July 2012 ChannelAdvisor Same Store Sales (SSS) for eBay, Amazon, Search and CSE

August 13, 2012

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Note: This is a monthly feature published by ChannelAdvisor highlighting the Same Store Sales (SSS) across our wide range of ~3000 retailers and ~$3b in GMV.  Details on the SSS including methodology and schedule can be found in January’s post.

Today we are releasing July 2012 data for Marketplaces (eBay/Amazon), Search and Comparison Shopping Engines (CSE) along with supplemental data.

Coming soon…The Olympics effect

Before we dive (jump, leap, shoot, run) into July’s results, we’ve been getting a lot of questions from both sellers and Wall St’ers wondering about the impact the Olympics had on e-commerce.  The 2012 London Olympics ran 7/27-8/12 so a total of 16 days, 4 of them in July and 8 in August.  We’re crunching the numbers and later this will will have some specific observations on the impact (or lack thereof) the Olympics had on e-commerce.  Stay tuned.

July 2012 SSS Results 

  • Amazon – Amazon continued it’s 2X e-commerce growth by coming in up 44% y/y growth for June.
  • eBay –  eBay came in at a whopping 28.2%, the largest growth number we’ve seen for eBay since we started tracking SSS @ChannelAdvisor!!  Details in the eBay section below.
  • CSE – Comparison Shopping Engines decelerated coming in at down 9.9%.
  • Search – Search continued to be a bit sluggish coming in at 9.6%.  Search details are below.

SSS Chart 

The following chart details the SSS data for July 2011 through July 2012: (click to enlarge)

July_sss_1

eBay Details

eBay’s July y/y SSS 28.2% growth was rec0rd-smashing showing.  To get a feel for what’s driving the marketplaces’ performance, here are the interior datapoints for the month:

  • eBay auctions – down 1.1% y/y – eBay stopped the stream of auction promotions and that enabled auctions to have their best y/y results in a long time – down only 1%.  For our customer base, the auction format has settled into the 10-15% range, used mostly for liquidation and ‘turn it into cash in 7 days’ type items.  It’s too early to call, but it could be that we’re finally seeing this mix ‘settle in’ and maybe going forward we’ll end up at a 85/15 – 90/10 type FP/Auction mix.
  • eBay fixed-price – up 33.1% y/y – This was a record showing for the FP format.  We’re seeing name brand larger retailers do very well on eBay and eBay’s daily deal program continues to drive significant revenue for top-tier sellers.
  • eBay Motors  (parts and accessories) – Up 36%, a very strong performance and ten point swing off June.  While not as high as Feb’s 57% or March’s 37.4%, this was a great month for P+A, which somewhat dispels my theory from June that hot months are a bit slow for P+A.

So you have a perfect storm in July of auctions settling down and FP and P+A both doing well which added up to the super-size 28.2% overall number.

Here are the YTD trends on these eBay internals:

July_sss_ebay_details

eBay has a bunch of back to school promos going and B2S tends to have a heavy apparel component, so it will be interesting to see if these trends continue into August and the rest of Q3.  If they do, we could be setting up for a very strong Q4 from eBay.

Supplemental data for Search

The supplemental paid-search details for July are available in this table:

July_sss_search

Search was somewhat sluggish in July as Google continues do run a ton of tests around the move to Google Shopping. (check out this post on sister site CSEStrategies for details and examples).   As you look at the supplemental search data, you see that there was little to no movement around the key drivers of AOV and CR.  Consequently CPC didn’t move as retailers aren’t going to pay more unless those metrics move.

Conclusions

We continue to think the SSS data is telling us that consumers really prefer the marketplace model and are voting with their wallets.  You can’t beat marketplaces like eBay and Amazon when it comes to selection, convenience, ease of use, value, etc.  We’ll be back shortly with some Olympic insights.  As always, let us know your thoughts in comments.

SeekingAlpha disclosure – I am long Amazon and Google. eBay is an investor in ChannelAdvisor where I am CEO.