eBay Gives New Meaning to Window Shopping
By Ina Steiner
eBay continues its efforts to shed its image as a flea market as it cozies up to brand name designers and works to help retailers bridge the gap between offline and online. As we previously reported, eBay has been working on touchscreens that retailers can display that allow shoppers to place orders "online."
The CEO of Kate Spade's parent company Bill McComb called the eBay technology "the wall as a mall" - video screens that are placed in a store window to advertise items that can be purchased through eBay Now and delivered to buyers within two hours. McComb is working with eBay's GSI Commerce division and credited the company with coming up with "future upstream R&D type ideas" - such as the touchscreens - that will help his company achieve its goals.
This week, eBay announced it was launching four 24-hour Window Shops in Manhattan:
"Each interactive storefront allows shoppers to select and order merchandise from Kate Spade Saturday, Kate Spade's new weekender line, on a touchscreen, schedule a free one-hour delivery to anywhere in the city, and pay with PayPal Here upon delivery."
Calling it eBay's "shoppable window," eBay's Steve Yankovich, said, "Suddenly the physical store, by virtue of online technology, extends to any space that's interesting to use."
eBay beta tested the interactive storefronts in its San Jose offices for the last few months. The Manhattan storefronts will be open through July 6. In an announcement about the technology, eBay wrote, "In the future, we see commerce as both local and global, online and offline, where big and small players can succeed with each other, not in spite of each other. Only then can we all share in more opportunity together."
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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