The Internet has brought about many changes in the consumer world. There have been various advantages that have been developed to make life easier for many people. With these advancements, it has become easier to conduct many traditional activities online. These include communication, purchases, and sending important data. The development of online companies like eBay has enabled consumers and producers to gain because it provides an online avenue for conducting business transactions.
About the site (eBay)
EBay is an online website that provides an avenue for buyers and sellers to buy and sell goods. Thus, consumers can easily get the goods and services that they want by simply going through the website and finding the deals that suit them.
It also offers an auction service where consumers can bid for the prices of various products and services. EBay as a company was founded in 1995. Its success has been attributed to the increasing use and access to the Internet. This has increased the website’s audience, making it grow fast over the years. The company operates in over 130 countries, thereby becoming a multi-billion dollar company (Collier 330).
The company is owned by Pierre Omidyar, a computer scientist. It began as a personal website, but he was forced to upgrade by his service provider. During this time it was known as AuctionWeb whereby it provided an online avenue for companies to conduct online auctions. Pierre was forced to charge users of the site because of the high traffic the site was getting during its initial days. Thus, he got the first eBay employee who handled the fees paid by users.
The company’s first president was employed in 1996, thus it signaled the evolution of the company into an online e-commerce website. In its initial days, the company was usually involved in online auctions. Thus, it was able to conduct over 2,000,000 online auctions in 1997 in comparison to 1996 whereby only 250,000 online auctions occurred. The company then began to consider business activities beyond auctions. Thus, it changed its name to eBay in 1997.
The company belonged to a consulting firm owned by Omidyar called Echo Bay Technology group. Thus, the website was to be located at the domain echobay.com, but a different company already owned the name. Omidyar then named it eBay.com, a shortened version of his consulting company (Collier 322).
Major progress for the company occurred in 2002 when it purchased PayPal. Thus, it was able to make a service that enables people to save money within PayPal and use it when making transactions. Thus, this service made it easier to securely send and receive money over the Internet for any company or individual with an email account.
EBay in e-business
EBay is a company that has witnessed increasing growth over the years. Its success is a result of the increasing use of the Internet. Thus, eBay has evolved into an e-business. This means that companies can establish shops online without necessarily having a physical structure.
Thus, all the transactions conducted within the business are depended on eBay. When a consumer wants a product, they simply log into the site and make a selection of what they require. The seller in many cases only has the goods within a warehouse facility for storage. Thus, once purchased the goods are delivered to the customer without hustles (Schwalbe 56).
EBay is a form of e-commerce where business transactions are conducted online. Thus, the website provides a platform where buyers and sellers can interact and sell their goods and services. Moreover, it provides a secure way to conduct these transactions. It also facilitates virtual communication where the customer can interact with the seller.
The use of PayPal also led to improvements in e-commerce. It became easier to conduct business online with a faster method of making transactions. Users could easily open a PayPal account, which would be tied up to their email. Thus, they could make secure transactions that were efficient and safe (Collier 210).
EBay uses an online auction or fixed price trading. Thus, a customer can choose either of the two methods to purchase the products or services they want. The bid made by the highest bidder is still shown during the entire period to allow for price discovery by potential consumers (Collier 207).
The option of negotiating for prices through an auction is an effective strategy to encourage more consumers because people are attracted to a situation where they have a wider choice to choose from. Through negotiations, people can determine the prices of the goods and services that they want and ensure they spend on a cheaper but quality product. Through eBay, people can sell products that are not necessarily new.
Thus, individuals with used products can easily sell their product through the service at a cheaper price. It also enables them to access a wider market, thus they can sell at a profitable price with ease. The customer also finds it easier to conduct transactions because it only involves the click of a mouse without movement and goods or services are then delivered to the customer (Schwalbe 38).
EBay is an international company, thus it attracts a diverse group of people ranging from individuals to companies. It has localized websites in countries such as Europe, North America, Latin America, and Asia Pacific. The largest users of the company comprise of individuals. This is the main target audience because a wide range of transactions occurs between individuals and consumers during transactions.
Companies are also allowed to operate accounts with eBay. Thus, they can sell their goods and services to a larger consumer base without necessarily having a physical shop or requiring the consumer to visit the company’s premises.
The website also targets potential consumers with the use of advertising. Thus, it has an online classified website whereby people can meet, exchange ideas, and conduct business easily. This has facilitated the company to increase its online presence and attract more users. The online classified sites include German automobile website mobile.de, itoko, and Netherlands marketplaces.nl (Gitlin 1953).
EBay is a company that has established various services in relation to trade.. These were various websites under eBay dealing with payment, communication, and commerce. The services include PayPal, Subhub, Half.com, Rent.com, Micro Place, Media Marketplace, Shopping.com, and Kijiji.com.
Online auctioning is one of the initial services offered by eBay. This is where customers can bid for a product until an agreeable price is reached. Being online, individuals can easily bid on a product from home. Thus, it has gained popularity over the years as bidding is an effective strategy to ensure consumers get the goods and services at the best price that they can afford.
Online classified is also one of the services offered by eBay. This is conducted through various websites owned by eBay, including Gumtree and kijiji.com whereby it offers an avenue for online communities within a specific urban region to conduct trade. Thus, advertisements are placed online for a specific audience within a region.
Launched in 2005, it operates in over 300 cities worldwide. Such a service has been able to offer localized advertising whereby users can find products within their geographical regions. PayPal is also a service offered by eBay. It allows for payments and money transfers for users of eBay over the Internet. It processes payments that occur over the Internet with ease and efficiency. PayPal became eBay’s subsidiary in 2002 and operates worldwide (Collier 300).
EBay is an international company with operations all over the world. Currently, the company has partner sites namely eBay US and eBay UK. These sites allow for the use of regional currencies for transactions. There are about 31 eBay subsidiaries globally. Many of these websites are localized, thus it encourages people within the various regions to conduct business and easily find what they need. The company, though established in the U.S., is growing twice as fast as a result of international markets.
Many countries had not been traditionally engaged in e-commerce, thus eBay was able to establish this new trend of doing business within various countries. The company has over 125 million registered users. These comprise of both individuals and companies. Thus, the company has been able to adapt a business concept into areas that are characterized by different cultures. It is also flexible where it adapts to local conditions that encourage more users to use the site (Gitlin 1954).
New additions to the website
There have been several additions to the website to facilitate an increase in the number of users and ensure ease of using the services offered by the company. One such example is the creation of a mobile application that runs on Smartphones like the iPhone and Android OS phones. Thus, many people have been able to install the eBay mobile application, which has facilitated the ease at which people can access the website.
Thus, people can easily conduct transactions or advertise their products easily by using the mobile application. Moreover, the mobile application has the ability to scan barcodes, thus it becomes easier to find online prices for a particular commodity. It also provides an interface to check on auctions as they are progressing online (Collier 336).
EBay has also established a gift cards service. This is where cards can be purchased as gifts. These cards can then be used by a user to make purchases on the website without using their own money. Moreover, eBay has a loyalty program whereby users of the website can earn points from the transactions made.
These points can increase over time and be used to make purchases on the website if sufficient. Moreover, the loyalty program can offer discounts and cashback guarantees to customers, thereby providing an attractive reason why they should conduct transactions over the website (Collier 335).
In conclusion, eBay has been able to grow as an online company due to the increasing use of the Internet. Moreover, it provides a way to easily conduct trade and make financial transactions securely. It is user friendly and diverse, thus many people can use the site for various activities including e-commerce, auction, classifieds, and transfer of money. This has ensured that eBay has retained its position as an important online company.
Collier, Marsha. EBay for Dummies. 7th edn. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley, 2012. Print.
Gitlin, Marty. eBay: the Company and its Founder. Edina, MN: ABDO Pub., 2011. Print.
Schwalbe, Kathy. Information Technology Project Management. 6th edn. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning, 2010. Print.