|Fri Dec 16 2011 18:59:52|
eBay Favors Big-Box Retailers in Holiday Promotions
By: Ina Steiner
Last year, sellers raised their eyebrows when eBay helped marketplace visitors find items in-stock at local brick-and-mortar chain stores. Now the online marketplace is running a holiday rewards program in partnership with ToysRUs, Dick's Sporting Goods and Aeropostale with an in-store twist.
Shoppers who spend $100 on any of the three retailers' websites or eBay stores will receive $10 to shop in-store at the retailer's local store.
eBay said the campaign promotes how today's consumers shop: "online and offline, via mobile and at the mall - to find what they want, when and how they want it." And eBay CEO John Donahoe said in a press release, "We're excited to offer this first ever online and in-store multi-channel rewards program with Toys"R"Us, Dick's Sporting Goods and Aeropostale. This innovative rewards program reflects the future of retail and the convenient, seamless shopping experience consumers are looking for."
eBay is also promoting a Guaranteed Arrival program that it's heavily promoting, highlighting listings from Toys R Us, Black & Decker, Ashford Watches, ShoeMall and Skullcandy and 20 other retailers from its GSI Commerce unit. eBay shoppers can place orders through Dec. 19 and receive their gifts by Christmas Eve, guaranteed.
eBay spokesperson Johnna Hoff said many GSI retailers will also offer shoppers the ability to purchase gifts up to 10 p.m. EST on Dec. 22 for delivery on the next business day (Dec. 23).
eBay knows the benefit of first mover advantage, and this video demo on YouTube shows eBay's vision. Consumers can now pay for toys at Toys R Us with PayPal via their mobile phone.
eBay has been cozying up to large retailers since John Donahoe took over from CEO Meg Whitman in 2008, and it's not just because Donahoe favors "buy it new, but it now" over bidding for used goods from small sellers. As mobile shopping bridges the online and offline world, eBay is counting on its PayPal wallet to dominate mobile payments.
It's difficult to measure precisely how this affects smaller sellers, but this season was definitely all about Buy It New, Buy It Now on eBay.