eBay Announces Aggressive Expansion Of Same-Day Delivery
By Anna Rose Welch, associate editor
eBay expanding eBay Now in the US and UK, increases competition with Amazon
On Tuesday, eBay announced it will be expanding its same-day delivery service, eBay Now, to 25 more cities in the next year, as well as launching several new features that will help personalize customer browsing. The company began its expansion on Tuesday, with eBay Now going live in Chicago. In the next few weeks, Dallas will also receive the service. These cities will join the ranks of New York and San Francisco, which have been offering the same-day delivery service for about a year.
Future expansions include London, a move abroad that will be supported with the help of London-based delivery platform, Shutl. eBay president Devin Wenig announced that eBay is purchasing Shutl to help eBay Now “scale quickly and cost effectively around the country and around the world.” eBay has also partnered with Argos Click & Collect in order to meet the rising demand for internet shopping in the UK. This trial partnership, which has expanded the company’s presence in the UK, allows the UK’s 18 million active eBay users to order through 50 eBay merchants and collect the items at any of Argos’ 150 locations.
Better Customer Experience Is The Driving ForceBehind Initiatives
eBay Now was first launched in San Francisco last year. The service allows customers to order and have items delivered straight to their door from various retailers, including Best Buy, Finish Line, Home Depot, Macy’s, Target, and Toys R Us, among others. Customers qualify for the service by spending at least $25 dollars on merchandise and pay a $5 dollar delivery fee to have the order arrive in an hour or less. Customers can make these payments using PayPal or credit card. In a move to make the experience even simpler for customers, eBay recently made it possible for customers to place local orders on the main eBay site, rather than making customers order through a separate site and app.
Another important advancement eBay plans to make available for eBay Now customers is scheduled shipping. eBay CTO, Mark Carges, says that scheduling deliveries is “a big requirement we hear loud and clear.” This particular service that would enable customers to receive purchases at a time that’s most convenient for them would be an important step for the company to prove its dedication to providing customers with a personalized shopping experience.
Expansion And Innovation Essential To Remain Competitive
Wenig says of all the new enhancements: “The distinction between offline and online shopping continues to blur. At eBay, we continue to find new ways to connect buyers and sellers. Traditional retail isn’t going away — it is transforming. Smart retailers are innovating, reimagining the store and what it means to shop.”
Indeed, eBay is not the only online retailer concerned with transforming the shopping experience for its customers. With this expansion, eBay will be in direct competition with online giant, Amazon, which already offers same-day delivery and locker pick-up services in the US and UK. Considering that Google is also exploring a similar program in San Francisco, this expansion is well timed to keep eBay’s online presence strong in the wake of growing competition.