You have probably seen private listings on eBay - where the buyer's ID is only known to the seller. On the bidding history, purchase history, and completed listings, instead of a buyer ID the listing only says "User ID kept private." Private listings do more than just protect the buyer's identity, they can work in the seller's favor also.
Creating a private listing on eBay serves several purposes for the buyer. Private listings give buyers more peace of mind when they are buying products that may be sensitive, embarrassing, or offensive to some people. Private listings on these types of items get more bids since the item will not show on the buyer's feedback page or history. Private listings are usually used for adult listings, undergarments, and personal healthcare products. Second, some buyers just want to keep their transactions on the internet private, regardless of the type of item. Their purchases are their business, and they prefer to work with sellers who respect their privacy.
Private listings can also work for the seller. Let's say you are selling a niche product or you have discovered something that sells very well on eBay. You don't want your competition to be able to scroll through your feedback and look at what items have sold. When you make your listings private, they show up on your feedback (as well as the buyer's) as private - all that shows is the buyer's comment, the buyer's ID, and the date the comment is left.
Now, your competition can still look in your store and see what items you offer, but they can't scroll through your feedback and see what actually sold. The only way your competition can discover what you have sold is to search completed listings for the actual items in your store. You can' hide completely, but you can make it a bit harder for your competition to figure out which of your products are actually selling.
Click here for the actual steps to create a private listing on eBay.
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