eBay gets a new baby – StumbleUpon

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Meg’s been spending again, in the region of $75m for StumbleUpon.

For those that haven’t heard StumbleUpon is a discovery/search site. It aims to show you a combination of your own preferences and those of people like you to present websites, videos, photographs, and even information you didn’t even know you might like. That’s a great fit for eBay – if they can tie the technology into the auction platform they can promote listings you might like based on those people who have purchased similar items to you in the past like. For instance if you purchase clothes for a two year old they might present you with toys. Equally the software might establish that people with two year olds also purchase something totally unrelated and offer you a new hammock – you might just like it if others do!

Either way it’ll be interesting to see what eBay do with StumbleUpon, it can’t do any harm having an eBay owned toolbar on millions of browsers around the world!

UPDATE: Bill Cobb has just posted on the .com announcement board… they haven’t a clue how to integrate StumbleUpon with eBay, PayPal and Skype, but when they figure it out they’ll let us know!

6 Responses

  1. It seems like a big pricetag BUT finding stuff on eBay is the biggest stumbling block for buyers: it’s a huge barrier for sellers who want to sell more and it’s something that eBay (rather than sellers) need to sort. Sound investments along these lines show that eBay’s thinking about this problem.

    If these geezers know something about findability/discoverability that can provide improvements for eBay then that’s good news. Let’s hope they stumbleupon (ahem) the answer.

  2. Bill Cobb has just posted on the .com announcement board: they haven’t a clue how to integrate Stumbleupon/gumtree/Paypal/skype/shopping.com/stubhub/the Minnesota Twins /Macys/ The Mail on Sunday / ebay.ie with all the other crap they think they may have bought while drunk, but when they figure it out they’ll let us know!

    Am i alone in thinking ebay should stop just randomly buying random stuff like some angsty menopausal New york Divorcee, and concentrate on making the stuff they already own work properly?

  3. Mark, I agree partially. In this case I think Stumbleupon will be a good move if it helps them ween themselves from a dependence on Google. Look for more deals for eBay this year.

    The problems with the marketplace business can be placed directly in John Donahoe’s lap. He comes from a consulancy background and doesn’t have a clue about what makes eBay work.

    Jeff Jordan was better suited for that position. Just my 5 Pence!

  4. *groan* .. yet another site to register/login/etc .. A big ( biggest?) component in this is not wanting to miss out on the next google/you tube etc.. $75Million looks cheap compared to the price those two sold/raised. How long does it take eBay to generate $75million? – a month or two? this is loose change.

    I’d rather see that money and more being developed into a decent integrated eBay search engine. The cat structure is bloated and inconsistent across various sites. Searching on ebay is messy – no I dont have the answers, but pay me $75million and I’ll have a go.

  5. oops.. “The company expects full year profits to reach up to 7.45bn.” (2007) .. make that a couple of days or so then to raise $75million. CHING! CHING!

  6. Lets hope they use Stumbleupon to improve trust, not erode it.

    There are opportunities to use SU’s features to favourite sellers and so on, but to what end?

    As a big seller with high quality feedback scores, I would like to have users shopping ebay and using something like an integrate stumbleupon tool to announce me as a buyer to their network of friends.

    Biggles : eBay AU is changing their backend to make the site more search focused, and remove some of this clunky category structure…




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