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Another Report Shows eBay Weakness

Another report shows troubling trends for eBay. Wall Street analyst Colin Sebastian of Robert W. Baird said his proprietary Marketplace survey shows ongoing weakness in merchandise volume growth, with March in the low-single-digits (est. 2-3%) and slightly below February growth levels. The report follows two other reports recently published that show similar findings.

It’s been nearly a year since eBay revealed that cyber hackers breached eBay’s corporate network and user database, and fallout from that incident combined with a Google penalty took a toll on eBay sales, according to its own top executives.

Sebastian saw some improvement in Gross Merchandise Volume in early March, likely related to Easter sales, but he said volumes turned negative by the end of the month.

However, his data suggests U.S. GMV growth is tracking in-line with expectations.

As for the UK, preliminary data suggests March ecommerce lagged a bit, while eBay continues to have problems in Germany. “Based on German website/mobile traffic data, eBay’s struggles continue, with a 20% Y/Y decline in March traffic. We note this is a continuation of a negative trend for eBay in the market that began in mid-2013,” according to the Baird report.

Cowen & Company recently reported a decline in visits to eBay for the month of February, while Bloomberg reported the number of eBay sellers has remained flat for the past two years.

eBay reports first quarter earnings a week from Wednesday.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
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 ina@ecommercebytes.com.