In its second-largest acquisition, Amazon buys the company for $970 million.
All bags, all the time, but oh, what bags: that’s eBags.com. The largest bag destination on the web, eBags.com boasts a mind-boggling selection ranging from dainty silk evening purses to aluminum-clad briefcases, and it’s harnessed the technology to serve up instantly downloadable images-in many cases, multiple views-of each product.
“With 4,000 to choose from, it can be daunting,” declares Peter Cobb, co-founder and vice-president of marketing. But never fear. Ebags.com gets shoppers’ business by doing a stellar job of giving them easy ways to narrow the field that go far beyond the usual shop-by-category or by-price options. For example, the site can tell shoppers in a few clicks the dimensions of acceptable carry-ons at each airline-then immediately pop up thumbnails for every suitcase that meets the criteria.
While the many and rapid search options keep what Cobb calls “surgical shoppers” happy, eBags.com also spied a desire to linger and swap travel tales among its world-trekking customers. So this year, the site launched a travel community that now numbers 100,000. Editorial content including trip recommendations and photos from members pique the travel bug among visitors-and all with must-have travel gear ready to buy just a click of a mouse away.
Jupiter Media Metrix Digital Commerce Analyst Heather Dougherty likes the way eBags.com invites customers into the act. “One of my favorite things about eBags is the opportunity they give customers to provide a review of a product 30 days after purchase. That’s a great customer service feature,” she says. In fact, 30% of customers invited to review a product in return for a discount on a future purchase do so. And the uncensored reviews posted on the site rank second only to selection in customers’ decision to buy from eBags.com.
Monthly visitors: 1 million
Went live: March 1999
Design by: In-house
OS: Microsoft NT
E-C Software: Cold Fusion