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What are Item Characteristics? Do all items have Characteristics?

(last updated on 12/27/2011)

What are Item Characteristics?

Item characteristics are values added to an item when it is listed that allow the seller to clearly define attributes of an item. Some examples are caliber, length, and manufacturer. These characteristics make it easier to find items that are similar or find the exact item you are looking for.

Do all Items have Characteristics? 

No, they do not. Items listed on may have item characteristics, they may not. Not all categories support characteristics and not all items in a category have characteristics defined for them. is rolling the characteristics out over time by category. Even if a category has characteristics all items within that category may not. Items listed via different methods have different access to listing characteristics. Items that originally listed without characteristics and are automatically relisted may not have characteristics.

Why doesn't the number of items in the search results match the sum of the characteristic counts?

Not all items have characteristics so only item that have had characteristics defined end up in the characteristic counts or display when you filter by characteristics. It is important to search both with and without characteristics to find all the items you are looking for. As characteristic usage grows the number of items without them will be reduced.