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Thu Jan 29 2009 10:02:12

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

By: Ina Steiner

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In today's AuctionBytes Newsflash, I report on eBay's push to grow ad revenue. eBay has been getting more aggressive with its ad placement, especially outside North America. Ads now appear on View Item pages and on My eBay. For several years they've appeared on search results pages, including ads that directly compete with the listings served up in search results.

With news of a new director of advertising partnerships for pan-EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), and eBay CEO John Donahoe talking up advertising growth rates during the company's recent earnings call, it seems clear eBay is very committed to growing ad revenue. An auction site as ad platform didn't work for Yahoo Auctions, can it work any better for eBay?






Comments (57) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: eBay is scum

Thu Jan 29 10:04:34 2009

Of course it hurt sales, angers buyers, and gets free ad placement for sleezebay. we would like to sub-let our space if ebay feels they must whore themselves on our listings.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Daisy

Thu Jan 29 10:33:39 2009

When the sellers leave because they cannot make enough money selling on Ebay, will the buyers come just to see Ad links?

I think it's pretty clear, John Donahoe is completely clueness, has no innovations whatsoever, and is tanking this company as fast as possible. The competitors have got to be wishing him on.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: ebay = penny stock

Thu Jan 29 10:52:43 2009

Ebay ads cannibalize sales, you mean people still list on ebay. Dinosaurs.
Anyone with half a brain knows ebay is a lost entity.

Get out. BONANZLE HAS IT ALL.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Patricia

Thu Jan 29 11:20:15 2009

Just another sign of how desperate Ebay is becoming.  They're choking on their own greed.  March on Donahoe...you're making history.  The death of a once healthy and wealthy company in only a year!  Just wait....the best is yet to come, Amazon announces its 4th quarter report tonight!!!

Bonanzle.com  rah rah rah - and don't forget to bring your customers with you!

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: RicRoe

Thu Jan 29 11:46:04 2009

ebay seems to talk out of both sides of their mouth on the issue of outside links i.e. advertising.

Sellers are prohibited from advertising or placing outside links in their listings, even though the seller is paying for the use of that space.

When it comes to their own interests however, eBay feels that outside ads are just fine as long as they are collecting the revenue.

Ebay does not share revenue with sellers when ads are placed on their paid listings, so effectively, eBay is benefitting from ad placement on space paid for by sellers when ad placement occurs on individual listings.

What eBay consistently ignores is customer perception.

If the ad placement leaves eBay sellers with the perception that potential buyers will be drawn away from listings by ad placement, then that becomes the reality, and sellers will pull out.

eBay likes to say that they offer these ads so that buyers will be assurred of finding what they want or need regardless of whether the purchase is made on eBay.

Many sellers feel that as buyers are encouraged more and more often to purchase off eBay then eventually that buyer stops coming to eBay entirely.

eBay claims they are trying to bring more buyers back to eBay, but doing so and then sending them off eBay to make purchases hardly benefits sellers.

eBay should be looking for ways to draw more buyers and keep them on eBay rather than sending them offsite and running the risk that buyers will eventually consider eBay irrelevant altogether.

This is a catch 22 that will grease the skids of eBays decline.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: d

Thu Jan 29 12:00:32 2009

"BONANZLE HAS IT ALL."

You mean, except for sales in large numbers! Big exception!

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: BONANZLE Has What???

Thu Jan 29 12:40:35 2009

I moved all my items onto BONANZLE over a month ago.  It was free and easy, that was great.

HOWEVER, since all my items have been on BONANZLE for that time period I generated exactly one $13 sale.

In the same time period on eBay for the same exact items I generated over 1500 sales for more than $100k.

BONANZLE appears to be filled with a lot of unhappy eBay sellers looking for an alternative and almost no volume of active buyers.

This is clear when the same exact products produce such a distinct difference is results.

Most of you here may hate eBay, and I have my own issues with them, but they bring what no other site except maybe Amazon can, and that is active buyers.

You can p!ss and moan all you want and chant ''Death to Donahoe'' until you are blue in the face, it wont change the fact that eBay is where there are a lot of active buyers.

Either deal with and adapt to the changes like ''Business People'' or keep crying in your soup and see where it gets you.

FLAME ON.....

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Troy

Thu Jan 29 13:27:05 2009

Its kind of a shame that eBay places ads on your listings.

The new auction site Bidboxr.com uses unique online interactive ads as a ''delivery method'' for all the listed items but it doesn't list ads on your listings!

Maybe eBay should start thinking about what they could be doing to help sellers before one of these up and coming sites starts to take business away from them.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Anarch

Thu Jan 29 13:37:03 2009

''Either deal with and adapt to the changes like ''Business People'' or keep crying in your soup and see where it gets you.''

Ebay is forgetting that
a) Sellers are not their employees
b) Sellers are ebay's customers
c) Sellers are angry with ebay
d) Ebay is growing the competition
e) Ebay sales are down since 3/08

The board of directors should put John Donahoe's job up for vote by the sellers - those who PAY the fees, and if sellers want to keep him as CEO, then he stays!  I suspect Donahoe would be voted out 99 to 1 by the majority of sellers.  Ebay should poll sellers today, before its too late.  They've lost the momentum, sellers do not work for ebay, and placing ads for outside ebay sales on ebay listings violates ebay's own policy of 'outside links' for goods sold outside ebay!!  Oh, but the almighty Donahoe can break the rules because its good for the corporation. Phooey.  RIP ebay.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Thu Jan 29 14:20:46 2009

"Either deal with and adapt to the changes like ''Business People'' or keep crying in your soup and see where it gets you."

Ah, yes. Another illustration of the caliber of people ebay hires, and I'll vbet he/she works in PR or caustomer service!

I can't help but wonder how these obvious San Jose trolls who so viciously defend ebay will feel when THEIR pink slip shows up.

And it can't be too soon.

I have no wish to see The Ho die, BTW. Only resign or be fired without his golden parachute. Learn to read, BONANZLE Has What???

What I would like to see die is ebay the corporation.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Now I Get It

Thu Jan 29 14:58:01 2009

Now I Get It!!!

Every person who posts here in support of eBay is an eBay employee.

So then it makes sense the every person that post here hating eBay must be an...AMAZON or BONANZLE EMPLOYEE !!!

That makes it all clear to me now.  AMAZON & BONANZLE are posting all over the boards about how much they hate eBay to drive all the successful eBay sellers onto their web sites and off of eBay.

Why didn't I see it sooner???  Everyone posting here that hates eBay or Donahoe is ACTAULLY just an employee of a competing marketplace.  That makes so much sense.

No ACTUAL eBay users post here, only Employees of eBay and other marketplaces.  The whole entire Blog is nothing but a scam put on by all these companies and their staff posting a bunch of BS about one another...BRILLIANT !!!


Hmmm... I have a dilemma though.  I like eBay as I sell a lot there, BUT, I hate competing off marketplace ads showing up in eBay search results and on item pages.

Sooooo....which company do I work for:

1) eBay
2) Amazon
3) BONANZLE
4) All of the Above
5) NONE of the Above

Please all of you employees of eBay, Amazon and BONANZLE, since those are the only people posting here now, remind me what company I work for again???


FLAME ON....(oh BTW, next I am no longer an eBay employee for those of you watching with interest, I will be branded a Troll.  That is the last bastion of hope from the companies I do not work for posting here to discredit everything I say.)

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: BWS

Thu Jan 29 15:25:43 2009

Its obvious ebay must have studied the dysfunctional relationship model of battered wife syndrome, and is using this as their customer relations strategy to decieve, cheat, exploit and degrade their sellers; because a battered wife relies on the batterer for substinance, shelter and a few crumbs of reward now and then, but also only responds to being degraded in order to be kept in check.  Oh, and they always come back for more..hhahahah

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: That's the BEST you've Got?

Thu Jan 29 15:42:42 2009

That's the BEST you other Marketplaces can come up with, trivializing the serious plight of Battered Wives around the world by comparing eBay to a ''Wife Beater''?

Come on, that is way out of line.  Women that find themselves in such unfortunate circumstances as living with an abusive spouse do not deserve to have their situations made fun of in such a manner.

How can AMAZON & BONANZLE employees stoop so low?

Shame on you.



Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: 115834

Thu Jan 29 16:22:24 2009

"Either deal with and adapt to the changes like ''Business People'' or keep crying in your soup and see where it gets you."

But there are some people (like me) who are still selling on eBay, who feel that eBay's business is based only on the success of each and every seller.

Yet the keep undermining the sellers. There is NOTHING more destructive to eBay sellers as eBay advertising our competition. Why would eBay sell adds to its competition?  This isn't a single or the first policy change they have implemented that damages the very core of their success, and hence the success of sellers.

And I understand why people would compare it to an abuse relationship because that's exactly how it feels.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: may

Thu Jan 29 16:34:04 2009

ina asked...
"An auction site as ad platform didn't work for Yahoo Auctions, can it work any better for eBay?"

NO NO NO

Or even if it shows some revenue, the expenses will be much greater.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Jerrica Benton

Thu Jan 29 16:51:08 2009

Yes, they do!!

I was the largest seller of several types of vintage items on eBay.  Yet, eBay did nothing to direct sales to my store.  Instead, their ads directed people to off-site stores.  And what's worse?  Those off-site stores didn't have ANY of those items for sale.

I also remember when sellers could purchase ads for their eBay stores that ran on eBay.  Those ads directed me to lots of eBay stores and kept the money I spent in-house.  Plus, the ads were targeted to the specific search, so the stores that were coming up actually HAD the merchandise I was looking for, unlike eBay's useless, new offsite ads.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Marvin

Thu Jan 29 17:17:57 2009

I don't think there has ever been any doubt that oBay is *all* about corporate revenue. The training wheels that eBay provided helped a LOT of us learn more about selling on the Internet. So when someone selling on oBay says that xyz site has little traffic on their listings, what they are really saying is they really saying is they have no idea how to drive traffic. Nothing wrong with the need for training wheels, but most of us outgrew them a long time ago.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: Who do you work for?

Thu Jan 29 17:41:56 2009

Marvin,

Are you an eBay, Amazon or BONANZLE employee?

We have to know to be able to take your post in the correct context.


(BTW, why would it be MY responsibility to drive buyers to a marketplace?  Isn't that the marketplaces responsibility to deliver buyers for the fees I pay?  I drive buyers to my own web site, NOT someone else's marketplace.  If the marketplace cannot drive traffic, then what is the point of the marketplace in the first place?  Amazon and eBay drive a LOT of traffic, BONANZLE thus far almost none.  But I sure as heck am NOT going to waste my time driving traffic to ''their'' marketplace so they can turn around and charge me a fee for the sale.  I will limit my traffic driving efforts to my own web site, training wheels or not.)

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

by: John

Thu Jan 29 18:50:44 2009

Sure the ads are upsetting, but the more damaging thing to most people on this board is their attitude. Change always presents new opportunities. If you can figure out how to leverage those opportunity you will thrive. Those that sit on their hands and complain are destined to either fail or remain very average.

Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?   Do eBay Ads Cannibalize Sales?

This user has validated their user name. by: Bob

Thu Jan 29 20:37:29 2009

Ok, stupid question....

All of those of you who say that Bonanzle has everything (but somehow mysteriously missing auction format) are getting all your traffic via Google, right?  Well, that and spamming boards, forums and blogs with bonanzle, bonanzle, bonanzle.  So why don't you just list all your products on Google Base so that they show up in Google Shopping, just like they do if you use Bonanzle?

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