How to Optimize Listings for eBay Mobile

eBay mobile app

eBay estimates as much as 40% of sales come from mobile buyers. If your listings aren’t optimized for mobile buyers, you are missing opportunities to reach customers.

Fixed price listings are preferred by mobile buyers.

Fixed price listings actually work better for mobile users because they don't have to go through as many screens to make a purchase. They can buy items in fewer steps. Now this isn't to say that you should nix auctions all together, because some buyers do prefer auctions. Just be aware that you may be missing mobile buyers who want a faster shopping experience. Buyers can filter search results to include fixed price only. Remember that some buyers are more time sensitive then price sensitive. It may be more important to receive an item quickly than to buy it at the lowest price. Examples include purchasing items for travel, birthdays or celebrations, or just plain old impatience.

Crop photos tightly.

Eliminate empty space and make sure you have zoomed in tight on the product, edge to edge. If you are selling multiple items in a lot, use one good photo with one item in the lot as your gallery photo. Potential buyers might not want to even look at a tiny little picture of 25 pieces of baby clothes. Get their attention with a nice shot of 1 or 2 pieces, then include more in your listings. Everybody gets 12 free pictures now, so take the extra time to take more than just one photo of a huge lot of something.<br/>
Write concise descriptions.

Keep them short, sweet, and to the point, and use one color font. Include important information but don't clog up the screen with too much text and a zillion of your personal policies. Remember, buyers are looking at a lot of listings and not just yours. Keep the description pleasing to the eye and easy to read. You have probably seen those eBay listings that look like a carnival with 7 different colors of font, all caps shouting at you, and moving graphics. Buyers may click away from that type of listing due to confusion or eye strain.

For eBay Mobile, less is definitely more! And use 12 point font or larger. Lots of Baby Boomers (there are about 76 million of them out there) don't always wear their reading glasses and may not even try to read the listing if the font is too small. And you would be shocked at how many mobile phone users don’t know how to enlarge the screen to see small text. Make it easy for them to read!

Complete all item specifics.

This is important for the eBay search engine, Cassini, and mobile buyers.  Make sure item specifics are filled out. The mobile app displays them on a perfectly formatted screen and many buyers may not even look past that point. 

Think through these issues when you are creating your listings, and remember that everyone isn't sitting in front of a huge flat screen monitor when shopping on eBay. Sometimes, it is better to think small.

Avoid using templates.

Some eBay experts even say to forego the fancy backgrounds and templates because the extra graphics cause the listing to load more slowly (buyers might click away) or clutter up the screen too much.

Templates carry HTML code that the mobile app can’t read. The font is often too small and images and font overlap making the description unreadable. Check your listings on mobile devices to see how they display. Also, as mentioned before, template services like Auctiva and InkFrog , the photos will appear in the description section and not at the top of the mobile app. So when customers are shopping on mobile and land on your listings, they may go to swipe the picture at the top and not scroll down to the description section. If there is only one picture at the top, that customer may move on assuming there is only one picture of the product. They may never see your photos in the description area.

If you have the Auctiva scrolling banner on your listings, it does not display on mobile.

According to, 30% of all commerce is mobile commerce. Consumers like to buy online. Read more about optimizing eBay listings for mobile devices. You've done all the work to drive traffic to your listings. Don't lose the customer because your font is too small, your graphics are too busy, or your photos are not clear.