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Hi. Like most people, I sometimes have a browse on EBay, to see what's selling and what isn't. I find it a useful tool for doing ad hoc market research.

Every time I go on there though, I find new shops I wasn't aware of before. These are established shops, not new start ups. It made me realise, that the way something is typed into a search box can have a significant impact on what results are returned (or not). That process would of course, apply to all the major search engines as well.

Obviously people have keywords in EBay listings and those with their own sites have metatags and content for optimisation, bit it did make me wonder how other people search for items.

Let me give you an example. You want a tee similar to one you've seen someone else wearing. The amusing slogan has appealed to you and you want something just like it. What do YOU type into a search box? Slogan shirt? Funny Tee? Amusing top? Joke t-shirt?

Perhaps you can see the problem here, not everyone is going to use the same search criteria. You could add a whole list of other words onto the list above and still not reach out to all potential customers.

I think we've all been in the position where we have 'googled' things and ended up with a page full of results, other than what we have actually been looking for. You'd think something as basic as 'sublimation supplies' would be very precise, but you'd be wrong. When I did that exact search, it missed out about sixty percent of suppliers. :confused:

Your comments, as always, are most welcome. :)
 
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