EBay has become an economic indicator. USA Today recently reported that the overall economy may be cooling because of the items such as Gucci, BMWs and Prada have fallen in Ebay search requests to less luxury items such as Ford and gold (viewed as a hedge against bad economic news). EBay is also a good indicator of what’s hot, such as WiFi home equipment which has seen big growth on EBay.
EBay has also become a way for entrepreneurs to launch their business, but it’s not magic bullet. Hawaii Business has a story about entrepreneurs using eBay to sell everything from Hawaiian shirts and Tiki statues. It is interesting that some sellers found that higher prices on eBay meant higher sales. Price becomes a proxy for quality.