- Half.com listings in Books, DVD, CD and Video Games will be available on eBay.com only if the Half.com merchant opts into the program.
- Items with a price under $1 on Half.com will not show on eBay.
- There will be no listing charge to be included on eBay, but the items will not be available in search, they will only be available via the product pages. The product pages do not get as much exposure as items in search, so the additional exposure for Half.com listings may be minimal.
- The product pages look a lot like Half.com; where the top 4 offers per product condition (New, Like New, Very Good, etc) are shown on the first page. Half.com results will be mixed in with the eBay listed items but still only 4 will show (per condition) on the first page. We all know that if you aren't on the first page, the chances of a sales are greatly reduced.
- Orders will be processed just like they are currently on Half.com, except payments will be made to your PayPal account and available immediately. It will be interesting to see how eBay manages the sales process when a merchant has a Half.com listing and an eBay listing in the same order.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Half.com Moves to eBay - My 15% Update!
I've been talking about this move for years now, I'm glad I can finally say, "I told you so!" BTW, this change was tested back in the days of eBay Express.
The details are a little bit murky and the deal isn't actually happening until May, but lets take a look at how this change might actually work:
That's the basics on how it actually works, but much more important is how sellers react to the change.
Since there is no cost to list, I can't imagine that current eBay sellers will not begin listing also on Half.com, but since there will be limited visibility of Half.com items on eBay, most will continue to list on eBay, hoping to get additional exposure/sales from their Half.com listings.
On Half.com items are sorted by lowest price and sellers are only rated on 3 DSR's (No shipping cost DSR) but DSR's have no impact on sort order. Half does not have Best Match.
We don't quite know how items will be sorted on eBay after this change, but lowest price seems to make the most sense -- who knows what eBay will decide on.
I'm not sure how much of an impact this will have on eBay sellers, it really depends on how many buyers actually click onto the product pages. If that number is large, the impact may be substantial, if very few look at those pages then it will be minimal.
I know a lot of sellers are worried about the increased listings drowning out their paid eBay listings, but I don't think it will effect DVD's, CD's and Video Games as much as it will Books; especially text books, unless the product pages become the standard way buyers find product.
For the most part Half.com is [mostly] just a text book marketplace and two times a year (Jan and Aug/Sept.) it gets lots of traffic. In between all of that it isn't all that vibrant of a site.
The real interesting aspect of this for me will be how Textbooks begin to sell on eBay. With Textbooks students usually search by ISBN number. If this search method is used on eBay it will show the product pages and that kind of traffic could be substantial.
If this test is deemed a success by eBay, look for this approach to be duplicated in other categories with Shopping.com listings.
I spoke with eBay about this coming change and most of what I have written above is accurate but the section on DSR's needs a little more explanation: Half.com only rates sellers on three DSR's. -- the one they do not rate sellers on is Shipping Cost. Having one less DSR will not advantage or disadvantage a Half.com seller when their items are listed on eBay.
I was told that this change is a test of a new buying experience on eBay and it made sense to use media as the guinea pig (my choice of words).
Certainly there will be sellers who try and game the system but how much of an impact this will have on current eBay sellers depends greatly on how many buyers click over to the product page. Knowing eBay buyers, they hate change just as much as sellers.
Just my 15%