How keywords will help you grow your eBay profits

Many unsuccessful sellers source and buy – and even list – goods without properly considering search terms likely to be used by potential customers for their products on eBay.

Subsequently, if listing titles and descriptions don’t match real life searches, products don’t appear in search returns and their goods go unsold.

Their successful counterparts know keyword research is crucial to making money on eBay – both in revealing products that are already selling in high numbers (and attracting regular profits for other sellers), as well as identifying search terms used by those wanting to buy specific products on eBay.

Making keyword research a priority ahead of even sourcing stock should lead to more rapid product turnover, higher prices and limited stockpiling.

So how do savvy sellers find high frequency key words and phrases for their eBay titles and descriptions?  How do they identify profitable products based on high frequency keywords?

How about giving these approaches a try…?

Searching manually for hot products and frequently used keywords

You could perform an advanced search for past sales of certain products and look for keywords commonly used in their titles and descriptions.

If you have similar products to sell, use keywords similar to those used by past successful sellers for those items.

Using research from companies like Terapeak and Hammertap

Research can sometimes be expensive but paying gives access to countless further profit-making statistics than any person can compile on their own.

Utilising trendspotting tools like Google Trends

Free to use but demands patience and analytical skills. Find similar other methods of doing this by keying ‘Trend Spotting Sites’ into any major search engine.

Making the most of eBay’s Pulse tool

It’s fast, free and highly efficient.

It is the latter I recommend to you today – even though eBay’s own Pulse tool was withdrawn several years ago without warning to sellers.

It was used to find high frequency search terms on eBay, as well as products based on those terms and selling in high numbers for other sellers.

The tool also revealed sellers topping the sales charts for specific high frequency search terms, leading to copycats stealing their product and marketing ideas and profiting from all their hard work. Not nice, unless you are the recipient of this wonderful free research.

But Pulse – so called because it helped sellers keep their fingers on the pulse of keywords, products and top performing sellers – was resurrected within days by research companies like Goofbid, providing a tool closely resembling eBay’s dead offering.

You’ll find the copycat Pulse tool by hitting ‘eBay Tools’ top of the home page at and then choosing ‘eBay Pulse Tool’ close to the bottom right of the ensuing dropdown menu.

On the next page you choose one of eBay’s product listing categories, such as Crafts, Collectibles (Collectables in the UK), Art, and numerous others. Click to search and you’ll find the most frequently used search terms across your chosen category.

For Books, Comics & Magazines, for example, Goofbid lists highest frequency keywords such as ‘angling’, ‘carp’, ‘comics’, ‘crochet’, ‘golf’, ‘birds’ and ‘photography’. Just below that, Goofbid lists bestselling products within a chosen listing category.

Use Goofbid’s Pulse tool and within minutes you’ll know what products to sell for guaranteed regular profits, along with words to use in your eBay titles and descriptions to attract the highest possible audience to your listings.

I personally see just one main problem with Goofbid, that being that it reflects broad product categories but doesn’t dig deep into product sub-categories.

So it reveals highest frequency keywords used across eBay’s Collectibles category, for example, but doesn’t hone in on search terms for postcards and autographs, or other specific collecting interest.

Thankfully, sellers specialising in subcategory products will find their needs well met at Watchcount, specifically here.

You click on a main product category at the top of the page and, lower down the next page at ‘Drill Down/Up Category’, you specify a product subcategory to locate related high frequency search terms and popular products.

Essentially, Goofbid is more effective for people wanting to dominate an entire product category and Watchcount is for sellers in tighter niches.

And both cost nothing to use.

So how do you use all that free information?

Some possibilities you might like to consider…

Only source and sell products based on high frequency search terms

Take ‘carp’, for example, a popular search term under Books, Comics & Magazines, and a topic you might specialise in on eBay.

Make a careful study of books about carp available on eBay – breeding them, fishing for carp, taking care of them, their history and more besides – and you’ll become a specialist seller much faster than someone selling books about all different subjects.

Specialising gives your listings prominence in eBay search returns and makes you someone buyers trust to describe their products correctly.

As a specialist, you’ll spend less time searching for stock at boot sales and auctions and you’ll spot bargains other sellers miss.

Create hybrid products or multiple item listings based on two or more high frequency search terms

You’ll grow your buying audience for fixed price products as well as encouraging bidding wars for your auction listings.

To illustrate, I know that ‘butterfly’ and ‘birdcage’ are frequent search terms for people buying wedding invitations and table favours. So if one hundred potential buyers enter each of those search terms daily into eBay, that should attract two hundred visitors to your fixed price wedding invitations and accessories featuring butterflies and birdcages together, attracting more bids and higher auction prices.

Another example: people selling vintage postcards might create fixed price or auction listings featuring two high frequency search terms, such as ‘Liverpool’, ‘Hastings’ and ‘Sunderland’ for topographical collectors. Combine two popular topographical areas and people wanting just one will have to buy both and face heavy competition.

Create new products based on high frequency search terms for similar and unrelated products

‘Titanic’, for example, as I’ve said many times, is a high frequency search term that helps lift sales of numerous products, such as collectibles and on prints to decorate walls in the home or at work, even on t-shirts and car stickers.

The idea is to use popular keywords as the basis of your own unique products, a procedure you’ll see working wonderfully well at produce on demand sites like Zazzle and Café Press where members upload images to appear on any or all of hundreds of different product types.

Visit Zazzle and Café Press, enter a generic search term, like ‘butterfly’, ‘Van Gogh’, ‘Greyhound’, ‘Alice in Wonderland’ – all high frequency eBay search terms – and you’ll have hundreds of product ideas to choose from.

Create bonus products based on related or unconnected high frequency search terms to grow your visiting audience

Similar to the last tip, make your listings stand out from people selling a similar base product.

It is all so very easy – and just a few minutes spent researching high frequency keywords will definitely grow your sales and profits and ensure your listings always attract eager buyers.

Go on, give it a go and do let me know how you get on.

This article first appeared on Auction Genie. Read more and comment here