eBay's Chief Technology Officer took to the corporate blog on Thursday to explain how the company is "replatforming" its marketplace in order to deliver what he called the shopping destination of choice.
If you follow eBay, you've already heard some of what Steve Fisher described yesterday and what we've been reporting on for the past year or so:
- Structured inventory initiative (the flip side for sellers is the Product Identifiers requirements);
- Building Relevant, Persistent and Personalized Experiences Through Machine Learning;
- Empowering sellers ("Delivering the Selling Platform That Best Serves Buyers").
Pay attention to what Fisher said about point number two, such as this excerpt: "We're creating new browsing flows and persistent product pages, allowing users to see relevant and tailored items, specifically based on their shopping behavior."
He said new pages will bring together many elements already available on eBay separately - editorial content such as buying guides, best-selling items, special promotions, shop-by-brand opportunities, deals, and more. "These pages are curated algorithmically through machine learning, and can be scaled across all categories and products. Also, the most popular pages can be further manually curated by experts to deliver the ultimate shopping experiences."
Fisher's post is similar to the post from the head of eBay Marketplaces North America Hal Lawton
in April who outlined three areas of focus for the marketplace:
- Structured data and building its product catalog;
- New marketing platforms, with an emphasis on social media;
- Increased control for sellers.
Fisher wrote yesterday, "One of the biggest opportunities we have is to organize, catalogue, curate, and present our vast inventory in ways that enable every person who shops on eBay to find their version of perfect, no matter what it is. That's why we have embarked on an ambitious, multi-year evolution of our shopping platform at eBay that aims to deliver relevant, persistent and personalized experiences for consumers."
eBay is acquiring Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning technology - is that the new gimmick to impress investors, a la "Cassini"? Or can eBay really use technology to deliver on a personalized experience for shoppers that has them coming back for more?
Take a closer look at the strategies the two executives outline, especially Fisher's post from yesterday
, and let us know what you think.