Germany’s Saturn rolls out eBay local shopping

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Media Saturn Holding GmbH is Germany’s biggest electrical retail business with a sales volume of €20.79 billion and 370 retail stores. Somewhat similar to DSG (Curry’s / PC World) they are also the largest electrical retail business in Europe.

Their problem was that in each store they had different stock to list on eBay and managing it through a single eBay shop was proving problematic. The solution was provided by WIDshop from Create Your Template, where they have started rolling out an eBay solution in which each local store has their own eBay shop but all the shops are linked.

An example for the , from where with a simple drop down menu you can see local stock for all their other eBay shops with the option to buy and collect or buy and have shipped. In the past there would have been a much greater advantage to have all product in a single eBay shop, but with Best Match and since the end of Shop Inventory Format listings it is less important to have all your inventory in one place. Most buyers will find items in natural search results so making it easy to find more products available for local pick up looks like a worthwhile trade for a larger shop inventory.

Now each Saturn outlet can sell second hand products, display items and returns, independently from the other shops, and can easily turn distressed goods into profit, but with a consistent cross company brand experience. Items sold can be shipped to the customer or can be picked up directly at the local store and an integrated search map for the customer’s nearest Saturn store completes the shopping experience.

One of the big benefits of the localised shopping experience is that buyers now know that if they make a purchase they can collect the item the same day. Local shopping on the web and a blended online/offline experience has been talked about a lot over the last few years and yet most ecommerce is still restricted to the buy it/ship it model. That’s more true on eBay than for many retailers and it will be interesting to see how the German market responds to the new Saturn model.

4 Responses

  1. Great idea!

    If you have never been to a Saturn store you need to before you die! I could not believe the size of them or the amount of product, pallet and pallet loads of PS2 just sitting around!

  2. I like this and in some ways surprised it hasn’t happened before. This would work great in the UK for the likes of Argos/Comet etc. and could help the high street, although I know they have their own sites for getting rid of returned/damaged stocks.

  3. As far as buying/saving on eBay goes:

    If you see an item that you want listed in auction format, send the seller a message asking if they will accept $x to end the auction early and sell the item to you. If that doesn’t work, use a sniping service such as to bid for you. It’ll bid in the last few seconds, helping to save $ and avoid shill bidding.

    If there is a particular item that you want that is relatively rare on eBay or goes fast when one is listed, use to set up a saved eBay search for it. You’d get an e-mail whenever a match is listed. You can use the price, category, exclude word, etc. filters to narrow down the results that you get in the e-mails. Excellent for “Buy It Now”s priced right.

    If the item that you’re looking for is difficult to spell, try a misspelling search site like to find some deals with items that have main keywords misspelled in the title. Other interested buyers may never see them.


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