Importance of Postal Code for Item Location

eBay requires sellers to specify the item location when they list an item. Although sellers can specify item location as either a valid postal code or as a free-text string identifying the location, sellers should use postal code to specify item location, whenever possible. The use of postal codes provides a better experience for buyers and increase sales. Unfortunately, a significant percentage of items are listed without a postal code and the majority of listings without postal codes were created by third-party tools, using the APIs. 

Inventory Warehouse - Item Location

Why is postal code so important?

Postal code for the item location is a significant factor in helping to connect buyers with a seller’s items. Item location postal codes improve search visibility and result in more accurate (and shorter) estimated delivery times.  

Better search visibility

Items with postal code for item location get better search ranking with Best Match. When buyers filter search results by item location or sort by distance, the visibility of listings without postal code is dramatically reduced as compared to listings that specify location with a postal code. 

Improved shipping times

Item location postal code not only helps buyers find a seller’s items, it helps with the purchase decision. Estimated delivery dates let buyers know when they can expect an eBay item to arrive, a critical factor for making a purchasing decision. When a postal code is specified for a listing, eBay uses a more rigorous algorithm for calculating the estimated delivery date, which results in more accurate estimates and, generally, shorter shipping times. 

Take action now

To help sellers fix their listings before the holidays, eBay has provided a simple tool in Seller Hub to add a postal code to all of a seller’s active listings that are missing a postal code value. The tool is available in Seller Hub for the following eBay sites:

eBay United States https://www.ebay.com/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay United Kingdom https://www.ebay.co.uk/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay Germany https://www.ebay.de/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay Australia https://www.ebay.com.au/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay France https://www.ebay.fr/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay Italy https://www.ebay.it/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay Spain https://www.ebay.es/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay Canada, English https://www.ebay.ca/sh/lst/missing-zip
eBay Canada, Francais https://www.cafr.ebay.ca/sh/lst/missing-zip

Please share these links with your sellers to help them correct their listings quickly.

TIP Currently, eBay allows just one postal code for a given item. If a seller maintains inventory at multiple locations, which are relatively close in proximity (e.g., the first three digits of the postal codes are the same), the seller should specify the postal code for one of the locations. This is definitely better than no postal code, at all.

Helping your sellers going forward

Listings without postal codes lose out in many dimensions. So, what can you do for your sellers? Include postal code for the item location when listing items, whenever possible and revise any existing listings to add postal code for item location.

  • For the AddItem family of calls in the Trading API, use Item.PostalCode to specify item location
  • For the createInventoryLocation method of the Inventory API, use location.address.postalCode to specify the item location