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eBay Releases Online Index for Small Businesses

Posted on 12.03.2010

A day after strengthening its foothold on local commerce with the acquisition of shopping search engine Milo, eBay has released a new report intended to help small businesses and entrepreneurs thrive on the world’s largest online marketplace.

The first-ever U.S. Online Business Index (OBI) was compiled from survey results of more than 400 eBay sellers on topics ranging from mobile commerce to Internet sales taxes to 2010 holiday sales and projections for 2011 growth. Key findings included the following:

Mobile Matters
•    73 percent of respondents said it was important that shoppers have the ability to browse and buy items on eBay using mobile devices
•    60 percent said they are willing to adjust their eBay listings for easier viewing on mobile devices

Tax Talk
•    88 percent of respondents said they would not support an Internet sales tax, which is currently under proposal
•    81 percent said they would support a small-business tax exemption if the proposal should be put into law
•    74 percent said they feared a sales tax would reduce the number of online transactions; 69 percent said they feared it would reduce out-of-state sales; 69 percent said it would make it difficult for them to maintain profitability, and 68 percent said it would hurt the U.S. economy

Optimistic Outlook
•    60 percent said they are considerably optimistic about the future of their online businesses in the 2010 holiday shopping season
•    72 percent expect their total online sales to increase through December
•    36 percent plan to increase their inventory through 2011 by up to 15 percent or more
•    53 percent plan to raise their sales targets from 2010, and 66 percent of those are targeting increases of up to 20 percent


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