This holiday season eBay is partnering with Pamela Love to introduce a limited-edition jewelry collection inspired by “the modern mysticism of the sun, the moon and the stars – reminding people to dream and wish bigger.” During the preview Thursday, we chatted with the General Manager of eBay Fashion, Marcelle Parrish, to find out more about this partnership and how eBay makes the experience so unique for both sellers and buyers.
Can you tell us a bit about how the collaboration with Pamela Love and eBay came about?
Absolutely. Pamela and eBay have worked together before with our partnership with the CFDA, and one of the things that we loved about her designs was really the whimsical aspect, which we thought tied really nicely into our Wish Bigger campaign. We loved that she also wanted to give back. Giving back is part of eBay’s DNA. We’ve given over $500 million back to not for profits in our 20 years. 100% of the proceeds for our collection with Pamela Love go back to charity with the CFDA’s targeting breast cancer, which is fantastic. What we wanted to make sure is that we also included that giving back during holiday. That’s so important. It wasn’t just about the uniqueness and the beauty of the design, it was a larger purpose as well.
Is this your first time working with Pamela?
No. We’ve worked with Pamela before with the CFDA. She created these beautiful battery packs with a star design on them last year for us, and they were the hit of the holiday season. They sold out actually in 2 weeks.
Besides Pamela, tell us about other collaborations that eBay has done with other designers or innovators that people can relate to, not just fashion.
What I love about Ebay, and there’s many things, but one of the things that is so important about our heritage is that we support small/medium size businesses, and larger brands, but the small and medium size businesses really create such incredible design, and normal times without a marketplace, wouldn’t be exposed to 159,000,000 active customers that we have. We’re introducing these businesses and these designers like Pamela to a huge audience, which we love. When you think about who we’re working with, I’ll give you an example, we just launched Three Bird’s Nest. Alisha is an incredible business woman, and she’s created this collection of handmade beautiful pieces of clothing and jewelry. We’ve just launched her on the marketplace within our artisan collective. Our goal is really to bring the inspiration at accessible prices. Not only do we carry the Hermes, which has a waiting list for years, but at the same time, beautiful pieces for $25, $15 that everyone can relate to.
eBay has a knack for collaborating with others so seamlessly. How was this perfected and where did the idea of collaborating begin?
Oh, thank you. Because community was always a part of eBay, we started with our community. It’s customer to customer. Our community has always been so important, our seller community and our buyer community. For us, it was just an extension of the community to work with different designers, through these collaborations. Crowd sourcing we did with Derrick Lamb about 8 years ago now. Even before collaborations were big, it’s something that was just inherently synergistic for eBay. I hate that consulting word. It does. It just worked for us. We want to be partners to our sellers. It’s very personal. Working with us is very personal. We talk to our sellers, we love our sellers. We connect with our buyers. We sell. I jut sold a bag, a Tory Birch bag. I was chatting with the woman who bought it in Florida, and she was going back to work. It’s just the stories that we pass on. It’s fun to shop on eBay.
Have there been any pieces in this collection that have really stuck out to you, that you saw and you were like, “Oh my god, I can’t believe somebody actually has this!”
A couple different pieces. One, with the artisan collective, we have these fantastic spoons from Milk and Honey. It’s a good seller. They have these … Two friends of mine are getting married, and it says, “Mr.” and “Mrs.” on the coffee spoon. I love that. It was the perfect gift for them. Just thoughtful and personal, so I love that one. Then, for my son, the drone, he’s getting that for Christmas. He’s been eyeing that, but these little small drones, and he loves playing with them. My daughter loves American Girl. It’s just combining the new and the vintage, the gleam pieces are amazing. Did you see that? Coco Chanel’s signature piece we’re auctioning off. That’s not going to go on my Christmas list, but it’s something to admire. It’s so inspiring, just seeing it. Every time I go onto eBay, there’s something I find that’s inspiring and I love and I want to give to someone. It’s nice!
Going back to fashion really quickly. In the past there’s always been issues with people selling fake handbags. I think that eBay has done such a great job ensuring the authentication of the actual pieces. How are you all able to do that, because a lot of times, even the brick and mortars can’t?
eBay’s one of the safest marketplaces there is out there to shop. We do that in two ways. We have a division dedicated to eliminating counterfeit goods. We work directly with the brands to identify certain key pieces to identify whether or not they’re authentic goods. We create algorithms that will go through the entire marketplace to identify things that could be possibly counterfeit, and we remove the from the site.
We also work closely with the brands to ensure that if they identify something, that they believe is not authentic, then we’ll remove it automatically. We also have a money back guarantee on all of our goods within eBay. Anytime a customer doesn’t have a good experience, we guarantee that money back. We’ve made incredible efforts to ensure that the marketplace is safe, and the experiences for the customers are always positive.
I actually had an issue where I purchased and autographed piece that was shipped to the correct address but the post office was holding onto it. We didn’t know where it was, and the post office marked it as lost. eBay refunded the money immediately, and then it finally arrived. I talked to eBay again and said, “It arrived now, so how do I repay the seller?” But they took care of it.
Oh, good. I love hearing that!
One of those things that I think is interesting is that eBay and even Paypal are really, really good at ensuring they have great customer service. It’s so funny that person to person interaction is not like that anymore.
That’s true. Ebay was founded on the premise that humans are basically good. We also want to ensure that the marketplace is inherently good. We have to have the safeguards in place. There’s so many small start ups that just don’t have the ability to ensure that safety, the authenticity that the safe buying experience that you had. That’s so paramount for us. We want to make sure every buyer has a good experience. We’ll go above and beyond to make sure that that happens. The same for our sellers. They’re both of our customers. We want to make sure that we make happy. We wouldn’t exist without our sellers. And same for our buyers.
Is there anything we should look forward to with eBay in the future?
There is. I think when we think about what we want to do, I can’t talk to you too much about it. I’m sure PR’s like don’t say anything. Just in something we’re thinking about is how to make styling easier and how to make that, when you think about what’s in your closet, how do you A. monetize your closet. Make sure that when you’re wanting to sell to buy. You want to buy something new, what can you monetize in your closet? Making that really easy. We launched eBay Valet, so you can just send it in. If you don’t have time to list, you send it in, we list it for you, and then we send you the check when it sells. Super easy. We’re going to be expanding upon that. Then, when we think about styling and how to make it easier, there is some things that we’re playing around with from a user experience perspective that’s going to make it really cool and easy to go through different outfits and some of our different products and different looks that you might love. I’m pretty excited about it.