Michele Maginty has managed Littlewoods Clearance eBay business for many years and today looks back at how Littlewood’s eBay business has grown over the years from starting to trade before eBay introduced Outlets and Enterprise customers.
Whist most large retailers are assisted in launching on eBay today, Littlewoods did it the hard way setting up their account with little in the way of a partnership until eBay started up their Outlet program in 2008 and began assisting large retailers to launch on the site. Littlewoods instantly became one of the first eBay Outlets.
Littlewoods is a big retailer, why eBay?
What originally attracted Littlewoods Clearance to eBay was the sheer volume of potential customers. Being a clearance business with such a vast array of stock, this was certainly appealing to us. We originally registered with eBay back in 2006 but the partnership with eBay didn’t spark up until early 2008.
What are the biggest challenges with incorporating eBay into your multi-channel strategy?
Our biggest challenge with selling on eBay at the beginning, and actually also to date, is the amount of item specifics that are required to ensure our listings appear in search results. This is by far the most time consuming task associated with selling on eBay. We’ve overcome much of the issues surrounding this by streamlining our internal processes and ensuring we keep a close check on our listings, search results and visit numbers.
How important is eBay to Littlewoods?
Our eBay side of the business is a very important part of Littlewoods Clearance’s online business, making up a good percentage of our online sales overall. Our relationship with eBay has grown over the years and we’ve formed a strong bond thanks to co-operation from both sides. We’ve got a great working relationship with both our account manager and our business development manager.
How do you manage your eBay business?
We have used ChannelAdvisor to enable us to list & manage our thousands of listings on eBay from the beginning. The ChannelAdvisor platform enables to list efficiently and let us get on with the business of selling our products without having to worry about listings or orders coming in.
The only side of things we’ve changed over the years is to streamline our back-end processes with regards to APIs for orders coming in and throughout the warehousing process.
What would you like to change about eBay
If we could change one thing about eBay, we’d have to say the checkout process. We’d love to be able to offer our customers coupons / vouchers for their purchase and the ability to cross-sell during the checkout process.