Snapchat-eBay alliance opens new marketing opportunities

Young buyers are most comfortable buying through social media channels.

In fact, fueled by Gen Z and Millennial social media users, shopping on social media platforms is expected to reach $1.2-trillion globally by 2025, according to Accenture.

So it’s no wonder that among the latest new alliances, online shopping site eBay has partnered with Snapchat, a popular photo and video messaging app, allowing shoppable eBay listings to be shared on Snapchat.

“Partnerships like this bring together these two worlds and create the serendipitous shopping experiences that kids are craving,” says Laura McCracken, global leader for the Social Commerce initiative of London-based Accenture, which specializes in IT services and consulting.

Younger buyers generally Gen Z and Millennials (roughly age 10-41) are spending most of their time on social media, she says.

“They discover things as they go,” she says.

Laura McCracken, who leads a social commerce initiative at Accenture.
Credit: Accenture

And that’s driving commerce through social media platforms, McCracken says.

In fact, Gen Z and Millennial social media users will account for 62% of global social commerce spend by 2025, according to Accenture.

How it works

This new alliance offers a seamless way to promote eBay listings on Snapchat, she says.

Snapchat walked its users through how it works in a posting

In a separate posting, eBay also touted the alliance, noting, “With over 332 million daily active users engaging with content, Snapchat is a window into a new audience and new potential for your business.”

Michael Porter, 22, of East Northport, an eBay seller and Snapchat user, says he’s interested in using the feature.

He works as a full-time news producer in Manhattan, but sells sports memorabilia, collectibles, sneakers and clothing on eBay on the side.

“It could definitely increase the traffic to my eBay store just from people on Snapchat that don’t know I sell on eBay or how to find my eBay store,” says Porter, who has over 300 friends on Snapchat and sells on eBay under the name mp_collectibles.

The way it works users open the eBay app and select a listing. Then they would:

  • Tap the share icon and then tap the Snapchat option to automatically jump to the Snapchat Camera with the automated eBay sticker;
  • From there, they create an original Snap (a picture or video) with the eBay sticker and they can use creative tools within Snapchat to layer on text and effects to make their listings standout;
  • The recipient or viewer will then be able to tap the eBay sticker to jump back to the listing in the eBay app.

Marketing to ‘friends’

Keep in mind with Snapchat you’d only be sharing “Snaps” to people on your friends list, says Christina Botte, Director of Social Media at EGC Group, a Melville-based marketing and digital services firm. Unlike Instagram, you don’t have followers on Snapchat, but rather friends you’ve added, she says.

“I really think it’s for the younger Gen Z audience to sell to other Gen Z,” she says. “They’re the ones on Snapchat.”

But you can then encourage that audience to then share your snap to their friends and so on, Botte says.

Scott Darrohn, managing partner at fishbat Media LLC, a digital marketing firm in Patchogue, agrees that Snapchat “definitely trends younger.”

With that audience the key is “putting together highly creative engaging content,” he says.

Don’t just put up a static post of the eBay listing, but rather show the product — for example, if it’s apparel, someone wearing it — or a video showing it in use and/or the functionality of the product, he says.

“Come up with creative ideas because you have a limited amount of time,” Darrohn says, noting if you share the eBay listing in your Snapchat Stories, it disappears after 24 hours.

Scott Darrohn, managing partner at fishbat Media LLC, a digital...

Scott Darrohn, managing partner at fishbat Media LLC, a digital marketing firm in Patchogue.
Credit: Erin Galloway

Botte also recommends when promoting eBay listings in your Snaps to have some call to action like ‘shop now’ or ‘sneaker drop’ — something telling them what’s their next step.

“You need to slightly educate people because this is such a new feature,” she says.

But all in all, Darrohn says the alliance can definitely be helpful to eBay sellers, noting, “it’s a really good way to develop relationships with repeat buyers.”

Fast Fact

Accenture’s report found that by 2025 the highest number of social commerce purchases globally are expected in clothing (18% of all social commerce by 2025), consumer electronics (13%) and home décor (7%).


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