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Mon June 22 2020 10:24:04

Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

By: Ina Steiner

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Online marketplaces are running commercials on TV - but who's winning the war for shopper eyeballs? We took a look at commercials from eBay, Etsy, and Mercari and discovered that ecommerce platforms are adapting their marketing during the coronavirus pandemic.

We also found a surprise video from Mercari that offers an entertaining behind-the-scenes look at the making of its ad.

eBay: Where America's small businesses live
eBay is running a commercial showing how small businesses have turned to its platform amid coronavirus-pandemic shutdowns - "a lot of them had to shut their doors, but many of them are still open on eBay, getting people the things they need." 

The ad shows shoppers can still find things from "Main Street" businesses that are closed by searching on eBay. Tagline: "Where America's small businesses live."


ispot.TV reports 2,547 national airings as of Monday morning.

Etsy: Find Joy
Etsy's commercial focuses on shoppers rather than sellers, showing people using items they've purchased on its marketplace in vignettes - a couple cuddling underneath a homemade blanket and parents connecting with children through creative handmade goods. 

The ad shows shoppers can bond with loved ones with the help of items purchased on Etsy. Tagline: "Shop Etsy. Find Joy."


ispot.TV reports 2,092 national airings as of Monday morning.

Mercari: Sell and Buy from Home
Mercari's commercial offers itself as a solution for consumer sellers who are feeling the restrictions of the pandemic quarantine: unlike online classifieds, you can ship your items to buyers rather than having to interact with strangers.

The ad conjures up the feeling of Zoom videos that many people are using to participate in meetings from home during the pandemic. Tagline: "Sell and Buy from Home."


ispot.TV reports 2,321 national airings as of Monday morning.

Mercari Behind the Scenes
Mercari was working on a new ad campaign when the world went into quarantine, so it was forced to adapt.

The company posted the behind-the-scenes look at the process on YouTube and wrote: "Here's a behind the scenes look at how we conceived, scripted, casted, produced and edited an entire commercial with no access to a studio or in-person crew. See how husbands became sound techs and kiddos became prop handlers during our all-remote shoot."

The "Bringing a TV commercial to life during quarantine" video is entertaining and shows they had fun during difficult times. 

So Who Wins?
Sellers love to see the platforms on which they sell advertise, especially on television. Let us know which ads you've seen on TV, and which one you think is most effective at reaching online shoppers.

Comments (25) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 12:23:04 2020

Looks like eBay is running recruitment ads for sellers.
Is there a looming shortage because of MP?

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

This user has validated their user name. by: Life During Wartime

Mon Jun 22 13:25:29 2020

I don't watch most of the tv channels where Etsy runs ads, but I saw a few in the last 24 hours on BBC America.  All are focused on handmade ''home decor'' items which make up about 16 percent of all listings on Etsy, or about 20 percent of all listings on Etsy for Handmade.  (I did searches for the phrase ''home decor'' to get my numbers.)  I did not see/hear any mention of Vintage home decor in the ads.

Etsy is currently running a test where the link to Vintage has been removed from the list of category-type links at the top of the site's pages.  I am in this test, and the Vintage link disappeared for me on June 4, and has not returned.  There are 2 threads in the Forums about this test, with just a few comments -- a general lack of interest.

I have seen both the Mercari and ebay ads.  Have never used Mercari, but I think the ad gets across the message to potential buyers and sellers what the site is about.

I have relied on ebay sellers during the shutdown to get grocery items that went missing from all local stores.  All of the transactions were perfect.  Who doesn't already know what ebay is and how to find the site?

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: RL15 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 14:24:38 2020

have not seen any of the ads

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: ShortSeller This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 15:40:05 2020

When is ebay launching the Follow Us Because We're Following You tv campaign?

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 16:11:11 2020

If eBay wants to help small business - revoke the golden parachute from the Mafia Don (now semi retired) Wenig and give a few lucky sellers (52?) 1 million dollars each.

It would help eBay way more then taking care of the DON - after all - he was almost just implicated in a major crime.

I didnt see the eBay one, or the Etsy one - I did see the Mercari one and it seems to work since my Mercari sales are eclipsing my eBay ones (there is a god! the less money to the San Jose Mafia the better!)

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: BobNJ This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 16:47:44 2020

Lots of eBay advertisements on mobile games too currently but none from any of the other online sellers yet.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: Shanna This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 16:58:12 2020

Ebay still in its defensive mode where they don't want to hear any criticism or advice, as they do not allow any comments on any of their YouTube videos.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 17:52:19 2020

@ShortSeller LOVE THIS ONE,

"When is ebay launching the Follow Us Because We're Following You tv campaign?"

Followed by "we do it because it's for your own good"......"let the beatings continue"

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 18:28:52 2020

My last "reminder" (3rd) to sign up for MP included a little statement that "thousands" had already done so.
These ads might hopefully have the same ROI as the ones selling New Coke...and be more expensive.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 18:44:51 2020

What happens when all these small businesses find out that you have to sign up for MP to see what's in it?

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: Geetar This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 19:21:40 2020

IDK, MP must not be that bad, otherwise we would hear more horror stories.
But then again, only a small fraction of sellers are using it now. Hopefully they will not have any problems getting everybody on board.

The other thing that I am afraid of is after they get their money from MP, they will say it's not enough, and start charging more, or coming up with some kind of schemes to charge more.

Why do they always hire lawyers to run these companies? They are just scammers. they dont actually do any work, and everything they do has a scheme attached to it.  All they do is steal from others who do work.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: COVID-19 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jun 22 22:05:45 2020

All lies!  How can you sell anything when buyers take every shipping delays (outside of sellers' control) to scam you for refunds and keep the items too?  

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

This user has validated their user name. by: Bill

Mon Jun 22 23:56:05 2020

I have not seen Etsy adds and I saw one eBay add and heard another on the radio. I see a ton of Mercari adds. Etsy and eBay must be running them at night to get the better rates because they have no been showing up when I watch TV.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jun 24 08:29:50 2020

They're all lame because none of them reflect what the sites are really about -- or what they should be about, that is -- except to buy and sell. That kind of advertising only promotes their wish for your money -- not their wish to connect you with legitimate small businesses for great products.

Find joy in home decor? Really? The only ones who seem to be finding joy are the ones who get to pocket all the funds they're squeezing out of sellers. One of these days they will finally get blood from that turnip, but it won't be the turnip's blood.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Wed Jun 24 09:19:23 2020

Who still watches TV?

I spend most of my time on Youtube, Facebook & eBay. . . . In that order!

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

This user has validated their user name. by: Life During Wartime

Wed Jun 24 12:11:53 2020

I still use premium cable.  Rarely use Youtube, never used Facebook (refuse to Zuck on it), visit eBay only to buy.  I worked for the company that supplies my cable and internet.  My pension pays the bill.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: Eagle This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 25 00:32:14 2020

Have seen Etsy, but like "Life During Wartime" stated above, it's all about handmade home decor. If you're looking for a homemade toy spaceship that seconds as a kids night light, then Etsy is the place to go! Actually, I've be afraid my kid would get electrocuted playing around with the light?

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: CenTex This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 25 05:07:08 2020

In my opinion eBay has the best and most effective ads on TV, Etsy ads are a short blur of nothing, have not seen any from Mercari.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: SellerGirl This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 25 05:08:56 2020

Life Without Wartime:
That explains what happened to my sales. It was like Christmas for me until June 4, now my sales are down 72%. Not all my items are vintage, but a lot of buyers find my shop through our heritage and legacy items.

Perminate Link for Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari   Who Wins the TV Ad Wars? eBay, Etsy, Mercari

by: SellerGirl This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jun 25 05:12:15 2020

Mercari ads are on in our market at least 5 times a day at different times. I haven't seen eBay ads at all, and Etsy only advertises once toward the end of the evening news programs, so they must be courting senior citizens and people with no internet access, two groups that will never buy from Etsy, so a waste of ad dollars.

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