eBay takes aim at Amazon with ‘Guaranteed Delivery’

I shop at Amazon a lot. Is it because the prices are the lowest? No, actually. Quite often, I pay a bit more at Amazon compared to other online retailers. Why would I choose to spend more money? Shipping time. As a Prime member, I get guaranteed free two-day shipping. For a few extra bucks, I can get one-day shipping. In other words, the guaranteed delivery is worth the premium for me. Saving a few bucks but not knowing when my order will arrive is simply a bad deal — for me at least (and I am guessing many others too).

eBay might be feeling the pressure from Amazon, as today, the company announces that it will be introducing “Guaranteed Delivery” this summer. eBay promises that certain products can be received in 3 business days or less. It is not available for all items, however, but more than 20 million products will be eligible.

Hal Lawton, Senior Vice President of North America at eBay explains, “While the majority of items on eBay already ship within 3 days or less, as well as for free, Guaranteed Delivery will give shoppers even faster delivery options and the confidence that their items will arrive on time.”

eBay shares the following benefits of this new “Guaranteed Delivery” initiative for both buyers and sellers.

For sellers

  • More Sales: Sellers will find new buyers by making items searchable by delivery date
  • More Control: Sellers set their own regional rates, working days and handling time cut-offs
  • Happier Customers: Guaranteed Delivery is the second most important criterion for online shoppers (right after free shipping)

For buyers

  • Guaranteed Delivery Dates: Items arrive by delivery date, guaranteed
  • More Search Options: Ability to filter, sort and search items by a guaranteed delivery date
  • Increased Confidence: If an item doesn’t arrive by the delivery date, eBay will make it right

What is interesting here is that buyers won’t necessarily see faster shipping times. As eBay explains, the company is already delivering most of its orders in three days or less. The big benefit here is the guarantee. Sometimes the value is in the promise — the peace of mind that your order will arrive when you need it. If it does arrive late for whatever reason, eBay will refund the cost of shipping.