The conference room we spent our day in was called Homestead. I'm thinking it had something to do with this decor, which presumably was sourced off eBay. (I am not sure that Pennsylvania Dutch is really Eileen or Sheila's scene.) In its 15 year history, eBay has grown like crazy. There are all sorts of phenomenal statistics to learn: 92 million active customers, $57 billion in merch sold last year, highest one-item sale ever was $4.9 million, Rachael's first eBay purchase was a car. I think all of us oohed and aahed most over the fact that every 3 seconds, a pair of shoes is sold on eBay. Whoa.
Predictably, there is a lot going on at eBay and we had an SEO tutorial from Dennis Goedegebuure, eBay's Director of SEO, a presentation by their corporate blogger, and a whirlwind overview of several new programs they're emphasizing for the holidays. The biggie is their Love to Give campaign, featuring the ever-enchanting Samantha Bee as a mom-correspondent probing the "Unwrap Attack" phenomenon in the holiday field of gift-giving battle. The Love to Give webisodes are all really funny but this one is my current favorite. Believe me when I tell you that it brought all of us in the Homestead room to tears with laughter and bizarro mommy hormones.
She is as hi-la-ri-ous in person as one might assume and also super sweet, being Canadian and all… Yes, we got to meet Samantha Bee, famous person from the world of traditional media. In fact, we got to film holiday greetings for our blogs with her and even ride in a prop sleigh. Thanks, eBay! (I will be posting that video when it gets edited, hopefully with some CGI help for my oddly speckled skin and wandering eyes. You should keep an eye out because there will be a very special holiday giveaway for my readers along with it. Be forewarned!) You might also want to create your own Unwrap Attack on Facebook. It's addictive.
If you squint, you can see Samantha Bee!
eBay Green Team (which was founded in 2005 over a pizza) introduced us to some really great new features that I suspect we will be taking advantage of this holiday season, eBay Instant Sale and The eBay Box. We all have drawers full of old phones and cameras gathering dust that could pad our PayPal accounts so we were particularly interested in the eBay Instant Sale, a program that aims to repurpose all of your cast-aside gadgets and gizmos, wipe them clean and pay you for them. Score!
The eBay Box is a way to simply, eco-consciously ship goods. It's a super durable cardboard box designed to be reusable, over and over again, which is fantastic for a marketplace like eBay where many sellers are also buyers and vice-versa. It is also fantastically adorable:
Check out the extra-cute word bubbles where you can leave messages for the next user!
The eBay Box is currently in a pilot testing phase and is available in three sizes. Look for it shipping from your favorite sellers soon and learn more about its creation. I love the innovation behind this project and behind the whole eBay Green Team.
I am also pretty excited about eBay Group Gifts, which should come in handy this holiday season. They use Buy It Now and PayPal to create a hassle-free way for multiple givers to chip in for a for a single gift recipient. No more trying to squeeze pennies from other parents in the carpool lane for a teacher gift, now you can do it all via email. Or, better yet, via Facebook Connect. It seems like eBay Group Gifts would also be a great way for siblings to purchase one big present instead of little novelty items for their parents. Nice.
I'm going to have to write a separate post about the loveliness of our hotel, in an effort to keep this one relatively short and pertinent. And don't forget to come back in a week or so for a super-exciting Unwrap Attack and eBay giveaway for one of my readers!
Disclosure: In accordance to the FTC Guidelines and WOMMA Code of Ethics, I am disclosing that my time, travel and accommodations have been compensated by eBay for my participation in the Love to Give campaign. Although I have a material connection to eBay, any publicly stated opinions of eBay remain my own– formed over the last decade or so, trolling the web looking for cool stuff and finding much of it on eBay.