The Professional eBay Sellers Alliance (PESA) held its semi-annual gather in San Francisco this past week. The PESA Summit 2006 was a huge success with many of eBay’s largest sellers in attendance in addition to many of the most important companies in ecommerce. buySAFE has sponsored every PESA Summit since the group’s inception in 2004.
Although the group includes eBay in its name, most of these merchants are actually multi-channel retailers seeking to sell product whereever they can make reasonable profits. These days, that actually means eBay sellers want to sell off eBay. AuctionBytes has recently produced some very interesting research on the trend to move beyond eBay. ChannelAdvisor‘s Scot Wingo covered eBay’s challenges on his blog last week as well I will be writing more about this trend over the coming days because it is obviously important for all of us in ecommerce.
One of this year’s attendees was Google, and they had welcome news for merchants. Google is planning to roll out a product search feature this holiday season. After users do a search on Google, they will be presented with another search box that will enable users to refine their search for products listed in Google Base. This is big news.
As buySAFE has learned quite well on Overstock.com, getting in the main search process flow can mean big time results. For Bonded Sellers selling on Overstock.com Auctions, this has certainly proven to be true.
Google’s announcement also means that Froogle is likely to be deemphasized in the future. Although Froogle continues to be a solid comparison search channel, it hasn’t met expectations so far (Shopzilla continues to be the big leader amongst the CSPs).
During the holiday season, I will share additional insights with you into what we are hearing from buySAFE’s customers about the Google Product Search. I am pleased to see alternatives to eBay continue to gain traction. The competition is good for ecommerce, and it is definitely good for companies that currently have to rely on eBay for their business. That has proven to be a risky proposition for many.