In 1995,to help his girlfriend buy and sell PEZ dispensers,Pierre Omidyar created eBay.com in his San Jose living room.Since then,guided by the vision of former president and CEO Meg Whitman,eBay has become a true cultural phenomenon,by far the largest person-to-person trading company on the Internet.
Using an auction format,sellers list items and buyers bid on them.Each eBay item has its own auction;buyers can choose the price they are willing to pay by bidding on the item or they can purchase those items listed as “Buy It Now.”It’s the equivalent of an online garage sale,yard sale,flea market,or estate auction,presented through a business model that fulfills eBay’s vision of connecting people.On any given day,113 million concurrent listings are available through auction-style and fixed-priced events,representing the activity of 86.3 million active members world wide.
eBay generates revenue with:
- seller listing fees
- charges for additional listing options and enhancements like bold type
- customization options (colors,borders,and other highlight features) for auction presentations
- sales fees,generally ranging between 1.25 and 5 percent of the closing auction price
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