eBay Advertising has soft-launched a new platform designed to help local firms reach new customers and build their businesses by serving their own ads and offering their services to relevant eBay customers in their area.
Dubbed “eBay Local Services Ads”, the scheme is initially being piloted in the UK, with Germany also trialling it this month.
With access to one of the world’s largest shopper audiences, the company claims that businesses from plumbers and hairdressers to caterers and DJs will be able to expand their reach and effectively target customers using eBay’s wealth of data and insights on customer search and purchase behaviour.
They will also able to engage shoppers earlier in the shopper journey – putting their business in front of people who might not currently be searching for that service, but could be interested in the near future.
The firm insists that by showing users ads for services that are relevant to the products they are viewing it will boost the customer experience by giving them easy access to services they are are actually likely to need, and in turn help to convert more sales for its sellers. For instance, if an eBay user is searching for an American-style fridge, they could be shown an ad for the services of a local plumber, breaking down a barrier to purchase.
eBay EU director of revenue labs Bert Bassett, who has headed up the project, said: “eBay wants to become a marketplace for services as well as products – and we think that this is a great place to start. Our Local Services Ads will particularly help small service-based businesses to use our inventory to target local, relevant customers. And crucially, we’re helping them reach users when they’re already in a buying mood, and when we know they’re in the market for a particular service, to deliver maximum ROI.”
Businesses will be able to use the platform by signing up for an account on the ebaylocalservices.com website. They will have the option to upload their own ads to the self-serve platform, or alternatively use a standard native format supplied by eBay. They will be able to choose who they want to target, segmenting their audience by product category and searched keywords on eBay, as well as by location and various demographic categories, and then be able to choose where on eBay’s website they want their ad to be placed.
Customers will have access to a detailed FAQ, tutorial videos and webinars, and will be able to contact support services online with any questions.
eBay Advertising’s Local Services platform is powered by DanAds, a provider of white label customised self-serve advertising platforms for publishers. eBay Advertising is currently offering a £50 discount on first-time orders over £70. Businesses can access the discount by using the promo code ‘JUNE50’, valid until June 20.
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