July 25, 2005, 12:00 AM

724,000 people derive some or all income from eBay, says new survey

A new survey by ACNielsen for eBay reports that 724,000 Americans derive their primary or secondary income from eBay, a group which eBay characterizes as “professional eBay sellers.”

Since eBay became more than just an online garage sale, many retail industry observers have wondered just how important eBay is as a selling force. A new survey by ACNielsen International Research for eBay provides an answer: very important. The survey reports that 724,000 Americans derive their primary or secondary income from eBay, a group which eBay characterizes as “professional eBay sellers.” Another 1.5 million say they supplement their income by selling on eBay.

In the first six months of 2005, eBay members in the U.S. sold merchandise worth approximately $10.6 billion.

The number of eBay entrepreneurs in the U.S. has increased 68% since the last comparable study in 2003, when 430,000 Americans said they were making some or all of their income selling on eBay.

“In just 10 years, eBay has become the destination for Americans pursuing their visions of entrepreneurship,” said Bill Cobb, president of eBay North America. “We’re proud to play a central role in small business development in the U.S. and around the world.”

EBay hopes to increase that number by hosting eBay Days Small Business seminars in eight cities in the U.S. this summer.

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