eBay Revamps Home for More Speed

eBay launched a redesigned homepage this week, aimed at helping customers more efficiently find and buy products. The redesign — months in the making — includes improvements to search, the eBay.com catalog, how structured and unstructured data are handled, product listings and more.

The improvements to eBay.com were largely driven by requests from merchants and shoppers, and improvements to search and catalog functionality are already found in eBay’s numerous mobile applications. Hugh Williams, eBay’s Vice President of Search Engineering, discussed the many new search features in a recent interview.

Regarding the new homepage, Williams said, “It has a great look and feel. It’s more personalized too. For example, you can sift through searches you recently did, and explore hot, trending products.” eBay.com’s search capabilities now include machine-learned rankings, which help elevate the exact product a user is looking for to the top of search results.

In addition to search improvements, the site redesign focuses on making good deals prominent so that users don’t miss them, tracking shopping trends that many users are following, making historical shopping results easily available, and many user interface enhancements. In focus group tests where users provided feedback on eBay’s new home page, they found it more useful, exciting, helpful and relevant.

“We have been responsible in driving pretty aggressive change,” said eBay Inc. President and CEO Donahoe, in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. “Still, I always want to go faster.”

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