From the Editor
By Ina Steiner
eBay acquired a startup last week in order to help it understand the latest trends in online shopping. Svpply.com is similar to Pinterest but with an exclusive focus on shopping, owning and wanting things. Yes, another social commerce website!
Are online merchants seeing a return in the investment they make in social networking? EcommerceBytes talked to some online marketplaces to find out their experiences, and the results may make you rethink your social networking strategy. Be sure to see tomorrow's EcommerceBytes Newsflash for some broad data on marketplace results.
Svpply is part of a trend known as curated shopping. Last week, EcommerceBytes contributor Dave Saltman wrote about another such site called GoKrt.
I had a chance to talk to Josh Goldman, a partner at venture capital firm Norwest Venture Partners, about these new trends in ecommerce two weeks ago, published in a 3-part series in EcommerceBytes Newsflash.
Three years ago, I covered Josh's panel at the Shop.org Summit called, "Reinventing Online Retail: Radical Business Models That Are Paying Off Today," in which he interviewed Matt Rutledge of Woot (a daily deals website) and Susan Lyne of Gilt Groupe (a flash sales website). He exhibited a great understanding of how the two business models worked, and it was a lively and informative session.
Josh has put another panel together for this year's summit called, "Community & Crowdsourcing: Lessons from the New Leaders," consisting of Anand Shah of Threadless, Ben Kaufman of Quirky and Chris Lindland of Betabrand.com. Interestingly, the session description starts off with, "Move over flash sales and daily deals."
I'll be attending the panel on Tuesday as part of EcommerceBytes' coverage of this year's Shop.org Summit in Denver, and it will be interesting to see if eBay's acquisition of Svpply comes up during the panel and what these startups think of eBay acquiring its way into the space.
EcommerceBytes Contributing Editor Greg Holden will be covering Wednesday's keynote - "Retail to the Power of Digital" - with Mike Golden (ShopRunner), Sameer Samat (Google) and Mike Fox (Facebook). It should be a lively session with AllThingsD.com editor Kara Swisher moderating.
There has been a lot going on this summer - just a few recent, notable developments: eBay updated its User agreement to prohibit users from filing class action lawsuits against the company, and it is currently running some free-listing promotions in two categories through the end of the year (Sports Collectibles and Outdoor Sports). And Bonanza announced it was launching a program to help its sellers move inventory faster by allowing them to list their Bonanza inventory on eBay and advertise on Google Shopping.
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for our coverage of the Shop.org Summit this week!
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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