April 08, 2014

March 2014 ChannelAdvisor Same Store Sales (SSS) for eBay, Amazon, Search and CSE

We've moved our blog! EbayStrategies.blogs.com will eventually be shut down, however the posts will live on. To access this blog post at its new location, click here.

Note: This is a monthly feature published by ChannelAdvisor highlighting the Same Store Sales (SSS) across our wide range of thousands of retailers and billions in GMV.  Details on the SSS including background, methodology, disclaimers and the 2014 schedule can be found in this post.  

Today we are releasing March 2014 SSS data for eBay, Amazon,Google Search and Google Shopping/PLA.  March saw a 'thawing out' with most e-commerce channels we follow posting increased same-store-sales growth in March compared with February.  With e-commerce forecasted to grow 15% (Forrester) in 2014, that is the baseline we use when comparing these results against e-commerce growth.

March 2014 SSS Results 

  • Amazon - Amazon's March SSS came in at 26.2% compared to February’s 23.0%, a strong m/m increase we believe due to the improvement in weather conditions.  Note that Amazon had a big PR win with the launch of Amazon Fire TV on April 2.  These launches usually 'spill over' into increased e-commerce sales, so we will watch for that in our April data.
  • eBay -  eBay's March came in at 17.8% up from January’s 15.0%. We have eBay details further down in the report that show what is going on with this marketplace.
  • CSE - Comparison Shopping Engines came in at 3.1% down from February's 6.1% (driven by softness in the non PLA engines)
  • Search - Search came in at 11.2% , an increase from February's 4.3% y/y growth.  Later in the report we have more search details.

Reviewing these high-level results, Marketplaces (eBay and Amazon) plus search definitely grew faster in March than earlier in the quarter.  eBay's growth rate is the highest since August 2013.

 

SSS Chart 

The following chart details the SSS data for March 2013 through March 2014: (click to enlarge)

Sss_march_14_macro

  

This chart clearly illustrates the up-tick in March data with the exception of CSE.

eBay Details

eBay's SSS for March was 17.8%.  To get a feel for what is driving the marketplace's performance, here are the interior data points for the month:

  • eBay auctions - Down 10% y/y. 
  • eBay fixed-price - Up 21.5% y/y - this was a nice showing for eBay and was the primary driver of the increase from February.  Note this is the strongest FP growth we have seen since March of 2013 (24.2%).   While the increases look pretty evenly spread across categories, the CE/Photo and sporting goods categories performed very well in March.
  • eBay Motors  (parts and accessories) - P+A  was down slightly in March coming in at  19.7% up from February's 22.3%.  While this was a slight decrease, it is still relatively strong when you look at e-commerce growth.

 Here are the TTM (trailing twelve month) trends on these eBay internals.  (click to enlarge)

  Sss_march_14_ebay_details

Supplemental data for Search

Here are the March Search internals: (click to enlarge)

Sss_march_14_search
 

Note: these are all y/y SSS comparisons (March 2014 vs. March 2013).

Search SSS increased 11.2% for March and you can see it was improvements to the conversion rate and average order value (AOV) that drove the result.

First, clicks were down flat y/y due to consumers moving to PLA/Google Shopping.  Conversion rates ticked up 2% to 3.04% and CPCs declined to $.47 a 7% y/y decline.  AOV increased 5% to $115.40.  

 

Supplemental data for Google Shopping

In September 2012, we introduced a new set of data around Google Shopping.  Here is the March Google Shopping/Product Listing Ad supplemental data:

Sss_march_14_goog_shopping

 

Overall, Google Shopping came in at 34.5% y/y increase on a SSS.   While 34.5% is nothing to sneeze at, it is a clear slowdown from February's 48% y/y growth and the > 80% growth we consistently saw in Holiday 2013.  Looking at the data, what we are seeing is an normal aging of the program (see last month's post for details).

In the March PLA data you can see that AOV decreased 10.2% while conversion rate rose by 8.7% to 2.44%.

Conclusions 

We hope you are able to use the data provided here to benchmark how your e-commerce channels performed to your peers.  

Our next SSS post will be in May when we look at the April 2014 data to see how the first quarter ends for the top e-commerce channels.

This blog post was written by Scot Wingo, CEO, ChannelAdvisor.

April 04, 2014

Webinar on 4/7: The eBay Seller Release 14.1 and How It Can Affect Your Sales

Just when you think your marketplaces strategies are in place, one of the marketplaces comes out with a new release and completely changes the rules on you — as eBay did last month with its latest Seller Release. And it leaves you spinning...

EBayDefect Rate? What’s that? Will I still be considered a Top-Rated Seller? What will I have to do differently? A new return policy? Huh?

Take a deep breath. We’ve got you covered. In fact, these changes are going to be a good thing.

Join ChannelAdvisor CEO Scot Wingo and Product Manager Jenny Hock on Monday, April 7 at 1 p.m. EDT for a special webinar as they take an in-depth look at the changes in eBay’s seller standards, what those changes mean for you and how you can actually leverage them to your advantage. The webinar will cover:

  • Channeladvisor-dashboard-monitorThe introduction of eBay’s Defect Rate (eDR)

  • Top-Rated Seller (TRS) changes based on the eDR

  • Return policy changes for TRS sellers

The new eBay seller standards don’t apply until May, so you’ve got plenty of time to digest them and take action.

See you there!

Introducing the eBay Defect Rate: eBay Seller Release 14.1 and How It Can Affect Your Sales, with ChannelAdvisor CEO Scot Wingo and Product Manager Jenny Hock.

Monday, April 7, 2014

1 p.m. EDT / 10 a.m. PDT

P.S. For more information in the meantime, check out Scot and Jenny’s very helpful two-part blog series regarding eBay’s Seller Release.

 

Expert Insights: Jenny Hock, eBay Product Manager – Part 1

We've moved our blog! EbayStrategies.blogs.com will eventually be shut down, however the posts will live on. To access this blog post at its new location, click here.

With a marketplace the size of eBay, whether you’re a buyer or a seller, it can often seem like a lot to get your head around. Sometimes you need an expert to help sort it all out. Our new monthly feature, Expert Insights, will provide a detailed peek into the e-commerce world, sharing expertise about some of online shopping’s biggest players through an industry expert.

Jenny Hock, eBay product manager at ChannelAdvisor, is one of those industry specialists. Jenny recently sat down with us to talk about how eBay has performed over the past year, delve into what’s to come in 2014 and describe the role ChannelAdvisor has with this leading global marketplace.

Jenny Hock

Q: Hi, Jenny. Could you tell us about your position with ChannelAdvisor and your working relationship with eBay?
A: I’m the product manager for eBay, responsible for ChannelAdvisor’s global eBay solutions. This includes working closely with our engineering team and eBay’s product teams to design a roadmap that will advance our eBay offering and help our sellers maximise their potential on eBay.

We’re also constantly getting feedback from customers as well as our internal teams that help us understand the challenges that eBay sellers are facing. Then we build solutions to help overcome those challenges and help our sellers make better decisions about selling on eBay. I’ve been with ChannelAdvisor for four years come May.

Q: What new trends and updates has eBay established this past year?
A: One of the interesting trends from eBay is its new fulfilment options. These include the Argos Click & Collect model and in-store collection for sellers who have brick-and-mortar locations. Argos Click & Collect allows a buyer to purchase a product from eBay but collect the item from an Argos location of their choice. This could be a location that’s most convenient to them, and they can pick it up for free, typically the next day. This model is currently only available in the UK, where products can be collected from around a growing number Argos stores, ready for collection within two working days.

Q: How have these fulfilment updates affected eBay buyers and sellers?
A: The Argos Click & Collect model gives buyers additional flexibility. They don’t have to be at home for the delivery or worry about having it delivered to their workplace. For sellers, especially those without any brick-and-mortar presence, it gives them access to a huge selection of collection points where buyers can come and pick up their order – which allows them to offer an added element of convenience for their buyers.

Q: What role did ChannelAdvisor play with Click & Collect?
A: We were involved from the early days of Argos Click & Collect as well as brick-and-mortar in-store collection and have offered it to our clients from the beginning. ChannelAdvisor has a very close relationship with eBay and has been innovating alongside them for over 10 years. We’re quick to alert our clients about updates and to get them up and running with new features that eBay releases. Our strong relationship and frequent communication with eBay helps during that process.

Q: How has eBay managed to keep itself ahead of the competition and retain its position as a leading marketplace this past year?
A: eBay did a huge overhaul of its homepage recently and is really trying to focus on discoverability as opposed to a standard search experience (whereby if you need, say, lightbulbs, then you search for them and you buy them). What eBay is trying to do with the Pinterest-style homepage, is to connect shoppers with products that perhaps they didn’t know they wanted — in other words, introduce them to new products that they love.

There’s always going to be the products you need, search for and buy. But eBay wants to start surfacing products that people will love, share and purchase.

****

This concludes Part 1 of our 2-part Expert Insights instalment with Jenny Hock. Part 2 will be up soon where we will discuss the challenges eBay has faced in the past year, what new updates or trends we can expect to see from the marketplace and the role ChannelAdvisor will be looking to play.  

Advancing eBay Results ScreenshotFor more information on eBay and how you can improve your position as a seller on the marketplace, take a look at our recent eBook ‘Advancing Your eBay Results’.

March 28, 2014

Updates from eBay's Seller Release 14.1: Part II

We've moved our blog! EbayStrategies.blogs.com will eventually be shut down, however the posts will live on. To access this blog post at its new location, click here.

In Part I of this two-part blog series, Scot Wingo provided an in-depth analysis of the upcoming eBay seller standards changes announced in eBay’s latest Seller Release, known as SR14.1. As the dust settles from eBay’s announcement, let’s take a look at what you can do now to take advantage of the benefits this change has to offer (and avoid any negative consequences along the way).  

But first, here’s a quick recap of Part I:

To stay competitive with the likes of Amazon and other major online retailers, eBay is making changes to provide a premium buyer experience. To this end, the company has created a new seller ranking system and introduced related changes to raise the bar for its sellers.  

The headlines of SR14.1:

  • The introduction of eBay’s Defect Rate (what we call "eDR"): One measure to rule them all.
  • Top-Rated Seller changes: TRS is being changed to now be based on the eDR.
  • Return policy changes: To qualify for the Top Rated Seller Plus seal and the 20% final value fee discount between November 1 and December 31, TRS sellers must offer extended holiday returns, with returns accepted until January 31.
  • Returns policy: There will be improved messaging about hassle-free returns to consumers.
  • Category changes: Minor category changes will be coming April 7, 2014.

The new eDR includes:

  • Item As Described DSR: If you receive a 1,2 or 3, that transaction will hit your eDR.
  • Ship Time DSR: If you receive a 1, that transaction will hit your eDR.
  • Feedback: If you’re left negative or neutral feedback, that transaction will hit your eDR.
  • Returns: If an item is returned and the reason is ‘not as described’ (SNAD in eBay-speak, meaning significantly not as described), that transaction hits your eDR.
  • eBay Money Back Guarantee/PayPal purchase protection cases opened for INR (item not received) or SNAD.
  • Seller-cancelled transactions: If, for example, you say you have ten of something, sell them and then cancel five unique transactions, that’s five eDR “hits.”


As Scot mentioned in Part I, we believe the introduction of eDR and the ties to TRS are the most impactful part of this release. We’ll focus on these two areas today.  

4 Ways to Protect Against a High eDR: 

6a00d83451d7ed69e201a73d8bace5970d-320wiThe elements of eDR boil down to four main areas, in descending levels of importance (but they’re really all important): describing your items accurately, providing a positive buyer experience, managing oversells and shipping quickly.  

1. Describe Your Items Accurately

EBay has been focusing on listing quality for some time now, with changes to image requirements and item specifics as prime examples. Item Not As Described is the DSR area that can really bite you, so it’s imperative to make sure your items are represented as accurately as possible. We see this especially affecting sellers of refurbished items. Refurb sellers should review their descriptions and explicitly call out any possible irregularities with the item. Multiple, high-quality images are also helpful here.  

Other Areas Where Item Not As Described Can Count As a Defect:

  • Cases: Be vigilant of and responsive to cases escalated to eBay for Item Not Received or Item Not As Described, but remember that eBay considers the act of opening a case at all to be indicative of a poor buyer experience...so be sure to provide excellent service to avoid this at all costs.  

  • Returns: Be very clear in your return policies so buyers are aware of the process and don’t initiate returns for reasons that point to the item not being as described. As eBay has stated, “If you disagree with the reason selected by a buyer for returning the item, you can report a return issue, add pictures of the item and we’ll prompt the buyer to escalate the return to eBay for review. If the case is resolved in your favour, it won’t be counted against your seller performance and you won’t pay return postage costs.” 

➢Action: Check your Item as Described DSR counts (1s, 2s and 3s) as a percentage of total transactions. The DSR Count is available in My eBay to perform this calculation. Anything over 5% (or 2% for TRS) should be a red flag.  

2. Provide a Positive Buyer Experience

While feedback can be subjective, the best way to mitigate neutral or negative feedback is to be fanatical about providing excellent customer service. ChannelAdvisor surfaces the most recent neutral and negative feedback in the eBay dashboard and/or in the Sales view, and it’s of course available in your eBay seller account.  

➢Action: Check Negative/Neutral feedback counts as a percentage of total sales and search for trends    to address. Feedback can be removed if it violates eBay’s feedback policy, so it’s important to understand this policy, as well as address the legitimate issues mentioned in buyers’ feedback.  

3. Manage Oversells

If you’re using a solution such as ChannelAdvisor, then you’ve already taken some action to manage oversell situations. However, it’s of utmost importance that you manage your inventory quantity tightly. If your quantity is adjusting outside of ChannelAdvisor, then make sure you’re sending frequent updates to keep your quantities in sync.  We’ve taken measures to make sure your listings are pulled down with extreme urgency when in an oversell situation.  

➢Action: Calculate total seller-cancelled transactions as a percentage of total sales. Evaluate how many transactions have been cancelled due to oversells (one way could be to look at refunds for which you have not restocked the item). If you have high-velocity items, consider using a buffer. We It’s super important to stay on top of this now, so please take a look at what’s causing your oversells and address it quickly.  

4. Ship Quickly

Fast is quickly becoming almost — if not more — important than free when it comes to shipping. Buyers’ expectations have risen significantly as a result of fulfillment programs like Amazon Prime, and gone are the days of 10-day delivery times (in most cases). In fact, the median lead-time-to-ship across all ChannelAdvisor eBay sellers is 1 day. Over 80% of the listings powered by ChannelAdvisor offer 2 days or fewer handling time, and over 60% of listings ship within 1 day.  Remember that there’s an option to offer 0 day handling time on eBay.

Action: Check low Ship Time DSR counts (1s) as a percentage of total sales. Review your stated lead time vs. actual lead time: Are you shipping within your stated lead time? Is your lead time low enough (one day or less)?  

If not, perhaps it’s worth considering making some adjustments to your fulfillment operations to optimize lead time and absorb that in your item price (if you can still be competitive) or charge a nominal shipping fee. If you’re at risk of losing TRS due to lead time, then the visibility gains from TRS may counteract any negative impacts of a slightly higher total product cost.  

Don’t Forget to Do These 3 Things to Retain Your Top-Rated Seller Status:

  1. Keep your eDR at 2% or lower (see above)

  2. Be prepared for extended holiday returns. This means that returns should be accepted for all transactions that take place in November and December, and will be required for listings to receive the Top Rated Plus seal (Premium Service badge in the UK).  

  3. Provide a valid tracking number — that’s a tracking number with at least one carrier scan recorded and validated by eBay — within your stated handling time on 90% of all transactions.

Remember that these standards will apply to transactions beginning in May, so you should take action quickly to address any areas of deficiency. Also, if you’re in decent standing, it’s still a good idea to strive to improve. Even if your eDR is less than 2%, your competition’s may be better, and they’ll be rewarded for that in search results.

Make sure you’re the one reaping the rewards of high standards!

Blog post by Jenny Hock, ChannelAdvisor product manager. 


Want to learn more about what the eBay Seller Release will mean for you? Register now to attend our webinar, Introducing the eBay Defect Rate: eBay Seller Release 14.1 and How It Can Affect Your Sales, with Jenny Hock and ChannelAdvisor CEO Scot Wingo on Monday, April 7, 2014 at 1 p.m. EDT.

March 13, 2014

February 2014 ChannelAdvisor Same Store Sales (SSS) for eBay, Amazon, Search and CSE

We've moved our blog! EbayStrategies.blogs.com will eventually be shut down, however the posts will live on. To access this blog post at its new location, click here.

Note: This is a monthly feature published by ChannelAdvisor highlighting the Same Store Sales (SSS) across our wide range of thousands of retailers and billions in GMV.  Details on the SSS including background, methodology, disclaimers and the 2014 schedule can be found in this post.  

Apologies for the delay in getting this month's SSS out, we were backlogged with Catalyst US matched with the big eBay SR14.1 announcement.

Today we are releasing February 2014 SSS data for eBay, Amazon,Google Search and Google Shopping/PLA.  Overall the marketplaces we track here (eBay and Amazon) had nice bumps in February as the unusually bad winter weather snow storms cleared around most of the US and deliveries were back to standard delivery times.  With e-commerce forecasted to grow 15% (Forrester) in 2014, that is the baseline we use when comparing these results against e-commerce growth.

February 2014 SSS Results 

  • Amazon - Amazon's February came in at 23.0% compared to January’s 14.0%, a substantial m/m increase we believe due to the improvement in weather conditions 
  • eBay -  eBay's February came in at 15.0% up from January’s 12.7%. We have eBay details further down in the report that show what is going on with this marketplace.
  • CSE - Comparison Shopping Engines came in at 6.1% down from January's 12.0% (driven by softness in the non PLA engines)
  • Search - Search came in at 4.3% , an decrease from January's 10.3% y/y growth.  Later in the report we have more search details.

Reviewing these high-level results, eBay and Amazon definitely recovered well in February.  eBay's growth rate is the highest since September '13.

 

SSS Chart 

The following chart details the SSS data for February 2013 through February 2014: (click to enlarge)

02_14_sss_overall
 

This chart clearly illustrates the up-tick in marketplaces in contrast with the softness in the CPC search/CSE channels.

eBay Details

eBay's SSS for February was 15%.  To get a feel for what is driving the marketplace's performance, here are the interior data points for the month:

  • eBay auctions - Down 8.5% y/y. 
  • eBay fixed-price - Up 15.5% y/y - this was a nice showing for eBay and was the primary driver of the increase from January.  
  • eBay Motors  (parts and accessories) - P+A accelerated nicely in February coming in at  22.3% up from January's 17.6%.  Within P+A we saw broad-based increases, but tires were particularly popular in February.  Note this is the fastest P+A growth rate since July of 2013, so a strong showing and a great way for the category to start 2014.

 Here are the TTM (trailing twelve month) trends on these eBay internals.  (click to enlarge)

  02_14_sss_ebay_details

Supplemental data for Search

Here are the February Search internals: (click to enlarge)

  02_14_search_details

Note: these are all y/y comparisons (Feb 2014 vs. Feb 2013).

Search SSS increased 4.3% for February and you can see there was a mix of internals that drove that result.

First, clicks were down 9% due to consumers moving to PLA/Google Shopping.  Conversion rates ticked up 4% to 3.08% and CPCs declined to $.49 - a 7% y/y decline.  AOV increased 10% to $121.17.  We've mentioned it previously, but again this data suggests that the Google Search Engine Results Pages that includes aggressive PLA/Google shopping coverage % and placement has bifurcated the Google shopper:

  • Lower AOV items - The buyer hits the PLAs, buys and is done.  They don't need or utilize the rest of the adwords.
  • Higher AOV items - The buyer spends more time on these purchases, so while they look at the PLAs, they take the extra time to explore the adwords content on the page.

You can see this behavior pretty clearly in the conversion rates and AOVs of each program.

Supplemental data for Google Shopping

In September 2012, we introduced a new set of data around Google Shopping.  Here is the February Google Shopping/Product Listing Ad supplemental data:

  02_14_gs_details

Overall, Google Shopping came in at 48.0% y/y increase on a SSS.   While 48.0% is nothing to sneeze at, it is a clear slowdown from January's 62.8% y/y growth and the > 80% growth we consistently saw in Holiday 2013.  Looking at the data, what we are seeing is an normal aging of the program.  A digital marketing program like PLA has several key components:

  • Geographical reach - which countries is this program available in?
  • Merchant adoption (is a merchant in or out?)
  • SKU adoption (how many sku's does a merchant bid on?)
  • Search coverage - For X commercial product searches the unit shows up Y times - Y/X = search coverage.  e.g. 10 searches, 8 shows - 80% coverage.
  • UX of the 'ad unit' - Google constantly tweaks the layout, behavior and placement of PLA until the multivariant testing settles on a handful of formats that have been data-driven to be optimal.

With those attributes of the PLA lifcycle in mind, here is a quick summary of the 'Lifecycle of PLA/GS' goes as follows:

  • May 2012 - Google announces GPS is going away to be replaced by GS - US only.
  • July 2012 - GPS done, GS/PLA ramps in US with minimal UX, merchants and not many skus
  • Holiday 2012 - UX in place, lots of testing going on, low coverage, some more merchants, more SKUs.
  • Feb 2013 - GS/PLA comes to EU launched (announced in Nov 12)
  • June 2013 - GS/PLA in EU is launched
  • Holiday 2013 - Most markets are mature with strong merchant and sku adoption, search coverage is near 100%, the UX has settled on 'rail right' placement of a 8, 6, 4 box depending on selection, or an above the fold, below adwords row of 4 or row of 8.
  • Feb 2014 - Google introduces what we @ChannelAdvisor called "PLA on top" - moving the ad unit to the very top of the page for many results.

So now that the program is reaching the 18 month lifecycle, Google has picked much of the low hanging fruit and the biggest knobs left to turn are the merchant experience (to try and get more merchants and SKUs) and the UX.

One area where PLA (and Google overall) has faced headwind is on mobile (specifically smartphone). PLAs rarely show up, which is either because Google hasn't gotten to that rollout yet, or the ad unit does not perform well (most likely scenario given the form factor) in that environment.

Note that our deep dataset on PLA indicates that contrary to some reports Amazon does not participate directly in PLA.  Several Amazon subsidiaries do such as Zappos and Diapers.com.  eBay dabbled in the program since inception, but for Holiday 2013 went very deep and wide in the program, frequently to the extent that all 8 results would be from eBay.

The point of bringing the history and lifcycle of the PLA/GS program is to illustrate that any new program like this is going to have it's 'go-go' phase and then eventually settle down into it's organic growth rate as it matures across several variables.  It will be interesting in 2014 to watch where this trend goes and what Google does to continue to improve the program.

 

Conclusions 

We hope you are able to use the data provided here to benchmark how your e-commerce channels performed to your peers.  

Our next SSS post will be in April when we look at the March 2014 data to see how the first quarter ends for the top e-commerce channels.

This blog post was written by Scot Wingo, CEO, ChannelAdvisor.

March 12, 2014

Live Blogging from 2014 Catalyst Americas: eBay Fireside Chat (Part II)

Welcome to the live blog of ChannelAdvisor's Catalyst 2014. We'll be live blogging the general sessions to make sure Catalyst attendees don't miss anything. Also, make sure you're following hashtag #Catalyst2014 and @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter for all the latest.

Speakers: David Spitz, President of ChannelAdvisor  and Christopher Payne, Senior VP for eBay Marketplaces, North America

Part 1: http://ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2014/03/live-blogging-from-2014-catalyst-ebay-fireside-chat-part-i.html

Payne: We work with merchants of all sizes. Why should you care about this? Because it drives more engagement into the platform. Getting young people active is important as well. In-store pickup is an innovation that they are responding to.

In the U.K., they don’t like having stuff delivered like we do here. Especially London. We’re trying an in-store pickup that is working really well. And I think it’ll work in the U.S. as well.

Shutl is a company we recently bought in the UK that is doing really cool stuff. You can get one hour delivery, two hour, next day, etc. They arrange it. We are beginning to test that in the U.S. and are really excited about it. "Local" could become the next paradigm shift. Just like mobile is right now. Local could be next and we’re at the forefront of it.

Spitz: We’ve heard you’ve invested in anti-drone technology.

(laughter)

Payne: Absolutely. 

Spitz: You heard it here first, folks.

The rapid growth of cross-border trade has been a big theme here at Catalyst. Talk about what it means for eBay.

Payne: We view global as a birthright at eBay. Anyone should be able to sell to anyone. Global has been a part of our vision since day one. There’s a lot of room for improvement in that area though. We want to break down the barriers of trade.

One of the key alliances we have is with PayPal. When PayPal enters a market like Russia, we can come in behind them. The methods a country uses to pay for products are really important. 

40% of our sellers do not export. And of those 60% who do, they don’t go to many countries. We want that to change.

The idea with our work in cross-border trade is to make the process easier on the consumer and the seller. We think we’re uniquely positioned to do that.

Spitz: Russia is a fast growing area for you guys? What do retailers need to do to get there?

Payne: It’s fairly simple. We’ve built a Russian language site. We do support in Russian as well. Customs, duties.. it’s all handled by the program.

Spitz: eBay has done quite a lot of evolve and become a major force in e-commerce. When we all leave here, what is the most important thing to take away from this conference?

Payne: First, to everyone, thank you for your business. It’s an exciting time and we hope you give eBay a chance to earn your business.

Spitz: We’ve been partners with eBay since 2001. It’s our longest-standing partnership, and we’re very grateful for it. Thank you for being here.

Payne: It’s been my pleasure.

 

Reminder for the Catalyst America’s social presence:
• Follow @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter as we’ll be tweeting out updates, reminders about sessions, networking events and more.
• Tag your social posts, Instagram pics with our show hashtag: #Catalyst2014 tabs on discussions, networking opportunities and more on the Catalyst app.
• Keep an eye on the ChannelAdvisor blogs where we’ll be live blogging the keynotes and main sessions at Catalyst.

Live Blogging from 2014 Catalyst Americas: eBay Fireside Chat (Part I)

We've moved our blog! EbayStrategies.blogs.com will eventually be shut down, however the posts will live on. To access this blog post at its new location, click here.

Welcome to the live blog of ChannelAdvisor's Catalyst 2014. We'll be live blogging the general sessions to make sure Catalyst attendees don't miss anything. Also, make sure you're following hashtag #Catalyst2014 and @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter for all the latest.

Speakers: David Spitz, President of ChannelAdvisor  and Christopher Payne, Senior VP for eBay Marketplaces, North America

Spitz: Welcome. I’d like to say a quick thank you to the staff for putting on a great Catalyst.

Now, how many of you sell on eBay? A lot. That why I'd like to welcome Christopher Payne.

Payne: Thanks for having me. I've been at eBay over five years. Love my job and thrilled to be here. Lots of waves of innovation happening right now and thrilled to be talking about them.

Spitz: Can you tell us how eBay thinks of its evolution? 

Payne: Lots of innovation at eBay. First, the work we’ve done driving trust in eBay. Second, simplifying the buying process. Third is innovation. Changes we’ve made to create a better environment for both they buyer and seller.

In 2009, we launched the reward program.

Core to the "new eBay" is the work we’ve done to drive more trust in the marketplace.

eBay looked a lot different five years ago. It was slow, it was purple. Search wasn’t great. We’ve made big strides in those areas. Conversions have increased as a result.

Mobile, local and cross-border trade are the three things that are accelerated things for eBay now. We’ve tried to wrap who we are now around a new logo.

Spitz: EBay feels more social now. What is driving that? Browse versus search?

Payne: One of our core tenets is to connect buyers to their needs. In Q4 of last year, we launched a thing called “Collections.” It allows sellers of all sizes to build collections. Pharrell is one of our celebrities who has collections. Goes all the way down to small jewelry sellers.

This allows us to create connections between people and ideas. It allows you the opportunity to show what makes you different or special as a retailer. We like what we see so far.

Spitz: eBay recently went all in on mobile it seems. We see a number of brands that are net new to eBay seemingly because of mobile. Tell us about your mobile strategy and where it’s heading.

Payne: In the wave of innovations that we’re talking about, mobile is the “big dog.” It’s changing the landscape. In ‘08 or ‘09, we took steps to capitalize on that platform, which helped us become a leader.

Also, eBay just seems to work well on mobile. We made an investment and it just worked. We went from $0 in 2008 to $20 billion last year on mobile.

Mobile is tough though. There’s different kinds of phones, tablets, etc. One thing that we think we bring to the table is that we’re making investments in it. So we think it’s to your advantage to partner with us, because you also benefit from our investments there.

Spitz: You guys are setting the bar high in that regard. New images requirements, etc. How do you balance new requirements with making it easy on the seller?

Payne: We know expectations are rising, and we try to rise with them. But we try to work with the customer to make it as easy as possible.

Better quality (better images, better shipping times, etc.) leads to a better experience and ultimately better sales. 

Spitz: You guys had a pretty significant release this week It’s the biggest one in years. How should people react and adapt to the release.

Payne: This release is an important change for us. It’s designed to meet the rising demands from the customer. Some key points of it:

1. Putting more of the things that matter at the forefront. We want to decrease churn.

2. Holiday returns. There is little seasonality to our business. One key reason is that we don’t offer holiday returns. We think you’ll get disproportionate sales when you do that.

3. Our philosophy is to move to as many objective standards as possible. Stay away from any standards that can be deemed subjective. 

4. Philosophy of transparency. Anonymous behavior affects sales. People don’t like it. We want to give sellers additional line item info. We think this will be super important. Will create trust on the platform.

 

Reminder for the Catalyst America’s social presence:
• Follow @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter as we’ll be tweeting out updates, reminders about sessions, networking events and more.
• Tag your social posts, Instagram pics with our show hashtag: #Catalyst2014 tabs on discussions, networking opportunities and more on the Catalyst app.
• Keep an eye on the ChannelAdvisor blogs where we’ll be live blogging the keynotes and main sessions at Catalyst.

March 11, 2014

Live Blogging from 2014 Catalyst Americas: Scot Wingo Keynote (Part III)

Welcome to the live blog of ChannelAdvisor's Catalyst 2014. We'll be live blogging the general sessions to make sure Catalyst attendees don't miss anything. Also, make sure you're following hashtag #Catalyst2014 and @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter for all the latest.

Part 1: http://ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2014/03/live-blogging-from-2014-catalyst-americas-scot-wingo-keynote-part-i.html

Part 2: http://ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2014/03/live-blogging-from-2014-catalyst-americas-scot-wingo-keynote-part-ii.html

ChannelAdvisor Update

Digital Marketing is two-thirds of what's going on in the e-commerce space. But it's complex: paid search, comparison shopping, social media, different devices, different promotions. And you spend money in each of these places and need to measure your success on each channel. And quickly.

What if you could calm that chaos? 

Today we're announcing our Digital Marketing program.

We've integrated our Paid Search and Comparison Shopping solutions into one single platform. It turns chaos into conversions and allows you to more easily manage all your advertising channels from one place.

What is ChannelAdvisor thinking about data?

You've asked for more channels, and we've delivered. Now, we want to help you understand what's happening across the entire ChannelAdvisor data set, comparing your performance with other retailers.

What if you could better price your products and predict what would sell well? What if you could better match your products with fulfilllment centers?

2013 was a big year for ChannelAdvisor. We went public in May under the symbol ECOM. We expanded our team by 47%, and we have 10 global locations. When we talk about cross-border trade, we can actually deliver. We're there. We have over 2,400 customers. We processed over $4.4 billion in GMV. If we were a retailer, we'd be #5 on the IR list.

But we can't do this without our sponosors, partners -- and most importantly, our customers. Thank you for coming to Catalyst, and enjoy the show!

 

Reminder for the Catalyst America’s social presence:
• Follow @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter as we’ll be tweeting out updates, reminders about sessions, networking events and more.
• Tag your social posts, Instagram pics with our show hashtag: #Catalyst2014 tabs on discussions, networking opportunities and more on the Catalyst app.
• Keep an eye on the ChannelAdvisor blogs where we’ll be live blogging the keynotes and main sessions at Catalyst.

Live Blogging from 2014 Catalyst Americas: Scot Wingo Keynote (Part II)

Welcome to the live blog of ChannelAdvisor's Catalyst 2014. We'll be live blogging the general sessions to make sure Catalyst attendees don't miss anything. Also, make sure you're following hashtag #Catalyst2014 and @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter for all the latest.

Part 1: http://ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2014/03/live-blogging-from-2014-catalyst-americas-scot-wingo-keynote-part-i.html

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Marketplaces account for a third of online sales in the US, but in China marketplaces account for 90% of online sales. Tmall is the largest marketplace in China, with about 50% of the market share. China celebrates Singles Day, with 4X the sales of Cyber Monday. Let's invite Ralph Zhao from Tmall Global to talk about this now. Today, ChannelAdvisor announced that we're supporting Tmall Global.

Ralph Zhao: In China, e-commerce started around 2003, and in these ten years, Chinese consumers have been buying from marketplaces; it's all they can see. They can find anything -- even a military tank! That's what we call selection. If you have good products, you can sell very well.

Marketplaces are a trend that will surely continue. More and more players are entering the market. Mobile is a big trend in China. Mobile purchases in China grew 3X in 2013 from 2012. In the second half of the year, we all focus our attention on Singles Day -- this year, I'd expect 100% growth from last year.

What is Tmall Global and how does it help US retailers sell into China?

Chinese consumers have always been sensitive to price. That's changing. Chinese people are buying high level products. In recent years, many Chinese people are looking to buy US products. And many US retailers want to sell into China, but there are many barriers, including rules and regulations. Not to mention customs and translation.

Clothes, baby products, cosmetics and housewares are popular categories sold by US retailers into China. Now with ChannelAdvisor, retailers can easily launch their products into Tmall, which is a great thing. There are 100 million buyers per day coming to Taobao, and there are more than 400 million active users.

Is China leading or lagging?

China skipped over big box era and moved right to online marketplaces. We think the US will follow in China's steps. Why?

By the end of 2014, there will be as many mobile users as there are people in the world. This is benefiting marketplaces. Maybe only 10-20 apps stick around in your daily usage: You want one or two apps you go to that have your information.

Will marketplaces eat the e-commerce world?

Historically, eBay and Amazon have been the biggest players in this space. Now, there's an explosion of new marketplaces. We believe in the future there will be social networks that will add marketplaces, and sites like Google. 

Recent Cross-Border Trade Trends

The US has the most overseas buyers. Everyone's excited, but it's hard to figure out strategy. ChannelAdvisor has developed the Agile Cross-Border Trade Framework. Agile CBT subverts the tradtional new-market approach by testing, learning and iterating, which reduces the risk of starting all at once. example, during your test cycle you might discover you have demand for your products in Australia -- then you can focus your attention there. 

Take advantage by first selling on marketplaces (global, then local) when expanding overseas. There are some great international selling programs, such as eBay's and Amazon's.

Here to talk about Brazil marketplaces is Sean Summers, VP of Marketplaces, MercadoLibre.

MercadoLibre is leading e-commerce ecosystem in Latin America. Last year, 20 million consumers bought 83 million in products on MercadoLibre. We found that our sellers were interested in cross-border trade, but encountered many challenges. Almost 50% of e-commerce in Latin in America is non-credit card, for example.

Brazil makes up 50% of MercadoLibre's market of 13 countries, and is the fastest-growing country in the region for e-commerce sales. MercadoLibre has its own form of payment system, and is also used by thousands of retailers in the region. Many payments are made in multiple installments as well.

Mobile accounts for 15% percent of MercadoLibre's sales, and we think this is a trend that will accelerate. MercadoLibre has its own app as well. 

Reminder for the Catalyst America’s social presence:
• Follow @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter as we’ll be tweeting out updates, reminders about sessions, networking events and more.
• Tag your social posts, Instagram pics with our show hashtag: #Catalyst2014 tabs on discussions, networking opportunities and more on the Catalyst app.
• Keep an eye on the ChannelAdvisor blogs where we’ll be live blogging the keynotes and main sessions at Catalyst.

Live Blogging from 2014 Catalyst Americas: Scot Wingo Keynote (Part I)

We've moved our blog! EbayStrategies.blogs.com will eventually be shut down, however the posts will live on. To access this blog post at its new location, click here.

Welcome to the live blog of ChannelAdvisor's Catalyst 2014. We'll be live blogging the general sessions to make sure Catalyst attendees don't miss anything. Also, make sure you're following hashtag #Catalyst2014 and @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter for all the latest.

Speaker: Scot Wingo, ChannelAdvisor CEO

Keynote Title: E-Commerce. Accelerated.

Part 2: http://ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2014/03/live-blogging-from-2014-catalyst-americas-scot-wingo-keynote-part-ii.html

Part 3: http://ebaystrategies.blogs.com/ebay_strategies/2014/03/live-blogging-from-2014-catalyst-americas-scot-wingo-keynote-part-iii.html

Welcome to the eighth annual Catalyst! Let's look back at 2013:

E-commerce is growing at 11%, three times the rate of brick and mortar. And consumers are increasingly doing their shopping online -- total retail foot traffic for November and December 2013 was down to 18 billion, or half of what it was in 2010.

Have you seen any malls built recently? We haven't, either. Not one indoor mall has been built in the US since 2006. 

Let's look at the #1 online retailer, Amazon. There's 237 million users and $74 billion in sales. These numbers will grow, to 266 million and $84 billion in 2014. How does Amazon do this?

In 2006, they had a partnership with Toys R Us. Deployed a third-party book marketplace for toys. And then they introduced Super Saver Shipping. Now, they've introduced Prime. Their growth has been faster on e-commerce. Amazon's 3 Flywheels:

1. Third Party Marketplaces
Amazon is 2X as big as everyone thinks it is, when you consider its third-party marketplace. 

2. Amazon Prime
Helps connect all these flywheels by giving consumers 2-day shipping. 10% of Amazon's users are Prime subscribers, and they spend 4X as much as the regular Amazon shopper.

3. Fulfillment Network
Amazon has over 100 fulfillment centers; Amazon's shipping costs are going down, because their fulfillment centers are close to large population centers. So the cost to ship products is decreasing. There's more shipping innovations made each day -- drones are just a recent example.

Marc Andreessen wrote a 2011 essay, with a premise that software is eating the world. In 2014, this makes a lot of sense. Zipcar, Netflix have become popular; snail mail is eaten by email. These disruptions happen quickly. Everything is driven by software: Even at Starbucks, you can pay online. Uber is disrupting the tax industry. 

How does this affect e-commerce?

We at ChannelAdvisor believe that marketplaces are eating the e-commerce world. The key benefits of marketplaces are selection, value, convenience and confidence.

eBay has introduced the Defect Rate -- a whole new system for measuring the top-rated seller rating. About two-thirds of people won't be affected, but many will. If you're here at Catalyst, we can walk you though what this means for you.

Why marketplaces now?

Marketplaces are aligned with consumer demand and expectations. Consumers want limited buying options, best price, fast/free shipping, purchase protection.

Let's invite Soren Mills, CMO of Newegg, up to the stage now. Newegg is leading seller of consumer electronics and IT products online. Newegg customers are passionate about commerce experience and wanted to see an expansion of categories. We found that as we did this, we brought in new customers in new product categories. Before that marketplace, we were 90% male. As we opened up the marketplace, we're now at 70/30.

We keep our specialty retailer core and audience base as we expand. It's been a surprise to us how many consumers who come in for new categories also shop in IT categories. We invested early in mobile and are always adding new content and features on our mobile site.

Newegg's marketplace sales are growing at triple rate. We see our marketplace is a key part of the future for Newegg. Ship by Newegg is our new program with 2-day shipping. We handle shipping and fulfillment. 

Reminder for the Catalyst America’s social presence:
• Follow @ChannelAdvisor on Twitter as we’ll be tweeting out updates, reminders about sessions, networking events and more.
• Tag your social posts, Instagram pics with our show hashtag: #Catalyst2014 tabs on discussions, networking opportunities and more on the Catalyst app.
• Keep an eye on the ChannelAdvisor blogs where we’ll be live blogging the keynotes and main sessions at Catalyst.