eBay is holding six seller events in a 3-week period beginning in mid-March. “eBay In Person” are evening meetings and consist of 2-and-a-half hours of presentation and panel discussion followed by networking. eBay had held annual conferences that attracted thousands of sellers, but replaced them with 2-day eBay On Location events that were limited to 1,000 attendees. Last year, it held no events and chose to piggyback on top of user-organized Meetups, where they sent presenters.
eBay sent an email to users announcing the In Person meetings as “special educational events for sellers in cities across America.” Unlike the more formal On Location events of the past, In Person meetings are free.
eBay spokesperson Ryan Moore said eBay In Person is a much more intimate and smaller scale event targeting 150 sellers. Due to demand, eBay increased capacity to over 200 for the first few events. “It’s a single night event from 6 pm to 9 pm that features a presentation from an eBay team member and then an open Q&A with eBay experts, followed by a networking event where attendees can ask questions one on one. All of the presenters will be internal to eBay,” he said.
In 2013, eBay hosted seven pilots of the In Person events (San Jose, Long Beach CA, Seattle, Chicago, Dallas, Tampa and Charlotte). “These were a little different than the events we’re hosting this year in that we produced most of them in partnership with a local Meetup group. I think Seattle was the only one that was done by eBay alone, simply because the Seattle group hadn’t formed yet. In addition to the ones we produced, eBay reps attended and/or presented at a dozen or more other Meetup events across the country.”
eBay’s website explains, “Each event combines a core presentation with a highly interactive panel discussion. The goal of the evening is to share some great insights, the latest news out of eBay, and best practices you can apply to your business right away, as well as to help sellers connect with each other and with our eBay team.”
The schedule of events are as follows:
March 18 in La Jolla, California
March 19 in Phoenix, Arizona
March 20 in Austin, Texas
April 7 in Draper, Utah
April 8 in Denver, Colorado
April 9 in Omaha, Nebraska
The Nebraska event takes place at the PayPal campus in Omaha, and the Utah event takes place on the eBay Customer Service campus in Draper.
Moore said eBay will be bringing about 8 team members to each event, and the exact presenters are to be determined. “The panel will have representatives of key areas within eBay. The areas may shift between each event, but are likely to include Seller Protections, Shipping, and Feedback teams, among others.”