John Donahoe, CEO, eBay, delivered a keynote at Open Mobile Summit this morning. He opened his speech by saying that “there will be more changes on how consumer shop and pay in the next three years than there have been in the past twenty. These changes will be technology-enabled and there will be winners and losers.”
Social is coming to commerce
The iPad is what he calls an “inflexion”: it has dramatically changed how people are consuming media even if the device is fairly new. The inflexions impacting commerce are: mobile – the enabler, local, digital – impacting the media, and social. Social is really influencing commerce, you go to the mall with your family and it is coming online.
E-commerce and retail are now becoming one
e-commerce is a $350 billion business, it represents 4% of total retail and it is losing its “e”: retail and e-commerce are now becoming one, because the line between online and offline is blurring and retailers with brick and mortar stores need to integrate mobile commerce offering to their on-site customer experience. For almost half of all retail transaction last year, the consumers have accessed the web for one reason or another during their shopping experience.
The future is about commerce, not e-commerce or retail, because consumers do not make the distinction between the two. Consumers now want to get what they want, when they want it, how they want it on their terms.
X.commerce: eBay is a platform that enables commerce – it is not a retailer
The implication for retailers is to go multichannel. If people are now shopping from their mobile devices, retailers need to be there. Groupon, Living Social, Facebook and twitter are now driving sales, and most retailers are not technology companies.
Any large national chain knows what product was bought in what store and when, but they do not know who their customers are because their credit cards readers are not tied to their CRM system, unlike Amazon, who knows everything. Retailers are looking to get there.
John Donahoe stated that eBay’s platform is designed to enable commerce, more specifically it aims to provide customers with what they want, when they want it, how they want it. And the company will enable merchants to compete in this market; eBay is a platform not a retailer.
The x.commerce platform and the x.com website allow developers to build application dedicated to online commerce.
Mobile and new user interface concepts are enabling online commerce and increase consumer engagement
Mobile is just another device to access the web, and that tool is becoming more powerful every year. This year $5 billion of transaction will close on eBay mobile this year and 3.5 billion of payment will be made on Paypal mobile. We had 66 million download of eBay mobile in the past 3 years and we sell 2600 car a week on mobile.
eBay built an app that allows people to order car parts just by taking a picture of it while fixing the car. Additionally, John Donahoe explained that eBay is working on a visual recognition engine to allow people to shop by searching or shooting photos. The last example he gave to demonstrate how changes occur in the shopping experience was the ability for mobile users to buy a pizza in a Pizza Express directly using Paypal mobile to avoid standing in line.
Ebay’s prospective on mobile is not to think about it as incremental but to take it as another stream or device in a consumer shopping experience that makes him or her more engaged.
“Mobile is driving consumer engagement and it is driving customer value” says Donahoe.
“We believe that there will be more changes on how consumer shop and pay in the next three years than there have been in the past ten or twenty years, consumers are in charge, technology enables it and eBay we are simply a technology platform that helps consumers to get what they want, when they want it, how they want it and helps merchant compete in this new commerce environment and we will never compete with them.” said John Donahoe to close his keynote.