Saturday, June 23, 2007

eBay Stores/Shops Should Be A Billion Dollar A Year Business!

I originally posted this on My Blog Utopia but felt that it would also be perfect for The Seller Evangelist . IMO, eBay has the answer to many of their marketplace problems if they would just change their perspective on Stores/Shops. Here is the post:

While eBay management struggles with what to do with eBay Stores/Shops, I often wonder what would have happened if they had just focused on them rather than shoving them to the side. Obviously CORE is the main revenue driver on eBay but Store/Shops have become the heart and soul of sellers on eBay.

I found this comment on the eBay Stores Board and it sums up my feelings very well and lends credence to the position I take in this post.

From moondancefarm

"eBay stores are not in competition with eBay auctions. They cater to a totally different kind of customer. They cater to buyers that want a product that is not in high demand, but they want it now. The management of eBay either fails to see this or does not want to admit it. And in doing so they are missing a huge opportunity."

I realize that in direct comparison, Stores/Shops are less profitable to the company than CORE but if you break Stores out and look at them like you would a StubHub or the revenue Stores/Shops generate is substantial and is still a growth business.

If eBay management can look at Stores/Shops as independent from CORE and consider it a stand alone business, I'm sure their perspective will change. Imagine growing the business to over 1 million Store/Shop owners worldwide and do the numbers. That is a business any company would want and there are obvious ways to achieve this without damaging CORE.

Stores were a focus of the company until putting them in search caused problems with CORE. It was evident that buyers did want the product that Store/Shop sellers were selling because many saw huge increases in sales while in SIS.

For many sellers, Stores/Shops are the window to a better life. A huge number of sellers are just looking to make some extra cash or a second income and eBay Stores/Shops were the ticket to their dreams. The fee increases are not the problem, the lack of exposure is. Sellers would not complain as much or as long if they received proper value for the fees they paid.

In my view eBay needs to spin off their Stores/Shops platform into an independent entity. They wanted to achieve this with Pro Stores but at least to my eyes that has failed. Converting Stores/Shops into an independent business that facilitates multi-channel selling would turn them into a Billion dollar business and separating them from CORE as a platform (Store/Shop sellers would still list in CORE) would keep the erosion from happening in CORE.

I realize that technically separating Stores/Shop from the marketplace platform would be a challenge and would take time but it is an option that needs serious consideration. As an independent business eBay Stores/Shops could reach their potential.

Just my 5 cents

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