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eBay Pulls Google Ads Over Marketing Stunt

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the it's-just-business dept.

Google 151

odoketa writes "According to the BBC, it seems Google scheduled a party to promote their payment system (Google Checkout) on the same day as a big eBay meeting, and this made eBay mad enough to pull their ads with Google. According to the story, eBay says it's merely an 'ongoing experiment' on their marketing. 'Google hoped to alert PayPal users who would have been in Boston attending the eBay Live annual seller event to its own service, according to market experts. It could also have been seen as part of an effort to get eBay to accept Google Checkout, currently banned on the online auctioneer's site. But in a contrite manner, Google cancelled its rival function a day before it was due to happen.'"

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151 comments

wrong (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19517621)

search "bowling ball" (or anything else) on google. Ebay ads are still showing up for me.

Re:wrong (-1)

Shadowfoxmi (989969) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517639)

you are wrong Mr. . The title says ebay pulls out google ads and not the other way around.

Re:wrong (-1, Redundant)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517707)

you are wrong Mr. . The article says "Auction website eBay has pulled its US advertising from search engine giant and adversary Google." and not the other way around.

Re:wrong (1, Flamebait)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517709)

From TFA:

But in a contrite manner, Google cancelled its rival function a day before it was due to happen and stated on its blog: "After speaking with officials at eBay, we at Google agreed it was better for us not to feature this event during the eBay Live conference."
They cancelled their "party."

Wrong... (2, Informative)

djupedal (584558) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517701)

You're seeing eBay guides, pages.ebay.com and/or pulling from either a local or ISP cache.

I tried yesterday, and again just now and nada. No eBay seller item links on the radar. No items being sold, including bowling balls.

Not a very good thing to do... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19517633)

That wasn't a very good thing for Google to do....

But heck; this world is never perfect...

=|

UK promo was good (2, Interesting)

Linker3000 (626634) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517637)

In the UK, Google checkout was offering £10 off any order over £30 with a major online IT supplier I use. The number of small orders I placed last month for toners and other parts was quite exceptional!

Re:UK promo was good (3, Interesting)

KingJ (992358) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517741)

I took advantage of this too, in effect it gave me free delivery. Certainly swayed me to use their payment system and it's a year long promotion, I wonder what the fees are that google charges retailers in comparison to ordinary card processing services?

Re:UK promo was good (4, Informative)

daeg (828071) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517863)

We use Google Checkout. Under their promotions, retailers have it good for the start, too. The ending rates are great, too, much better than PayPal. The Terms of Service are much more agreeable to both the buyer and seller, particularly for physical goods. I'm not sure how they compare to digital goods, but PayPal isn't very good on that front, either.

Re:UK promo was good (3, Insightful)

WhoBeDaPlaya (984958) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518431)

Not to mention that eBay loves double-dipping - charge ya for auction closing fees and then PayPal fees.

Re:UK promo was good (1)

rainman_bc (735332) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519759)

Did you think that fees would have come down after eBay bought paypal? Really, wake me up when you return from Neverland :)

Re:UK promo was good (1)

WhoBeDaPlaya (984958) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519947)

Heh, heck no. Just venting, is all ;)
Still, eBay has incredible allure due to the huge number of clueless buyers and sellers there.

Re:UK promo was good (5, Interesting)

DrogMan (708650) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517933)

The promo was/is good and I was about to sign up to Google Checkout to accept smallish payments on a system I'm working on, but was really put off by the fact that Google insist on the person making the payment sign up to a Google account. PayPal dropped this a long time ago, and much as I dislike PayPal, at least now you have the choice to letting your clients make their own decision to signing up to PayPal, or not.

Once Google removes this restriction, I'll probably use them to accept small payments rather than use PayPal.

/DM/

Re:UK promo was good (3, Insightful)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519417)

Hopefully you've let google know that. Otherwise it's just wishful thinking.

Re:UK promo was good (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520155)

Hopefully you've let google know that. Otherwise it's just wishful thinking.

You act like the people at google are stupid. They are not. At least, not all of them. They are smart enough to compare successful services to unsuccessful ones and examine the differences.

Fine with me (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19517649)

I'm not sure what ads they are removing but hopefully all of them. When I am searching Google for something, I am not interested in the Ebay results. If I wanted Ebay results, I would have searched Ebay for it.

Ebay had this coming anyway. They actively forbid Google Checkout from their auctions already. I'm sure it is wrapped in some disguise as consumer protection.

Re:Fine with me (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517759)

I would be more interested in EBay results on Google's search if they actually HAD those results. Any time I've ever been looking to buy something, and saw an EBay ad on Google, it got no results when I clicked, despite the fact that the item WAS on EBay.

Admittedly, I never search for simple things like 'bowling ball', but rather the exact item I want, but still... The ads were always pointless when I would want them, and useless when I didn't.

Re:Fine with me (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518795)

I have print outs of the results for my name and the name of a (now former) cubicle-mate on the wall of my cubicle. Both have eBay adverts for our names. If you click on the link, then it goes to an eBay search page, which says 'no results found.'

I'm amazed Google didn't reject eBay ads for spamming long before eBay decided to pull them. Other Google ads have often been sufficiently relevant that I've actually bothered clicking on them. eBay ads I click on just so it costs them, and they have to pay for the stupidity of putting meaningless adverts up.

Excellent news! (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19517697)

I'm sure many people will appreciate not seeing the spammed ebay links for just about everything you search for. "HDTV", no problem, ebay will spam the top of google with TVs. Death in Iraq, yes, ebay too has a fine stock of Grim Reaper overstock. Come and get it while it's hot, limited stocks, hurry hurry hurry!

eBay wouldn't do that (4, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517767)

They don't advertise on Google to do Google a favour. They advertise on Google to draw traffic to eBay. If they pull their advertising, they hurt themselves. Not as much as they hurt Google, because they can easily spend the advertising budget elsewhere, but still a case of cutting of their nose to spite their faces.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (3, Funny)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517859)

They advertise on Google to draw traffic to eBay

Precisely! Otherwise, how would I know that I can find sinusitis relief on eBay?

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

Zabu (589690) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519051)

According to Google eBay is the only place online to find conflict diamonds.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (4, Interesting)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517861)

Is eBay not a big enough player to require Google advertising?

This got me thinking of advertising in general. Do consumers REALLY need another 5,000 Coke commericals nationwide today, too? Are they afraid that we'll all of a sudden forget they exist? Afraid that people who like Coke would switch to Pepsi thanks to those ads so we'd better innundate them with our ads to keep that from happening?

There are defining sites out there on the internet. You wouldn't google for online auctions unless you're looking for an eBay alternative. You wouldn't goggle for user shared video sites unless you're looking for a YouTube alternative.

Or, at least I wouldn't. :)

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

john_is_war (310751) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518191)

The coke/pepsi advertisement thing... sounds very familiar. You been listening to Lewis Black, haven't you?

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

chrisd (1457) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519719)

You're thinking David Cross. He has a funny bit about McDonalds. "I don't think that people will suddently worry where they're going to get their big mac if you skip a day," and then launches into a polemic about paying thier workers slightly better.

David Cross is funny :-)

Although it seems the kind of joke that you'd hear other places, too.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (4, Insightful)

xappax (876447) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518341)

Do consumers REALLY need another 5,000 Coke commericals nationwide today, too? Are they afraid that we'll all of a sudden forget they exist?

It's a good question, it seems intuitive that those brands are so deeply entrenched in our collective awareness and habits that they've sort of transcended advertising. It seems like we could never see another ad for Nike, and we'd still remember them and buy their shoes just as much.

But it's not true. The reason we can tell it's not true is that companies like Nike universally continue to spend gobs upon gobs of money on advertising campaigns, which they could've otherwise kept in their pockets. I think the main reason mega-brands advertise is not because they're afraid we'll forget, but because they're afraid we'll start paying attention (or more attention) to their competitors, or even other industries we'd rather spend our money on. Nike doesn't care if we remember them in general, they care if they're the top brand on our minds when we walk into the shoe store, and that we associate them with all the cool things of today.

In this way, advertising is like an arms race. You may have enough advertising to let people know about your product, but another advertiser is just going to step up their campaign and draw even more attention to themselves (and consequently away from you). Keeping the attention on your brand is what keeps you alive as a corporation, so you have no choice but to increase your advertising campaign to even more intensity...they respond in kind, and the cycle continues.

Of course, the result of this marketing cold war is what we have today: an almost completely ad saturated environment. It's difficult to look anywhere in an urban environment without seeing a logo or advertisement - it's so universal that people start to tune it out as background noise, which simply means advertisers must come up with newer, more subtle or outrageous or manipulative ways of increasing their brand awareness and appeal.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518899)

Erm, yeah, I suppose it could be a advertising war. But in Nike's case, they're always making new products. Of course they're going to advertise those, despite their brand power.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (2, Insightful)

rainman_bc (735332) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519995)

which simply means advertisers must come up with newer, more subtle or outrageous or manipulative ways of increasing their brand awareness and appeal.
Great post! I want you to run the marketing department in our office ;)

Thing is though, the outrageous stuff is what gets me. This morning I was watching the morning news, and from the traffic chopper out comes a freaking ad from the traffic lady's mouth. How can the morning news not think that this just annoys viewers, and that most of us are intelligent enough to look past that garbage?

I don't choose what beverage I drink from what's on TV. I've never seen an ad for Orangina on TV and that's my favourite beverage. I pick a restaurant based on reviews online at dinehere.ca (I'm from Vancouver so it makes sense). I refuse to buy Nike because honestly they are way overpriced for the value you get. If I am an athlete where the extra spring in my step makes a difference, I'll let Nike put there shoes on me for free. Until them, Umbro or Adidas or Puma is fine for me and I'll keep the other $150 in my pocket thanks. I don't pick my beer based on how slutty looking the models on TV are. I like Hoegarden and Amstel myself, and don't see much ads for those.

I've sat in on marketing conversations at the place I work, and they truly seem to believe that end users are easily manipulated. I think marketers have beliefs about consumers that just aren't true any more.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

LiENUS (207736) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518375)

Ebay advertises under much more than just "online auctions" they had an advertisement for virtually any item you could buy, so if you searched for "silly hats" looking for an online retailer of silly hats, you'd seen an advertisement for silly hats on ebay and then you might decide to purchase them on idea in the hopes of getting a good deal rather than an online retailer.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518379)

Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (2, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518565)

This is probably the most profound and sensible thing said so far. (It's probably a quote, but just roll with me here.)

Advertising is amazingly hard to quantify. How do you -know- if someone bought that item because of advertising, or because they just saw it in the store. Did your advertisement in Magazine X bring in any sales? Was it the TV commercials? Was it the fact that you advertised in 6 different ways? Could you have eliminated one of them with the exact same results, or even better results? Could you have added another?

It would be easy to spend more money trying to determine how successful your ads were than the actual ads cost.

The only thing that could make pulling Google ads worthwhile would be to make a big stink about it on 'moral' grounds and get the news media to advertise for you for a while. Getting Google to cancel their event was a great bonus.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

Jellybob (597204) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518845)

That's one of the biggest advantages I see with AdWords. I work for a company where we have clients spending over £1000 per day on them, and the reason for that is the reporting tools you get.

You're able to see exactly which ad campaigns are bringing people to your website, and with a little bit of work you can even follow them right through to find out which ones are actually leading to a purchase, or whatever the desired outcome is (we have targets setup for actual online purchases, contact form fill outs, and brochure requests). Using the reporting tools you can see the value of each advert, in terms of how much money it's making you.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

QuoteMstr (55051) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519323)

Hey. We do the same thing at my place, but with a little bit of a twist.

If somebody comes in through google for visit A, then two weeks later, comes back directly to the site for visit B and buys something,we attribute that sale to A. We figure that somebody found out about the site through google on visit A, so we can attribute the sale to the corresponding adwords campaign. There are advantages to building your own reporting tools. :-)

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519779)

That's great, if you're only advertising through the web and only with AdWords.

What if you're using 6 other web-based advertising companies as well as TV, radio, and newspaper? How do you know the person didn't forget your URL and search Google for you, then click on one of the paid ads instead of a search result? Or search result that was related to what you do, and see your ad there? Google didn't actually provide the initial consumer demand, they were just a means to find you afterwards.

The thing is, you don't -know- what happened, any more than we ever did. Educated guesses are great, but they're still just guesses and not facts.

The sibling post makes a good point about return visits as well, but I don't know how they're tracking the visit. Cookies could be cleared or on a public computer, IP addresses often change, I doubt they managed to get the person to sign up for an account the first time, but it's possible... Too many variables. His complex reporting system has managed to further refine the data, but not make it perfectly clear.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

loourker (1090051) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518503)

As any marketing expert at Google or eBay or Coke can tell you, half of anyone's marketing budget is wasted. The trouble is figuring out which half.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518821)

they don't advertise ebay.com. but when people search for products on google, they get links to those products on ebay... quite regularly.

and yes, consumers need 5000 coke commercials. if all of a sudden they disappear, and only pepsi commercials are left, people will think of pepsi more often and coke will slowly lose its share. the marketing concept here is actually pretty simple.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518883)

New users join the interweb every day. Unless word of mouth advertising for your service is extremely strong you need regular advertising to let those new users know what your are offering. Even if eBay already has a large userbase they still need to grow it constantly to satisfy shareholders.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

whoop (194) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519007)

What I don't understand are the generic adds for things like milk, pork, beef, etc. Is someone watching and saying, "Hmm, this beef stuff looks like it might be tasty. Let's go get some."

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19519851)

The absolute worst is the ads for power. I mean, we don't even have a choice there. What benefit do they get from advertising? Do they think if they spend more on advertising, we'll start using more electricity? I guess they are hoping that they can get commercials on TV to be longer by spending lots of money on advertising so you'll have to have your TV on longer to watch a show, so they make more money off the electricity?

I also don't get the constant advertising for BASIC cable on cable TV. Over here, the ads are intelligent even... while I'm watching TV on my digital cable, while the ad is on, a bar pops up on the bottom of the screen saying "Press A on your digital remote to order BASIC CABLE!"

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

rainman_bc (735332) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519819)

If they pull their advertising, they hurt themselves
eBay is as much a household name as google is. Unlikely either will be hurt by it except Google will see a few less eBay dollars.

Re:eBay wouldn't do that (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520047)

Surely pulling hteir ads is going to cost them something, otherwise why don't they just pull their ads and save money?

I imagine a lot of people haven't linked eBay with buying absolutely everything. It might not be the first place they think of when searching for an XBox, for example.

Now we will see who has more behind them (1)

Stu101 (1031686) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517771)

Now we may see no less than a battle between two MAJOR internet players. It will get v dirty v quick. Basically I predict a last man standing type scenario.

It was only a matter of time before someone pulled the trigger because you cant have two major companies, with 2 sets of shareholders co-existing for very long. One will inevitably get greedy.

Re:Now we will see who has more behind them (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517791)

> Basically I predict a last man standing type scenario.

We'll see how many people dislike eBay and PayPal. I've closed my paypal account because they've become a bank and moved to a EU rather than UK system and were apparently incapable of answering my questions about it. Still, I bet the people they're paying to answer questions are really cheap so that's saving them money.

I hope Google comes up with an auction site. Perhaps they'll take abuse more seriously than eBay does, too.

Re:Now we will see who has more behind them (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19517979)

I've closed my paypal account because they've become a bank and moved to a EU rather than UK system..

  1. Although it's high time PayPal were regulated as a bank, their move will not make them one any more than they are currently.
  2. The UK is in the EU and has been for a very long time, making the second half of your sentence non-sensical.

Re:Now we will see who has more behind them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518199)

> The UK is in the EU and has been for a very long time, making the second half of your sentence non-sensical.

Only if you lack the sense to understand that a bank based in another part of Europe no longer operates under the regulations of the UK, such as the FSA (Financial Services Authority).

Re:Now we will see who has more behind them (1)

eharvill (991859) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519145)

The UK is in the EU and has been for a very long time, making the second half of your sentence non-sensical.
Last time I was in England they were still using the Pound. Although they are a member of the EU, they haven't adopted all of their policies it seems. *shrug*

Paypal useless (3, Informative)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517805)

I am soooooo glad that eBay will now have competition from on of the top dogs for their
paypal excuse for a payment system. I hope google can actually tie this into your gmail account with higher security, although if eBay will not use this service, I dont know where else except the p0rn
sites where this might be usefull?

Ebay Thailand (1, Offtopic)

yohanes (644299) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517815)

Strange, right now, ebay.co.th is still showing as Adwords ads in Google search.

Re:Ebay Thailand (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517851)

Strange, right now, ebay.co.th is still showing as Adwords ads in Google search.

TFA:

Auction website eBay has pulled its US advertising from search engine giant and adversary Google.

Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (4, Interesting)

osewa77 (603622) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517821)

Knowing how much traffic Google drives through search and Adwords, this move by Ebay is nothing but suicide. It's a good thing - for Ebay - that Google has decided to back down.

Ebay is in a bad position, really, because they don't drive their own traffic. If Google decides to launch an auction website, it'd be a real bloodbath, because Ebay is nothing without it's famously massive traffic, much of with it has to buy.

I suspect that they have an agreement with Google that prevents Google from implementing a simple competitor in the auction space.

What happens if Ebay boycotts Google? We'll get less "buy used baby's from Ebay" spam. That's it.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (4, Insightful)

AutopsyReport (856852) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517883)

It's not suicide. Most Internet users have been to eBay. eBay was successful long before Google showed up and they will continue to be successful because their success is attached to the name, how easy it is to remember, and how quickly you can type "ebay.com" in the location bar without having to go through a search engine.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (2, Insightful)

winnabago (949419) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518367)

I don't have a source, but it is interesting that ebay still feels the need to tout their own payment systems in real life. About a month ago in Boston, they started putting PayPal ads on the tops of taxis, in bus shelters, and such places. Now that this Google Checkout issue has come out, it makes sense. They saw the pressure from Google coming.

I don't think ebay feels that Paypal can run via its own momentum, with others trying to gain share in that market.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518635)

I don't think this is in reference to ebay pulling the keyword 'auction'. I'm aware of ebay.com, but when I do a search for "Great Rock and Roll Swindle Movie Poster" in Google, if the stars (keywords) are in alignment, I'll get a link reminding me that ebay would be a good place to find that item. I like to think I'm fairly Internet saavy, but more often than not these smart ads drive me in the right direction. An ebay (or paypal) flashing banner at the top of every single page I surf would do none of this.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19519037)

Most internet users? The number of users on the internet is not a static number. It is growing constantly with new users and this growth is very fast and not linear. If eBay stopped advertising today eventually the number of Internet users who had never heard of eBay would vastly outnumber those users who had visited the site. Also it is not enough for a publically traded company to merely be successful, these companies also have an obligation to show constant growth of revenue.

Yes, but now there's more competition (1)

phorm (591458) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519387)

The problem for ebay nowadays is that the competition (google) *will* have ads. As google's checkout becomes more refined, ads may attract more users and attract them away from ebay. If google has a continuous presence, and ebay's diminishes, then ebay may very well start to fade.

About time, too... ebay is not even close to the bargain shop they first were, with sellers abusing the system, fraudsters rollicking around, and ebay cutting in on everyone for as much dime as they can.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (1)

WickedStick (918212) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520003)

They both went public in 1998 so I wouldn't say they were successful for very long before Google. Google was much more successful right from the start anyways.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (1)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518071)

Ebay has TV and radio commercials. They were a successful, house-hold name before Google even became popular. It's like saying it would be suicide for Coke to pull advertising from Google.

Re:Message To Ebay: This Is Suicide (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518689)

No ... this is ... eBaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay

Google's new corporate principle: (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19517835)

Don't be asshat.

Paypal and Checkout (3, Insightful)

kanwisch (202654) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517839)

I ditched Paypal when I couldn't reject a credit card payment (I didn't accept them). Assuming Checkout doesn't have the same issue, it'll be my preferred method of payment/receipt for the long-haul.

Re:Paypal and Checkout (1)

ssstraub (581289) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519577)

You should have read the eBay rules before accepting Paypal. It strictly states that you CANNOT accept Paypal without also accepting credit card payments through it. If you attempt to make this statement in your auction, the auction can get cancelled on those grounds if eBay notices or someone complains.

Ebay/Google (0, Redundant)

Mockylock (1087585) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517841)

I would think that EBay was independent enough for people to know the name and use them without the use of Google or any other advertisement (aside from television). I think that once you're at a certain level, it's all top-of-mind-awareness, wouldn't you think?

Needless to say, I think they're probably making the right decision by ending whatever advertisement relationship they hold with them. It's only going to save them money and look better on paper.

Re:Ebay/Google (2, Interesting)

AutopsyReport (856852) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517961)

I would think that EBay was independent enough for people to know the name and use them without the use of Google or any other advertisement (aside from television).

Exactly. eBay is like Google; you don't go to Yahoo to find Google, and so you don't go to Google to find eBay. This was a calculated decision, not necessarily a bad one. If people believe it was a suicidal decision, recall the numerous fee increases that caused the community to throw up their arms in revolt. You would think that was suicidal, but eBay is still just as strong.

I PRAY Google takes eBay down at some point. (5, Insightful)

Mewtwo (878960) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517889)

...and this is coming from someone who does fairly significant business through eBay.

eBay's fees are ridiculous now, and PayPal even moreso. eBay has continually raised their fees year after year, taking a far too large cut of small items. What's worse is that 2.9% + 30 cents bit on PayPal transactions, whether or not it was actually funded through a credit card. I understand needing to pay yourself back should someone actually pay with a credit card and get small fee on top of that, but when money is moved from one PP account to another, that costs them $0...not to mention that PayPal's fee is done on the TOTAL, not the pre-shipping price, so they end up taking 2.9% of the money that you're supposed to have to ship the item as well. ...and since eBay and PayPal are so closely knit, and almost everyone on eBay only uses PayPal to pay, trying to use any of the smaller players is pretty much futile. The only payment service that can reasonably knock PayPal off of its pedestal is Google Checkout, and eBay knows this.

Between those two things, I'm losing well over 10% on any item that doesn't cost a huge amount of money. They wonder why people do stuff like use eBay contact info to sell outside of eBay and to list $1 items with hundred or even thousand-dollar shipping cost to avoid paying eBay as much as they can.

eBay claims that they want to have payment services with established track records or something like that. Just wait a year or two, and then possibly sue for inclusion, or at least under some law about anti-competitive acts? If Google could get GBay up...

GBay + "do no evil" = death of eBay.

Re:I PRAY Google takes eBay down at some point. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518621)

Isn't GBay Gotham City's black market online auction site?

Re:I PRAY Google takes eBay down at some point. (2, Informative)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518891)

As someone who had a business that accepted CCs (we had the contract with a CC processor, terminal, could swipe cards) the fees charged by Paypal are actually in line with real CC charges. Around 2.4% of total sale (don't break out shipping - total amount) and $0.30 per transaction. Processing of CC charges ranged from 1.8% to 3.3% depending upon the volume of sales you did (we did around $30K/month and were at the 2.4% price range).

EBay's fees are quite high, though, and I don't have any experience with Paypal's CS so can't comment there, but the fees they're charging seem to be somewhat in line with meatspace...

Re:I PRAY Google takes eBay down at some point. (1)

whoop (194) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519087)

I didn't understand why people charged $10-20 to ship an item like a video game, until I started unloading my dusty collection. By the time you figure in shipping, ebay, paypal fees, you're up in that ballpark.

Currency exchange (1)

phorm (591458) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519469)

What I've always found fun is how - on top of the fees for the seller etc - paypal is making a nice chunk of change on currency exchange. With the Canadian dollar up at $0.95USD, ebay will still happily only convert cash at $0.915 (for my last transaction). Not only that, but from what I've been able to tell they *require* conversion of funds. I used to use a particular Visa for Paypal specifically because they didn't charge fees for conversion of $USD. Then "Paypal Canada" came up, and suddenly all my funds are converted to Canadian anyways... at a rate that is always lower than the actual exchange.

That's fine if Paypal wants to charge a lessened exchange to cover costs/convenience etc, even most grocery stores do too, but not having the option to have the charge made to my Visa in USD and take advantage of the increasing power of my home currency is a royal pain in the rear end.

Re:I PRAY Google takes eBay down at some point. (1)

Saberwind (50430) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520073)

What's worse is that 2.9% + 30 cents bit on PayPal transactions, whether or not it was actually funded through a credit card.

In the US, it's illegal to charge different prices depending on method of payment.

However, it would be nice if they charged everyone 1.5% or whatever the weighted average happens to be.

Re:I PRAY Google takes eBay down at some point. (1)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520121)

Illegal, or just a violation of the agreement with Visa and Mastercard?

eBay just keeps marginalizing folks... (0)

DJ_Maiko (1044980) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517891)

First it was their own users w/their increased pricing plan (the same folks who BUILT their vast empire). Now they're getting all huffy over Google Checkout? It was a "party" for pete's sake (which in their nerdy world means: bad chips & dip, kool-aid, guys wallflower'ing as they discuss Wizards of the Coast while they avoid the girls- /shudder dancing- & 80's pop star Tiffany as "entertainment")!

Goes to show how out-of-touch eBay is becoming w/the masses. They swear they've got the market cornered & anyone trying to infringe upon that will just get summarily blitzkrieg'ed. Sounds like eBay's been taking business classes over at Micro$oft & Tivo'ing all the X-Files reruns from the Sci-Fi channel. When Meg Whitman [wikipedia.org] finally "gets" the fact that Google has WAY more street cred than eBay (& that adopting Google Checkout is a wise business decision), she'll finally do something positive for her shareholders.

So hard to choose sides (5, Insightful)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517895)

I mean, on one side we have google, a tremendously useful tool that has saved me countless hours when troubleshooting problems/doing research.

And on the other side we have paypal who called me a liar on the phone because I told them that they, not I, made a mistake

So hard to choose sides!

Re:So hard to choose sides (4, Funny)

The Breeze (140484) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519467)

This is obvious a fake post.

I mean, come on, someone claiming to have actually gotten Paypal on the phone? How likely is that?

"We're Paypal. We don't care. We don't have to."
-apologies to SNL.

Death of the one trick shop (2, Insightful)

Stu101 (1031686) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517917)

Now its down to who blinks first, im guessing that Google either have:

A) An ebay alternative (Killer? )
B) The resources to create one pretty quick.

We will have to see what countermeasures Ebay can conjour up. My guess is not a lot because Ebay, to my mind at least, is a one trick pony.

The BBC is spinning this... (3, Interesting)

owlnation (858981) | more than 6 years ago | (#19517935)

This is not what it seems. I read this article on the BBC earlier today and it annoyed me then.

Their use of the word "angry" in the headline is preposterous. This is shamefully hyperbolic sensationalist tabloid journalism -- something the BBC is pandering to more and more -- they really need to fire some editors. Also, it seems to me that someone in the Richmond offices of eBay has the ear of someone in the BBC, eBay gets an astonishingly high amount of free publicity from the BBC (The BBC does not allow advertising -- um, yeah, sure...). Again, they really need to fire some editors, I'd be astonished if at least some of them were not taking backhanders every now and again -- it certainly looks that way.

Why would a medium sized corporation be "angry". And particularly in this case, although eBay is the largest user of Adwords, eBay is still a very small company compared to Google. eBay has no alternative to Adwords. It's use them, or fail trying something else.

While I'm personally convinced that eBay's management are far from the sharpest executives out there, they are at least smart enough to realize that they need Google much more than Google needs them. Sure, there's some Corporate game playing around checkout etc, and perhaps this move is simply a reflection of that. eBay, like any firm, needs to try to assert themselves occasionally to negotiate better deals. This is business. This is not news.

If Google was planning their own negative party then perhaps it would be good for someone to examine their mission statement -- while not exactly evil, that action isn't something that would give any company the moral high ground.

This is all a storm in a teacup. The whole thing reeks of publicity stunt. Publicity stunts are things the BBC falls for regularly -- especially where eBay are concerned.

Godwins Law invoked on eBay/Google spat .. (1, Insightful)

rs232 (849320) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518049)

"It's no secret that part of Google's plan for world domination is to replace eBay, which involves selling products via Google Base and paying for them using Google Checkout. However, Google isn't yet powerful enough to launch the expected blitzkrieg, so the two companies maintain friendly relations under what's been compared to the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact [guardian.co.uk] signed by Von Ribbentrop for Germany and Stalin"

Who said that amateurism on the Internet was leading to the death of real journalisim ..

Godwins Law [killfile.org] br>
-- br>
"we both made shells for the Nazis, but mine worked, dammit!", C. Montgomery Burns

Re:Godwins Law invoked on eBay/Google spat .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19519517)

How is this a troll? It is ridiculous that journalists should treat business practices analogous to war between Russia and Nazi Germany.

Seen it before (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518107)

This was essentially just your average Internet dick-waving contest, except in meatspace.

Fun Experiment (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518117)

I am sure all of you have done this, but notice that when you google for eBay [google.com] , the first and only ad is for Google Checkout (thinly veiled as an ad from buy.com). While Google does not manipulate search results by hand, they definitely mess with the Ads :))
Cheers!

first and only advert .. (1)

rs232 (849320) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518183)

"the first and only ad is for Google Checkout"

Fishtec Fly Fishing
Fishtec - Your Fly Fishing Partner.
Fish Tec - Buy Online Today.
www.Fishtec.co.uk

http://www.google.com/search?source=ig&hl=en&q=eba y [google.com]

was Re:Fun Experiment

Re:Fun Experiment (1)

porkThreeWays (895269) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518355)

I just tried this and nothing comes up for ebay... Literally a blank ad pane. I tried other search terms thinking maybe I had some ad-blocking software, but nope. Am I the only one? Perhaps they are freezing the advertising until they get all this worked out?

Re:Fun Experiment (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518651)

It's disappeared from my search results too! Maybe a smart alec decided it was a good idea to do this and then got fired later for lack of good judgment :)
Cheers!

Re:Fun Experiment (1)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518661)

I just tried a few times, and I got no adverts at all. The first search result was for ebay.com. (I'm in the US)

Re:Fun Experiment (1)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518827)

I waited a few minutes and tried again. I am now getting an eHarmony advert (You can't buy love on Ebay), and I clicked search 5 or 6 times and got this same advert.

It did make wonder what kind of bill these people would run up if everybody on Slashdot clicked-thru their advert.

Re:Fun Experiment (DOESN'T WORK ANYMORE) (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518773)

The advert is gone.

Someone in Mtn. View reading Slashdot must've fixed it (I'd like to think)

Cheers!

Hypocrisy? Or just sour grapes? (3, Insightful)

WidescreenFreak (830043) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518155)

Wait. Let me get this straight. eBay can deny their customers the ability to use alternate payment methods (Western Union, Google Checkout) in an anti-competitive move to try to force people to PayPal, which eBay owns. That's just a-OK. But if Google tries to take advantage of the opportunity to make people aware of Google Payments, which eBay is denying their paying sellers to implement, all hell breaks loose and eBay gets all upset!

Don't get me wrong. I like eBay and PayPal. I've never had a bad experience with either of them. But I found it to be more than coincidental that very shortly after eBay bought PayPal suddenly they have to ban Western Union and other payment services, citing "consumer fraud protection". Oh, f**king spare me!! I used Western Union several times for my auctions with no problems at all. Even eBay's sellers tools will reject the submission of an auction if the words "Western Union" are found in the description!

So, now Google decides to take advantage of an opportunity to make themselves known to eBay customers, and eBay gets all pissed off? Wow.

Screw Ebay, Google needs to start their (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518233)

own auction service. They also need a real estate service. DIY real estate is going to be big.

lots of ex-Microsofties work at Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19518353)

This move is right out of the Microsoft marketing playbook for upstaging rivals' big announcements and good press. Google as a company is a lot like what Microsoft was 15 years ago. It's interesting that more people haven't noticed this.

Greed Ego and Why Ebay Sucks (2, Insightful)

grapeape (137008) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518465)

http://news.com.com/Google+cancels+rain+on+eBays+p arade/2100-1024_3-6190905.html [com.com] goes into much more detail.

You have to love Ebay's comments as to why they dont allow Google Checkout, it reliability is unproven. Which of course translates into we dont get anything out of allowing their service and are much happier double-dipping on our "customers". Their real fear is that people would ditch paypal in droves, which is true, I dont know anyone who really likes paypal but its the only choice you have in dealing with Ebay. Ebay may be surprised to find that accepting other forms of payment would bring people back to ebay. I hated paypal so much after being ripped off for a second time that I just stopped using ebay completely, a better choice of payment options might tempt me back. I did still find myself led to Ebay by google often when searching for specific items.

I'd like to see the real numbers on traffice from google to ebay, I have seen it listed as much as 10% and as little as 2%. Still it looks like this hurts Ebay more than Google, I havent seen any numbers suggesting revenue from Ebay totalling more than 1-2%. If I was Google I'd stick to my guns and not allow them back until checkout was declared acceptable.

Is Ebay mad or just angry? (1)

icepick72 (834363) | more than 6 years ago | (#19518965)

mad enough to pull their ads with Google.


If they are "mad" to pull the adds then they have done so possibly error and definitely without the proper thought applied; however if they are "angry" about the situation then it seems like an understandable business move.

But where will I buy my search results now? (2, Funny)

glindsey (73730) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519009)

This is horrible! Now, when I search for "software interrupt," I won't see "Looking for software interrupt? Find new and used software interrupt and thousands more items on eBay!"

This is going to make things much more difficult.

BEWARE of Google Checkout (1)

ArhcAngel (247594) | more than 6 years ago | (#19519017)

this may be a little OT but.....
I was recently in the market for a big ticket item and once I found the one I wanted at the price I was willing to pay I began the checkout procedure. I had been seeing the Google Checkout buttons on many of the sites and the allure of getting a little bit more taken off my purchase convinced me to sign up. I mean HAY! this is Google after all so it must be great. I dotted my i's and crossed my t's and completed the purchase. Within minutes I received an email from Google Checkout that my transaction had been denied and that I needed to correct the information and resubmit. Turns out since it was such a large amount Amex flagged the charge and contacted me to confirm I had made it (Kudos to them I say). I authorized the charge and resubmitted it to Google Checkout. I got the same note saying the charge was refused. I called Amex and they informed me the charge was never resubmitted. I tried again with the same results. I tried to contact Google Checkout support only to discover that there is no such thing. If you try hard enough you can find a contact form and fill it out but all I ever got were canned responses about being sorry for the inconvenience. I opened a complaint with the BBB and the only response I got was more of the same canned "We're sorry for the inconvenience" emails with no assistance on fixing the problem. I ended up cancelling the order and going to a brick and mortar to get my item. I expect better from a Google property and I won't be using the service again anytime soon. I've had my problems with PayPal but at least I was able to correspond with some who could actually help me.

Re:BEWARE of Google Checkout (2, Informative)

D-Cypell (446534) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520109)

I understand this frustration. I used to work for a company that provided payment services and spent at least some of that time doing customer/technical support.

Our system had a similiar mechanism to google. If a particular card was rejected by the bank, our software would refuse to resubmit the card to the bank for a period of 24 hours. This sounds like an irritating policy I know (and I had to discuss the issue with many people in the same situation as yourself), however what I can tell you is that your case is 1% of the story. The remaining 99% are fraudsters who get hold of a card number and spank that card number against as many merchants as possible hoping it will go through. Often these numbers are posted online so instead of one frauster you get a couple of hundred. The lines that the banks use for CC auths are shockingly obsolete and very low bandwidth so were a finite resource for us, there was thousands of lines of defensive code to limit access to this bandwidth. I did suggest that maybe would should only block after x amount of failures, but the CTO didn't want to know!

What we would generally do is advise any cardholders to contact the merchant they were purchasing from, who had the facility to unblock a card manually.

Its a PITA, I know, and I do think there are ways for processors to make this less of a problem, but just so you understand why...

Advertising's effect is very easy to measure (1)

vorlich (972710) | more than 6 years ago | (#19520009)

1) compare your total quarterly sales (minus the cost of the ad campaign) after your ad campaign to the previous (ad-free) quarterly sales.
2) ???
3) Profit!

Promotion works in the same quantifiable way:
1) Clip out all of the newsmedia references to your product and multiply that media line rate by 2 and invoice client.
2) ???
3) Profit!
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