New-look eBay moves toward social, mobile

EBay unveiled a new look for its website Wednesday inspired by social networks, giving consumers personalized shopping suggestions and a new emphasis on mobile Internet.

The ecommerce giant with 105 million active users will start giving its users a "newsfeed" and a "personalized homepage" with recommendations based on a user's shopping history or personal interests.

The liberal use of photos on the revamped eBay site seems to mimic the fast-growing social network, Pinterest. The eBay newsfeed appears inspired by Facebook and users will also get a Twitter-like option to "follow" products or brands.

"We're delivering a cleaner, contemporary look and feel; a more intuitive, convenient way to browse, decide and buy -- both globally and locally; and a new personal way to curate your own shopping experience and discover items perfect for you," eBay president Devin Wenig said.

The site will have "more inviting pictures" and allow users to click on an item and get key details, and then complete a purchase in as little as two clicks.

Sellers on eBay will be able to link their Facebook fan or profile page, and embed YouTube videos.

"These changes and more reflect the new eBay and our evolution as a marketplace that connects the world to the things they need and love -- anytime, anywhere" said Wenig.

Wenig said the "new eBay" would be increasingly global and mobile, reflecting consumer trends.

"In a connected commerce world, consumers shouldn't care whether the product they want is at a neighborhood store, or in a shopkeeper's window halfway around the world," he said.

"The future of commerce is mobile. It's increasingly multichannel via any connected screen. Consumers want to move seamlessly across devices, through any shopping environment."

Shares in eBay rose 0.15 percent to $46.29 in midday trade.

EBay is set to release quarterly earnings next week. The online auction had net income in the past quarter of $692 million on revenue that rose 23 percent to $3.4 billion.

The company said in July it expected mobile volume from eBay and its PayPal unit to each hit $10 billion in 2012 -- more than double the amount in 2011.

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