Saturday, June 16, 2007

Thoughts from eBay Live

Well, I'm getting ready to head out of Boston but I thought I would wrap up some thoughts about eBay Live! I will have a much more comprehensive post on Monday so tune back in then.

First off, an update on the Google/eBay brouhaha: As of this morning it appears that eBay still has not turned on their Google ads, which to me is a surprise since Google cancelled the party. IMO eBay over reacted to the party in the first place and this is evidence of that. In speaking to sellers here at Live! it is clear that the lack of Google ads is causing a drop in sales. One seller said that on the first day the ads were gone his sales dropped 80% and another seller I spoke with dropped 40%. Sellers can maybe handle a day or two of lower sales but they aren't sitting on $3 Billion in cash to ride out this childish response by eBay.

It appears now that Google has responded by dropping eBay's ranking in Natural Search in response to the pull out. Hopefully the two sides will get together because ultimately the sellers are going to pay the price for this feud.

It has been good for me to see a lot of friends and catch up, there certainly is a much more subdued feeling here this year as opposed to previous conferences.

I often come across as negative regarding eBay but I don't think of it that way. I am dissapointed that so many lives are being affected by decisions of eBay management and while Meg and Bill said over and over again in the keynote "we heard you" eBay as a company has different priorities than the community at large.

I attended the DVD round table and sat and listened to eBay media sellers discussing issues and was struck by the realization that these same questions have been asked for the last 5 years and still nothing has happened. Well meaning eBay employees hear from sellers, take that info back to San Jose and then it just seems to dissappear. "We here you" has very little meaning any longer. So many people are dependent on what happens with eBay, employees, investors, and sellers all have a vested interest in the future of eBay. "We here you" just doesn't cut it any more.

I'll be back on Monday with some detailed notes on the week so check back then.


Randy T said...


If you haven't already, read the new PESA official statement on the ebay marketplace....I believe it was released while ebay live was already happening. Its very well written and I think it sums things up sellers of all sizes...

Randy T.

Randy Smythe said...

Randy, I was aware of the position piece by PeSA. I took a quick read of it this morning and I agree that the piece is speaking directly about the problems. It is good to see PeSA taking a stand. PeSA may need to take a more activist posture with eBay to make sure they take sellers seriously.

I'll read it again when I get home and see if I can add anything to it.