In a sign of how much eBay has changed, stodgy Microsoft opened a store on the marketplace, eBay announced on Tuesday. Once best known for auctions of quirky goods, eBay has been working to transform itself into a Business to Consumer (B2C) site rather than primarily a C2C marketplace. Several years ago, larger retailers and brands had seen eBay more as a site to police for unauthorized and counterfeit products rather than as a place to sell.
eBay is still in that awkward stage, however, where despite its best efforts to become as trusted a site as some other retail destinations, tensions between buyers and sellers remain, and quirkiness has yet to be stamped out.
According to Tuesday’s announcement, the Microsoft Store on eBay will sell Microsoft first-party products, as well as curated products appealing to the eBay community, “resulting in a unique shopping experience entirely different from shopping in a brick and mortar store. Best of all, you can expect the same level of customer surface (one assumes they mean service) that you’d find at microsoftstore.com, with the added benefit of eBay’s safe and secure marketplace.”
Microsoft’s eBay Store will carry the following items:
- Surface RT – 32 and 64GB, with type cover bundles
- Surface Pro 64GB
- Xbox 360
- Kinect sensor
- Surface accessories from Microsoft including Type and Touch covers
- Select Xbox 360 from Microsoft accessories
- Select Microsoft keyboards and mice
- Select refurb products (Surface RT, Xbox 360, and Kinect)
Microsoft has been a member of eBay since Aug 5, 2013, but only had one feedback rating by the end of the day on Tuesday. “Excellent experience!” wrote the now anonymous buyer (last month eBay took away transparency by hiding some transaction information and bidder identities.)
Microsoft is one of the few sellers who get their logo displayed next to their listings in eBay search results. Those companies, known as “diamond sellers,” also get promotional merchandising perks such as exclusive emails sent to targeted eBay customers.
eBay announced the addition of Microsoft in its main blog and on the eBay Electronics blog.