Retiring the WatchCount.com Widget
Very soon we'll be retiring our long-standing WatchCount.com Widget for eBay Sellers
. This is our free widget that some sellers have included in their listings to broadcast how many watchers the item has.
We're needing to decommission our Widget after 7 years due to recent platform changes at eBay. The eBay developers team announced that the programming functionality that we use to power the Widget is deprecated and will soon be terminated, so we have to shut our Widget down beforehand.
We'll be turning off the Widget on or shortly after 20-Aug-2015. If you have the Widget in your listings, please be sure to remove the Widget HTML code before then (thanks).
RIP eBay Classic/Wildcard Search Tool
| Revised: 14-Mar-2015
Sadly, as of approximately 24-Feb-2015, our eBay Classic/Wildcard Search Tool
has been non-operational, most likely permanently. This is due to recent changes on the eBay platform that no longer support accessing their classic search framework as our tool had done for a couple years. Our tool has been reduced to now only performing standard eBay searches. (Much less exciting, indeed.)
Please keep in mind that our eBay Most Watched search tool
continues to be wildcard-compatible. But it's a different beast, may not reliably be wildcard-compatible going forward, and is not a complete replacement for our former Classic/Wildcard tool.
That said, we're happy that we got a good two years out of its functionality, extending the life of eBay wildcard searches beyond its official/announced termination towards the end of 2012. We'd received praise from a number of happy eBay shoppers who were excited to have discovered our tool that enabled them to continue targeted, yet broad, searches on eBay in a way that's only afforded by including the classic wildcard symbol in a search query.
It's unlikely that we'll be able to resurrect this tool.:(
Still, we'll be on the search for any viable replacement functionality, and should we discover anything worthwhile, we'll post about it here or in our low-volume newsletter
Thank you for your continued support and use of WatchCount.com !
Just Launched: eBay Buyer/Bidder History Search Tool
| Revised: 28-Sep-2014
We've just launched our new Buyer/Bidder History Search Tool
, which attempts to display all items a user purchased or won within the last several weeks. This new tool is meant as a near-identical replacement for the former, long-standing Advanced Search by Bidder search functionality eBay had offered for many years, but retired just a couple months ago. Our new tool is free to use, just like all of WatchCount.com's tools and services
While either party in an eBay transaction can make use of our tool, we had small eBay sellers in mind while developing it. We learned that those who knew about and used the similar, former eBay search tool had some solid reasons to put it to good use:
- to help identify and corroborate suspicious buyer behavior or claims
- to assist in manually cross-selling other eBay items, such as a custom-printed promo flyer inserted in outgoing shipments
- to help reveal trending products and general purchasing behavior
- to offer some measure of bidder vetting on high value bids
- to enable sellers who receive misdirected customer inquiries to relay the buyer to the proper eBay seller
As with all of our alternative eBay search tools, we're dependent on functionality served by eBay's publicly accessible developers platform. With eBay having recently sunset their similar Advanced Search by Bidder tool, the longevity of their back-end API support (and thus that of our own tool) is unclear to us. As such, we've tagged our new search tool
for the time being (as we did with our Classic/Wildcard search tool
), but we still remain cautiously optimistic that eBay's API platform will continue to support us going forward.
Jump to eBay Collections from WatchCount.com
By now you've probably heard of eBay Collections
, eBay's visually engaging showcase of professionally curated content in many popular categories. Moreover, any eBay shopper or seller can assemble their own collections set, optionally making it available to be viewed by anyone.
We've just made it a tad easier to tap into all of those collections, based on whatever keyword search you've entered into our Most Watched items
Just look for the [eco]
link above/near our search results, which will take you to eBay Collections, targeting the search terms you've entered. (This direct link is currently only available for eBay.com (US) users, but we hope to expand it to eBay UK in the near future.)
Now See Similar eBay Items
We recently added a tiny new feature to most of our search results pages.
You can now click the small "similar items" link and be taken to eBay where you'll see a list of items similar to the one you're viewing.
eBay's internal algorithms assemble this list of about 20 individual products and presents them right on the view-item page. This can help familiarize yourself with other like-products for sale on eBay, in case the one you're viewing isn't quite what you're looking for.
Keep an eye out for that special link while you're cruising around WatchCount.com…
eBay Radio Interviews WatchCount.com
We just concluded speaking live with Jim "Griff" Griffith and Lee Mirabal of eBay Radio (eBay's official online radio network). It was a fun chat as we roamed around WatchCount.com exploring some of our eye-opening eBay search tools.
Griff started us out at the homepage's Most Watched
search utility. Then we made a pit stop at our Top eBay Searches page
before Lee then asked us to give her the scoop on our lesser-known Best Offer selling price lookup
All in all we had a good time, shared some laughs, and hopefully exposed some more eBayers to our creative and unique web apps. (You can listen to the archived radio segment
Just Launched: eBay Classic/Wildcard Search Tool
| Revised: 18-Jun-2013
We've been eager to provide a functional, alternative wildcard search tool ever since eBay removed said searching capability
from their site late last year.
At last, we're now proud to launch such a search utility on our site
, enabling eBay wildcard searching by leveraging eBay's classic search engine framework.
On our eBay Classic/Wildcard Search
page, simply enter your query with wildcard character/symbol (*) included, and we'll generate for you a special eBay-destined search link that'll take you to eBay, handling your wildcard search on eBay properly, processing the wildcard syntax as you intended it with complete search results – the way it used to be!
You'll see that our new search tool also provides many of eBay's typical advanced search options, including Completed Listings, Best Offer filtering, and deep subcategory accessibility.
Note that currently our homepage Most Watched search tool
is still wildcard-enabled as well.
Are you new to wildcards? Wildcard functionality is used to substitute characters in a search keyword to help broaden the searcher's intent, offering a level of expansiveness and granularity with a simple asterisk. This can help, for example, to quickly turn up keyword misspellings, plurals, years, part numbers, and themes. A search for dress*
, for example, can return results that include dress, dresser, dresses, dressed,
etc. Here's a live example of wildcard-supported search
, when looking for books from the 1800s. By comparison, see eBay's standard search results without wildcard handling
. … Update:
Stuart Turnbull kindly made another short YouTube video
recently to illustrate the usefulness of our new search tool.
We hope you enjoy this new handy search utility we've built, and – as always – we welcome
your feedback, comments, and suggestions.
eBay Sold Items: Best Offer Selling Price
| Revised: 28-May-2013
We just added a tiny new feature to WatchCount.com that we think a small number of our visitors will appreciate.
This is relevant to already-completed eBay listings that sold via Best Offer instead of the original BIN asking price, within the prior
If you're curious what its final selling price was, just use our Item Lookup feature
by pasting the several-digit eBay listing number (or the entire eBay URL) into the 'Keywords' box on our homepage
then clicking the "Show Me...!" button.
You'll then see basic item details, now including the final Best Offer sold-for price. (We try to display the selling price outright, if we can; otherwise, we'll link to an eBay page that shows it to you there.)
Stuart Turnbull kindly made a short YouTube video
recently to illustrate how easy it is to use this search feature.
Just Launched: Most Popular eBay Searches
We're excited to launch a new search tool here on WatchCount.com: Most Popular eBay Searches
! With it, you can see search terms most frequently used by other shoppers on eBay, in most any category or subcategory. This handy eBay keyword tool also does the same for search phrases you enter yourself, spanning across all eBay categories, returning similar and related terms used by live eBayers cruising around the marketplace.
You'll see that we make it easy to browse through subcategories, re-run searches based on newly found terms, and also easily jump over to our Most Watched
search tool (or eBay) for interesting finds.
The development of this tool comes right on the heels of eBay's retiring
of their heralded eBay Pulse pages. We wanted to offer a replacement for the same tool that was featured on Pulse for so many years, and we feel we did a pretty good job of it (actually, we've got a few bells and whistles that Pulse didn't have).
We hope you enjoy this new search functionality
we've just brewed on the site and, as always, we welcome your feedback and suggestions
eBay Removes Wildcard Searching
Earlier this month (05-Nov-2012, to be exact), eBay removed the ability to search their marketplaces using an asterisk within search terms. This wildcard functionality, as it's called, allowed a search for dress*
, for example, to return results that included dress
eBay has stated that the asterisk character will no longer be supported, whether on-eBay or off-eBay. Thus, this change also affects their entire third-party developers platform, including WatchCount.com search queries and related services, and is unfortunately out of our control.
Search phrases that include a wildcard will now simply drop the asterisk and proceed without it. eBay still plans to process search queries with intelligent recognition to attempt to interpret the intent of the user and return relevant results. But know that if you use an asterisk, you may no longer receive results the way you're used to.
There's been a lot of discussion about this revolutionary change, some of which can be found in eBay's Search forum
. eBay has said that as part of their search engine evolution, they needed to replace that functionality with a different internal algorithm for processing/interpreting and rewriting search requests by users.
As we said earlier, this affects search products on WatchCount.com, such as our No Bids, Auctions Ending Soon search tool
Our flagship Most Watched search tool
: it seems that wildcards may still work
there for the time being, but we're not entirely sure. Play around with it and see what you think!
eBay Retires Pulse Pages
It seems eBay has dropped support for its Pulse pages, effective a few weeks ago. While to our knowledge eBay made no public announcement, a number of bloggers and observers took notice of the change, whereby the Pulse pages for eBay's major international sites disappeared, replaced with an automatic redirect to the eBay home page.
had been around for at least a decade, probably more. It's likely that eBay's removal of it was part of an "out with the old, in with the new" strategy that's currently underway on the site, evident by their high-publicity announcements of their new logo, homepage, and overall shopping experience advances.
Many feel that eBay Pulse maintained a kind of gravity for a certain "underground" audience of eBayers – a mix of buyers, sellers, and other enthusiasts, stretching back to the early years of eBay. The Pulse pages highlighted popular search phrases, most watched items, and popular eBay Stores, giving users a kind of glimpse of what was hot on eBay from a handful of angles.
For nearly half a decade now, WatchCount.com has been happily offering eBay Most Watched Items/Auctions
search functionality that we liked to think was something akin to "Pulse on a turbo boost", as we're able to show more detailed ranking information with more depth and search features than what Pulse touched upon.
We hope and expect to continue offering these eBay Most Watched search services (as well as other features on the site), hopefully for years to come, and invite eBayers who were once regulars to Pulse to come explore all that WatchCount.com has to offer for eBay shoppers, sellers, and others.
Larger Photos for Most Watched Items
We've just boosted the photo image sizes for listings appearing on our Most Watched items
pages. Pictures are now about 50% larger!
We think this change is a little easier on the eyeballs, and we hope you too enjoy more eye-catching moments as you browse the listings on our website.
Please reach out to us with any comments or suggestions you may have on this update (or anything else on our site). There's a Contact Us
link in the 'About' menu on every page...
Thanks for using WatchCount.com!
WP Plugin: Milestone – Topping 4,000 Downloads
The WatchCount.com WordPress Plugin
just hit another milestone today, surpassing its 4,000th
download. (Rockin'!) This is a total count since our free plugin launched over 2 years ago.
The WCCWPPI (as we call it) is hosted at, and tracked independently by, WordPress.org. You can see their download graph and counter for our plugin on the official WordPress Plugin Directory website
If you use our WordPress plugin, we'd like to extend a big thank you
for contributing to the master download tally, and we hope you're enjoying using the WCCWPPI to showcase your favorite eBay items within your blog.