Amazon’s Diverse Seller Push Upsets Ebay

By CultureBanx Team

  • African American buying power will rise to $1.54T by 2022

  • Amazon captures one in every two dollars spent on online retail in the U.S.

The battle for sellers has become more intense between e-commerce giants eBay (EBAY +1.05%) and Amazon (AMZN -1.34%). In a cease and desist letter sent to rival Amazon, eBay alleged they used “unlawful” attempts to poach sellers by using its internal message system. With African Americans spending $1.3 trillion annually there is a lot of money at stake for both of these marketplace platforms.

Why This Matters: Ebay has six million sellers in the U.S. and 19% of them are minorities. Amazon would like to play a more prominent role with diverse sellers as a way to tap into the immense spending power of black people. They over-index against the total U.S. population for dollars per buyer spent online in the majority of grocery categories, according to Nielsen.

Amazon captures one in every two dollars spent on online retail in the U.S.

Ebay’s internal probe was launched after an one of its sellers alerted the company they had been contacted by an Amazon employee, who suggested they abandon eBay and instead sell via its platform. The Wall Street Journal reported that in order to slide under eBay’s radar, messages sent by Amazon sales people were generic and frequently used hyphens or periods between letters to describe the rival company, including a-m-a-z-o-n or A.M.Z.N.

Amazon captures one in every two dollars spent on online retail in the U.S., according to research group eMarketer. The Selig Center estimates that the nation’s African American buying power will rise to $1.54 trillion by 2022, driven by population increase, income and education. These figures haven’t gone unnoticed by either company as they both race for dominance with this demographic.

Situational Awareness: Amazon has more customers, but some sellers still prefer eBay since it doesn’t compete against them for sales. Also, Amazon takes a cut of nearly 15% of each sale and collects additional fees from sellers for things like advertising. The ability to communicate directly with buyers is also an attractive option for many eBay marketplace sellers.

CBx Vibe:Mean Mug” Yung Bans