5 Things ChannelAdvisor Support Wishes Sellers Knew About eBay

August 9, 2017

Marketplaces ChannelAdvisor By ChannelAdvisor Support

There are a lot of moving parts to a marketplace, so it’s only natural that an error message comes up a time or two. Today, we’re taking a look at eBay and going over some common questions that come across our desks over here in Support and hopefully clearing up some confusion sellers may have about common errors.

1. Keep the eBay token valid

ChannelAdvisor uses an 18-month “token” to manage eBay listings on your behalf. This token serves as the link between ChannelAdvisor and eBay, and when it expires, no communication can occur between ChannelAdvisor and eBay until it is updated again. This includes revisions of existing listings, postings of new listings and order imports and updates.

You can verify the token status and expiration date by going to Marketplaces > eBay > eBay Settings > eBay Marketplace Credentials.

As the token’s expiration date approaches, ChannelAdvisor will post reminders, and you can always update the token before the expiration date.

To start the token renewal process, complete the following actions:

  1. From Marketplaces > eBay > eBay Settings > eBay Marketplace Credentials, click on the eBay seller username that you wish to update.
  2. Click on the Update Token button.
  3. You’ll be guided through a series of pages, which will include signing into eBay and clicking Agree or Continue several times.
  4. At the end of the process, click the Save and Exit button in ChannelAdvisor.
  5. This will take you back to Marketplaces > eBay > eBay Settings > eBay Marketplace Credentials, and you can verify the new expiration date.

It’s important to keep your token updated or, if it’s already expired, to update it as soon as possible. Once the token is updated, ChannelAdvisor will automatically start importing any missing orders. Any related revision and posting errors will need to be deleted from the Listing Errors page. Tracking updates are not sent when the token is invalid, and therefore will need to be updated directly on eBay. Similarly, any changes made to item information after the token expired wouldn’t have been detected and will be sent the next time something is changed for the item.

2. Use the eBay Listing Errors page and delete errors as they are resolved

There are two button options to view Listing Errors: Products and Errors. Use the right view for the right task. Use the Products view to easily see all errors and warnings for targeted troubleshooting of a specific item. Use the Errors view to check out summary information for all errors and warnings and to determine which problem is impacting the most items.

Unlike other marketplaces, eBay requires that listing errors be cleared before any attempt to post the item. If you have resolved an eBay error, don’t forget to delete the error message. If you haven’t been managing the eBay Listing Errors page on a regular basis, you may have older listing errors that are no longer relevant. As a rule of thumb, ChannelAdvisor Support recommends that you delete any listing errors greater than a few days old and if you’re currently working to resolve an issue, delete all associated errors more than an hour old.

3. Variation data cannot be changed without ending the current eBay listing

When a variation listing is posted to eBay, eBay expects that all of the originally submitted variation data will stay exactly the same throughout the life of the listing. If the variation data sent from ChannelAdvisor changes, eBay can’t reconcile the differences between the data currently being sent and what was originally sent, and eBay will return variation errors.  Common variation errors include:

  1.  Duplicate custom variation label
  2.  Missing name in name-value list
  3.  Variation specifics cannot be changed/variation specifics mismatch
  4.  The variation option is duplicated

Essentially, all of the above errors are caused by the same issue: variation data has been changed or removed since the listing was originally posted. These errors will prevent updates to live listings, and will also prevent new products from being added to existing variation listings.  To avoid these errors, it is critical to ensure no changes are made to the variation data once a listing is successfully posted on eBay.  

4. Manage all eBay listings through ChannelAdvisor

Posting eBay listings outside the ChannelAdvisor platform is generally unadvised as ChannelAdvisor can only manage listings that are in our Open Listings view.  If ChannelAdvisor is not managing a listing, we are unable to properly manage price, quantity or listing details.  This may result in — but is not limited to — unexpected listing configurations, price/quantity inconsistencies and a higher risk of overselling. In some scenarios, managing listings outside ChannelAdvisor may result in orders not being pulled into the platform. In this situations, it will be necessary to work with the orders directly through eBay.

You also miss out on the opportunity to use unique ChannelAdvisor features such as Deal Planner, Repricer and Automatically Withdraw Listings With No Sales.

If you are currently hosting listings outside the ChannelAdvisor platform and would like to convert these to ChannelAdvisor listings, please contact our Professional Services team. You can use this form to request the eBay Listing Services package.

5. Use eBay order consolidation to save on fulfillment costs

ChannelAdvisor has a great feature that allows you to save on fulfillment costs by combining orders from the same buyer so products can be packaged and shipped together in a single fulfillment. When Automate Buyer Cancel and Order Consolidation Processing is enabled in the ChannelAdvisor eBay settings, each new order that arrives will be held (for the time frame specified in the settings) to watch for other orders from the same buyer that can be consolidated. To qualify for consolidation, the following requirements must be met:

  1.  The orders must be from the same buyer within the time frame specified in the order consolidation settings.
  2.  The shipping address must be the same across all orders considered for consolidation.
  3.  The shipping carrier and class must be the same across all orders considered for consolidation.

This consolidation feature is strictly for fulfillment purposes only.  It does not change anything regarding the shipping costs. The buyer will still pay the advertised shipping cost for each listing. Check out additional details and instructions from ChannelAdvisor Support on enabling this time- and money-saving feature.

Not selling on eBay yet? Apply today to get started on a marketplace with 169 million active buyers worldwide (and counting!)