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Tue Apr 23 2013 18:26:09

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

By: Julia Wilkinson

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I logged into eBay today, like so many other days, and I must say I was taken aback. There, staring back at me, on the left side of the eBay logo and its trimmed-down  top-level categories, was a huge gekko...er, Geico...I mean, the Geico Gekko. Now, I happen to really like this cockney-voiced little green spokeslizard, as spokescreatures go, but I had to wonder: is this what eBay ads will look like going forward? Or is this a special green ad for Earth Day Week or something?

I did not see the same big gekko on eBay on my iPad in the Chrome browser, but the "pop-up" ad gekko did appear in the top left of the screen where other pop-ups have appeared. It also appeared on some lower levels of eBay such as the My eBay screen, for me. 

Ina noted eBay has had several of these over the years, some to recognize holidays (Halloween), causes (breast cancer awareness), and other ads (UPS).

Does anyone even care? It may just be because I now have a hugely wide monitor that this gekko seems to loom over my flatscreen monitor like a billboard in Times Square. But I vaguely wondered: would there be a group of people who didn't care, a group of people who liked the gekko if its big ad revenue might mean lower eBay fees down the road, and finally a group who didn't like it for whatever reason?

Or would there be two groups of people: those who did not care and those who either liked it, or did not like it? (I always say, the world is divided into two groups of people; those who divide the world into two groups of people, and those who don't).

It also harkened me back to days of yore. I'm talking about when I worked in the Internet biz circa 1989 when people were still using Usenet and there was an online service called Q-Link. At one time there was a school of thought that an online service maybe should not accept ads, as it would be too intrusive to the user experience. That take on it seems so quaint now.

Also, AOL used to have fun with holidays, doing special animation screens, much like Google does today with its doodle. (Can you imagine if Google started putting ads there, on its sacred, minimalist home screen, or if the doodle became an ad?).(As Ina put it, "Google has Doodles, eBay has Peekaboos (or whatever they are." Anyone know if these things have a name?

So I guess I'm just wondering how you reacted or didn't react to this little green guy today...and maybe even if you saw it? What did you think, if anything? Post a comment here!




Comments (20) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: Patricia This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 23 19:13:46 2013

Anything for a buck....that's Ebay!

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Tue Apr 23 19:16:45 2013

Usually one that is oblivious to ads, I had to look for him & there he is. I DO like the fact they are putting him in the strip of their ''tool bar'' at the top and not in the middle of my listing. That strip is a good place for an ad, actually.

Given the recent efforts of  internet blackouts over CISPA and the various hackings going on (like AP's twitter feed, for one) I believe I will refrain from clicking on any links presented to me. Just. In. Case.  

Charming Gecko, yes, but he's getting a bit long in the tooth like Flo and the AFLAC duck. Of course the Budweiser Clydesdales have endured and endeared over the years, so who am I to say.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

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

Tue Apr 23 22:53:05 2013

I wonder how eager our little green friend would be to appear on ebafia if his insurance company were to receive hundreds of complaints on their toll free line in the next couple of weeks about not wanting to buy insurance because of their advertising on a website with such a poor reputation for honesty and integrity?

Just wondering...

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Tue Apr 23 23:47:41 2013

As I have most of my eBay destinations saved as bookmarks in my browser, I have managed to avoid being exposed to this latest eBay money grabbing scheme.

Sadly though ads such as this will become more prevalent on eBay because top management desperately needs to increase revenue.

Since management has proven ineffective at significantly increasing sales, new money streams are necessary in order to cover the outrageous compensation increases eBay has foolishly bestowed on John Donahoe and the rest of his know nothing executives.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Apr 24 07:42:12 2013

There's only room for one gekko at eBay, and we know who that is.  Ebay's very own Gordon Gekko.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Wed Apr 24 07:45:37 2013

LOL Rexford!!!!

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: PowerSeller2007 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 09:12:15 2013

The Gekko is very deceptive ebay image.

I suggest they use Giant Alligator image!

Ebay is like a greedy giant alligator.  They swallow ALL money from small American sellers and failed to deliver a safe community marketplace.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: minibeesknees This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 10:12:31 2013

I wonder along with Ming. Since 1998 I have been simply awed...especially in the early ebay days...that folks from all over the world would buy the widgets I make and sell on a very limited basis to supplement retirement income. I market to a tiny hobby market and sell a product in the higher end of the price range for similar items, and for that I guarantee variety and quality. It has amazed me for about 15 years that total strangers from thousands of miles away would send me their hard earned money any way we could figure out (I am pre-PayPal) how to do that...with the expectation I would send what I promised under the terms we decided on because they had very little recourse if I didn't. I've always had more generous terms then ebay when it came to shipping cost, and returns, and exchanges. In fifteen years I've built a good reputation in my tiny market. It is my practice to use as little of what ebay did in the way of enhancements over the years. I use PayPal, and most of the time I have a basic store. I keep everything simple. Historical data tells me that over all those years the percent of gross fees plus shipping versus gross sales has dropped significantly...ebay gets lots less of my money then they did when I also paid to host pictures. My 'success' rests heavily on my reputation and I feel that ebay pulls me down to their level.  

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Wed Apr 24 10:18:48 2013

The Gekko is cute, so I don't have a problem with him. Though I do think Maxwell the pig is poised to become the new spokesanimal.  

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: Massachusets Howler This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 11:01:08 2013

Let me tell you about what Geico has done to me.
A pizza delivery driver struck me in the rear here on a country road. I was hit while standing still (I was sitting patiently behind another car that was waiting to turn) and he was going over 50 mph so my car was totaled and I was injured- without medical insurance as I am an ebay seller.
Geico DID NOT COVER THEIR pizza delivery driver as he was not carrying COMMERCIAL insurance as he was "delivering pizza".
My insurance company paid a PAULTRY sum and I sit here injured, and I must sit here and see Gieco ads on my listings that are not selling.
That is what corporations will do to you here in the USA.
Gieco needs to cover their drivers that hurt other people instead of looking for excuses not to pay.
I even had to pay for my own rental car- and I was sitting at a DEAD stop.
Stay away from pizza drivers folks.

MH

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 11:26:31 2013

Among the companies I "Love To Hate" are Verizon; ebay; Geico; NYSEG; DTV  and ---and----and---well guess that must be them then.

Geico does not always have the most honest rep either esp in MY view as they played a "dirty trick" on my family after a claim was made---long story--and this cost us -time- a bunch of money and higher rates for a good long while.

But the gecko---well--he is kinda cute.

BUT--is the FIRST place YOU think of to buy CAR INSURANCE-----eBay???

Really?  

When I go to shop on Amazon or other places I don't expect to see Geico or Ford or any OTHER ads.  I DO expect to see the logo of the company I ELECTED to shop at.  

Done.

To JULIA---Way back the very FIRST time I heard about this wondrous thing called the INTERNETS (I don't even think it WAS called that yet!) I said to my husband--the Tech Dept---Wow!  You could SELL THINGS using that!  And he about fell over because apparently this was against Internet Religion or something.  FFW a few years to my discovery of ebay and I start selling things via the web.  And he is scornful.  Until I go and make a major appliance purchase--with the spare change I made on--ebay.  He kinda had to re-think his notions of the "Purity" of the interwebs huh!!!!

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Wed Apr 24 11:53:09 2013

Why does eBay NEED to do such things in the first place?

One might assume that if eBay was the wildly successful venue that it's claimed to be, then of course, the FVF's, listing fees, upgrade fees, and PP transaction fees would be more than enough to sustain and grow the company.

It makes perfect sense to me that news-oriented websites and other information-based sites would NEED to focus on ad sales. For those types of businesses ie: ones that aren't selling a product or service) their primary income stream comes from ad revenue.

But for eBay? It makes no sense to me.

Based on the evidence we have, it makes logical sense that things aren't as rosy as eBay execs would have us believe.

I supposed that this effort to provide an additional income stream for eBay is working... after all, they keep doing it, and they continue to make these ads more intrusive and distracting.

But, it's a dangerous and slippery slope... a double-edged sword that cuts-both-ways. --- As eBay execs increase their focus on ad revenue, it's entirely possible that other areas of eBay will suffer or stagnate.

Oh well. What a pity.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: Paul W This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 12:36:42 2013

(I always say, the world is divided into two groups of people; those who divide the world into two groups of people, and those who don't).

AND, I am sure you are one of the ones who don't. :)

As to the gecko--it's just another ad.  

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 12:54:59 2013

Sounds like a perfect combo. One not so reputable company doing business with another not so reputable company.
ebay is all about getting every dollar possible at any cost.  
Even though I have pop up blocker, they still appear all the time. You have to hunt for the info in between all the ads.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

by: rosachs This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 24 13:40:09 2013

"a group of people who liked the gekko if its big ad revenue might mean lower eBay fees down the road"

Since when has eBay's increasing ad exposure ever lowered or even slowed the rate of fee increases on the site?

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Apr 24 14:04:30 2013

Annie, you nailed it with: Based on the evidence we have, it makes logical sense that things aren't as rosy as eBay execs would have us believe.

No robust marketplace sends buyers away from their site.

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Forestt

Wed Apr 24 14:05:34 2013

Geico is the biggest abuser of ''bait and switch'' tactics ever seen. Of course, they're so big the FTC doesn't take action against them.  They offer a teaser rate to get you to switch and then raise your rates every time. No wonder they're advertising on eBay.  

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: bitbybit

Wed Apr 24 20:24:40 2013

Over ten years ago I had a policy through Geico and the policy was complete rubbish along with being overpriced. From what I understand Geico is just a clearing house for a bunch of insurance companies. As I recall the policy was with Travelers Insurance and they did everything they could do not pay on a claim. I left them as fast as I could and will never do business with Geico again even though its Gecko is as cute as can be.

Ebay is increasing its exposure of ads while at the same time decreasing sellers exposure.  

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Thu Apr 25 07:44:45 2013

bitbybit observes: ''Ebay is increasing its exposure of ads while at the same time decreasing sellers exposure.''

eBay execs are using this to supplement their shrinking FVF revenue.

Think about it... if sales were *truly* as good as eBay claims, these types of ads would not be necessary.

And, on the other hand... in the unlikely event that sales ARE as good as eBay claims, the presence of these ads makes me wonder why eBay isn't more focused on ATTRACTING new buyers and KEEPING THEM ON THE SITE once they arrive.

Every ad is a distraction from eBay's main purpose, and it provides an opportunity for a visitor to click away (never to return?) and spend their money at a different site.

It's very short sighted. Short-term gains at the expense of the rank-and-file sellers who must compete against other sellers, other websites, AND NOW who must also compete with eBay ads!!

Good luck with that.  

Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?   Ginormous Gekko the Shape of eBay's Ad Future?

This user has validated their user name. by: Forestt

Thu Apr 25 14:37:29 2013

Anonymous Annie said "Think about it... if sales were *truly* as good as eBay claims, these types of ads would not be necessary."

Agreed, any marketplace that needs to run ads on pages paid by for merchants is clearly in the rears or just aberrant with greed.

Great concept, distract the consumer from the item they're searching for for a .05 cent click or even less useless CPM. Most "normal" businesses do everything possible NOT to distract a consumer from making a purchase. Then again, eBay full of MBA's who have maids that do their shopping don't realize the average consumer who is not getting paid to shop doesn't have blinders on.



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