Each feed sent to Oodle represents a set of listings: "classified ads in the Oak Town Free Press", or "cars listed on SellAnything.com". A feed with a full set of listings means that all currently active listings for the set are included. Any listing in the set that is not included in the feed is assumed to have expired, and is removed from our search index.
The purpose of a listing url is to allow users to click and go directly from our search results to the actual page on your site that contains information on the listing in question. As such, the listing url should refer to a page that:
In those occasional cases where an item becomes unavailable, but Oodle has not yet received a feed update reflecting this, the listing url for the item should take users to a page clearly indicating that the listing is no longer available.
The picture provided via the image_url field of a listing is used to construct a thumbnail image which then appears next to the listing in our search results. This picture must be specifically related to the listing, and is generally expected to be an actual picture of the item being listed. Furthermore, if we are to display a thumbnail of it in our search results, your robots.txt must allow us to download the image. We encourage our feed partners to provide us with the largest image available.
If the feed contains any
image_url fields, then we need to download
the images at these urls in order to generate thumbnails for the listing. This is
only possible if your robots.txt file allows us access to the urls that these
images are at. Please give access to "oodlebot" in your robots.txt.
# Example robots.txt entry where all images are in an /images/ subdirectory.
If the price of an item is specifically 0, then a 0 value should be put
price field, such as:
If the price is merely unknown (but not necessarily free), please see the next question.
If a listing has a price associated with it, but its specific price is not known,
then it is best to supply an empty
price field, as with:
or to leave the
price field out of this particular listing entirely.
It is much more common to have a listing with an unknown price than a listing whose price is 0 (free).
An XML document is said to be well-formed if it meets the requirements for well-formedness as defined by the W3C. Since this is a technical definition, it is possible to have a computer program check whether an XML document has this property.
The reason well-formedness is important is that it greatly eases automatic machine parsing of a document.
There are a variety of publicly available XML validators and formedness checkers that you can obtain and pass your document to. A common
one on many versions of Unix is
If you have perl, libxml, and XML::Simple on your system, you can run:
and if it runs with no errors, your document is well-formed.
perl -e 'use XML::Simple(); $xml = XML::Simple::XMLin("./oodle_feed.xml")';
As a last resort, an online XML formedness checker can be found here.
<cannot appear as-is in document text.
They must be escaped by
or the block of text the are a part of must be put into a literal text
CDATA section. Examples:
This line with its unescaped & and < is **not** well-formed XML.
This line with its escaped & and < *is* well-formed XML.
<![CDATA[This line with CDATA-enclosed & and < is *also* well-formed XML.]]>
encodingattribute should not be set to
utf-8when the document is actually
Many xml feeds we receive have, as their first line:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
This is perfectly valid xml, but in many cases, the actual character encoding used for the feed is
So, when you are checking that your feed is well-formed, if you get a format error
in the feed file, but you can't see any obvious error at that location, consider changing this top line to:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="ISO-8859-1"?>
We update your listings at least daily, upon noticing that the feed file has been updated. We generally notice within 15 minutes of its update that a feed file has been changed, and download the new version for processing.
This could be happening for a variety of reasons. Among the most common are:
If these do not appear to be issues, please contact us at [email protected].
Yes. Your listings will appear both on Oodle and in Lycos and the other marketplaces that we inform.
Currently, only listings posted directly on Oodle or on Marketplace, as well as listings from members of our paid inclusion program show up on Marketplace. If you are interested in being part of this program, please contact our sales team at [email protected]
Please contact our sales team at [email protected]
We are sorry to hear you are having trouble submitting your feed. Before submitting a ticket to us, please make sure to try one more time, and make sure you fill out all the required fields and also click the “test feed” button. If it still doesn’t work, please use the fields below to describe your issues.
We are sorry to hear you are having problems with your feed. You should find all the instructions and examples you need on our Feed Guidelines page, which describes the whole upload process as well as contains links to category-specific examples and specifications. We hope that helps.
If you want to use a paid service to prepare your feed, try a service like GoDataFeed.We have received good feeds from sites that use this company to prepare their data. We don’t have any arrangement with GoDataFeed, or any connections with their company.
We currently only provide personalized feed upload support for customers in our paid inclusion program. You can read more about our paid inclusion program here
If you only submitted your feed a few days ago, it is possible it is not live yet.
If your feed previously worked and now your listings are missing, please provide us with some details and if appropriate someone will get back to you.
No. We don’t usually crawl sites anymore. However, it is easy to submit a feed with your listings to us. Read about that here.
If you changed the URL you want us to fetch your feed from, please don’t re-submit the feed through the submission tool. Contact us with your details and we will updated your configuration.
We currently accept feeds with listings for the following countries: United States, United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, and India. Please use the “country” field and the country’s two-letter ISO code to specify what country your listings are in.
We are sorry to hear you decided to remove your feed. Please submit the following information and we will remove your listings from Oodle.