Frequently Asked Questions (Widget)
Fix or improve things . . .
Altering the Widget . . .
Not adding up . . .
Moving forward . . .
I've placed the Widget HTML code in my eBay listing, but it doesn't appear.
If you place the Widget HTML code into a new listing (and sometimes even a current listing), please understand that the Widget will remain automatically hidden for a time. eBay enables us to display the Watch Count after your item passes a certain "popularity threshold" (as defined by eBay, and subject to change) and so the Widget will remain hidden until that criteria is met.
Usually this simply means that once your listing gets its first bid or sale, we can then display the Watch Count — and the Widget will almost immediately appear without any effort on your part, remaining present until listing end.
A missing Widget can also happen when your specified minimum Watch Count
hasn't yet been reached on the item, and so the Widget remains hidden.
Unfortunately, due to technical reasons, there are also certain classes of eBay item listing types that are categorically incompatible with our Widget, such as multi-variation listings, certain eBay Stores Inventory items, and single-quantity Fixed-Priced listings.
Also note that the Widget will not appear when it's placed outside of an eBay item description page (unless it's in Demo Mode
) — or when you're previewing/revising a listing before it goes live.
Moreover, you may wish to also have a closer look at the Widget HTML code within your listing to verify it hasn't accidentally been altered. You can always re-copy a fresh HTML snippet
into your listing(s).
There are also a couple other, far less common, reasons why the Widget may occasionally hide itself. If you're stumped and would like a hand troubleshooting, feel free to drop us an email
Sometimes the Widget reveals embarrassingly low Watch Counts on my auctions. Can I hide it when that happens?
Yes you can, if you configure it in advance (don't worry, it's easy). Simply revise the "min=
" parameter that's nestled within the Widget HTML code before you paste it into your listings. (Sellers who use this feature often pick a number between 2 and 5 as their minimum threshold.) The Widget will be prevented from appearing until the Watch Count of your item meets or exceeds your specified "min=
If your version of the Widget HTML code doesn't already include the "min=
" parameter, go here
to grab the latest HTML code, or you can add the parameter yourself by following the instructions on our Customization page
We're more than happy to help you with this if you need a hand; just drop us an email
It's cumbersome to add the Widget to each of my auction listings individually. Is there a better way?
You can have the Widget automatically included in all of your listings if you use a listing template. The Widget HTML code isn't coded to a specific listing (nor is the accompanying Dynamic Watch This Item Link
), so you can simply drop the code
into whatever template file you use for creating new listings.
Can I place the Widget at both the top and bottom of my listing?
Yes, that's easy to do. Just copy-paste the same Widget HTML code
into both places within your listing.
Can I encourage visitors to click "Watch This Item" links in my listing?
Yes, you can. And if they follow your direction, your item will be added to their watch list, as usual, and increase the item's Watch Count. This +1 accrual is reflected in the Widget (after a few-minute delay) and can make your item look more appealing as a result.
Our standard Dynamic Watch This Item Link
is already included alongside the Widget to quickly make this suggestion to visitors, but you can change it to another image or text phrase if you like.
Can I change Widget customizations or remove the Widget while my listing is live?
That depends. Doing either of those requires you to be able to make modifications to the Widget HTML code
within the content of your listing. However, eBay has rules in place (read them here
) to restrict when you're able to edit or append to a listing. Therefore, try to specify and use your preferred Widget customizations while you still have the ability to edit your listing.
You may also wish to use Widget Demo Mode
to preview different customization options before your Widget goes live.
What is Widget Demo Mode?
With Widget Demo Mode you can see a preview of how your Widget will appear, with all of your specified customizations in place, once it's displaying live Watch Counts within your listing(s). Enabling Demo Mode entails adding a tiny piece of HTML code to your Widget HTML code before placing it in your listing. (Don't forget to disable Demo Mode, though, when you're done playing!)
You can also preview a Widget in Demo Mode quickly, outside the context of your listing. Here on our Customization page
is more info on enabling and using Widget Demo Mode.
Can I alter the Widget HTML code to my liking?
You're welcome to make adjustments to the Widget HTML code so that the Widget is positioned within your listing as you see fit (such as centering, inline floating, etc.). You can also: remove the outgoing link (if there is one); tweak, replace, duplicate, or remove the Dynamic Watch This Item Link
image; make customizations to the Widget as specified on our Customization page
. If you'd like to add/edit/remove explanatory text around the Widget image, that's fine with us too.
However you may not add any code to your listing that alters the display of the Widget image itself, such as cropping it, shrinking it, placing overlays, or otherwise altering the displayed content of the Widget (except for allowable customizations
). Nor may you link the Widget to any URL other than what may be specified in the Widget HTML code
(even if the Widget HTML code you use has no outgoing link) without receiving prior permission from us
I'd like to falsify the Watch Count in my Widget with an inflated figure. How can I do this?
Sorry, we can't help you there. We get live Watch Count data directly from eBay (with a mere several-minute delay) and display it without any alteration. (You can, however, have the Widget automatically hide itself
when your item's Watch Count is low.)
I'd like to place the Widget on a colored background.
Our standard array of skins
have borders and drop shadows meant to be placed on a white background, but we can build you a skin with a custom palette. Just shoot us an email
and we'll be more than happy to work with you on that.
The Watch Count for my item as shown in the Widget differs from what's listed in My eBay.
If it's off by only 1-3 watchers then the difference is likely due to our few-minute data-feed delay. If you go grab a glass of milk/water/beer/etc. from the fridge and come back to your computer, the dust should settle and the Watch Counts should be in sync.
If the difference is prolonged or any greater than just a couple counts, then please take a moment to let us know
If I see a WatchCount.com Widget in someone's eBay listing, how do I know it's an authentic Widget, displaying an accurate Watch Count?
Our Widget always embosses the item number and current timestamp directly within the Widget's image to show currency of the data. The Widget won't display anything when it's placed outside of an eBay listing, unless it's in Demo Mode
(which the Widget image declares).
You may be able to double-check the Watch Count displayed in a Widget by visiting our home page
and searching for the listing using the item number or title. There's no guarantee, however, that you'll find the item in our search results since eBay may not consider it "popular" enough
for us to display.
If you'd like to guarantee that a Widget is definitely authentic, you'll need to view the source code of the eBay listing (easy to do within most browsers) and examine the live Widget HTML code to verify that the image tag's source specifies WatchCount.com
, or WatchCount.net
as its domain.
Which eBay country-sites does the WatchCount.com Widget work with?
The Widget works with the main eBay
US site, as well as a growing number of international eBay sites. Keep your eye on the eBay site/country selector in the menu bar, located at the top of every WatchCount.com page, to see which countries we currently support.
If I add the Widget several hours or days after the listing began, will the Watch Count be accurate?
Will placing the Widget in my eBay listing give it preferential placement in WatchCount.com search results?
No. Our search results are independent of Widget use. (That said, however, since our Widget
comes bundled with a Dynamic Watch Link
that solicits "Watch This Item" clicks, with more watchers you may find your listing ranking higher in our search results.)
I have some ideas for improvements to the Widget, such as features or more skins.
If you have ideas for Widget features or other improvements (or bugs), please send them our way
. (Thank you in advance.) Likewise, we're happy to entertain additional skins to our array of Widget customizations
. (If you give us a skin that we include as a Widget option, we'll be happy to link to your site from ours.)
How can I stay updated on the latest WatchCount.com Widget happenings?
Just keep an eye on our News page
where we'll post Widget service announcements and updates. You may also wish to join our Newsletter
to stay current on WatchCount.com happenings.
How does an item's Watch Count differ from its Bid Count or Hit Count?
All 3 are metrics that track shopper interaction with a particular listing, and each can be a reflection of item popularity in its own way.
* Hit Count:
This is how many people have viewed the item's listing page. Many sellers include eBay's standard (or their own 3rd party) counter in their listing(s) to show how many people have "passed by" the page. This might be analogous, in a brick-and-mortar retail store, to how many people pass in front of the store's window and turn their heads to peek through at a certain product on display.
* Watch Count:
The Watch Count is how many eBay users have actively clicked "Watch This Item" on the listing page to express some kind of interest in it, whether as a bidder, potential bidder, fellow seller, or other onlooker. This affirmative action of the user intentionally clicking the "Watch This Item" link/button (and being logged in to eBay at the same time) makes the Watch Count an excellent "popularity vote", much like other user flagging technologies at other websites. Taking our physical storefront metaphor a step further, the Watch Count is akin to one of the window shoppers choosing to enter the store, walk over to the product on the shelf, and inspect it further.
* Bid Count:
This is simply how many bids an eBay item has accumulated. In our metaphor, this might be similar to how many people have not just examined a certain product on the shelf, but have taken it up to the cashier with bona fide intention to purchase it.
Each of these counts can be a measure of item popularity in its own right, each with its pros and cons:
The Hit Count is rather broad, measuring casual item interest "from afar", but it includes counts from non-eBayers as well (perhaps a good thing).
Since Watch Count requires an actual click from a registered eBay user, it makes a great "popularity yardstick". It intermeshes interest from both buyers and sellers (and others) -- this could be a positive or negative, depending on where you're coming from.
Bid Count is of course naturally a prime choice for measuring direct buyer interest in an item since it requires shoppers to make legally binding contracts (bids) and pledge actual money. But, bidding often doesn't accrue much until the end of the listing, whereas Hit Count and Watch Count accumulate throughout the entire lifespan of the listing. Moreover, using Bid Count as a popularity metric misses the many potential bidders who have some solid interest in the item but abstain from bidding for various reasons. And if you're using eBay's Classified Ad format for your listing, it can't be bid on at all.