Started as an online auction platform, eBay is one of the largest online marketplaces worldwide. eBay is one of the earliest and oldest internet businesses that survived the dot com bubble of 2001. Founded by Pierre Omidyar in 1995 by the name- Auction Web, eBay was a pioneering platform that introduced bidding and auction of products online.
eBay has a unique business model where individuals and businesses can list new or already used products or items for auction at relatively low prices. The platform boasts excellent online consumer-to-consumer and business-to-consumer sales services with transparency and authenticity. Just like every other successful e-commerce business, eBay had its own share of hardships. 1995 was the time when the west was adjusting to the concept of the internet for daily use.
Amid all the apprehensions and skepticism, Pierre listed his laser printer for $1. It took almost a week for bidders to quote their price and at the end of the sale, the price drove uphill to $14.85- making it the first-ever transaction of the revolutionary multinational e-commerce platform of the 21st century.
History of eBay
Ebay’s business model was simple, brilliant and was indeed ahead of its time. It is an online marketplace where buyers and sellers can bid on their quotes and make a transaction. As simple as it sounds, the then dynamics and market scenario didn’t actually pave a grand welcome for this e-commerce platform. Surpassing all the odds, now eBay stands atop with over 185 million active buyers worldwide.
Bidding was free. Yet, the seller was charged an additional sum of money in the form of additional promotions. (Not to be mistaken with the present-day Ad pushes or ad promotions.) The additional promotions meant the seller will be allowed to sell the products or items with bold fonts. ( A feature that makes the item or product stand out from the competition.) In the end, the transactional fee which ranged between 1.25% to 5% (depending on the final sale price) was set for the sellers. As an online marketplace, this platform’s role was to list the item, notify sellers whenever an item is listed within their auction budget limit.
With time, eBay brought in many changes in its organization structure, management decision making system, and sales process. In October 2002, eBay bought PayPal, which made eBay’s automated transactions an easy-to-use and trustworthy feature. However, PayPal was merged with Microsoft later in 2015.
An online person-to-person trading platform, eBay has a sophisticated transaction management for enhancing buyers’ and sellers’ experiences alike. The platform hosts an extensive catalog that arranges items by topics, allowing each auction to segregate in a defined category of its own.
Both browsing and bidding on this platform are charge-free, yet, sellers have a price-cut which ranges anywhere between $3.30 to $5 depending on the transaction and bidding. Whenever an item is listed on the platform, sellers are charged a non-refundable insertion free and an additional amount will be charged if seller opts for promotional aspects.
eBay notifies the seller and buyer when the bidding is matched and all the contracts between the parties are independent of eBay.
Why is eBay successful?
The success of eBay can be rooted in its transparent transaction process, accessibility, and trusted trader community. eBay has a unique rating system that facilitates buyers to rate sellers on transactions and other related issues.
Each user (either buyer or seller) is allowed to have a feedback score which rates the quality of the buyer and seller. Also to ensure a safe community, eBay offers Buyer protection- an assured protection covering up to $500 (variable) with no hidden charges. However for people who prefer other payment methods, eBay offers a Standard Purchase Protection, which covers $200 for items that are not received by the buyer.
eBay facilitates an easy exploration of buyers and sellers, making it a trusted platform for trading and auctioning.
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