eBay continues to shine the limelight on mobile commerce
For several years, eBay has dominated the e-commerce scene, with only Amazon considered to be its most significant competitor. The online retailer has put a great deal of emphasis in improving the online shopping experience of consumers and has recently begun to embrace more commerce in an aggressive fashion. Indeed, eBay anticipates that mobile commerce will account for a significant portion of its sales in the coming years. This week, CEO John Donahoe outlined plans to take the company in a relatively new direction: Offline commerce.
Retailer aims to blur the lines between physical and digital commerce
Donahoe is eager to bridge the gap between the digital and physical worlds when it comes to commerce. This has been accomplished to some degree by eBay already through the adoption of mobile commerce. Consumers shopping for products from their mobile devices have shown how blurry the lines between physical and digital retail have become. This summer, eBay plans to partner with several retailers in order to make mobile commerce have an even more tangible presence in the real world.
Pop up shops gaining notice
According to Donahoe, eBay will be working to support “pop up” shops this year. The idea behind pop up shops is somewhat simple: A store front that can be located anywhere and sell products online to those using mobile devices. These shops are becoming more popular in the retail industry, especially when it comes to retailers trying to reach out to busy consumers. In 2011, UK retailer Tesco created a pop up shop in South Korea, where QR codes where used to sell products to consumers using public transit. eBay has plans to follow in Tesco’s footsteps to some degree.
New York may soon have new pop up shops
The online retailer will be leveraging the power of QR codes in order to sell products. These codes can be scanned by a mobile device to initiate a mobile transaction. The products are then delivered to a consumer’s home or elsewhere as defined by the customer. PayPal and eBay already have strong ties to several physical retailers and expect that this initiative will be well received. The retailer plans to launch this new initiative this year in New York.