eBay has recently redesigned its popular online shopping site to feature image-heavy content in the hopes of creating a more user friendly feel, which it plans to gradually release into the U.S. market over the next 100 days. The goal with this redesign is to enable the customer to enjoy a more browser friendly experience, more like “window shopping.”
Here, shoppers are shown items based on things they’ve purchased in the past in an accompanying feed, which visually reflects the look of the popular Pinterest social site. This feed can conveniently be edited by the shopper, allowing them to add or remove categories to further personalize their shopping experience. Users are also able to follow the feeds of their friends, greatly expanding the potential of the discovery feed. According to eBay president Devin Wenig, these changes are part of a long-range effort to make shopping more convenient and intuitive for users.
This brings to the forefront shifts that are happening across small businesses in the world of e-commerce. With the incorporation of a Pinterest-like product discovery model, eBay is attempting to merge the process of discovery (usually limited to brick and mortar contexts) with the impulse purchase. Furthermore, eBay’s decision to incorporate a cleaner look on its site (with larger photos and a great deal more white space) reflects a recognition of a growing shift in the tastes of today’s younger users. This is an important adjustment for eBay, given that more consumers are opting for mobile internet experiences via smartphones and tablets.
Simultaneously with this site transformation, eBay also announced plans to launch a smartphone and tablet computer app called eBay Now, which connects customers with local partners and delivers goods to them within the hour. The physical launch for this service is based in San Francisco, with New York City expected to come soon. International launches of the redesigned site are expected to begin in early 2013.
Associated Press. “Ebay Redesign Borrows from Pinterest” Newser. 10/10/12.
Swartz, Jon. “EBay Launches Site Redesign, Pinterest-Like Feed” USA Today. 10/10/12.
Weber, Harrison. “eBay Announces Site Redesign, Pinterest-Like Discovery Feed, and the Debut of eBay Now in SF” The Next Web. 10/10/12.