GM Abandons EBay

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

GM’s grand experiment with Ebay will be over by the end of the month, reports Automotive News [sub]. GM had extended the program once, and was considering continuing it into October. So why didn’t they? Paging GM spokesfolks… we have a cleanup on aisle nine…

The need to roll eBay out nationally isn’t there as it was when we first rolled out the pilot. At the time we had no large, national marketing programs in the system, so that made sense at the time. What we’ve come up with since then are two large, national programs that are already in place.

In other words, failure was not an option… but only because there were no parameters for failure. Gosh that sounds exactly like what Mark LaNeve said when he was asked why the program was being extended despite generating what can only be described as weak sales. Come to think of it, how was the California-only Ebay experiment a substitute for a “large, national marketing program?” More importantly, did GM sell a single vehicle on Ebay?

GM’s spokesman calls the program “very successful,” but the company is still refusing to reveal how many sales it attributes to the online auction site. What they will say is that the 16,000 vehicles listed by GM’s California dealers generated more than 15,000 leads, a statistic that implies the Ebay pilot could have been worth developing further. Well, might have implied, if the term “leads” weren’t so damningly nebulous. Even less helpful is GM’s claim that 1.5 million visitors looked at GM’s section of the site, performing 1.9 million eBay searches. The only conclusion left to draw is that GM has plenty of statistics but it doesn’t want to share for reasons that are inexplicable now that the program has been canceled.

Anyone who bought a GM vehicle through the official GM-Ebay program is encouraged to contact me at publisher@ttac.com with evidence.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

More by Edward Niedermeyer

Comments
Join the conversation
2 of 30 comments
  • Jonas_cord Jonas_cord on Sep 30, 2009

    Is it just me, or are there tons of ads for GM on Ebay Motors right now, and when you select the "Make" dropdown menu, you only get GM brands!?

  • GhentForever GhentForever on Jul 22, 2011

    These are not a bunch of adults discussing here. Just a bunch of GM bashers. GM never said the eBay program was going to replace the national marketing programs. It was just a trial run to get leads and marketing data in California.

  • EBFlex At the summer property putting boats in the water, leveling boat lifts, cleaning the lots for summer, etc. Typical cabin stuff in the most beautiful place on the planet
  • Lou_BC I've I spent the past few days in what we refer to as "the lower mainland". I see Tesla's everywhere and virtually every other brand of EV. I was in downtown Vancouver along side a Rivian R1T. A Rivian R1S came off as side street and was following it. I saw one other R1S. 18% of new vehicles in BC are EV'S. It tends to match what I saw out my windshield. I only saw 2 fullsized pickups. One was a cool '91 3/4 ton regular cab. I ran across 2 Tacoma's. Not many Jeeps. There were plenty of Porches, Mercedes, and BMW's. I saw 2 Aston Martin DBX707's. It's been fun car watching other than the stress of driving in big city urban traffic. I'd rather dodge 146,000 pound 9 axle logging trucks on one lane roads.
  • IBx1 Never got the appeal of these; it looks like there was a Soviet mandate to create a car with two doors and a roof that could be configured in different ways.
  • CAMeyer Considering how many voters will be voting for Trump because they remember that gas prices were low in 2020–never mind the pandemic—this seems like a wise move.
  • The Oracle Been out on the boat on Lake James (NC) and cooking up some hella good food here with friends at the lake place.
Next