- eBay wants to win over sneaker resellers.
- The marketplace bills itself as the originator of the sneaker resale game and sold more than 5.7 million sneakers in North America in 2019.
- eBay’s Vice President of Seller Experience Harry Temkin said the platform offers more than StockX, one of the more popular sneaker resale platforms today, when it comes to data, customization, and transparency.
- eBay provides detailed sales trend data to platform users via a free foundational tool called Terapeak.
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eBay likes to describe itself as the originator of the sneaker resale game. Now, it’s trying to become the best in the industry.
As the sneaker resale market continues to grow, eBay has been making a concerted effort to return to its footwear roots. At the same time, other resale platforms like StockX and GOAT have gained momentum as more people look to cash in on a market that a 2019 Cowen & Co. analysis estimated could be worth $6 billion by 2025.
Harry Temkin, eBay’s vice president of seller experience, outlined some of the marketplace’s key advantages over market rivals. They include a seamless experience for the seller, the elimination of seller fees on certain items, and the wealth of product and sales data available to each client.
eBay’s model of transparency
eBay’s strategy to reascend to the top of the sneaker resale game is more than a few months in the making. The platform, which sold more than 5.7 million sneakers in North America in 2019, made a big move to attract more sneaker sellers in December by eliminating North American seller fees for any sneaker sold at $100 or more. The e-commerce company previously charged fees of up to 10% to sellers, which deterred some sneakerheads from using the platform. StockX and GOAT both charge various fees for sellers on their platforms.
On the buyer side, eBay’s vast network of sellers and niche inventory makes it a platform filled with boundless possibilities for a market based on specificity.
“If they can’t get them in those drops, they know to come to eBay that very morning,” said Temkin. “Because there are lots of resellers who are already selling sneakers.”
As for sellers, some have reaped the benefit of the platform for years. Chris Holbrook, or Sneaker Jesus, achieved more than $1.5 million in sneakers sales in 2019, 90% of which were sold on eBay.
While eBay, unlike StockX and GOAT, does not have a formal authentication process for its sneaker platform, Temkin said this type of model comes with its own set of positives. As opposed to choosing a stock image of a sneaker for an online listing, eBay sellers take their own photos of each product, thereby giving buyers the ability to see exactly what they are getting, blemishes and all.
“Being able to see the exact product gives your buyer a lot of confidence in what they are purchasing,” Temkin said of eBay’s model. “And I think that is one of the advantages of eBay.”
Focusing on the data
eBay also equips its sellers with the tools and analytics necessary to maximize their profits via a free foundational tool called Terapeak.
Terapeak’s detailed dashboard equips sellers with historical sales data for categories and specific items. The tool enables sellers to determine the most effective way to list their items online and at what price point, according to key terms and past sales trends data for similar items.
While marketplaces like StockX reveal sales histories for pairs of sneakers and offer a general suggested listed price, Terapeak gives sellers a different level of detail that Temkin says makes eBay stand out from its competitors. When it comes to sneakers, Terapeak’s advanced filtering tool allows sellers to easily find previous listings based on shoe size, category, and model.
“We allow the seller maximum flexibility,” said Temkin. “We allow them to choose how wide of a scope they want their search to be, or how narrow.”
In addition to helping sellers find the correct way to price their pairs of sneakers, Terapeak also illuminates how active a seller category currently is and what sellers are responsible for the largest percentage of sneakers sold.
“It allows you to understand market concentration,” explained Temkin. “Who am I competing with, how many others, am I competing with, and how aggressive do I need to get on price?”
eBay’s advanced analytics are a large part of what Temkin believes to be an overall advantage for sellers on the platform. And according to Temkin, the journey with eBay’s analytics has only just begun. The platform plans to eventually roll out even more tools to help sellers convert their listings at a higher rate.
“You’re going to see from us more and more analytics over the next several months,” Temkin said.