eBay CEO Devin Wenig is on a mission to "take on Amazon," according to Bloomberg
. The news outlet provides some background on Wenig's career and experiences at eBay - it was he who insisted the company reset all user passwords after the infamous data breach, for example.
According to Bloomberg, the centerpiece of Wenig's strategy is to differentiate eBay from Amazon:
"Crucially, he has stopped competing in the area where the Seattle leviathan arguably has the biggest advantage: the speedy delivery of everyday merchandise. Instead, Wenig wants shoppers to come to eBay when they are planning vacations and need supplies, refreshing a wardrobe or curious about the latest gadgets.
"Amazon appeals to time-strapped shoppers with Dash buttons that let them quickly replenish laundry detergent and toilet paper when their stock is running low. Wenig wants to wow consumers with a sense of discovery as they meander through an online bazaar that makes shopping pleasurable and drives impulse sales beyond a narrowly focused online mission."
It appears what Bloomberg is saying about Wenig's strategy is that you go to Amazon when you want something and you want it quickly, but you go to eBay when you want something but don't mind meandering through listings and you don't need it quickly. Surely there's more to the strategy, but that's as far as the description in Bloomberg goes.
Bloomberg also said misspelled words are a leading cause of searches that yield no results on eBay, which is now in the market for companies that make spell-correcting algorithms. (eBay buyers and sellers know the phenomenon as "fat fingers" - the eBay finding tool FatFingers is still around, by the way.)
Many sellers grit their teeth when they hear about search algorithms, but what if eBay allowed users to dial up or down those algorithms in Best Match search? That would be pretty innovative, and might make a world of difference in helping users find items they're seeking.