Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Sat Sept 2 2017 22:13:33

RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

By: Ina Steiner

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Half.com officially closed on August 31st, and the URL now redirects visitors to eBay.com. Half.com launched in 1999 and catered to buyers of books, music, movies, and games. eBay acquired the fixed-price media marketplace in 2000 and came close to shutting it in October of 2004.

Why close it now? 

Since the breakup of eBay Inc. in 2015, eBay is a much smaller company and is putting all of its limited resources for Marketplaces into Seller Hub and its Structured Data initiative. (Part of Half.com's appeal had been its catalog approach that made it easy for sellers to list and easy for shoppers to find the item they were looking for.)

And in 2000, eBay had been considered an auction site; 17 years later, CEO Devin Wenig is trying to get the message out to shoppers that eBay is a fixed-price marketplace and is running a "Color Your Cart" brand marketing campaign to drive the point home. It no longer needs a separate fixed-price site.

As EcommerceBytes reported in June, eBay notified sellers of the pending closure and urged them to consider growing their business on eBay instead. "We believe we can provide a greater selling opportunity for our selling community, and a better shopping experience for our buyers, by focusing on the core eBay.com platform."

Sellers who sold via Half.com (HDC) liked it because it was free to list, so they didn't have to use any of their free listings on eBay to list books that might take a while to sell. But last December, commission fees spiked, and some sellers expected that might be the beginning of the end for Half.

An EcommerceBytes reader said the writing had been on the wall for a while. "When they raised fees to 25% last year it was clear they were trying to scare the remaining users away from the site. No remaining users = no complaints when it gets shut down, I guess."

Some buyers and sellers writing on industry boards on Friday said they had been unaware the site was set to close on August 31st - one buyer wistfully wondered if they would be able to recover their wish list. 

Visitors are now presented with an interstitial that includes a link to sign in before being redirected to eBay:

Half.com has closed. We are redirecting you to ebay.com, where you can find great deals on a wide selection of books, movies, music and more. 

Click here to access the My Account section of Half.com.

In its letter to sellers in June, eBay explained said returns would continue to be processed until October 31, 2017, and it provided an email for those who had questions: service@half.com.




Comments (12) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

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

Sun Sep 3 02:17:50 2017

"...eBay is a much smaller company and is putting all of its limited resources for Marketplaces into Seller Hub and its Structured Data initiative... "

"We believe we can provide a greater selling opportunity for our selling community, and a better shopping experience for our buyers, by focusing on the core eBay.com platform."

Prima facie evidence that ebafia can't walk and chew gum at the same time, and their claim of capital poverty tugs at my black heart.

A not so friendly reminder to ebafia executives: they are NOT "your" buyers. They're our buyers, and one of reasons you're #failing is because you don't  understand this and the enormous ripple effect your lack of comprehension has created.

Ebafia will never recover from The Ho's failure to maintain a secure platform and his scheme to defraud Google.

#failing.

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 3 09:04:25 2017

I'm not surprised.

If you look hard enough, you can easily find the other 51 companies eBay has bought and closed - this is hardly the first and it won't be the last.

It's just more eBay incompetence- and no one is surprised at all.  

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

by: futervest This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Sun Sep 3 13:42:30 2017

GOOD riddance half .co was a give away market. And now they're turning eBay into one as well.

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Sun Sep 3 23:21:44 2017

I've been on eBay for 19 years!

Not once have I been to half.com

Never had a reason to go there when I could just go to eBay instead. . .

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

by: betsys.bijoux This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon Sep 4 00:52:01 2017

As one of the first users, it will be missed greatly - at least what it was, not the zombie that eBay turned it into.  At least they haven't bought Abe Books yet!

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 4 00:58:54 2017

If Ebay had half a mind, Half.com could have been converted into an ebook/audio streaming/movie streaming site like AMZ has.  That would have attracted consumers to the site, and at the same time they would have seen a catalog of books and CDs.

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Mon Sep 4 02:24:17 2017

BAIN is the driving force behind the destruction.
It's their M.O.
No Bain, No more destruction.
How do we destroy Bain ?

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

This user has validated their user name. by: Philo

Mon Sep 4 09:02:35 2017

In all seriousness, the only notice I got about the closure of the site and removing saved lists came from here!

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 4 10:43:21 2017

I used Half early on. It WAS a good place to sell out of print books at a fair price.

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Mon Sep 4 12:26:43 2017

Ina has a fresh story about abe books being down with no ETA of when it will be back up & running. . .

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 4 15:01:35 2017

Chicago is correct in his/her post 😀

eBay once again ruined a perfectly good thing.  

Perminate Link for RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace   RIP, Half.com - eBay Closes Media Marketplace

This user has validated their user name. by: IDKwhoIare

Tue Sep 5 12:53:40 2017

Chicago48 - "If eBay had half a mind..."  It would be lonesome



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