August 17, 2009, 12:00 AM

eBay opens an app store

Online Marketplace eBay is making available this week the first dozen applications from outside providers designed to help eBay sellers manage their orders. Merchants can find and subscribe to the applications at my.ebay.com.

Katie Evans

Managing Editor, International Research

Online Marketplace eBay has added its first third-party applications to its Selling Manager and Selling Manager Pro platforms that offer services from outside providers designed to help eBay sellers manage their orders. Merchants can access the applications at my.ebay.com. There, they can purchase subscriptions to tools and services that are embedded directly into the eBay platform.

The new services are the first of a dozen that will be rolled out over the next week and include:

  • Terapeak: which provides merchants with market research to help them decide what to sell, develop selling strategies and determine the value of their items.

  • HostedSupport: a customer support tool that helps merchants answer questions shoppers have about their listings. The tool enables merchants to link shoppers to their FAQs or set up auto-response messaging when the shopper clicks the “Ask a question” link in their listings.
  • ahTEXT: a service that sends merchants text messages when buyers take such actions as ask a question, make an offer, buy an item, leave feedback or file a dispute.

“EBay’s Selling Manager Applications Platform is an app store for eBay sellers that makes it easy to find and subscribe to tools that can help our customers increase the efficiency and velocity of their businesses on eBay,” says Kumar Kandaswamy, senior manager, eBay Platform.

In April, eBay announced that it would no longer charge sellers to subscribe to Selling Manager Platform, making it an open platform where developers could embed their applications into my.ebay.com, allowing them to connect with sellers directly.

EBay manages the billing on behalf of approved third-party developers. EBay says it expects the program to grow to offer services to help merchants with shipping, inventory management, sales tracking and customer support.

All applications are free for sellers to try. Sellers can access the applications directory for Selling Manager and Selling Manager Pro at http://applications.ebay.com/. EBay’s Selling Manager and Selling Manager Pro have 270,000 active subscribers in the U.S. and the tools can be accessed at http://pages.ebay.com/selling_manager and http://pages.ebay.com/selling_manager_pro.

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