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Improve performance with better descriptions

Think of your listing title and your item description as advertising—an opportunity to inform and get buyers excited about your item. A buyer relies on these details to make a purchase decision, so it's important that the information you include is accurate, clear, and comprehensive. Not only does this help set a buyer's expectations, it can also help you avoid:

  • Low detailed seller ratings for item as described

  • eBay Buyer Protection cases where a buyer reports that the item received doesn't match the description in your listing

  • Negative or neutral Feedback

Item condition

Describing your item's condition accurately is a key ingredient in your listing. Let buyers know exactly what they're getting—and be honest. Mention even the tiniest imperfections, so the buyer knows what to expect. A complete and accurate description also reduces the chances of the buyer reporting that your item was not as described.

Common problems Solutions

Describing refurbished, demo, or open-box items as "new" is misleading. "New" means brand-new, unused, unopened, undamaged and in the original packaging.

  • Clearly identify your item as refurbished, a demo, or opened throughout your listing, including the title and description, and highlight the item's quality separately.

For example, you can use a 5-star rating system, where 5 stars indicates the item is in perfect condition, meaning no flaws or defects and all parts and accessories are included. A 1-star rating describes an item that may have some functional defect. Be sure to clearly outline what each star rating means in your listing.

Burying information about the item's condition can make it easy to miss. This can look like an attempt to hide potential flaws about your product, which isn't fair to buyers.


  • Include information about the item's condition in your title, description, and item specifics (when available). Make sure the information is easy to find and easy to understand.

  • Use headlines, bulleted lists, and other visual elements to make your item details easy for buyers to find.

Omitting details about the item's flaws or defects can lead to misunderstandings.  


  • Clearly describe wear and tear, flaws, defects, malfunctions, missing parts or accessories, and any other imperfections.

Item details

Buyers tend to focus on a few key details when reading an item's description. If you don't include item details in your listing, it could lead to a misunderstanding about what's actually being sold.

Common problems Solutions

Not including all the relevant details about the item

  • To let buyers know exactly what they're getting, and to help enhance the value of your item, be sure to include relevant details in your description, such as:

    • Brand name, company, designer, or author

    • Item condition and quality

    • Model number or compatibility

    • Quantity

    • Size (give exact dimensions, if possible) and weight

    • When the item was made

  • Use headlines, bulleted lists, and other visual elements to make your item details easy for buyers to find.

Putting details in the listing for an item that is not actually being offered


  • Keep your listings simple and focus on providing only details that are relevant to the item for sale.

  • Don't use keywords that are unrelated to your item as a way to draw attention to your listing. This practice confuses buyers and is against our search and browse manipulation policy.


The photos in your listings should be of the listed item and reflect its condition. Include clear and detailed photos, especially for used items, to let a buyer know what to expect. When you set the right expectations with your photos, you have a much better chance of making your customer happy. For more information on photos and picture quality standards, visit the eBay Photo Center.

Common problems Solutions

Using stock photos for used or less-than-perfect items. Stock photos may only be used for brand-new and unopened items.

  • For items that aren't new, only include photos of the actual item

  • Include photos that clearly show any flaws or imperfections, as well as photos that highlight the item's good features.

Having misleading photos—for example showing two shirts when only one is actually for sale

  • Keep your photos simple, clear, and accurate, showing only the actual item for sale.

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