In a sort of tit-for-tat promotion, eBay has an answer to Amazon.com’s earlier promotion from last weekend. eBay’s promotion gives you $10 to spend in-store if you spend $100 online.
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One could consider it the reverse of last weekend’s Amazon.com promotion. That perk used the Internet giant’s Price Check app to encourage consumers to check a price in-store, check the price using the app, and then walk out without buying anything.
The promotion gave users, after they placed a desired item into the Price Check app’s virtual shopping cart, a 5 percent discount, up to $5. It could be used 3 times for a maximum of $15 in savings. That promotion drew a great deal of anger from brick-and-mortar retailers.
eBay’s promotion goes the other way. Spend $100 online, and get $10 to spend in-store. The negative, however, is that the selection of stores to is pretty small, and let’s be honest, not all that compelling when compared to Amazon.com.
In other words, as a direct answer to Amazon.com’s promotion, this makes for good PR, but hardly makes a consumer’s wallet all that happy. The online stores that you can make the purchases at are the Toys“R”Us store on eBay, ToysRUs.com, DicksSportingGoods.com or Aeropostale.com.
You also can’t mix and match, or at least it doesn’t sound that way, because a person who spends $100 will receive a $10.00 in-store gift certificate which can be redeemed at a “local retail store of the same brand.” In other words, you have to spend $100 and Store X to get $10 off at the brick-and-mortar version of Store X.
The promotion runs from Sunday at 6:00 a.m. ET through Monday, December 19 at 11:59 p.m. ET.
While we understand the anger that brick-and-mortar retailers had against Amazon.com’s promotion last weekend, as a consumer, we have to say: if you want to compete with Amazon.com, you have to compete on price.
Some of the argument against the Amazon.com promotion was about Amazon.com’s perceived sales tax advantage. However, Amazon.com’s price advantage isn’t just the small percentage it gains from that. For example, on Friday night, one of its Lightning Deals was the H&R Block Deluxe + State 2011 tax program for $24.99, down from $44.99 retail.
It’s hard to argue with that price advantage and buy from a brick-and-mortar retailer.
eBay has a mobile app of its own, called Red Laser. Similar to Amazon.com’s Price Check app, consumers can use it to scan a bar code, compare prices, and buy online. It has one key difference, though: consumers can also see if the product is available nearby.