Active buyers on eBay increase 4% to 169 million consumers thanks in part to the marketplace making its site search easier.

The gross value of goods sold on eBay Inc.’s U.S. marketplace increased 3.63% year over year to $8.84 billion in the first quarter, the online marketplace reported Wednesday.

In the quarter ended March 31, eBay increased its active buyers to 169 million, up 4.3% from 162 million a year ago. The marketplace credits the increase with retaining its current buyer base, stable growth in reactivated buyers and some early momentum on new buyer acquisition in the U.S. and Korea.

A replatforming of the marketplace has helped drive an increase in active buyers, as has an advertising campaign and eBay’s continued work on its structured data pages, which will make it easier for eBay to show relevant search results.

“We started to land users directly on our new browse pages when they search for certain broad based keywords connecting structured data experiences to our core organic traffic,” CEO Devin Wenig told investors on an earnings call according to a Seeking Alphas transcript. EBay plans to move paid search traffic to structured data pages by the end of the second quarter, he said.

At the end of March, eBay rolled out a new home page that is simpler and more personalized, Wenig said. “Using structured data and artificial intelligence we’re creating a shopping experience tailored to each eBay user’s interests,  passions and shopping history,” he said.

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Also within the quarter, eBay announced it will sell its operations in India, eBay.in, to Indian online marketplace giant Flipkart. The marketplace also is making a $500 million cash investment in Flipkart. The move will increase eBay’s penetration in India, Wenig said.

The team at Flipkart are strong executors, with deep knowledge of the local Indian market,” he said. “And we’re committed to winning in India through this partnership.”

EBay is a finalist for the Mobile Commerce Award at the 2017 Internet Retailer Excellence Awards. The winner will be announced at a June 7 banquet at IRCE in Chicago.

For the first quarter ended March 31, eBay also reports:

  • U.S. gross merchandise volume of $8.84 billion, up 3.6% from $8.53 billion in the same period a year ago.
  • Gross value of goods on eBay’s global marketplaces grew 2.4% to $20.95 billion from $20.45 billion.
  • Net revenue grew 3.7% to $2.22 billion from $2.14 billion a year ago.
  • Net income of $538 million compared with $550 million.
  • Ticket unit StubHub’s gross merchandise volume was $916 million, up 5.4% from $869 million.
  • The number of active buyers (those who have made a purchase on eBay in the past year) increased 4.3% to 169 million from 162 million a year ago.

 

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