EBay Inc has redesigned its Web site to encourage visitors to browse and collect items they might want to buy later with something it calls the “feed.”
The feature, reminiscent of popular sites like image-heavy Pinterest, shows users items based on things they purchased in the past or items they have clicked on the site. Shoppers can also edit their feed by adding or removing categories and individual items.
EBay’s old search feature — which helps shoppers who already know what they are looking for — is not going away. Rather, the company says it wants online shopping to feel more like window-shopping or browsing in a bricks-and-mortar store.
San Jose, California-based eBay unveiled the new Web site on Wednesday at an event in New York’s trendy Meatpacking district. It will be available to eBay’s US users gradually over the next 100 days and to international users after that.
EBay says it has 105 million active users worldwide and it has about 25 million sellers, ranging from large brands to individuals.
The company is also launching a smartphone and tablet app called eBay Now. The app lets people order items from retailers, such as Macy’s, Target and Walgreens. In most cases, eBay promises delivery within an hour.
EBay Now is being tested in San Francisco, but the company will likely roll it out elsewhere in the future.
The company also simplified its shopping site so that it takes fewer clicks of the mouse to buy items. The redesign also looks cleaner and with larger photos than the previous version.
In addition, the company has been testing a service called Lifestyle Deals, which offers Groupon-style daily deals in select cities, such as San Francisco, Boston and New York.
Shares in eBay, which reports its quarterly earnings next Wednesday, climbed US$0.54 to close at US$46.76 on Wednesday.