Confessions of a Fashionista

Wednesday, August 30, 2006 at 5:52 PM

By Cynthia Kwon, Strategic Partner Development (and self-proclaimed fashionista)

With the new fall wardrobe hitting the stores, I decided it was time to clear my closet to make room for the latest fashions. After choosing a few items that I just could not part with, I was left with a pile of clothes, shoes, and purses, most of which I had only worn a few times. What to do with all this stuff? Instead of just giving it away as usual, I decided to try and sell it to help fund my fall fashion purchases. Since I'm a member of the Google Base team, I naturally turned to Base to list my fashion treasures for sale.

The current challenge we often see from people and retailers selling stuff on Google Base is that they just don’t give enough information. The way Google Base works is that the more structured data (attributes) you give us, the better chance you will have of matching a user search and getting your information displayed. Simple concept, right?

But even as someone who works on this product, I must admit that the process is not entirely intuitive. For example, take my favorite pair of Gucci boots. Following the feed instructions, I would send the following pieces of information about these beauties:

Apparel_Type: Shoe
Product_Type: Tall Boot
Gender: Female
Color: Black
Brand: Gucci
Condition: Used
Price: $400
Payment_Accepted: Google Checkout

However, just sending those attributes do not really do my boots justice. I mean, these are Guccis! I've worn them only twice and they're just one season old. The patent leather detailing on them is gorgeous and they come with this cute silver buckle that has the Gucci Logo embossed on it. Clearly, to give only the suggested attributes is not enough. Only custom attributes can truly describe them. Like this:

c:Category: Couture
c:Season: Fall 2005
c:Outer_ Material: Fabric
c:Inner_Material: Leather
c:Heel_Material: Patent Leather
c:Embellishments: Patent Heel, Buckle
c:Sole: Rubber
c:Heel_Height: 3 inches
c:Heel_Type: Stiletto
c:Boot_Shape: Pointy
c:Size: 7
c:Trim: Patent Leather
c:Zipper: Side Zip
c:Circumference: 15 inches

Can you start to get a better picture of what these fabulous boots look like? Because I have provided so many attributes, I have a much better shot of matching a user search. So, my fellow sellers, retailers, and fashionistas, take it from someone on the inside. I know it takes more effort to send all this information -- but it will be worth it!