eBay about to launch ads in mobile apps

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eBay Mobile AdseBay are about to start adding off site adverts into their mobile apps. That means that buyers, who according to eBay spend up to 150 minutes per month on the app (three times that of any rivals), will start seeing the adverts from Q4.

“eBay mobile advertising will be a native experience, beautifully integrated into the eBay app” says the blurb, as eBay told it’s advertisers that “We’re giving you the opportunity to connect with eBay users throughout their entire shopping journey”. Unlike other advertising solutions, eBay say that they can better target ads because users have single, universal login across all platforms and devices and it doesn’t rely on cookies.

eBay Universal Log inAddressing whether eBay users will be drawn into off eBay purchases, eBay say that their relationship with users happily survives seeing the odd advert and if they respond to advertising don’t think it’ll stop them coming back to eBay in the future. They’re probably right there, buyers will still start their next search on eBay, but if they just saw an advert and bought their kids new bikes for Christmas off eBay, it also means they won’t be buying the same bikes on eBay from an eBay seller.

We’re all pretty used to seeing adverts on eBay nowadays, both on listings and on search pages etc. I never click on any of them, at least if I do it’s an accident. What do you think – do “on eBay” adverts for “off eBay” products harm your sales or do they enhance the buying experience for products and services which simply aren’t offered on eBay?

Of course you may be on the other side of the fence… do you use eBay advertising and do you want to advertise your products and service on eBay mobile apps.

My worry is that while I’m in town minding my own business happily buying some paper clips on my eBay mobile app, I’ll be bombarded with geolocated “you must be feeling hungry” adverts for the local fast food outlet. Think it won’t happen? Remember the horrible home page toolbar banners for burger king?

8 Responses

  1. To be fair I guess its irrelevant what we think. Its a revenue stream for eBay, and if they didn’t have that income then fees would be higher.

  2. It feels like a mistake to me. Mobile is the area where they have done really well, better even than Amazon. One reason for this is a well designed mobile app which is nice to use. I get frustrated with so many others but I generally find ebays to be excellent.
    Adverts can’t help but be invasive on mobiles simply because the screen space is so small they are either intrusive or pointless. I worry that a lot of buyers will find this intrusiveness annoying and this will put them off using the app and therefore more likely to shop at other places.

  3. Can they not, as Amazon do, also offer sellers the opportunity to advertise/promote their own products.
    It does seem a little disheartening that Ebay are willing to do this. Obviously they can (and usually do) do what they like with their site. However, if I can’t add a link to a video or website that helps to sell my product why should Ebay be promoting links that do the exact opposite?


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