As you may or may not know, auto and powersports sellers can use eBay’s product catalog to specify vehicle compatibility. While this can be an easy solution for many sellers, there are limitations to the eBay product catalog. It may not be available in your country, your parts may not be included in the catalog information, or details included in the catalog listing may not be appropriate for your selling situation.
In order to ensure a great buyer experience, you can also submit compatibility information manually through the ChannelAdvisor platform by specifying each of the supported vehicles. While the automotive parts catalog is currently only available in the US for vehicles, manual fitment is supported today on the US, Canadian, UK, German, French, Spanish, Italian and Australian eBay sites for vehicles as well as motorcycle and watercraft equipment in the US.
Specifying the compatibility details brings a better shopping experience for both the buyer and the seller. By providing the information in the listing, you reduce questions from buyers about whether the part will fit their vehicle, reduce returns from buyers selecting the wrong part, increase buyer confidence in their purchase and increase your exposure to buyers using the vehicle-based filtering while shopping for parts. Buyers will see the same set of results whether you use the catalog for the compatibility information or specify it manually, so there is no disadvantage to your exposure in search results or in the display to a buyer.
To specify the compatibility information, you will need to get the Master Vehicle List for your type of products and geographic location:
- United States
- Automotive Vehicles
- United Kingdom
- Automotive Vehicles
- Automotive Vehicles
This list defines every single vehicle supported by eBay, allowing you to clearly identify the compatibility information relevant for your parts. Whether your parts are for a Ford Model T, Tucker 48, Toyota Camry, or anything in between, you can identify the supported vehicles from eBay’s list and use them when submitting your listings. To specify these with your ChannelAdvisor inventory, just configure the vehicle data as an attribute with your SKU and associate the information on your posting template. For more information, see our Community content regarding Parts Compatibility and Fitment (must be logged into the ChannelAdvisor Community).
Periodically, updates are applied to the vehicle lists, but these are generally to add new model years. Once older model years have been published, there are only minor updates required to correct for small errors. When configuring the compatibility information with your products, we have you use the year, make, model, and other details for identification. This allows your product information to continue working properly even if eBay makes a change to their internal product identifier (ePID). Since a 1969 Chevrolet Camaro cannot suddenly change into a 1977 Pontiac Firebird, this means that the work you put into defining your compatibility information is preserved even when eBay internally rebuilds the vehicle list.
When eBay updates the list every few months, a quick review of the vehicle make/model name changes and new model years allows you to make sure that your products have all of the most current and accurate information. Quarterly updates have recently been posted for both the US and UK, so even if you are an existing compatibility user you’ll want to check and see if there are any updates relevant to your products.
Generally, up to 3,000 vehicles can be specified on a single listing, allowing most parts to be completely specified in a single listing. While this is not a problem for most parts, certain types of accessories available to a wide array of vehicles can quickly exceed these limits. In that case, sellers have two options:
- Submit the 3,000 most popular vehicles and only create a single listing
- Create multiple listings with up to 3,000 vehicles each
If you are in this situation, you’ll have to decide which is best for you. The former is easier to manage and covers many buyer situations while the latter is more comprehensive and allows for all buyers to be included.
ChannelAdvisor has supported eBay’s Parts Compatibility since the initial launch in March of 2010. If you’ve held off from using parts compatibility because your items were not part of the eBay catalog, manually specified compatibility gives you an opportunity to participate in an improved buyer experience and see your sales increase.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2013 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.