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Google threat to eBay

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#1 Ruud


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Posted 01 October 2004 - 10:57 AM

Google comparison shopping is a growing threat to eBay which sees sellers leave for the great wide open of the Web.

Just as worrying for eBay is that more and more of its business sellers appear to be recognising the greater potential of Google to project them into more lucrative markets across the entire Web –at a much cheaper rate than eBay. Significant defections have already taken place. For example, the online print store Art.com used to list 8,000 posters a week on eBay. It has now switched to selling on Amazon and advertising with Google on the grounds of significantly increased sales. The same is true of Kelley’s Coins in Atlanta which defected from eBay to Google on the grounds of time and cost and has seen its sales increase 50% to $2million.



#2 BillSlawski


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Posted 01 October 2004 - 08:41 PM

More and more businesses seem to be increasingly asking themselves : “ Do we still need eBay ?”

My view of eBay has been that its convenience, and its ease of use has been what has attracted so many to sell on eBay. Over the past few years, I've seen as a way for businesses to incubate.

It makes sense that at some point in time, merchants would leave eBay. At least those who learn more about online business, and want to cut the cord, and grow on their own.

So why have Whitman & Co. been so keen to censor Google ads? The real reason appears to be that Google matches ads with listings generated by relevant keywords.

Is eBay threatened by Google, and comparisons in search results? Or do they feel that they need to protect their trademark? I'm not so sure that this article makes its case.

After all, not only is eBay one of Google’s biggest advertising customers, it actually makes its money on Google by using trade-marked names –its own included- to advertise its listings.

I don't think I understand why a company shouldn't use its own trademark to advertise its site. But a trademark owner needs to police its use by others.

I do find it pretty odd that this article doesn't mention Froogle.

#3 Ruud


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Posted 03 October 2004 - 09:57 PM

The article doesn't state its case clearly enough - if they had, not mentioning Froogle would have been more logical.

With numerous parts of eBay indexed by Google an increasing number of eBay customers are delivered through Google searches. That's one side of the story - and it's a story that when read by web-aware ebay sellers simply means "I can sell on my own as long as Google can deliver me the customers".

That's not all, it gets worse. The people doing these searches are at the same time presented with ads targetted at their specific search. A double whammy. eBay feels this doesn't help their revenue.

Of course the last affects any ecommerce site - but more so one which asks money for its services. Fact is that selling elsewhere, on Amazon for instance, and advertising on Google is and more profitable and more cost-effective.


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