Will Amazon Beat eBay In Australia?

Liz Morton
Liz Morton


UPDATE 2-7-24

A year and a half later, we can finally put this one to rest - Amazon has surpassed eBay to become the top ecommerce shopping destination in Australia!

Amazon Surpasses eBay as Leading Australian Marketplace for First Time - PR Newswire APAC
MELBOURNE, Australia, Feb. 7, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Amazon Surpasses eBay as Leading Australian Marketplace for First Time

MELBOURNE, Australia, Feb. 7, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- In an industry first, Amazon has overtaken eBay to become the leading marketplace in Australia according to new research from global ecommerce accelerator, Pattern.

Marketplace shopping has also become mainstream in Australia, with research highlighting 93% of people shopped on a marketplace in 2023 and 94% plan to buy from platforms like Amazon, Catch, Temu, and eBay over the coming year.

The findings were revealed as part of Pattern's sixth annual 'Marketplace Consumer Trends Report – 2024,' which researched Australian shoppers' changing ecommerce habits and the latest marketplace trends.

Australian marketplace sector experiences major disruption

The Australian marketplace sector is expanding and being disrupted. Emerging platforms Temu and Shein have rapidly gained significant market share, with 25% of shoppers buying from Temu and 21% from Shein, while established platforms like Catch and eBay underperformed in 2023.

Amazon has grown to become the dominant local marketplace and is projected to reach $5.5 billion in Australian turnover by the end of the current financial year. Amazon now outperforms all other marketplaces on average monthly site visits, including eBay by a significant 48% over the last three months of 2023, to achieve an average of 75.2 million monthly site visits.

"New marketplace entrants into Australia, like Temu, are shaking-up the sector and quickly attracting consumer interest. However, it's expected that Amazon's leading market position will only grow, as the platform wins shoppers with competitive prices, the widest product range and ease-of-use shopping via Prime," said Merline McGregor, General Manager, Pattern Australia.

Amazon is also on track to achieve the highest growth rate of any marketplace in 2024, with 63% of Australians planning on buying from the site (+6% annual growth) compared to a projected 8% decrease in people planning to buy from eBay. Notably, 80% of shoppers who were in the $200k income bracket bought on Amazon, reflecting its strong reach among higher-income consumers.

It's been a rough couple weeks for eBay with a mass layoff announcement, $3 Million criminal settlement in the 2019 cyberstalking scandal, historic $59 Million settlement with the DEA related to pill presses sold on the platform in violation of the Control Substances Act, and more.

Stay tuned to see how eBay fared globally compared to Amazon for Q4 and full year 2023 when they report earnings on February 27!

Here in the US it's been a foregone conclusion for quite some time that Amazon rules the ecommerce game, but historically that hasn't been the case in Australia.

Could that be changing? Jarden analyst Ben Gilbert seems to think so!

Amazon poised to dethrone Ebay as Australia’s top online retailer
Australia’s e-commerce industry is standing at the precipice of a monumental shift, as new data predicts Amazon is on track to dethrone Ebay.

The American e-commerce giant, which launched in Australia just seven years ago, has been rapidly outmuscling competitors with faster delivery times and local growth in its loyalty scheme, Amazon Prime, Jarden analyst Ben Gilbert said in research published on Friday.

Traffic to Amazon’s website has grown more than 20 per cent in the past year, while key rivals eBay, Ozbargain and Gumtree have seen hardly any growth or even negative growth in the same period.

If these trends persist Amazon will overtake eBay as the No.1 retail website in Australia, measured by online visitors, Mr Gilbert said...

...“Amazon has been the biggest mover this year, lifting share by more than 40 per cent since December to July,” Mr Gilbert said.

“Amazon.com.au [is set to] overtake eBay as the No.1 retail site in Australia in the next 12 months, based on the current run-rate.”

Other experts point to key differences in user experience as a driving force for Amazon's growth and/or eBay's stagnation in this market.

University of Tasmania senior lecturer and retail expert Louise Grimmer said Amazon is winning favour among Australian customers with a user-friendly website and a growing product range.

“Customers find it easy to navigate their way through the platform – eBay is not up to scratch in this area,” Dr Grimmer said.

“Arguably the eBay platform is quite confusing, it appears a little ‘dated’ and I think it is quite overwhelming for many users.”

eBay's user un-friendliness and "dated" appearance aren't limited to the Australian site of course, plenty of buyers and sellers across the world will agree it's a global issue that CEO Jamie Iannone's tech led reimagination of the platform has so far been unsuccessful in solving.

eBay Search - 0 Results Found, No Promoted Listings?
eBay search has been problematic for years - has CEO Jamie Iannone’s tech-led reimagination made it better or worse?

The news of eBay's quickly shrinking dominance of the Australian market comes at an interesting time, as SVP International Joo Man Park (who was responsible for overseeing Australia, China cross-border trade & Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa markets) has left the company.

More eBay Exec Losses - SVP International Joo Man Park Steps Down
The eBay executive losses continue as it appears SVP International Joo Man Park has left the company.

Previously eBay had separate leadership roles for Americas, Europe and International, but that has now all been consolidated under Jordan Sweetnam, previously SVP GM Americas now SVP Global Markets covering all domestic and international operations.

eBay is increasingly becoming a much smaller player in global ecommerce than they once were and it looks like they're going the route of cutbacks and consolidation as they resign themselves to that fate rather than making needed changes and investments to achieve real growth and long term stability.


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Liz Morton is a seasoned ecommerce pro with 17 years of online marketplace sales experience, providing commentary, analysis & news about eBay, Etsy, Amazon, Shopify & more at Value Added Resource!

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