Optimizing Your eBay Titles and Subtitles

August 31, 2017

Marketplaces Dominic Grevsmuehl By Dominic Grevsmuehl

eBay allows retailers just 80 characters for product listing titles — a fairly low but mightily important figure that plays a vital part in marketing your product. A notable title can make your product stand out from the crowd and encourage shoppers to select your product instead of your competitors’.

The product title on eBay is especially important because it’s used to match the search results of the buyer. For that reason, use as many of the 80 characters you need to ensure that your descriptions, item specifics and images are optimized so your listing is visible to the highest number and most appropriate consumers on eBay. Subtitles give you the opportunity to add eye-catching keywords that don’t fit into the title or promotional text.


There are two key aspects to consider when optimizing your eBay titles:

  1. Describe your item accurately and set expectations. Accuracy is key — do not include any keywords that could be ambiguous or misleading. Avoid spelling and grammar errors, and capitalize words in a title. A recommended sequence in titles would encapsulate key information: Brand – gender – type – style – size – color – condition.
  2. Convey trust and confidence. If similar products are frequently produced with poor quality, use words such as ‘original’, ‘official’ or ‘genuine’ at the start of your title as reassurance to the consumer. Include attributes that best describe the quality and build of your product, together with the location of where the product is manufactured.

The inclusion of ‘From Your Seller Name’ can increase your brand visibility and build conversion through trust and security.

Additional Resources on Title Optimization

Below are some robust tools that will help you identify the most powerful titles:

  • Terapeak: Arguably the most professional tool for optimizing your title on eBay, Terapeak provides retailers transparency into competitor behavior, pricing techniques and strategies, supply and demand, category and product trends, and customer purchase patterns. It does, however, have a subscription fee starting from $19.95 per month.
  • Title Builder: Title Builder is a useful and free tool that helps you build out existing keywords in your title.
  • Listings Analytics: If you’re already listing products on eBay, then you’re able to review how your active listings are performing and being seen. eBay’s Listings Analytics allows you to quickly identify the most and least efficient performers, enabling you to optimize your strategy.
  • Competition research: Analyzing your competitors’ strategies will enable you to see whether there is a pattern on how titles are constructed, what keywords stand out and if you are missing any item specifics.


eBay also offers subtitles that permit you to write an additional 55 characters detailing your product information. Maximize the potential of subtitles by listing information that doesn’t fit into the title, as well as additional keywords and item specifics.

Consider adding other available benefits, such as seasonal promotions, savings against RRP (recommended retail price) prices, free delivery offers or other promotional activity that’s explained in more detail in the product description.

Hopefully, you’ll find that optimizing your eBay title and subtitle can substantially improve your marketplace listings.

Not selling on eBay yet? What are you waiting for? Apply today before the holiday frenzy begins. Your bottom line will thank you!

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in November 2013 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.