Sotheby's Ditches eBay – Fed Up With Internet Auctions

from the just-not-working dept

It appears that Sotheby’s simply can’t figure out a way to make their auctions work online. In 1999 they teamed up with Amazon to put their auctions online, which ended in failure. After that awful experience, Sotheby’s decided to partner with the best and teamed up with eBay about a year ago to let them handle their internet auctions. At the time, we wondered if Sotheby’s would be any happier with eBay. The answer is in. They’re not happy at all. They announced today that they won’t be auctioning things off via eBay any more due to “lower than expected demand”. It sounds like this was a case where someone sold Sotheby’s on the notion that the internet was “changing everything” and all they needed to do was “get online” to be a part of it – rather than carefully thinking out a strategy to target the types of people who are focused on such high end auctions. The typical picture of an eBay shopper doesn’t exactly match with the stereotype of the Sotheby’s auction buyer.

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