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Ebay to Take on Poshmark, The RealReal for Luxury Resale Spend 

eBay, luxury, reCommerce, retail

In a bid to draw consumers to its eCommerce platform, eBay is exploring new retail avenues.

The online retailer served as a go-to site for online shopping in the past, offering a wide range of products, from rare collectibles to everyday items. However, as eCommerce evolved, eBay lost market share to rivals like Amazon. To adapt, eBay shifted from its original auction-focused model to include more fixed-price listings. 

Now, eBay is venturing into the luxury resale market, bumping against niche competitors like Poshmark and The RealReal, both of which offer platforms for buying and selling second-hand luxury items. 

EBay has launched a luxury consignment service through a curated collection by Jenna Lyons, according to a Dec. 12 press release. Lyons, known for her role on the Real Housewives of New York and as the former creative director at J. Crew, has partnered with eBay to showcase high-end handbags, including items from her own collection like Celine, Louis Vuitton and Miu Miu. 

As part of this foray into luxury reCommerce, eBay has rolled out Luxe Line, a mobile consignment concierge that allows consumers to sell or buy luxury items in a physical location. 

EBay also introduced its Certified by Brand luxury resale program in April, allowing brands to verify pre-owned items like watches, handbags and jewelry. And, as part of a move to go offline, eBay in November launched “Canal Street Wear,” a pop-up shop in New York, showcasing streetwear from top-rated eBay sellers, featuring brands like New Balance, Louis Vuitton, Bape and Nike. 

“Our consignment service is designed to help to remove the typical barriers to selling pre-owned items,” said Tirath Kamdar, global general manager of luxury at eBay, in a press release announcing the launch of Luxe Line. “The Luxe Line gives sellers and shoppers a way to test out our new service in real life with the same trusted experts that eBay works with for the online experience.” 

Read more: EBay Rolls Out Branded Buses to Promote Consignment Service 

EBay’s Continued Bid on Luxury 

Even despite the April shutdown of Cudoni, a luxury resale platform backed by eBay, eBay has continued to double down in the space.  

Following the shuttering of Cudoni, investors were concerned regarding eBay’s ability to increase its market share in the used luxury sector. Nevertheless, in its April earnings call, eBay doubled down on its commitment to intensifying efforts in this category despite the setback. The company disclosed a revenue of $2.5 billion, reflecting a 1% increase on an as-reported basis. 

See also: eBay-Backed Cudoni Shuts Down, Highlighting Growing Competition in Luxury Resale    

In the summer of 2021, eBay introduced an authentication service for luxury goods as part of its guarantee program. This service covered both new and pre-owned handbags from 16 popular luxury brands like Saint Laurent, Gucci, Celine and Balenciaga.  

Charis Márquez, eBay’s vice president of fashion, highlighted how the authenticity guarantee has transformed the way people buy and sell luxury items on eBay. 

To ensure authenticity, eBay announced that all qualifying handbags sold for over $500 in the U.S. would undergo a rigorous authentication process, which involves a thorough physical inspection using advanced technical equipment. 

“Demand for luxury items on eBay is soaring — an iconic Hermes Birkin bag was recently sold for $98,000 and our watches business doubled last quarter, said Kamdar in 2021. “People come to the marketplace knowing that they’ll find the designers and items that they’re coveting. And now, eBay is delivering a more seamless and accessible experience that lets shoppers buy and sellers sell luxury handbags with total confidence.” 

EBay has also extended its authentication process to other high-value items like shoes. 

In 2022, eBay extended its authenticity guarantee to U.K. shoppers. At the time, eBay said in a press release that a handbag was being sold on its platform every 15 seconds, with nearly two-thirds of the handbags listed being pre-owned. 

Is eBay the New Luxury destination? 

While the company has yet to reveal specific numbers within this category, the online platform did note in its latest quarterly earnings report that its investments in artificial intelligence (AI) is leading to happier customers.  

More here: AI Upgrades Are Creating Happy Customers, eBay Says 

More specifically, customers are more satisfied with eBay’s shipping capabilities.   

“In Q4 we deployed a new machine learning model for estimated delivery date from the U.S. and select international markets, enabling us to make more accurate delivery predictions to buyers,” said Jamie Iannone, CEO of eBay, said in November during an earnings call. 

In the United States, this approach resulted in an approximately 1.5-day reduction in the average delivery estimate for all domestic listings. 

Moreover, eBay implemented a model specifically for eligible authenticity guarantee products, leading to an average reduction of approximately two days for U.S. listings. 

Among eBay’s AI integrations is an image-based listing tool. According to a September report by PYMNTS, this tool allows sellers to take or upload a photo using the eBay app, with AI automatically populating item details. Through one photo, the AI generates titles, descriptions and information such as product release dates, categories, sub-categories, listing prices and shipping costs.   

The image-based listing tool has already undergone a beta release for employees, and there are plans to make it available to the public in the coming months. 

Read more: eBay to Add AI-Powered Image-Based Listing Tool   

That said, eBay has yet to reveal actual performance numbers within luxury.