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eBay Is Drifting Away from Social Commerce

Most modern marketplaces are optimized for suggesting what customers might want to buy, but social commerce incentivizes to explore the marketplace with social features integrated inside. As eBay over time transitioned towards established sellers who sell in quantity, Alibaba's Taobao has continued to develop the true consumer-to-consumer exchange.

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Why Amazon and eBay Lost in China

China's e-commerce market represents almost a half of e-commerce sales worldwide, and practically all of it is on domestic websites like Tmall.com and JD.com. Most of the largest e-commerce markets in the world have Amazon and eBay with major market share, but not in China. Many would jump to the conclusion that China is a market favoring local players and US companies have no chance. But this is not the whole picture. Both Amazon and eBay could have had much more market share in China.

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eBay's Revamp is Taking Too Long

eBay's future, at least in public, has been about structured data, new user experience development and efforts around AI and machine learning. eBay has been talking about the structured data initiative since at least the start of 2015, so it's been two years, and there isn't yet much to show for it. We think the biggest issue with the structured data initiative is it is taking too long.

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India Is the Most Important E-Commerce Battleground to Watch

India will eventually become the second largest e-commerce market in the world, overtaking US in the next 10 or so years. There are four players in the Indian market: Flipkart, Amazon, Snapdeal, and Paytm. However the market is shifting towards only three: Flipkart-Snapdeal, Amazon, and Alibaba-Paytm. Recent Alibaba investments into Paytm took its stake to over 50%. And Flipkart-Snapdeal merger seems to be just a matter of time.

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A Growth Plan for eBay: Buy Etsy? No

There has been an article titled "A Growth Plan for eBay: Buy Etsy" circulating, which is quoting an analyst from Monness, Crespi, Hardt & Co. to have said that eBay should consider acquiring Etsy as a strategy for growth. The combined could company would have a larger product offering, and thus improve Ebay's chances in competition with Amazon. We think this is flawed idea.

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