3/30/10

eBay opens the Fashion Vault to offer limited-time sales

EBay yesterday launched its Fashion Vault, a hub for “flash sales” of high-end fashion brands, in the company’s latest attempt to lure consumers back to eBay with the kind of limited-time offers that have been a success for other online retailers.

Zak Stambor , Managing Editor

EBay Inc. yesterday launched its Fashion Vault, a hub for “flash sales” of high-end fashion brands, in the company’s latest attempt to lure consumers back to eBay with the kind of limited-time offers that have been a success for other online fashion retailers. EBay tested the program last fall.

The Fashion Vault features discounts of at least 50% for limited quantities of items for a limited window-typically between 48 and 72 hours, says an eBay spokeswoman.

That model is similar to Gilt Groupe Inc. and GSI Commerce Inc.’s Rue La La, both of which offer one-off sales of designer wares at large discounts.

EBay says it gives brands complete creative control to market their items on the site. For instance, French Connection Group PLC, the first retailer to offer a flash sale on eBay, features gallery-style layouts and items displayed on models. The time remaining in the sale is prominently displayed on both the Fashion Vault landing page and each product page.

The move is in line with eBay’s recent attempts to improve the shopping experience on its site. Other recent efforts include expanding its buyer protection program to all buyers, offering discounts on fixed-price listings to lure more merchants, including larger ones, to list lots of items at fixed price, and experimenting with improvements to its site search.

Topics:

business, business finance, Criticism of eBay, eBay, World Wide Web

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