There are two articles out today, both from WSJ/DJ that had some interesting snippets – plus a little bonus contest/joke to get you through the end of the week.
Donahoe Update – (or what is ‘buy-bye’ in Swahili?)
In the first ($ub required), Donahoe echoes what we’ve been seeing at ChannelAdvisor – that the ecommerce market has stabilized. (not down, not up, but more sideways since Feb).
The most interesting part of this is that JD slips in there they may get rid of the Kijijijiji brand. As much as I LOVE to type kijiji, I do think it should go and they should call it eBay Local. This was one of the top points of my eBay 2.0 diatribe and it’s great to see eBay following my advice 😉 Here’s the snippet:
He also said the company is weighing whether to scrap its separate Kajiji online-classifieds brand in the U.S. The company might merge Kijiji into the eBay brand as e-commerce formats — such as auctions, fixed-price and classifieds — begin to merge in a world where consumers use search engines to find what they are looking for regardless of format.
If they are following my eBay 2.0 business plan, next they will sell the corporate jets (on eBay of course – but they HAVE to use free shipping).
I’ve been getting lots of calls from Wall St. analysts asking why eBay hasn’t integrated BillMeLater (BML) in PayPal yet. My answer is – “beats me”. Retailers are able to integrate BML in 30-60 days and here we are closing in on a year after the M+A and it’s still not integrated. PayPal President, Scott Thompson, was speaking earlier in the week and gave this update:
Thompson said BML this summer will become a payment option available to shoppers who have PayPal accounts. It will also become a checkout option for shoppers who use eBay’s marketplace. He added that by the first quarter of next year, BML will be embedded as a payment option side-by-side with PayPal on merchant sites around the Internet.
It will be interesting to see if eBay passes any of the great BML economics on to lowly eBay sellers as they do to their retail partners or if they pocket all those gains for themselves (I think we can all guess how this is going to go).
What is the eBay Seller’s Challenge?
(wait for it)
The eBay Seller’s challenge is…. To stay in business these days! (har har har)
But seriously folks, some eBay PR flacks sent me a very detailed email about this competition eBay has sponsored by the Kauffman foundation. Spend hours on a business plan and upload a video and you could win $25,000 to help grow your business. $25k is nothing to sneeze at, but my sense is this thing is going to take a lot of time and it’s not really clear that it is geared towards existing eBay sellers with that being only one of four categories – the others are:
Member of armed forces
Never sold on eBay
For a kick, watch the video where the lady says she is going to use the $25k to buy a new camera and take better pictures. Hmmm, that’s going to be one helluva camera!
I’ve embedded the video because that’s just fun to do and proves I am a HTML WILD MAN:
eBay Strategies contest – I’ve got a box full of ChannelAdvisor goodies for anyone that uploads the best spoof video or silliest use of the $25k. Post a link to it in comments.
SeekingAlpha disclosure – I am long Google, Amazon and eBay is a minority investor in ChannelAdvisor