eBay UK Fashion Outlet launched

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eBay have launched the Fashion Outlet microsite which can be reached at fashion.ebay.co.uk or by clicking the Fashion Outlet tab in the eBay header.

This has reduced the number of Outlets from 30 to 13, although those retailers previously billed as “Outlets” can still be found through the Retailer Directory link. 5 of the 13 Fashion retailers currently do not qualify as Top Rated Sellers.

eBay’s aim is to provide a destination site where consumers can purchase from high street brands at deep discounts. The aim is to attract consumers who otherwise wouldn’t necessarily consider shopping on eBay, so traffic should be incremental. For current eBay sellers who sell fashion in Clothes, Shoes and Accessories the big question is will it increase incremental traffic to other eBay categories or will it divert sales from their eBay businesses to the Fashion Outlet?

7 Responses

  1. With my buyer hat on, it will mean that I will have less to trawl through, as I never (and I mean never) click on the tabs in the ebay header. If it’s not in the main site, then I don’t see it or buy it.

  2. Chris fashion.ebay.co.uk and the fashion outlet tab are slightly different. However the whole shaboodle looks poorly thought out to me.

    Seems like eBay is in a deep identity crisis and is determined to kill of a giant customer base and replace it with a small one.

  3. I can see why this makes sense from eBay’s point of view – attracting ‘big’ names to the ‘ebay portfolio’ and making browsing easier for buyers. Dealing with the Outlets must also be a much more straightforward and proportionately less time consuming proposition for eBay’s management.

    In many ways it’s a natural progression for ebay as a business (the ‘eBay community’ days, for better or worse, are long gone). Successful sellers develop their business by increasing the quality and quantity of their stock, refining their operational and management processes and improving the professionalism of their presentation and service. eBay are attempting to do much the same.

    For a while now it’s been increasingly hard to for small to medium independent sellers on eBay unless you sell unique / very niche items, or offer a differentiated level of service. It might soon become unviable for many – and I suspect eBay feel that’s a price worth paying for attracting the ‘big names’.

    The ebay proposition for small sellers who offer unique / niche items is currently only rewarded in visibility terms by the Top Rtaed Seller badge, so those sellers must seriously develop and grow their brands off ebay.

  4. I don’t understand why they have made finding “non-fashion” outlets so difficult with this change. To get to Argos, for example, you go to fashion outlets, then go to retailer directory, which has nothing to do with fashion.

    No novice potential buyer would ever find this strange route.

  5. I find the fashion outlet a hotch potch of mixed marketing ideas.

    I was expecting to see a portal to a whole world of fashion choice for the buyer… but no – its a place with no choice, and the majority of items that are there are low grade mail order or department clearance items. eBay should be aiming for a higher grade of customer, especially if they are promoting it with national advertising and home page profiles.

    The result of this high profile homepage push is that the ‘real’ fashion on ebay is hidden, as buyers think that this section holds ALL the clothing on ebay.

    If you do a search, or go through the guided sections in the ‘fashion outlet’ for formal shirts – there are NONE in there. Similarly with suits, there are none there – and interestingly there are casual coats / jackets (448 items miscategorised)…hardly a good buyer experience. How can you launch such a thing with little inventory? With the advertising they plan, its hardly a soft launch?

    Interestingly the US site point to all the clothing on the site, the UK site points to the ‘outlets’ only.

  6. The problem I find with this micro site is that it’s misleading.

    Using the term “Fashion Outlet” suggests that you will find all fashionable (and may be not so) branded clothing, not that you will only be able to buy said items from Outlet sellers.

    We already have Amazon & Play do we need another?

    The brilliant thing about eBay, originally, was that there was nothing like it; a great way for individuals to buy and sell.

    That was it’s success, the creation of eBay Shops was a good progression, but we will soon end up with a site that is so far removed from it’s origins that it will merely fade into the background.There are others are already doing this, but better!

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