Should eBay rewrite your listing titles in search results?


How would you feel if eBay rewrote the titles of your listings when they appeared in search results? We haven’t heard any reports that eBay does, but the company has filed for a patent describing the concept.

At first glance, this might seem like a very bad idea, but there are few factors that validate the rationale for doing so.

“It’s difficult to present a long description for a product list on a mobile screen. Specifically, the screen size of a mobile phone is smaller than the screen size of a computer (eg laptop, desktop) and long titles in a list may not fit. fully display on a mobile screen. “


“In some cases, displaying an ad or search result that includes a long description can consume space on the screen of a mobile device and may impact the user experience. for a buyer querying one or more items. “

The other reason we can think of: sellers often try to use the title field to optimize the search. In other words, sellers can put a lot of keywords and include model numbers in the title so that eBay’s search engine finds their listing, resulting in a title that doesn’t necessarily read easily or does not attract the attention of buyers.

But how would eBay rewrite all those ad titles? Using machine learning, of course. He explains in part: “Raw titles and user behavior data can be used to train a machine learning model to identify one or more parameters that can be used to refine a raw title provided by the seller to generate a refined title that leads to a desired result. “

It all comes down to execution. How confident can sellers be that eBay could create a system that rewrites a shorter title that would be great for grabbing the attention of buyers?

While sellers are skeptical of eBay’s headline writing skills, the sentiment is mutual: eBay wrote in its file: “Often times a seller can enter unnecessary or duplicate information when providing a description for an item for sale. “

He also wrote: “Additionally, certain descriptions included by a seller in an advertisement may, unintentionally, negatively impact the seller’s goal of selling an item at the desired price (for example, as high as possible). . “

If eBay thinks that having a separate title to show in the results is a good idea, why not allow sellers to create two titles when listing an item: one that is optimized for the eBay search engine. and a shorter one that is optimized to grab the attention of buyers (and mobile devices) that would show up in search results?


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