View sorting incorrect

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Original Post

Many folks on the site have noticed that sorting listings by their number of views can lead to inconsistent or innacurate results.

This is due to the fact that views are only updated in the database one per day, and the database is what sorts results. During the day, the views accumulated do not factor into the sorting algorithm.

Due to the high number of views that are processed on Etsy every day, it is not currently possible to update the sorting with any more frequency.

We will most likely be removing the sort by view option from results pages, as showing innacurate data is the last thing we want to do.

Posted at 8:32pm Jul 11, 2007 EDT

Responses

athaclena says

That makes absolutely no sense to me.
When I look at sort by views some items just seem to be randomly misplaced.
In any case I KNOW my views aren't changing that much every day.
It may not make a difference if you'll remove it anyway, but I'm pretty sure it's not broken just because of that.

Posted at 4:14am Jul 12, 2007 EDT

vessla says

That does makes sense, but how come you do your sorting in the database? Is it a performance thing? If the numbers that are being displayed are different from those stored in the DB (and are more accurate), can't you use the displayed values for the sort? I'd have gone for doing the sorting at the front end, treating it as part of the display logic.

But, I don't know the details about what technologies you're using and haven't done that much with PHP. I can only think in Java these days :-)

Posted at 4:58am Jul 12, 2007 EDT

I think the feature is still helpful if not perfect.

Posted at 6:13am Jul 12, 2007 EDT

vessla, it would be possible to sort the listings on the page using the display logic, yes, but since we only get 15 items on a page at any time, the next pages would more often than not fail to line up with the previous page. It'd be a bit of an imperfect hack. :]

Posted at 11:41am Jul 12, 2007 EDT

vessla says

Aah, that's true ... but it's not exactly worse than what it does now, and it seems like it would be a bit less obvious.

Still, I wonder how many people even use this feature - myself, I only use it when looking at my own shop, to see if the views have gone up. I don't think I would use it when buying.

Posted at 5:02pm Jul 12, 2007 EDT

After thinking about this for a bit today (since I had a showcase spot and was paying particular attention to views and sorting) -- it seems to me that the current two threads, 'view tally issues' and this thread 'view sorting incorrect' are inextricably linked:

www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5154422

While I understand conceptually that you can't process the sort function for "view sorting" in real time - that it happens once a day only, that does not still explain ( to my mind anyway) why it never seems to align in any way at all on any day.

Because it seems that if the view tallies were correct, there would be just a lag time of a day when a 'sort by views' would display correctly for the previous days views. Currently, that doesn't seem to happen, they are always out of order.

Is there something I am missing in here??

Thanks RevolvingDork for taking time to ackowledge and respond to the original threads on both topics. I hope a solution will evolve.

Posted at 12:58am Jul 13, 2007 EDT

51greenwich, they are actually two seperate issues -- the innacurate view tallies are being investigated, but even when that issue gets resolved, the sorting issue will remain.

Posted at 2:47am Jul 13, 2007 EDT

Hmmm. That makes sense in theory, but not in reality.

My shop has this item showing with 91 views:
www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=5101537

Sorting above this item with 148 views:
www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=6119220

The top item is much older and I seriously doubt it has gotten at least 57 views in the last day while the bottom item has received none.

So the whole "sorting by views as of the last update" doesn't make sense.

Anyway, that being said - the only reason I sort by views is to see which item has the most views. I guess if I were curious I could just page through each page of items to figure it out myself.

So I wouldn't miss this feature overly much.

Posted at 2:55am Jul 13, 2007 EDT

Oh, plus, I have an item with over 200 views that sorts out to page 6! That means there are LOTS of items with less than 100 views (some as low as 26) sorting above this one.

Something is definitely wonky here.

Posted at 2:58am Jul 13, 2007 EDT