Put a FRAME around your Gallery pictures & GET NOTICED! : eBay Guides

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As a seller, you might wonder, if everyone's using eBay's Gallery option, how can I attract attention to my listing? Sure, you can spend more than five dollars extra per listing for listing upgrades including Bold ($1.00), Border ($3.00) and Highlight ($5.00). In some cases, that's cost effective, but what about those items you sell that have a lower profit margin — things around the house, odds and ends that won't bring in more than five or ten dollars? In that case, the extra cost of listing upgrades isn't really justifiable.

You may be interested in trying FRAMES!

    FRAMES is a CD of 542 images that FRAME your snapshots and make your Gallery pictures POP! Eye-catching, colorful and bold, your listings will stand out from among all the others. If you own a digital camera, you've probably already mastered the simple procedures required to use FRAMES. A little cropping / resizing, a simple cut and paste, and that's it!

Here's how FRAMES works

    eBay's Basic Picture Service suggests you upload an image that is 1024 x 768 pixels, a rectangular 4:3 ratio. Many of us also upload a rotated version of the same size, a ratio of 3:4, when we have a picture that is taller than it is wide. The Gallery actually displays an 80 x 80 pixel square image, a ratio of 1:1, so we also have that to work with. (More about this later.)
    Using eBay Picture Services (as well as self-hosting) is a simple enough process. You take a picture, transfer it to your computer, perform an edit or two, and then upload it. So you won't need to change your photo preparation process; you can continue to snap your pictures and edit them, simply adding a FRAME during the procedure. Your FRAMEd pictures will then be ready to upload.

What's on the CD?  

    The FRAMES CD consists of 3 folders (each containing 542 images), a .pdf contact sheet, and a .pdf instruction manual / tutorial (from which this Review / Guide borrows liberally). Like FRAMES itself, it's all quite basic, but it is a useful reference.
    The contact sheet displays all 542 FRAME designs in every size. Each of these has a blank dummy overlay inserted into it in order for you to see more clearly what the FRAME may look like around a photo. In all, there are 2,710 different combinations!
    The 3 folders of FRAMES are organized by size. All these sizes look good in the Gallery and in your listing / description. Each folder contains 500 multicolored images and a sub-folder of 42 solidly colored images which result, naturally, in a solid FRAME. All the multicolored images will create patterned FRAMES.
    Images in the 4x3 folder are 1024x768 pixels. A 4x3 picture fits into these. The 3x4 folder contains the same images rotated 90 degrees in order to accommodate photos that are taller than they are wide. Using any of these FRAMES with your pictures results in an image that meets eBay's suggested upload dimensions.
    In the 1x1 folder you will find images that are 640x640 pixels square. Using these 1:1 ratio FRAMES with your pictures results in a photo that, when uploaded and downsized by eBay, will fit precisely into the 80 x 80 pixels allotted in the Gallery.

FRAME-ing your pictures is as easy as 1-2-3!

Let’s start with a standard 4x3 picture. This one is 1024x768 pixels:



From the folder named solid, which is inside the 4x3 folder, select this black rectangle. It’s exactly the same size as the picture.



Because they’re the same size, copying and pasting the picture of the kitten into the rectangle will entirely cover the black background, and you won’t create a FRAME. So let’s crop the photo of our feline so that it measures 944x688 pixels. That shrinks the original picture by 40 pixels on each side:

          >         

Notice that you don’t need to concern yourself with the photo’s resolution (or anything else for that matter). Just make sure the picture’s dimensions (in pixels) are small enough to fit inside the dimensions of the rectangle.

Using the tools your editing software provides to help you center one image on top of another, copy and paste your picture onto the background:

+ =
     
There! You’ve created a FRAME!

Now let's look a little closer...

    A 4:3 ratio FRAME is 1024x768 pixels, and the ideal suggested picture size for insertion into this background is 944x688 pixels. This creates a 40 pixel FRAME evenly around the photo, as shown in the contact sheet. But if you'd like a wider FRAME, simply reduce the size of the picture. For example, a 924x668 pixel snapshot will create a 50 pixel FRAME evenly around the picture, and a 904x648 pixel snapshot will create a 60 pixel FRAME.
    You're free to insert any size photo you like, but remember eBay’s Gallery will display a smaller version of your image, and you'll want it to look good after it has been downsized. These are the suggested sizes:

    Width:Height ratio    FRAME dimensions    Ideal dimensions of snapshot
        4:3 ratio                      1024x768 px                 944x688 px
        3:4 ratio                      768x1024 px                 688x944 px
        1:1 ratio                       640x640 px                  560x560 px

Care to try another?

OK, let’s do one specifically for the eBay Gallery.

eBay's actual Gallery thumbnail dimensions are 80x80 pixels. This means that when you upload your 4x3 photo, the Gallery image seen for your listing is trimmed to 80x60 pixels (in order to keep a 4:3 ratio). So you're wasting 20 pixels of height! As long as you're paying for this space, why not put it to good use?

  Let’s crop your picture perfectly square, so that it is 560x560 pixels, like this:          
   


       Now select a background:        



This FRAME is selected from the 640x640 pixel images in the 1x1 folder.
Any 560x560 pixel photo pasted into its center will fit purrrrfectly!

Copy and paste, creating the FRAME:




Using these 1:1 ratio FRAMES with your pictures results in a photo that, when uploaded and downsized by eBay, will fit precisely into the 80 x 80 pixels allotted in the Gallery.

And if you're feeling creative ~

    A 4:3 ratio picture can be inserted into a 1:1 ratio FRAME by cropping the LARGER (horizontal) dimension of the snapshot to 640 pixels. The result is a FRAME on the top and bottom but not on the sides.
    Alternatively, a 3:4 ratio picture can be inserted into a 1:1 ratio FRAME by cropping the LARGER (vertical) dimension of the snapshot to 640 pixels. The result is a FRAME on the sides but not on the top and bottom.

If your image editing software allows you to resize / resample an image, please note:

    When cropping, you can crop to the exact pixel dimensions you desire. But if you're resizing and want to keep the proportions of the original picture, the resulting pixel dimensions may be a little different than the ideal suggested in the table. This occurs if your picture’s dimensions are not precisely a 4:3 ratio. However, match at least one of the two suggested dimensions (either width or height) and your results will still be satisfactory.    

Guide ID: 10000000004695624Guide created: 28/11/07 (updated 19/08/13)

 
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