculations and numbers involved in rankings will continue to evolve as eBay works to create the best possible shopping experience, these are the basic details and general strategies that will enable sellers to make eBay search work for them, rather than against them:

· Use popular, relevant keyword combinations.

· Be generous with catalog and item specifics data.

· Make accessible, interesting, attention-grabbing listings.

· List stock gradually, as you actually expect to sell it.

· Focus on performance and being customer-oriented, not just on listing tactics.

· Maintain consistency.

· Use both Terapeak and eBay Listing Analytics.

eBay's new Cassini search platform takes much more than just the title of your listing into account. How are your item specifics? Item descriptions? Photos? More and more, the details will matter.

Sellers have long paid attention to badges like the "Top Rated Plus" badge seen here—but it's time to start paying attention to listing details and quality everyday practices, not just meeting numeric targets.