Item Specifics Troubleshooting: We're Here to Help

Why is eBay making some Item Specifics required?

Item specifics are part of a new and easier approach to listing on eBay. We’re simplifying our category structure and asking sellers to describe what they are selling using item specifics rather than having to choose between many specific categories. We require item specifics guided by eBay shopping data, based on buyer search terms and the information a buyer would need to make a purchase decision (e.g. colour and size are important to a buyer shopping in the clothing category). These Required Item Specifics are essential to your visibility on and off ebay, as buyers use them to search and filter items onsite.

How do I easily update my item specifics?

If you have a small number of listings to update, you can use Seller Hub and filter your listings by ‘Required Soon’ and update your Item Specifics directly.

Visit Seller Hub → 

If you have a significant number of listings to update, as an eBay seller you get free trial* access to the Optiseller tool which allows you to update Item Specifics in bulk until the end of June.

Learn more about Optiseller →

Why is eBay asking me for Item Specifics that are not relevant to my item. What should I do?

Our Item Specifics requirements are based on buyer search terms and are relevant to the category they are required in. 

If you feel the Item Specifics we’re asking you to update are not relevant to you, you may be listing in the wrong category. See eBay’s category structure to make sure you are listing in the right category. 

How do filters affect item specifics?

If you do not enter an item specific, for example you don’t enter ‘blue’ in the colour item specific, then your listing will completely disappear from the results when a buyer applies a filter for “blue”.

I’m getting an error message when trying to update my multi-variation listings. What do I do?

Starting 22 February 2021, as part of our item specifics updates, certain variation details will no longer be valid. This change helps clarify what variations work best as a single listing, and what items are more likely to get noticed as separate listings. 

Listings impacted by this change will display the following error message when you edit them: “This attribute is not valid for this variation. Add a valid attribute.”

If you see this message:

  • First try to update your listing. Look for an existing variation detail that more accurately describes how the items are related.
    • For example, a listing for a kitchen faucet may have previously used “Type” to describe the variations “Stainless steel”, “Rubbed Bronze”, and “Chrome. This could b updated to “Finish.”
  • If you can’t find a relevant existing variation detail, you’ll need to create separate listings.
    • For example, a listing for tools may have used “Type” to describe variations for “Hammer,” “Wrench,” and “Screwdriver.” In this case, the items are not closely related enough to fall under a single listing. The variation “Type” will need to be removed and the items re-listed separately. 

Making these changes helps your listings with multiple variations show up in the right searches, and helps buyers feel confident in their purchase.


*This eBay offer includes access to the Optiseller Aspect Finder+ tool for sellers until June 30th, 2021. No commitment is required from sellers beyond this date, no payment details are required to redeem this offer, and sellers who redeem the offer will not be charged for the use of the tool during the offer period. To take advantage of this offer, sellers must sign up using the link provided (or if already an existing Optiseller user, by logging in by using the link provided). Optiseller does offer other paid-for tools, services and plans which can be purchased separately. These are not included in the free offer.