September 9, 2016 by Andrew Minalto - 2 Comments

Spicy Auction Templates – Active Content Compliant?

sat-mobile-friendly

Happy Friday everyone!

Earlier this week I wrote a post about the new changes coming to eBay this autumn. One of the changes that will come into effect in 2017 is related to the rather technical term of active content use in eBay listing templates.

Soon after my post went online, I started to receive emails from my customers who are worried that their Spicy Auction Templates are not compatible with these new rules.

Here’s one example:

Hi Andrew,

Just saw your post about the up-coming changes on eBay. As I’m a member of SAT I use your templates solely (I LOVE them!) and just wanted to check that they are compatible with the new rules by using this tool, as advised by eBay:

http://www.i-ways.net/mobile-friendly/en-uk/

Now, all my listings show all kinds of errors and the tool basically says that my listings are not mobile competitive.

no-active-content

Does this mean that from next year my listings won’t be compatible with eBay?

Many Thanks in advance!

Jay

Hi Jay,

Thanks for your email. eBay really should put more details in place to avoid unnecessary stress for many people who are now panicking over these new rules.

First things first – you need to separate TWO things here:

  • Mobile friendly template
  • Use of active content

That online tool checks listings against BOTH things – mobile compatibility AND use of active content, which is nice of course…

BUT eBay’s rules are ONLY about the use of active content and NOT mobile compatibility.

What is active content?

To put it simply, it’s a number of scripts/coding languages that eBay will no longer support:

  • JavaScript
  • Plug-ins
  • Flash videos
  • Form actions

Our Spicy Auction Templates, both pre-made templates and custom made templates, DO NOT use ANY active content that is prohibited with these new rules. We have never used it! Our templates are built in plain HTML so they’re 100% compliant with these new rules.

And you can see this when you check your listings using the i-way tool – the second block that shows whether you use any active content – it’s all in GREEN, apart from the last one – LINKS – which is in orange. But such plain links are allowed by eBay, so it’s nothing to worry about.

active-content

Now, speaking about the Mobile Compatibility of our templates – they’re not currently mobile compatible – “technically”. They’re not build in a RESPONSIVE manner that would make them fully mobile compatible.

But as our templates are simple, one column layout designs, they still look good on mobile devices. You can check this yourself by looking at your listings using a mobile phone. On tablets they look absolutely fine and on mobile devices they still look okay, the only thing is that the text is rather small.

So why are our templates not responsive and 100% mobile compatible?

Well, for a reason.

We haven’t made our templates responsive because Turbo Lister doesn’t support that. You can’t edit responsive template listings in Turbo Lister as the visual editor make changes to the code and basically screws everything up.

Until now!

As we discovered from the latest eBay seller update – Turbo Lister is being discontinued shortly and will be replaced by the new Seller Hub (your new account dashboard). You can already take a look at a preview of this Seller Hub by logging into eBay USA using your normal eBay account details:

http://www.ebay.com/sh/ovw

Yes, it’s all web based (unlike Turbo Lister which was a desktop application) BUT at least it’s fast and from the tests I have done, very easy to use.

The new Seller Hub will be THE ONE listing tool used by most sellers now, as Turbo Lister won’t be available anymore. And as Seller Hub DOES support mobile templates and responsive designs, we’ll be updating our template library very soon. I hope to change all templates in the SAT members’ area to a responsive design by the end of the year.

Visually they will look exactly the same, with the only difference being that they will be 100% mobile compatible and text will look good/big even on small screens.

For people who have ordered our CUSTOM designed templates in the past, we’ll be offering a service (for a fee) where we re-code your templates to a responsive format. Details on this service will be announced on my blog within the next few months.

So, to sum it up – these new eBay rules are all about NOT using Active content in templates. Spicy Auction Templates do NOT use any active content so are 100% compatible with these new rules.

Mobile compatibility is a different matter entirely and is not something that eBay sets any rules about, however we’re still going to be updating our SAT template library in the upcoming months.

Hope this helps & have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

Thanks,
Andrew

2 Comments
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  1. Richard Cole

    Hi Andrew, i have read the above but still have concerns that my ebay listings will be removed shortly due to policy violations. I received an email yesterday which stated that said that 56 of my listings had emails, o.k that is my own fault and i have removed them but it also said I had 68 listings with links, I don’t use any links, so I can only assume it is your templates causing the isssue. I have also checked one of my listings using the i-way-tool and it came up with:

    No active content
    ✓ JavaScript
    Javascript is not found in source codes ▾
    ✓ Forms
    HTML form is not found in source codes ▾
    ✓ Mobile incompatible plugins
    This page does not use any mobile incompatible plugins ▾
    ? Links
    HTML link is found in source codes ▾
    ? Target Blank Links
    Links without target=”_blank” are found in source codes ▾

    Can you advise me whether I am going to get my listings removed or am I worrying unnecessarily.

    Regards

    Richard

    1. Andrew Minalto

      Hi Richard,

      Please get in touch with us via support and provide a link to one of your listings so we can take a look.

      Thanks,
      Andrew

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