With around 40 million monthly users, Ebay classifieds is one of the most visited websites in Germany. In the future, the portal will do without Ebay, even if the name of the online retailer will only disappear in three years.
In the financial world, the billion dollar sale of eBay’s advertising division to the Norwegian online marketplace Adevinta made big headlines just over a year ago. After all, the world’s largest operator of online classifieds portals put around 9.2 billion dollars in cash and stocks on the table. Two activist groups of investors had urged Ebay to sell larger businesses and cash in.
Sale still little known
However, the separation of Ebay and Ebay classified ads has not yet reached many users, although it has now been formally implemented.
Paul Heimann, who has been managing Ebay classifieds as managing director in Kleinmachnow just outside Berlin since the beginning of 2019, also noticed this: “Customers on the street sometimes say Ebay when they actually mean classifieds.” The name will change: “For a period of three years we will be able to use the brand name Ebay Classifieds as it is – with the logo and everything that goes with it.”
Many years ago not only Ebay but also numerous publishers recognized that the classifieds business would increasingly take place on the Internet. When eBay classified ads started over ten years ago, print advertising papers such as “Avis”, “The Hot Wire” or “Quoka” had their own online portals for a long time. Private classified ads in print were already at a low level back then and have continued to collapse over the past ten years and are often only relevant in niche areas.
On the other hand, professional portals such as the online job exchange Stepstone or Immowelt.de, which belong to the Axel Springer Verlag, are more successful. The fiercest competitor of Ebay classifieds is now the Facebook group, which operates a digital flea market with its marketplace. The exact number of users of the US marketplace in Germany is not publicly known, as Facebook does not communicate it.
Ebay classified ads now reach around 66 percent of German Internet users. In the initial phase, it was mainly private advertisements that attracted private interested parties. The portal now has more than 45 million ads that are constantly updated.
Every day around a million new ads are placed, which, unlike auctions and sales promotions on the site of the former parent company Ebay, are free.
More than just a flea market
The website is no longer just a digital flea market. Because even the professionals have discovered the portal. “Classified ads have an enormous reach,” says Heimann. “This is of course also highly relevant for people who sell real estate or cars, for example. This also applies to people who offer services, to craftsmen from painters to tilers. ”
The portal is No. 1 for privately owned used cars ahead of its sister company mobile.de and AutoScout24 and is one of the top 3 portals for real estate. Service packages for this professional target group have become the classifieds company’s most important source of income.