Ebay RSS Item Feeds Creating Your Own Personal Buying Feed

What are Ebay's RSS Item Feeds?

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication and is a format that allows normal HTML pages to be shown in other ways. Most namely as a feed. A feed is a page that is dynamically updated each time it is called. Usually this technology is used with blogs and online newspapers. Once someone subscribes to the feed they can easily catch up on their favorite blog posts and news items. This is accomplished through various RSS Readers such as Google Reader. Now where it starts getting interesting is that eBay provides RSS Feeds for all kinds of searches that you could possibly think of doing. Next time your on eBay try conducting the most specific advanced search you can, go to the bottom of the search page. You'll see a little orange RSS button click the button and you can subscribe to your search in any newsreader. That's not all though RSS is more powerful than most realize. There are plenty of uses for eBay RSS Feeds if we get a little creative.

Ebay RSS - Create Your Own Custom Buying Feed With Yahoo Pipes

Scouring eBay for a great deal on products to resell can be a very time consuming and tiring activity. Imagine though if you could just open a newsreader and have all the deals waiting for you. Now you can by harnessing the hidden power of RSS. Let's say you buy and sell collectible video games on eBay. Normally you would probably be searching each day for deals on items. With eBay RSS you could create a list of games at the prices you want and open it in your reader each day. Here's how:
  1. Login to eBay and go to advanced search.
  2. Now narrow your search down as much as possible. In keeping with our example let's say the game we want cost $100 and we want get it for at most $50. So under price you would put $0 to $50. Now if an auction is just starting out and is already bid up to $50 you're probably not going to get a great deal. So something else you can do is check the box that says "Items Ending Within" and you can choose to see only items ending within an hour or two. This gives you a better chance of grabbing a deal.
  3. Now go to the bottom the page and click "Search". Scroll down to the bottom of the results page and and click the orange "RSS" button.
  4. A new window will open copy the address from the page we'll use it later.
  5. Now go to Yahoo Pipes a web site for manipulating RSS Feeds and their content. (Don't worry it won't get too complicated for our purposes).
  6. Create an account and click the "Create A Pipe" button. You should be taken to tool that looks like something for designing a flow chart.
  7. On the left hand side of the screen under "Sources" find the "Fetch Feed" module press the "+" to add it. Paste your RSS address in the module.
  8. Add as many more eBay Item Feeds as you'd like.
  9. In Yahoo Pipes under "Operators" add the "Sort" module in the drop down menu select item.pubDate and descending. This will sort all your eBay Feed Items by the day that they were published the ones ending sooner appearing first. (in some cases BIN items may show up first before auctions)
  10. Now link the modules together and save it under whatever name you'd like. There now you have a personal eBay Buying Feed. Run the pipe and save the new RSS address to your favorite reader.
You can also use eBay feeds to keep tabs on specific items and their prices by simply checking the completed items box during advanced search. This will show you the completed items which ones sold and for how much over time you should get a good idea of how much the items are going for. Ebay also has a new feature called "Products and Reviews" where you can select to sort items by "Bestselling" it's the fourth tab over when searching from within a category. However they have not offered an RSS feed for these results yet. If this is your first time using Yahoo! Pipes then you also may want to check out this informative book Working with Yahoo! Pipes, No Programming Required or if you have experience with programming there is much more that you can do with RSS using JavaScript and JQuery.

*Update: So I was trying this out the other day and realized that the sorting doesn't work with the example given you actually need another module to help sort the items. Instead of re-writing the entire article I thought I just give you a yahoo pipe you can copy and edit yourself. You simply have to add the ebay feeds that you'd like sorted and it does the rest. Ebay Feed Combiner

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