More third-party advertising coming to eBay

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Sponsored links on eBay UK

If you think there’s too much third-party advertising on eBay now, just wait: things are only going to get worse. New Media Age reports that eBay have launched “an international business division” to sell targetted campaigns across eBay’s collection of international sites. Christian Kunz, head of advertising international at eBay, said that eBay’s “unrivalled product transaction data [would enable] brands to get closer to sales by directly targeting consumers with a high propensity to buy.” The new division will be based in London.

We know that eBay have been running user testing recently and looking at users’ reactions to advertising. One member of staff involved in the testing commented “normal users have a very low threshold to adverts or things that they suspect to be paid-for services”.

Nevertheless in the Q2 earnings call just a couple of weeks ago, JD hinted that more adverts towards the top of eBay pages might be coming:

We continually test that to make sure what placements optimize our advertising but by and large, above-the-fold listings monetize better.

During the eBay Live Town Hall, Stephanie Tilenius admitted that current third-party ads are taking sales off the eBay site. She also commented that the longer-term goal is for sellers to be able to buy advertising themselves on eBay: personally, I thought that’s what I was already doing.

I suspect I don’t need to say this 😉 but leave us a comment. Buyers’ comments are particularly welcome: have you clicked an ad on eBay and gone off-site to buy? Are third-party ads a help in finding what you want, or just a distraction to take you away from eBay?

17 Responses

  1. I don’t buy often, but I was looking for a semi circular dough scraper today. These are easily bought in the States, but for some ridiculous reason are like hen’s teeth here. I found twice I was tempted by off site links below the first page of searches, and had to back track to get back to the search page and go to page 2. And I still forget all the time that there IS a page 2 and sometimes beyond, and the link is BELOW the paid ads. So often I don’t get further than page one anyway. If

    a) the page links were above the paid ads
    b) the page links opened a new tab

    then I would be much more likely / find it much easier to stay on the eBay site.

  2. Well I hate to say it but its doing me some good!! Since the ebay ‘experience’ I have been playing with PPC ad’s and have had alot of business directed my way from ebay site, this is because one of the areas I sold in on ebay had no other seller selling what I have, or had on there. So now when a user searches on ebay it comes up with my add and they click through.

    Personally ad’s are fine but like #1 I don’ think they should appear above the page numbers.

    stu

  3. It must be that eBay’s buyer surveys found that a majority of shoppers “would like even more” 3rd party ads on those great Best Match search result pages.

  4. Perhaps eBay have finally twigged that no bugger can find anything with best match so they are presenting relevant adverts instead while they figure out how to fix best match.

  5. Am not surprised in the least.

    I discovered only recently that you can choose what sites you want your Google ad to appear on from a list of sites that have google ads showing…. looks like ebay will soon become a choice.

    Ebay listing fees should be abolished if more ads are to be shown or at the very least lowered.

  6. As a buyer: what I see promoted on the eBay site I use most often (eBay.it) are financial services (e.g., car insurance policies), utilities, cell phone networks, pay TV operators, etc. All of these services you cannot buy on eBay.it, because the platform is not set up for it – so it’s hard for me to think that sellers lose any sales because these ads compete with their goods.

  7. I’m a seller and a buyer and rarely ever look at those paid ads. I see them appear but never ever click on any of them. So it does not do anything for me.

    “She also commented that the longer-term goal is for sellers to be able to buy advertising themselves on eBay: personally, I thought that’s what I was already doing.”

    I remember a few years back that eBay had their own “Paid Advertisment” , similar to google adwords. It was for people who wanted to get more exposure to their eBay listings, stores, etc. You were only allowed to link any of your ebay sites but within a certain category. So when someone searched for an item within the category you sellected, your ad would appear. Why don’t they do that again as apposed to allowing third party to intervine and take people away from their site?

    I for one used that paid advertising for my store. I was very disappointed when they removed that form of advertising on eBay. I’m sure, now that people are accustom to this form of advertising, people would dish out the extra money to be able to put a link to their eBay store on every page within a category.

  8. eBay exec have lost their minds, and more importantly are content in leading eBay members off site through sponsored ads to sites selling counterfeit top brand hand bags. One of the sites looks startlingly similar to eBay’s new search appearance.

    I have screen shots of 5 occurrences of sponsored ads from 5 different counterfeit sites directly from eBay. It is also amusing that paypal is a payment option as well on I think 4 of them.

    Funny how eBay protects members from sellers, but happily opens the portal for the members to be abused if they can make more money aiding in the deception of those members. unbelievable lack of ethics- they take depraved to new heights.

  9. I’ve had quite a few website sales through sponsored links at the bottom of the page.

    Good you might think, but how many ebay sales have I lost to other people’s sponsored links when mine isn’t showing?

  10. Third party advertising is very dangerous on eBay. I advertise via Adwords and often buyers on eBay will do a search for something like “Leave Feedback”, see my ad, click on it, and then actually try to log in to leave feedback on my site. Then I end up with angry emails about how it’s so complicated. After talking to many of these buyers it has become obvious that they thought they were on the eBay site all along. Now imagine if a phishing site started advertising under those keywords. I’ve resorted to blocking my ads from appearing there but it doesn’t always work. Funny thing is that buyers do the same search on Amazon and I don’t get any problems from them.

  11. @Paola on July 30th, 2008 6:15 pm

    “As a buyer: what I see promoted on the eBay site I use most often (eBay.it) are financial services (e.g., car insurance policies), utilities, cell phone networks, pay TV operators, etc. All of these services you cannot buy on eBay.it, because the platform is not set up for it – so it’s hard for me to think that sellers lose any sales because these ads compete with their goods”

    Search was for Urban Decay – these where the ads in the search returns and yes these can be purchased on eBay

    [URL=https://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii200/eyecatchingbeauty/872332c8.png][IMG]https://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii200/eyecatchingbeauty/th_872332c8.png[/IMG][/URL]

  12. These are directly competing ads with items that can be purchased within eBay- by many sellers

    Paola on July 30th, 2008 6:15 pm

    As a buyer: what I see promoted on the eBay site I use most often (eBay.it) are financial services (e.g., car insurance policies), utilities, cell phone networks, pay TV operators, etc. All of these services you cannot buy on eBay.it, because the platform is not set up for it – so it’s hard for me to think that sellers lose any sales because these ads compete with their goods

    [URL=https://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii200/eyecatchingbeauty/872332c8.png][IMG]https://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii200/eyecatchingbeauty/th_872332c8.png[/IMG][/URL]

  13. I never see third-party ads on eBay.

    I use firefox with the NoScript and AdblockPlus plugins – one (or maybe both) of them prevent the ads from being displayed.

    I wonder how many eBay customers use ad-blocking software that limits the visibility of those ads?

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