Every industry needs competition, and for eCommerce two of the biggest names have been Amazon and eBay.
However, fairly recently eBay has been living under the shadow of Amazon. Amazon has grown big so as to almost dominate much of eCommerce, especially here in the west.
Amazon needs eBay though. An industry needs healthy competition in order to thrive, or else it will become a monopoly and stagnate.
Which leaves the question How then can eBay begin to compete with Amazon and provide it with real competition?
eBay used to be the larger of the two marketplaces however over the past 5 years Amazon has surpassed the past master and now it’s time to look at what eBay can do in order to start competing again.
In a video I posted on YouTube last week I discuss how eBay can make improvements in order to become a worthy competitor for Amazon.
eBay has begun to copy aspects of Amazon, which might not be good for it in the long run. eBay has its own strengths, which it needs to capitalize on in order to find its place again and provide more challenge for Amazon.
With that said here are the three ways I believe eBay should be competing with Amazon.
#1 Putting Sellers First
One of the ways that eBay can compete with Amazon is to continue to focus and support the sellers there.
Communication is the key to any successful business, and eBay has over the years been active in supporting as well as communicating with the sellers and upcoming changes to the platforms.
This is something that eBay has always done much better than eBay, communicating upcoming changes giving sellers 6 to 12 months in order to adapt.
A great example of this is the eBay seller updates like this one here.
Amazon has never been one for giving its sellers this same luxury.
Devin Wenig has come out numerous times publicly stating that eBay is nothing without the sellers, and I think if this culture can filter down to the rest of eBay employees (Especially support staff) then this can be a major difference between eBay and Amazon.
#2 eBay Is Not Your Competition
The second point is connected to the first, and that is eBay does not compete with its sellers.
It has encouraged sellers even, and this is the strength that eBay has. Competition might be good for any industry, but when you try to compete with your own customers, that can create mistrust. eBay knows that, and has stayed away from competing with its own customers.
Amazon however is a competitor to many of its sellers and because of this has turned some sellers away from the platform, especially when Amazon owns the whole space on which it is ‘competing’
Amazon can suspend your account as a third party seller without warning, whereas it will never be in eBays interest to do the same to you.
Communicating this is a must for eBay to maintain it’s relationship with its sellers as well as winning over new ones.
#3 Innovate again
The third point that eBay needs to do to compete with Amazon is to innovate once again. Innovation can greatly help in competing with others.
A new way to approach the market can have great impact. eBay has stopped doing this, and so has lagged behind Amazon. It has to find new innovation in order to become more competitive.
AdCommerce was a great example of this, as was the developments with Top Rated Seller and their partnership with Argos with Click n Collect in the UK.
However compare this with Amazon and it looks like nothing. Amazon are constantly developing new ideas and eBay needs some fresh ideas and concepts in order to keep sellers engaged.
You can see the video I made on this subject here:
Let us know what you think, what does eBay need to do in order to compete with Amazon once again, and start levelling the playing field?