Item Description Guidelines & Best Practices

Item Description Guidelines


  • Describing only the item being auctioned in the listing

  • Providing a complete and accurate description of the item

  • Specifying the condition of the item

  • Describing any defects or flaws in the item

  • Including accurate measurements and weight of the item

Not Allowed

  • Intentionally using vague language to misrepresent the item

  • Intentionally withholding item information and encouraging bidders to directly contact you for more information

  • Including conflicting information in a listing, such as saying you have an artwork by one artist in your title, but another artist in the description

  • Including comments that discourage bidders from bidding on LiveAuctioneers. For example, we don’t permit statements like “Participate in our auction via Telephone or Absentee bid and receive a discounted buyer’s premium.”

  • Listing an item and stating the item listed may not be the one that the winning bidder receives upon auction completion

Item Description Best Practices

  • Make sure your item title and descriptions are accurate in order to set proper expectations for the bidder.

  • Help bidders visualize the item by providing item specifics: dimensions, weight, condition, time period, artist, manufacturer, the number of items available per lot, etc. Remember to provide all the information in advance to help bidders make a decision without the need of reaching out to your team.

Sample 1

  • Tell the full story by filling any gaps that potential bidders may have about the item. A good item description should give relevant details to convince bidders of its value. When it comes to telling a story in your item description, try to answer these questions:

    • Who originally made this item?

    • What inspired them to make this item?

    • What was the journey of making this item? When was it made?

    • Did it belong to someone known?

  • Be transparent about the item condition to help bidders know exactly what they’re bidding for. Bidders don’t mind blemishes as long as they see them described in the item description.

  • Make the item description easy to scan in order to capture bidders’ attention and help them find the information they need. Make sure your descriptions are scannable by including bullet points and short paragraphs.

Optimize your item description for search engines to drive more traffic and reach more bidders. Remember to think like a bidder and ask yourself what words people are likely to use when looking for your kind of items.

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