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Sun May 4 2008 16:06:40

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

eBay acknowledged on its corporate blog it has entered into a deal with Buy.com after the news was broken by industry blogger Randy Smythe on Friday. The retailer will move its new and in-season inventory onto its eBay Store in the coming weeks. eBay made an official statement about the partnership deal, which gives Buy.com special pricing.

eBay is aggressively using price as a lever to improve the value and selection on eBay.com. Consistent with our goals, we have entered into a partnership with Buy.com to bring their new-in-season merchandise onto eBay.com. We expect to learn a great deal from this partnership and we will build upon the results.

While eBay is not disclosing the terms of the deal, it may mirror eBay's recent change on its Italian marketplace where eBay Storeowners who pay a large monthly subscription fees receive near-free listings, but higher commissions, beginning in June.

At this time, high-volume sellers on eBay.com are not eligible to receive the same type of price breaks as Buy.com. According to eBay blogger Richard Brewer-Hay:


"I've been informed that we are not, at this time, extending the "deal" to top sellers and that any partnerships will be assessed on a one-off basis with hand picked partners. Personally, I think that top sellers that have put the sweat equity into helping make eBay what it is today - that have consistently provided excellent service for their customers - should be included for consideration when the time comes."

Those words must give very little comfort to members of high-volume seller organizations, who have lobbied eBay for similar price breaks, only to have eBay reach out to mega-seller Buy.com because of the huge amount of inventory they can offer. One thing is certain, this is not the only deal of this type being brokered, and eBay may be on track to fill as many of their categories with this type of seller as they can.

This will affect smaller sellers too, as everyone gets pushed down in the pecking order (and in search results.)

eBay has been transforming its marketplace in an effort to, in its words, improve the buyer experience. Sellers have been coping with new policies and fees, and some sellers have staged boycotts of eBay after radical changes were announced in January.

With the new CEO John Donahoe leading the charge, it's unlikely eBay will ever return to its roots.




Comments (79) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Kal

Sun May 4 17:58:46 2008

''Disruptive Innovation''

It certainly is disruptive, but innovative?

I don't think so.

It seems it's the polar opposite of the alleged comment about the ''flea market'' aspect and the cribble-crabble the Danahoe didn't like.

But isn't this the same thing? Clogging up the listings with thousands upon thousands of repetitive new items? Clutter is still clutter. I can buy this stuff locally, and would opt to do that first.

Also, if you read the ebay ink blog, you'll see the buy.com items listed on ebay cost MORE than if you just go to buy.com and order the EXACT SAME item there, and yes, that factors in shipping too. What's with that?

Isn't it also amazing that the timing coincides pretty much with the start of the boycott?

Ah, who cares, it's all become bullshit anyway.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Usher Lieberman

Sun May 4 18:34:35 2008

@Kal

Buy.com is limited to one listing per SKU, i.e. you won't see thousands upon thousands of repetitive items.

Also, the listings I've looked at have the same exact same price on eBay and Buy.com.  Would be interested to know which items you are looking at.  

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Patricia

Sun May 4 19:01:10 2008

Hello Mr. Leiberman - nice to see you posting here.  I know everything is dependant on DSR's these days.  How do you explain some of buy.com's feedback?  I don't find them to be exactly expert first rate sellers - except maybe in shear amount of listings only:

Items not received for weeks

not received at all

unreasonable length of time for refunds

selling what they do not have

no communication when they made an error or when their customer contacts them

excessive shipping- charged someone 35 dollars that fit in a flatrate box which right now costs 8.95.


Hmmm....doesn't exactly sound like they are pleasing or enhancing buyers' experience.  I can't help thinking if this feedback belonged to lil ole me I'd be long gone!!!  I'd be one of those ''shape up or ship out'' sellers!  Is there a double standard at work here?  I kinda think there is and that when it comes between enhancing the buyer's experience and dollars - the dollars are going to win every time! ;-)

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Dan

Sun May 4 19:09:07 2008

If eBay enters in future deals with the largest vendors (and give them a break on pricing) they should require at least 50% (or all) of the merchandise be the "lowest price" on the web at any time.  This deal is great short term for selection but the pricing component needs work.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Kid1

Sun May 4 19:10:21 2008

I think there is more than 1 deal out there. One of the biggest seller with aleast 4 stores has all free shipping now.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Kal

Sun May 4 19:14:28 2008

Mr. Leiberman,

Go check the ebay ink blog, There is a post there mentioning the same item on ebay and on buy.com that end up with two different final prices, the ebay price being higher. Sorry, I do not have actual item numbers and the post doesn't reference those. It does however mention what the item is, so maybe you can figure it out from there.

By ''repetitive'' items I wasn't referring to the same item being listed thousands of times, I was referring to more of the same items already on ebay from other buyers. I just don't see how ''more of the same'' enhances anything.

ebay needs to get back to it's roots of being THE place to go when looking for something unique. I would NEVER go to ebay to look for a router for instance. If I need a router, I need it NOW. I'd go to one of a number of local stores. This is just one of many examples of items i would never consider ebay for. Turning ebay into a retail mall is a mistake.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Kal

Sun May 4 19:20:49 2008

@Kid1

The big shipping companies give the same kind of sweet exclusive deals ebay is offering to buy.com for high volume shipping customers. The shipping is NEVER free for the shipper, just so low, from special deals, that they can absorb it or factor the cost of it into the retail price.

Technically, since you don't pay for shipping, yes, it's free.

Other sellers can't compete with this. This is all part of the lie about the ''Level playing field'' that Pierre so eloquently waxed about a few days ago on the ebay ink blog. There is NO level playing field when you give certain players a sweet deal. As Pierre said, and I QUOTE: ''special deals behind the scenes because they’re a big retailer and we want to get them to come on eBay, that kind of stuff. That would have been—is—a disaster.''

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Patricia

Sun May 4 19:25:06 2008

"Other sellers can't compete with this. This is all part of the lie about the ''Level playing field'' that Pierre so eloquently waxed about a few days ago on the ebay ink blog. There is NO level playing field when you give certain players a sweet deal. As Pierre said, and I QUOTE: ''special deals behind the scenes because they’re a big retailer and we want to get them to come on eBay, that kind of stuff. That would have been—is—a disaster.''

That may be the reason why ebay management doesn't talk much and certainly doesn't talk to sellers unless its Pesa. LOL

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: namewithheld

Sun May 4 19:33:04 2008

This year, it's Buy.

Next year, maybe Best Buy.

Then Target.

Then The Gap.

Until, eventually no independent sellers can compete and ebay is just another shopping portal full of corporate sellers. The same ones down the street at the boring strip mall.

Where's the ''Windorphins'' in that?

Full time sellers (at least those who don't specilize in unique items, like antiques) who haven't diversified their businesses off ebay already AND planned their overall exit stratagies really need to do so now.

This Buy deal represents the future of ebay.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

This user has validated their user name. by: Ina

Sun May 4 19:33:47 2008

To get back to the issue of transparency...Sellers who have built their businesses on eBay need to know the competitive landscape in which they are operating.

Aside from the issue of whether it is fair to enter into such a deal, was it right of eBay not to disclose to its sellers that it was planning on giving one of their colleagues a better deal? And is it right for eBay not to disclose the terms of this special deal?

And WHY is eBay mum on this deal?

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Patricia

Sun May 4 19:48:17 2008

Ina with  all due respect when have they ever been honest and above board with us.  So far this year they have put sellers thru an emotional wringer and treated both good and bad sellers as criminals to be judged by unknown buyers and they never once ''leveled with us'' on what the future plans are.  We feel we are to be used till the last minute and then will be scrapped the minute we aren't of any monetary use to them.  This is the rub and why sellers, for the most part, have come to hate and distrust ebay. We know now that the transparency and community they speak of is nothing but ebay-speak.   Ebay will never get this trust back even if they find they want it in the future - when this grand plan of theirs falls thru.  They're effectively burning their bridges behind them!  It really has little to do with what's fair and what's not, but what we need in order to profit on that site.  That part is being chipped away almost on a daily basis.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Patricia

Sun May 4 19:57:44 2008

''This year, it's Buy.

Next year, maybe Best Buy.

Then Target.

Then The Gap.''

I'm kind of doubting that....each large department store is already online and operating well.  Why would they need ebay?  Certainly ebay's name and reputation could only detract from them.  Sellers such as buy.com or their own shop.com may bite but it remains to be seen how well they'll do on ebay.  As for bringing buyers and sellers together as Mr. Lieberman posted on the ebayinkblog.com - I haven't seen many new buyers since they started this grand mess.  Most other sellers are complaining about it too.  I keep saying sellers are begrudgingly complying with all the new ditzy policies - now:  ''where's the beef''?  where are the new buyers we were promised?  I have yet to get a logical answer from ebay.  If they think listings like buy.com are going to get them here in droves - forgetaboutit! All they say lately is that even more mysterious changes are coming!

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: EBAY REFUGEE

Sun May 4 20:25:45 2008

Ok ''Mr Usher Lieberman'' If you are as you say ''playing with a level field'' then explain this...

http://cgi6.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewListedItems&u
serid=sdc_prod_442675_57&sort=3&page=332&rows=25&since=-1&rdir=0


Why
is it this seller has more than 10,000 items showing up in the LIVE listing counts for your site, yet when you click on the items they say no longer valid?  And why is it most of these items have a start date that is WAY over the 30 day store max? Even though it says this when those items are clicked on...''Note: Listings that have ended more than 90 days ago will no longer appear on eBay.
''

And why is it that yet again, just like back in March, when you click on the sellers ID it brings you to another users profile that is also a 0 feedback seller?  And do not say that they are accidental listings from a seller on shopping.com because I actually spoke to owner of ''Boyne & Keily L.L.C.'' and come to find that they have no knowledge of their name being used this way on ebay.  And why will it now only show up to 10,001 listings.  Every time auctions end...there are still 10,001 available.  So just how many padded listings numbers do you have there?

I know you guys in the offices like to say that the sellers are ''just noise'', so if that's true...why do you have to put up tens of thousands of fake items up to change your listing numbers?  Are you afraid the share holders will realize that a lot of your listing counts are not legitimate items and that the boycotters really are affecting your site more than you are willing to admit?  

I am sure you will now have these active listings all deleted and that you probably will not even respond to this letter if you are in fact the real ''Usher Lieberman''.  

And why is it in your forums that you feel that you have to hide any LIVE threads with mention of the boycott to the back of the thread pages?  I thought you were NOT afraid to hear from your members. Yet you suppress their voices by hiding them?

I am surprised that you would use these shady business tactics when you say that you are trying to make ebay a better experience.  

You are being watched very closely ebay...and you just keep screwing it up by simply avoiding the truth...outright lying, and posting fake auctions!!!

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: kevin

Sun May 4 21:28:26 2008

Ina,

http://www.startupnation.com/blogs/index.php/2008/05/03/eb
ay-partners-with-buycom-gives-large-sellers-the-finger/

-Kevin

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Jim

Sun May 4 21:57:32 2008

You people putting URLs in your messages. I wish you'd use TINYURL.COM first on those long URLs. You can't click on them, and they are longer than one line, making them a pain to paste into a browser.

Look at your posting and you'll see what I mean. Your URL is on 2 or more lines.

PLEASE, use tinyurl first so the URL can be copied and pasted with ease.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: for jim

Sun May 4 22:14:51 2008

there ya go jim ..

http://tinyurl.com/4vnlyw

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: hey ina

Sun May 4 22:23:17 2008

hi ina, when are you gonna do a radio show?
the 'ebay radio griff pay to play info-mercial show' does nice and cheery radio, but has no content. the only other internet radio show i have found is dave&sparky's show, which is good, but only once a week. there also used to be a guy on 'e-autioneer' who did great radio, but disappeared. THE INTERNET IS LACKING MORE E-COMMERCE RADIO SHOWS. can you or anyone help or suggest some please?

thanks

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: dimes

Sun May 4 22:27:58 2008

Last Tycoon DVD -
$7.93 + free shipping on buy.com
$9.88 + $3.40 shipping in its eBay store

Larousse Italian/English pocket dictionary
$3.89 + $3.95 shipping on buy.com
$5.99 + $5.10 shipping in its eBay store

SoundBlaster I/O module
$13.37 + $7.08 shipping on buy.com
$15.99 + $7.18 shipping in its eBay store

It took all of 5 minutes to find those, and a cursory comparison shows a boatload of more of the same.

I don't know what buy.com is paying eBay, but whatever it is, the exposure it will get for its own site (I'd never been there before today) has got to make it well worth it.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Mr. Tim

Sun May 4 22:33:22 2008

Buy.com uses Google checkout. Does that mean they can offer it in their eBay listings while every other seller cannot? Or will eBay prohibit them from using it as well? And since Buy.com has their own website, why throw stuff on eBay in the first place? And most of all, who cares? Has anyone out there EVER bought anything on Buy.com? Just more padding of eBay's listings, IMO. Like all the junky used GM vehicles that will be popping up on eBay real soon. They can't give them away on the dealer lots, so throw them on eBay, right guys? Listing numbers go up and more fools gobble up overpriced eBay stock. And THAT's all that matters to Donahoe and the suits at eBay.

eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com   eBay Does Exclusive Deal with Buy.com

by: Patricia

Sun May 4 23:00:35 2008

@ Dimes - that's quite a jump in price.  Apparently they feel they have a bigger market on ebay and also they have fees to pay too...even reduced fees add up - though if they wanted higher prices they should have made the deal with Amazon  ;-)

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