It is fair to say that when eBay seller policy updates are released many people take a short breath. We know there will be some good, some bad and some that make us scratch our heads in wonder. People do not always agree with their changes, and sometimes sellers are left feeling that they are doing more work for little reward. The latest update was no different.
A Controversial Change
eBay has decided that as of March 2018 all images will have to be free from watermarks. Many people watermark their images to ensure that other sellers do not use them, and of course to build that all-important brand awareness. It is something that has taken time to create and now has to be removed. To say there is an uproar from this controversial decision is putting it mildly so let’s have a look at the reasoning behind it.
It is Actually a Positive Move
Before you will rush to shoot the messenger consider this. The purpose of our eBay listings is to sell our items and to do that we need to put them in front of the biggest audience possible. eBay is introducing ‘shop the scene’ which is a graphics-based feature that highlights products featured in a scene.
So, for example, a group of people are all sitting around wearing fashionable clothing, having a meal or just socialising. If your item matches what they are wearing, eating or doing, your listing could feature in ‘shop the scene’. This is a graphical popup that showcases matching item listing, but not if there is a watermark on it. Search facilities will not be able to find your item as the search engine needs images to be in a clean plain background with no decorations texts logos and borders. While this may seem harsh, this is not unique to eBay. Search engines do not pick up images that have the UK flag or watermarks on them; it has become standard internet practice. So with this knowledge, it probably makes sense to comply with the requirement as you will be increasing the potential sales audience.
Sadly Compliance is Not Optional
Unfortunately, even if you feel that featuring in ‘shop the scene’ won’t do much for you (we can’t think why it is a great new feature), eBay has dictated that watermarks are simply not allowed. Remember active content? Along the same lines, eBay will remove images that do not comply so you could find that your listings no longer feature images. Buyers are likely to just scroll past listings with no images, and not generate the sales you were hoping for, which also makes you look less professional, and damages brand awareness efforts.
We understand that removing watermarks from hundreds or thousands of images is going to be time-consuming however there are various tools that can help you with this. If you would like more information on how we can help you get your images March 2018 ready, please do not hesitate to contact us.