eBay Struggles, Pageviews Declining Significantly

By  |  Tuesday, November 25, 2008 at 2:12 pm

ebaylogoNext time you hear some media talking head claiming that hurting consumers are running to eBay in droves for better deals, you can call their bluff. Nielsen released data that shows the auction site is continuing to lose eyes as the economy worsens. The data shows a precipitous drop off beginning in September, right around the time the US economy really began to tank.

eBay saw its some of its best times late last year, averaging around 13.5-14.5 million pageviews per month during the holiday season. However, after those good times, the auction site began a essentially steady decline.

You can almost see the point when consumers began to panic. August shows about 11 million pageviews, but by September that had fallen to 9.4 million. October was even worse, ending at about 9.1 million pageviews. The August to September drop was the largest decline outside of the normal post-holiday slump in two years of data.

Now forgive me here — I am no math major — but I’m going to do some number crunching. Using last holiday as a guide, it looks like we can expect about a 10% or so bump up for the holidays. Even if this occurs, eBay’s traffic would be down about 20-30% year over year. This seems about right — October’s traffic numbers were down a third from last year.

The economy may not be the only reason here. Silicon Alley Insider (which I think goes a bit overboard with the title, it is not that bad yet) surmises that stronger competition as well as the fact that eBay’s value proposition isn’t as great is also helping to accelerate the decline.

I’d agree with this: eBay has become less of a bargain these days. I’m noticing that more and more items look like a good deal at first glance, yet the money’s being made elsewhere, whether through “handling” charges, or obviously inflated shipping costs.

eBay’s not helping either, alienating some of its sellers by tinkering with its selling fees far too much.

For those of you that like pretty little charts, I’ve included this data graphically after the jump.

chart

 
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6 Comments For This Post

  1. Galen West Says:

    as an ebay user for over 10 years (back when it was called auction web), i can tell you business is bad. very bad.

  2. Ed Oswald Says:

    specifically, could you give us an idea of what is going on? I think it would be interesting to hear.

  3. Dan Knight Says:

    That’s also about the same time eBay changed its price structure to move sellers away from traditional auctions and promote Buy It Now pricing.

  4. Dave Barnes Says:

    As a consumer (i.e., buyer), I hate Buy It Now pricing.
    My goal, as a buyer, is to get a bargain. For me, that means bidding should start at zero$. Then, I keep hoping that there won’t be many bidders and I will get a bargain.
    Without the perception of being able to get a great deal, why would I shop at eBay?

  5. jasonwallace Says:

    To learn what is REALLY going on at ebay, search the internet for:

    “eBay’s Disruptive Innovation, How’s that workin’ for ya? — GenuineSeller”

    To learn what ebayers are experiencing due to Whitman & Donahoe’s insane new policies, search the internet for:

    “Ebay Stockholders and Sellers Calling For Immediate Termination of John Donohoe CEO Petition”

    To read what ebay’s own employees are saying about the EXTREMELY POOR upper management at ebay, go to glassdoordotcom.

    FIRE DONAHOE!!!

  6. Casey Benedict Says:

    It’s not the recession that has hurt ebay.
    Its the fact that ebay treats it’s sellers horribly.

    They block your account if you have some money in it so they can make profit in interest using your money for 180 days.

    You can find out so much more at the following links. http://www.paypalwarning.com
    http://www.paypalsucks.com/ and so much more.

    Ebay and Paypal are not your friend! DO NOT USE THEM THEY ARE AWFUL!!!!!!

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  1. LIVEdigitally » Blog Archive » Lack of Trust key to eBay’s decline Says:

    [...] read on The Technologizer that eBay is suffering from a drop in visitors (SAI has some more stats too).  This comes as no [...]

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