Inside Retail: What are your expectations for the year ahead? David Ramadge: As inflation and interest rates continue to rise, we are starting to see these macroeconomic factors affect the industry. Value will be a top priority for consumers throughout 2023 and buyers will be increasingly savvy about finding the best savings. In 2022, some retailers overstocked their products so the start of 2023 will see retailers selling through their remaining goods and offering steep discounts to
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nts to move merchandise. This environment of price fluctuations will create challenges for SME retailers as they try to stay competitive and navigate pricing while they sell their excess stock.
We will see pockets of resilience in categories consumers are passionate about, such as car parts, luxury handbags, and sneakers, and we expect these to grow.
The circular economy will play an increasingly important role in 2023 as Australians become more environmentally conscious and Gen Z will drive the trend. We expect pre-loved to become part of the mainstream as consumers make more sustainable purchase decisions.
IR: Are there any major projects or initiatives in the works?
DR: Looking ahead, we know that trust remains crucial to both our buyers and sellers. We will continue to invest in trust initiatives, like Ebay’s Authenticity Guarantee and Money Back Guarantee, while improving selling tools that will enhance the experience for buyers and sellers.
Ebay partners with sellers, it does not compete with them – we are a platform for sellers, by sellers. In 2023, we’re looking at finding more ways to enhance our connection with the seller community, enabling people to grow and scale their businesses with helpful resources and sharing their inspirational success stories.
IR: Are there any potential challenges on your radar?
DR: Regulators in Australia and around the world are continuing to focus on issues like data protection, privacy, and consumer safety, which is something we welcome and take extremely seriously. While any change can complicate operations, we find that when these issues emerge, consumers default to what they know and trust.
With an established presence in the Australian market for over 20 years, Ebay has built trust, credibility and expertise in the market and is committed to growing economic opportunity for B2B, B2C and consumer-to-consumer business alike. We will continue to invest and innovate to ensure buyers and sellers can transact with confidence online and drive steady innovation.
IR: Looking back on 2022, what were some of the biggest obstacles you faced?
DR: In 2022, we saw that trust continued to be important for our customers and that shoppers were engaging more with initiatives like Ebay’s Authenticity Guarantee, available on sneakers and luxury handbags. Trust, along with safety and protection for our buyers and sellers, will remain paramount.
Over the last two years, Ebay Australia has been working hard to become the platform of choice for sellers, designed by sellers. To better connect with our seller community, we co-created a seller advisory panel, which enables us to get direct, regular feedback from the community so we can continue to enhance the seller experience. Our seller Net Promoter Score has jumped 20 points in just a year. While we’re pleased with what the team has achieved in partnership with the panel, we can’t wait to see how we can continue to grow our partnership with our sellers and continue showing up in better ways for our seller community.
IR: What was the biggest highlight of 2022 for Ebay?
DR: In addition to the launch of our Authenticity Guarantee service on sneakers and handbags, we also launched a Fitment Guarantee for car parts, to help Australians find and buy parts compatible with their car.
In the current climate of increasing scams and fear about safety online, the most important things we continue to invest in are safety, protection, and trust. If you buy or sell on Ebay, you will be protected with Ebay’s Money Back Guarantee.
Our protection for both our buyers and sellers makes Ebay the perfect place to buy and sell things people love and are passionate about.
IR: Businesses are preparing for a possible recession, rising inflation and supply-chain bottlenecks in 2023. How do you plan to insulate Ebay from all these factors?
DR: Ebay offers everything from new, to pre-loved and refurbished, and that diversification is extremely valuable in times of economic shifts. Having that full spectrum of product offerings puts Ebay in a good position to cater to the changing demands of consumers.
This article was originally published in the 2023 Australian Retail Outlook, powered by KPMG. Download here.