EBay CEO John Donahoe took to the stage of the 10th annual Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition in Chicago on Wednesday to discuss what he calls the "commerce revolution".
The term applies to the many ways consumers shop for products today, including going into a store to buy a product, browsing retail sites during work hours, making a purchase from a tablet while watching television at home, etc.
For too long, Mr. Donahoe said, retailers have seen various shopping behaviors through their own eyes — in channel terms — rather than seeing it from the consumer's vantage point. "Consumers," he said, "just want to shop."
To demonstrate that eBay gets it, Mr. Donahoe offered several examples:
Mr. Donahoe predicts the future will bring even more "interesting combinations of online and offline" to meet consumers in the time and place they want to shop. While never mentioning Amazon.com by name, it was clear throughout much of the eBay CEO's speech that he was drawing comparisons between his company and its chief rival. He emphasized the point at least twice during his speech, reminding the audience that eBay is "a partner, not a competitor."
Which business model do you think is more responsive to the needs of consumers?