The Poor Man’s eBay RSS to WordPress Hack

Because I’m not a coder, I have to dig around looking for tools and tweaks that are publicly available and then bend & twist them to my will.

Here’s an eBay workaround I’ve found that helps make affiliate life a little easier:

Install and activate the firstRSS WordPress Plugin. This will allow you to display RSS feeds within your WordPress posts.

  • Tip #1: Open the firstRSS.php file and change the cache_time to something like 30 minutes so that your eBay listings will always be fresh. Also change the items_limit to a reasonable amount–eBay’s lowest search results option is 25. I don’t know about you, but a blog post with 25 auction items displayed isn’t all that appealing.
  • Tip #2: You can choose to display both pictures & auction titles/information or just the auction titles.

eBay RSS Feed Generator: Generate the rss feed for the items you want to display within your WordPress posts.

  • Tip: Because the feed isn’t going to refresh every second, set the listings to end in more than 1 hour (found in eBay’s advanced search area) so your visitors will always view live auctions from your blog.

When you’re wanting to display auction results within a post, simply insert [rsspara:URL] or [rsslist:URL] within your blog post where you want the ebay auction results to display. Replace the URL with the ebay rss feed url. To display all the auction info, use rsspara, rsslist displays the titles only.

Benefits: Highly targeted ebay items are displayed within your blog posts since you can get very specific with your search terms. This method also keeps your juicy data private since you’re not using a third party feed display setup.

Drawback: It takes time to go to eBay, make your search & create your rss feed. Not much time, but it still has a lot of room for more automation.

Solution: I created my own WordPress Quicktag for eBay RSS results (read here how to do that). Now all I have to do is click my eBay quicktag when writing a blog post and simply edit the search phrase to what I want.

If you’d like to grab my copy of the quicktag hack, here’s the file: eBay Quicktag. Just save it as quicktags.js and upload to wp-includes/js folder.

Important: Make sure to change the afcj=12345 to your Commission Junction affiliate PID to afcj=yournumber.

The eBay quicktag displays in front of the “more” quicktag. You can move that wherever you want.

When writing a post, simply click the eBay quicktag to insert the rss ebay code. Change “insert+keywords+here” to whatever auction search results you want displayed (remember to use + between each word).

Customization Tip: You can create a special div to wrap around the rss code. For example: Have an ad box that aligns to the right of the page within the post that just lists the auction headings. Have the background a different shade than the rest of the blog post. The sky’s the limit ;). Simply include the <div=xxx></div> in the quicktag info so that it’s automatically included and add the div to your CSS file.



I've been trying to find my way online for more years than I care to admit.

9 thoughts to “The Poor Man’s eBay RSS to WordPress Hack”

  1. Thanks for the informative post. Maybe you could help me out with my problem.

    I tried this on my blog but as you can see it’s not displaying results no matter if I use rsspara or rsslist.

    Any ideas why not?


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  3. I don’t suppose you know how to change the amount of items..the cache time and make it display images. The latest version, which I am using doesn’t seem have any options to change these settings in the php file. So I have 50 odd entries…not cool! Cheers.

  4. uberpiglet I haven’t played with this for awhile, but I did a quick check and it looks like eBay did a change somewhere. I know when I wrote this I could do the specific search, get the rss link for that search and then change the amount displayed from within that link.

    If you see this part of the ebay rss link: frpp=25, at one time you could change that number (25) to something like “5” and it would only display 5 items in the feed. Doesn’t work now. In fact I look at the ebay feed and it’s forcing 100 listings even when an advance search for ’25’ is made.

    I know with “carp” you can control the amount of feed items displayed, though I think you’d have to buy an upgraded version to get the pics displayed with them (it’s cheap though). But getting carp to display feeds within a post is a whole nother issue itself. The plugin phpexec might do the trick though (display php within a post).

    Sorry I couldn’t be more help.

  5. Ohhh that looks like a good one, and specifically for ebay. Thanks for swinging back and letting us know about it uberpiglet :).

    Good luck with mega ebay commissions! đŸ˜‰

  6. Hi, I wonder if you might be able to tell me how I change the number of items firstrss displays? I can’t seem to find the answer anywhere.

    I noticed your tweaked file, but I don’t need caching or anything else – I just want to be able to change the number of headlines displayed.



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