eBay have announced today that they are to restore some paid advertising on Google. But eBay spokesman Hani Durzy said “I will tell you it will be in a much more limited way than it was before.” Adverts are apparently due to start later today, but as of this writing seem to be missing still.
Declining to give exact figures, Durzy said that adverts would be at a much reduced level compared to previous campaigns, and that the company will switch some advertising to Yahoo! “Overall the takeaway for us was that we weren’t as dependent on AdWords as some out there may have thought.”
The official eBay line has always been that the withdrawl from Google was part of a planned experiment in marketing strategy. In a lunch Q&A session at eBay Live! last week, John Donahoe, President of eBay Marketplaces, said, “There’s a lot more being made of this than is really the situation. We’re constantly testing, this is just simply something we’re doing as part of our regular work.”
The timing of the moves though, advertising withdrawn just after Google’s “Let Freedom Ring” party threatened to bring dissent to Live!, and restored only ten days later – hardly long enough for any decent trial – has to suggest that this is more about machismo than marketing.