EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2533 - May 02, 2011     2 of 5

eBay Runs National Campaign to Advertise Drop-off Stores

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eBay is running a promotion in eight cities across the U.S. advertising eBay drop-off stores with the message, "Unlock the hidden cash in your home. Millions of people want your stuff." The move is part of eBay's push to encourage consumers to sell or trade-in their unwanted items, such as its new Instant Sale program for gadgets. eBay has said consumers who sell on eBay also buy on the marketplace.

eBay launched the Trading Assistant (TA) program in 2002 and the Trading Post program in 2004 to help promote independent consignment sellers, and it revamped the program in 2008, imposing strict new requirements.

The new ad campaign runs through the month of May and focuses on eight top "DMAs," according to eBay spokesperson Johnna Hoff - as far west as Los Angeles, and as far east as Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia. Hoff said the markets were chosen because of easy access to multiple Registered eBay Drop Off Locations (REDOLs) where customers can find staffed store locations to bring the items they want to sell. "Customers will be able to visit a Trading Assistant for a free appraisal of their items and a free gift (while supplies last) during May," she said.

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A variety of local media will be used to target consumers and businesses, including the following:

  • Email and Direct Mail: eBay will send postcards and emails targeting those that have registered on eBay but have had little or no selling activity;
  • Radio: eBay will run ads on local radio stations starting May 1 for 2-3 weeks;
  • Post-its: eBay will include Post-it like stickers on the front pages of local newspapers;
  • Door Hangers: eBay will have teams of people placing door hangers targeting affluent households within a 5-mile radius in selected cities. A door hanger is an oversized printed piece that is hung on the front door of a house.

Selected drop-off stores received free eBay tote bags to give away to customers who print out a coupon on the promotion website (

Ms. Hoff said eBay's Trading Assistant Program is a valuable resource to help people quickly and easily sell their items on eBay. "Especially now - with many people thinking about spring cleaning - eBay is promoting the Trading Assistants and the services they provide to let people know how easily they can turn household items and electronics into cash through eBay - even if they don't have time to do it themselves."

About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to

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