|Thu May 19 2011 19:55:38|
eBay Surveys Customers on Social Networking Activities
By: Ina Steiner
eBay sent an email to a subset of users asking them to take a survey on social networking. It used the survey to find participants for focus groups it is conducting over the next week with users who use sites such as Facebook, Twitter and MySpace.
The survey asked respondents which social networking sites they use, in which types of social networking activities they engage, how frequently they use such sites, and even the type of cell phones they use (iPhone, Blackberry, Android smartphone, Symbian Smartphone, Windows Smartphone, Palm, Traditional cellular phone).
eBay's survey also asked about online shopping behavior on Apple, Amazon, Best Buy, eBay, Macy's, JC Penney, Sears, Walmart and Target, and in which categories they shop:
- Vehicles, parts or accessories;
- Clothing shoes or accessories;
- Collectibles, such as antiques, cons, stamps and memorabilia;
- Computers and consumer electronics (TVs, MP3 players, computers, cameras, video game consoles, etc.);
- Entertainment items (books, movies, DVD/Blu-ray discs, video games, etc.);
- Health and beauty items;
- Home furnishings;
- Jewelry and watches;
- Tickets (sporting events, concerts, theater, etc.).
eBay asked respondents in which online channels they listed or sold items in the last year. It's always interesting to see which of its competitors eBay includes on surveys - in this case, the list included: Amazon; Bonanza; Craigslist; eBay; eBay Classifieds; Ecrater; Etsy; Facebook; Glyde; iOffer; Kijiji; Oodle; Overstock; Marketplace on Sears; Marketplace on Walmart.com; StubHub; uBid; Your own company website; and other.
eBay was interested in respondents' attitudes about Computers and Consumer Electronics, asking how willing they were "to go to as many websites as possible to get the best deal," and asking how well each of the following statements described them:
- It is important that I always have the most current technology
- I enjoy reading about and staying current on improvements in technology
- I am intimidated by electronics and technology
- I enjoy building or customizing my own devices to meet my needs
- Computers-electronics bore me
Other survey questions include the following:
Which of the following websites or programs do you use?
- None of the above
For each of the following websites or programs how frequently do you:
- How frequently do you log on?
- How frequently do you Post/update information
- How many friends/connections do you have?
- From which device do you access?
Which of the following have you done on Facebook in the past month?
- Created a Facebook ad
- Created/updated your company page
- Posted info/a link for an item for sale
- Updated your profile
- Updated your status
- Asked/posted a question
- Asked for a product recommendation
- Made a product recommendation
- Posted a picture
- Posted a link
- Posted a video
- Tagged yourself or someone else in a photo
- Used Social Sign-on to access another website
- Clicked the "Like" button on 3 or more things
- Played a game
- Purchased Facebook credits
- None of the above
It's interesting that eBay, which had a huge community element in its early days, is now conducting research into users' social networking behavior.
How big a deal is social networking when it comes to online shopping? Is it over-hyped, or will a killer app come along that we have yet to envision?
Are there any social features would you like to see on marketplaces such as eBay?