eBay's Chief Technology Officer yesterday defended the company's use of its own infrastructure, posting on the eBay Tech blog that it has been able to withstand sudden increased demands in 2020 in part due to its cloud hosting decision.
Mazen Rawashdeh wrote, "Thanks to our tech transformation strategy and investments in our private cloud infrastructure, the eBay marketplace has met the sudden and rapid influxes in customer demands with ease and agility throughout the pandemic with an even faster, more modern and more seamless customer experience."
He said eBay was similarly poised to meet the increased demands of the upcoming holiday season.
At a time when many sites use solutions from IBM, Oracle, Amazon, and Google when moving to the cloud, eBay decided to stick with its own infrastructure. That's in contrast to Etsy, which announced in 2017 it would migrate from its own data centers to the Google Cloud Platform.
Etsy announced in February
of this year that it had completed the project - and did it in 2 years. "Our migration to Google Cloud has enabled us to shift more than 15% of our engineering headcount from daily infrastructure management to improving the customer experience," Etsy's Chief Technology Officer Mike Fisher wrote on the Etsy corporate blog. "The combination of increased brain power and significant compute power has dramatically sped up our innovation pipeline."
What's right for one company may not be right for another - and eBay and Etsy are very different (eBay processed $25 billion in GMV in the third quarter, while Etsy processed $2.4 billion in GMS, excluding Reverb). So what else did each have to say about their respective approaches?
eBay says its checkout is able to handle the influx in traffic and transactions while keeping costs relatively flat:
"Our platform is able to handle this sudden rise in traffic and customers needs in large part because of our tech transformation strategy, providing a seamless experience while smoothly adjusting to this rise in numbers and handling over 250 checkouts per second. We have kept our marketplace available for customers throughout the pandemic at a relatively flat cost, even as we welcomed new customers to our platform."
eBay's Rawashdeh said by deploying edge computing technology around the world by distributing services to reside within proximity of customers, it provides a seamless and consistent experience regardless of customers geolocation. "Our edge technology can be deployed very quickly in a nimble and efficient way within a short period of time to allow for surges onto our platform so we can continue to scale our services and provide the best experiences for our global customers."
He also wrote, "Our edge technology provides increased service resiliency, improved latency and delivered consistent customer experiences. With faster and localized services, we can truly show up for our customers - wherever and whenever they need us."
Meanwhile, Etsy said by letting Google do the heavy lifting, it's able to redeploy engineering staff to improve the customer experience. A case study about the migration
published on Google Cloud said Etsy was able to meet its goals of making sure that its platform functions smoothly during peak periods of sales; is cost-efficient; and is environmentally sustainable.
Taking a step back, what *sellers* care about is how each platform performs. Are they able to use the site efficiently, and are buyers able to easily find and purchase their items?
For eBay sellers, a major concern this year is how well the company's technology is holding up to Managed Payments as it moves more sellers into the program. That's an area its Chief Technology Officer didn't mention in Tuesday's blog post
but would be interesting to hear more about.