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Mon June 18 2007 12:29:05

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay pulled its advertising from Google US in what it calls part of its routine marketing tests, but what many believe is retaliation for Google's efforts to draw attention to eBay's ban of Google Checkout, including planning a protest party during eBay's annual convention in Boston last week.
This idea for an AuctionBytes poll came from a reader, who suggests we ask our readers:

"With whom do you most sympathize? Ebay for protecting their paypal business in a free enterprise system any legal way they choose? Or google for risking losing and offending their top advertising customer because they'd like to get into the payments game?"

You can also comment on what Bill Cobb had to say about the decision to pull the ads and how it may be affecting traffic to eBay listings.

If you have any thoughts on the Google-eBay controversy, call toll-free 877-222-0856 or 508-720-9279 for international callers, and your message could be included on the AuctionBytes Hotline Podcast.*

*Read details on the hotline page.

Comments (17) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: John Lawson

Mon Jun 18 12:45:24 2007

I am actually PISSED OFF! I cannot believe eBay is going to jeopardize US sellers without even thinking about how this effects sellers across the board.

That they would arbitrarily pull a stunt like this just to make a case against Google is outrageous. It has no freaking' regard for its customer base (we the sellers) to do this. They are already "screwing" us by not allowing Google Checkout and now they are going to remove the traffic from Google, this is UN-FREAKING-BELIEVABLY arrogant.

I don't know if it speaks volumes to Google but it is shouting in my ear "We (eBay) don't give a damn about how this may impact you little seller boy, we just want to prove a point."

I thought President Bush makes stupid war decisions, but Meg just trumped him BIG TIME!

I’ve got official numbers from our weekend sales. We lost 30% of sales over the weekend compared to previous sales averages thanks to this little stunt.

Sales on Friday were the lowest in nearly a year! So the pundits can claim what they want but eBay better wake up, cause they need Adwords or they would be screwed.

I cannot believe how much eBay has lied about this situation. eBay has every right to do what they did, I just am tired of them lying about it. The Bill Cobb interview with Ina of AuctionBytes (
is so telling. She asked him directly about it and that man stammered like a my 2 year old when I catch her doing something I told her not to.

Get some gonads and own up to your actions eBay, this was sloppy, inconsiderate, arrogant, and foolish. Next time, think about how you want to respond to someone else's little PARTY without taking money out my pocket please. You (eBay) acted like a jilted ex-girlfriend that spoiled the prom for everybody, just to get back at your boyfriend.

OK, I'm done...

John (

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Jim

Mon Jun 18 13:27:57 2007

(CAUTION: Explicit Lyrics)

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Larry Phillips

Mon Jun 18 13:36:54 2007

I'm actually not happy with either.  eBay has been feeding us baloney by saying Google checkout isn't safe, and by saying that their removal of adwords was a normal test.  But I don't blame them for trying to protect a potential infringement on one of their key sources of revenue.  So I'm mostly upset with them about their prevarication.  Why couldn't they just say ''We thought about Google Checkout long and hard, and for a variety of reasons, we do not believe it's implementation is in the best interest of the eBay community.''  At least then, they wouldn't be lying to us.  

As far as Google, it was inappropriate to try and make such a splash at eBay Live.  This is eBay's big hurrah, and Google's timing shows an insensitivity to one of their largest revenue resources.  
In the end, I definitely want Google Checkout to be an option on eBay, and I definitely think that stopping adwords is costing me a loss in traffic and a loss of money, so eBay gets a failing grade in how they're treating their sellers, but Google's poor timing and lack of tact get a failing grade for showing a brazen indifference to anybody that gets in their way.  Both need to be sent to the naughty corner.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Randy Smythe

Mon Jun 18 20:36:35 2007

I'm hearing 40%, 80%, 20% drops on sales since eBay pulled their ad word campaign.

Google performed a High Rick stunt and lost and eBay is acting like a spoiled child.

Sellers want choice in payment options, buyers want choice in payment options, either give it to them on terms you can live with or be forced by the government to do it. If the government steps in nobody wins.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Burt S.

Mon Jun 18 21:16:46 2007

Little sympathy for either company as each seeks market domination without real concern for client service (especially ebay.) We will be trying to have federal legislation introduced to require higher levels of client and customer service than is now offered by most large site operators, including ebay and google. Such legislation might require review similar to what most states' Public Service Commissions do in overseeing utilities within their purview. The larger issue is the 'client be damned' orientation of these two and other companies with internet based services.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Billoment

Mon Jun 18 22:11:27 2007

For our little company (in a sea of Big Fishes) it really does not mean much. We do not rely on one channel to operate in. Those that are stuck with just eBay (and did not wise up to their arrogance and manipulative manuevers that started over 2 years ago) this is a big blow and another smack in the face. We are multi-chaneled and this is no big deal. We also do feeds to Google Base on a regular basis. I wonder how many holes eBay has in their feet after all of the times they have shot them selves. I can not believe that when I think they would wise up and smell the coffee they end up doing another really stupid and idiotic manuever. Another thing that blows my mind is how the stock owners just sit back and allow the current mangement to go on running the company.


Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: mulatto

Mon Jun 18 22:45:52 2007

You people need to understand that this is business. You believe everything you hear and bite the hand that feeds you. Don't you understand that ebay is what allows you to sell? Without ebay, your nothing.  

Now as for the google checkout thing, it's obvious that it is NOT good business to add google checkout because Paypal (ebay owned) now has some real competition. Bidpay...auctioncheckout, those little guys will never compare, but an internet giant? Oh yes!  

And eBay is BSing about the safety of Google Checkout because for all those non-techies that don't know Google checkout REQUIRES sellers to have an SSL security page to send customer data (transaction data, address, etc) into their backend system where as Paypal DOES NOT!! Yes I am talking about Paypals IPN (Instant Payment Notification).  

I know because I developed backend systems for both platforms, Google is much more secure having signed carts where paypal didn't have before. Plus, come on lets face it....its google! What has google ever done bad?  

I rest my case!

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Mario Vodopivec

Tue Jun 19 01:31:31 2007

In this case, I think eBay was right. They pay big bucks to organize the whole event, and then someone else rents a hotel room near by and tries to promote their own business in a way that I believe is not ethical (though not illegal).

Alibaba used this technique first at eBay live in San Jose in 2005 (anyone remembers bags with their logo and mp3 players they were giving for free?). One can expect something like that from an outsider with much smaller resources than ones of eBay, but for Google to do that? It's just not on their level, it's against their motto "don't be evil", it was a mistake and I think they realized that, thus canceling the party.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?


Tue Jun 19 09:07:46 2007

I feel that Ebay did not even once consider how this would effect its millions of users. Ebay feels they are always right and seem to never bend. In a fair and balanced market google should be able to compete. Google has the name it is time for them to enter the auction marketplace and show Ebay how to properly run a business. While most sellers are fine with the final value fees it is the outrageous listing fees that swipe our money. Google are you listening. No listing fee style auction and a fair final value fee and the market is yours. Death to Ebay and Paypal.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Garry King

Wed Jun 20 09:51:45 2007

Google checkout would have no impact if people were happy with Pay Pal. Ebay has more to lose than Google. Google will have little or no trouble selling the same adwords to another willing buyer. The real loser will be the ebay seller, since the adwords traffic will be very difficult to for Ebay to replace.  

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: QueenyD

Wed Jun 20 10:20:10 2007

I'm relatively new to ebay & the big issue that I see is the lack of concern for their customers.  They have no interest in customer service this is valid on both the paypal and ebay sites.

It is a common problem with monolopies and they get away with it as long as there is no competition but sooner or later there will be competition and the frustrated sellers will move.

It seems to me that eBay really focuses on short term gains without seeing the big picture, that will cost them long term.

It doesnt seem ethical for Google to try to steal its customer's clients. Though I don't know if businesses consider what is ethical.

It would be nice to have choices and lowered prices.  It would be nice to search google and find something other than ebay posts.

I dont seem to show up on google so I'm not affected as others are.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: lighthouse

Thu Jun 21 12:42:49 2007

We have seen virtually no drop in store volume.  I think the Google money was being spent blindly on random words that God knows who was selling (pink elephants anyone?).  Its much better that eBay puts those marketing dollars to better use for the whole of the community.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Katherine

Thu Jun 21 19:34:58 2007


Ironically, while ebay is a power-abusing monopoly, ebay *sellers*, exposed to vigorous competition on ebay, have created a consumer heaven, where the best selection, the best service, the best prices and the most convenient shopping experience in the world can be found! --------------------------Lest we forget, IT IS THE EBAY SELLER ALONE who is Ebay's actual customer!!!

Ebay is supported exclusively by sellers' listing fees (a vast proportion of which go down the drain for goods that go unsold!), by services ebay markets to these sellers, and by the commission fees ebay makes on sellers' sold products. ------------------------

It's clear that any seller comments submitted via ebay contact systems go directly into the ebay recycle bin! (That's probably one good reason why sellers travel to a yearly conference and stand in line for a rare chance to be granted an audience and direct questions at ebay execs.) ------------------

My feeling is that ebay sellers should express the opinions ebay isn’t interested in hearing about their customer satisfaction by rallying to the immediate support of Google! -----------------------------

Anyone who briefly investigates Google Check-out will see that Google is attempting to offer a MUCH better service than Paypal on so many levels, including SCRUPLES- their policies are so much less sleazy, folks- and they are even offering this service free to sellers! You can't ask more than that! ------------------------------

Ebay sellers who are less than delighted with ebays' service, policies and responsiveness ***should sign up for Google Checkout immediately***, even if their buyers are as yet unfamiliar with it. Do so to finaly have your voice heard. Do so, so that Google Checkout might become a real contender as a competitor to paypal. -------------------------
Try Google Adwords! They work and they're cheap!!!! They are affordable by even the smallest website. You dont need ebay to advertise on Google for you! Besides, if ebay stays off Google your adwords will stand out even more! I myself was sick of ebay ads all over Google. I myself search Google as an alternative to searching ebay. I search Google to find websites, not ebay goods.  -------------------------------------
Sign up for adwords to show Google your support and to send a clear message to ebay that if they try to stamp out meaningful competition by bullying tactics rather than by improving their own service, sellers will vote with their dollars and give some of their business to Google, now, in order get another effective means of driving business to their off-ebay website businesses!!! (A lot of us created our websites in the beginning only because ebay was making life so difficult for us!!!)----------------------


Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Ina Steiner

Fri Jun 22 17:12:24 2007

AP and IDG Newswire reported 1 hour ago (Friday @ 4-ish ET) that eBay ads are appearing back on Google, but quote eBay spokesperson saying in a reduced way. We'll have more on this in AuctionBytes.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: mg

Tue Jun 26 20:22:38 2007

When eBay makes any decission it is never about what is good for eBay users. It is ONLY about what they think is best for eBay's and PayPal's bottom line. That is what keeps the stockholders happy and what keeps Meg and top staffers in bonuses.

Pulling ads from Google is not going to help eBay or its users. But the move is not entirely about Google Checkout either. Want to know what gives Meg her worst nightmares? It is the knowledge that Google could at any moment decide to start their own online auction business. What makes those nightmares really frightening?
Meg knows, and so do all her most savy sellers, that ONLY Google is big enough strong enough and competent enough to suceed in direct competition with eBay.

So how stupid was eBay's decission to pull those ads?  I have always heard it is a terrible idea to wake a sleeping giant. Google didn't create its Checkout system so that it can go unused by millions. They are probably only steps away from starting up their own auction business. I for one sure do hope so.

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: Jason Scott

Thu Jun 28 07:29:04 2007

Ebay and Google are both good, but I came across a great new concept. Its a new site My Hire Site -  -

Its like ebay except that you can hire instead of purchase. It helps save a lot of money on stuff needed temporarily like camping equipment, etc. The site is doing a great job by bringing together lenders and hirers from the same neighborhoods...

Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?   Google versus eBay, What do YOU think?

by: trevor ginn

Thu Jun 28 12:30:01 2007

I am sure that google probably does not care that eBay has removed the ads.  eBay ads, in the UK certainly, have always been of a very low quality, for example typing in the search phrase "Auctioning4u" brings up the advert "Buy Auctioning4u on eBay".

i think that eBay is shooting itself in the foot by disallowing checkout as the more payment options offerd to sellers, the more likely they are to make a purchase.

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