eBay is increasingly improving its online sales system to catch up with its “brother” Amazon.
In the history of business in the world, perhaps there has never been a case like eBay – a business that has been profitable since its inception.
With exponential growth and strong branding, eBay has grown rapidly, E Bay success stories: eclipsing many other up-and-coming auction sites dotted in the dot-com bubble. By the time eBay went public in 1998, both Omidyar and Skoll were already billionaires.
Miracle of eBay
eBay was founded in September 1995 by programmer Pierre Omidyar, in San Jose. He wanted his website – then called “AuctionWeb” – to become one of the world’s first online marketplaces. The first product sold on the site was Omidyar’s broken laser pen, and he easily earned $14.83.
AuctionWeb quickly became widely known, because people could buy anything on it, even weird and old products. The site was later revamped and started charging users a small fee after their products were sold.
Mr. Omidyar used the money to upgrade AuctionWeb’s auction site and bring sales to $7.2 million in just one year. In the history of business in the world, perhaps there has never been a case like eBay – a business that has been profitable since its inception.
eBay was founded in September 1995 by programmer Pierre Omidyar, in San Jose.
AuctionWeb’s income quickly increased, even more than Omidyar’s current salary, so he decided to quit and devote himself full time to developing the website.
In 1996, he added feedback and comments for users, allowing buyers and sellers to rate each other. This makes buying and selling safer. In 1997, Omidyar changed the name of AuctionWeb and the company name to “eBay”. He started spending more on advertising and designing the logo for eBay.
In 1998, at the height of the dotcom, eBay became a big business, and investing in Internet businesses at the time provided tremendous value to regulators and investors.
In 1999, eBay began “traveling” around the world, opening websites in the UK, Australia and Germany.
This site started to encourage more people to participate in buying and selling and became a large and diverse “virtual marketplace” where you can buy anything, big or small. In particular, unlike other websites, after the end of the dotcom boom, eBay still “lives” strongly and develops to this day.
In 1999, eBay began “traveling” around the world, opening websites in the UK, Australia and Germany. eBay acquired half.com, an online retailer similar to Amazon, in 2000 and acquired PayPal, a popular online payment channel, in 2002.
eBay’s New Strategy
eBay and its CEO, Devin Wenig, are faced with a big task: to prove to investors that their e-commerce site is still doing well since separating from the “giant”. PayPal electronic payments in 2015.
During the Goldman Sachs Technology and Communications Conference in San Francisco, Mr. Wenig said he has a plan to improve eBay’s future operations. eBay is operating more like a retailer than a marketing technology site and currently sells more than 800 million items available through web services.
eBay and its CEO, Devin Wenig, are facing a big challenge.
Previously, eBay’s core business was an online auction site with key products such as antiques, clothing and vehicles. But in recent years, the company has focused on selling new products such as electronics and auto parts at fixed prices.
However, with the new strategy, eBay will have to face fierce competition with e-commerce brand Amazon. The challenge for eBay is how to get users to find eBay first.
Mr. Wenig said: “The biggest challenge for eBay right now is creativity. E-commerce is a free market and fierce competition, sellers can sell anything they want and this does for sites like eBay or Amazon that are difficult to control and become complex.”
In eBay’s more than 20-year history, the only way for buyers to find the goods they were looking for was through the search box. However, for mobile phones, users don’t want to go through a list of hundreds of search results.
The challenge for eBay is how to get users to find eBay first.
eBay is making more efforts to improve the way goods are searched, making it more “methodical”. The company wants to help buyers narrow their search results by providing them with more selective results.
For example, if you want to search for iPhone, you’ll see categories related to the latest price, make, and model. What you will see will be selected results that match your wishes, not a list of all iPhones being sold on eBay.
In addition, eBay also encourages buyers to post product reviews. Thus, selling on eBay will become more quality and prestigious. The company is taking a closer look at the customer reviews posted, Mr. Wenig said.
eBay is also following in Amazon’s footsteps by giving sellers more tools and data to help them grow their businesses. Amazon salespeople often provide sellers with numbers on some of the best-selling items and point out which ones don’t. At the same time, Amazon also lets sellers know when they can raise or lower their prices, based on data on similar items sold on the site.
eBay and Amazon – the race never ends.
One area where eBay doesn’t “mimic” Amazon, however, is logistics. The company refused to build a fleet of planes, trucks, and trucks to handle FedEx and UPS. Mr. Wenig claimed to still “love” Uber Rush – Uber’s latest delivery service. Instead of reinventing the distribution network, he still wants to work with Uber. Wenig is strongest: “The only thing we can compete with is Amazon in terms of shipping.”
In addition to shipping and logistics, Mr. Wenig also paints a good picture for eBay, with a similar perspective to Amazon’s e-commerce market. This is such a big undertaking that even Walmart and Target have trouble replicating the model to success.
Mr. Wenig is still very confident: “There will only be a few big e-commerce companies and eBay will be one of them.”