Ebay’s technical failure on Saturday has raised fears about the auction site’s ability to handle bulk listings by large retailers.
The search and browse functions on Ebay’s main shopping site, Ebay.com, were down for most of Saturday.
The Financial Times said that the failure appeared to show the group’s new strategy of attracting large retailers and wholesalers to its online marketplace has backfired.
Ebay notched up a 33% increase in live listings on the same time last year to 200 million. The etailer has been tempting back buyers and sellers by luring liquidators and big retailers to its site, after losing market share to rivals such as Amazon.
Lorrie Norrington, Ebay president, said the incident on Saturday was “isolated” and “not systematic” and “By Sunday, the site was performing well in stress tests, handling increased activity levels throughout the day.”
She added: “While we’re confident that we remedied the software problem and that it won’t reoccur, we deeply regret the impact it had on the eBay community. To minimise the impact, we’re working to ensure that sellers and buyers whose transactions were affected by the disruptions will be made as whole as possible. This includes listing fee refunds and protection against negative or neutral buyer feedback as well as detailed seller ratings lower than 5 stars for impacted sellers, and vouchers for buyers of items that were impacted by the disruption.”
The failure of Ebay on Saturday is likely to hit its revenues hard.
“There are three ways they are suffering,” said Sandeep Aggarwal, an analyst with Collins Stewart. “There is a loss to revenue. Then they have to give credit to the merchants. And then there’s the likely defection of users during the holiday season.”