Repeat purchases of commodity goods are low-hanging fruit for retailers, but it’s not something eBay has made easy for its shoppers to do. eBay is rectifying that, and on Thursday, the company announced the availability of a “Buy Again” feature on mobile devices.
The Buy Again feature will be available to shoppers on the desktop in 2020.
Former eBay CEO Devin Wenig had announced the Buy Again feature in July during a keynote address at the eBay Open seller conference in Las Vegas.
He acknowledged eBay hadn’t made it easy for shoppers to make repeat purchases, “Because you have to go into My eBay and find the item, and maybe the seller’s not selling that item again. Like the simple act of buying the same dog food – my poor dogs might have to get different dog food every month, ’cause we don’t make buying that same item easy.”
The goal, he said, was to drive frequency by making it easy to reorder the same product month after month. “That drives velocity, that’ll drive sales for you,” he told the 1,500 sellers in attendance in July.
In Thursday’s announcement on its Tech blog, eBay explained the new feature:
“Now, when buyers go to their My eBay > Purchases page on iOS or to the eBay hamburger menu on Android, they can scroll through a list of their purchases and will see a Buy Again button. This button allows them to quickly purchase that item from the same seller that they have purchased from before.”
And if that item is no longer available from the same seller, shoppers can use a “Buy Similar” button. The company explained: “eBay’s search algorithms will then surface similar inventory, using the purchase title. Buyers will see the same product sold by a different seller; the same product in a different variant (think of the same sneaker in different colors); or a similar product (like a different running sneaker from the same brand). It’s that simple.”
eBay said it would also test a dedicated repurchase experience via a Buy Again page in order to make it easier for buyers to find the items that they’d like to purchase again in one place.