Getting Listed in Search Engines

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Getting Listed in Search Engines

You've probably seen eBay listings show up when searching for something on Google, Yahoo! or some other search engine. If you have, you may have thought to yourself, "I wonder if I could get my auctions listed on Google?"

The answer is a resounding YES! You just need to understand how search engines work, and why they might list an eBay listing in their results.

Google and most other search engines place a lot of weight on inbound links to a web page. In other words, the more inbound links a page has to it, the more important a search engine considers that page to be. The words that are used as part of the link add even more weight as the most important keywords for that web page.

It's a little more complex than that, but that explanation will suffice for our needs.

On eBay, a link to your auction listing is created in category results. When a person browses the listings by category, the titles for every auction that is currently listed is linked to the actual auction page:

eBay's trumpet category

The above image shows the results if you browse the category of: Musical Instruments > Brass > Cornet, Trumpet

The words in each title (which are each linked to the actual auction page) get picked up by search engines as important keywords for the auction page. However, for a search engine such as Google to consider it important enough to add the auction page to its index (which means it will start showing up in search results), the links need to stick around for awhile.

The problem with eBay is that so many listings are coming and going that your listing in the category results will change the page it's on almost every day. Furthermore, search engines don't always crawl (examine, sometimes called "spidering") all the pages of a site. Often they'll only follow a few links deep, which means that your listing might not even get looked at by a search engine like Google until there are only a couple days left for your listing, which means it won't be around long enough for the search engines to consider indexing your auction page.

The solution to this is to use the Featured Plus! listing upgrade. The Featured Plus! upgrade will place your listing on the first page of the category results throughout the entire life of the listing. Furthermore, your listing will appear again in the regular results below the featured listings, meaning your auction page gets linked to twice, thereby increasing its importance in the eyes of the search engines.

This is a new technique I've only heard of recently, and haven't tried myself yet, so take this advice with care.

Also, you can create search engine traffic to your eBay Store (if you have one) by using basic search engine optimization (SEO) techniques in the creation of your store.

The key is to use important keywords in the item descriptions of your Store listings, as well as (and especially in) your listing titles.

Remember when I talked earlier about the importance of having keywords in links to your auction pages? Well, the same applies here. Make sure the titles include the keywords you want to optimize for. Furthermore, when you create your store categories, choose the category names carefully.

If your category name is a keyword, and that same keyword appears in your listing title, then that's two locations that your keyword appears as a link, which results in more weight given to your store listing for those keywords.

If it seems a little confusing, it will make more sense if you open an eBay Store, then come back here and reread this. But the following screenshot from an actual eBay Store may help as well:

eBay Stores SEO example

These are listings in the "Poker Chips" category. Note that all the titles in that category also contain the term "Poker Chips".

Next: Chapter 1 Summary & Takeaways

Subchapters:

Optimizing Your Auction Title
Make Your Auction Listing Stand Out
Cross Promotion
Bait and Hook (NOT bait and switch!)
Buying Traffic Through Pay-Per-Click Search Engines
Getting Listed in Search Engines
Chapter 1 Summary & Takeaways

Jump to another chapter:

Chapter 1: Driving Traffic to Your Auction Listing
Chapter 2: Listing for Higher Profits
Chapter 3: Does Any of this Stuff Work?
Chapter 4: eBay Stores
Chapter 5: Auction Management
Chapter 6: What to Sell on eBay
Chapter 7: Finding Products to Sell on eBay
Chapter 8: Mining eBay's Traffic
Chapter 9: HTML Tutorial
Chapter 10: Acting Like a PowerSeller
Chapter 11: Final Words