Shop Locally on eBay
eBay has long been known as the world's premier online marketplace, a turn of phrase that rightly points to the way that eBay has made it easy to buy and sell over great distances. On eBay you can sell your stuff overseas or buy stuff from overseas that will turn up on your doorstep. These days, however, eBay is focusing on a number of major initiatives in addition to its marketplace business.
One of these, of course, is PayPal, which eBay would like to turn into a major global payments processor. Another is growth in the social commerce area, with things like Facebook commerce and other buying and selling that leverages global social networks. Not all of eBay's initiatives are so global, though.
Enter eBay Local Shopping
eBay Local Shopping does the opposite of what most eBay tools and services do. Rather than expand your buying and selling horizons to cover entire regions, nations, or indeed the globe, eBay Local Shopping narrows your focus to your immediate locale, helping you to remember just how many things are bought and sold near your own home or place of business. In brief, eBay Local Shopping lets you:
- Confirm your current location with eBay
- Name an item you'd like to buy locally
- See which local stores around you have the item in stock
- See which sellers of that item on eBay are near you
The platform relies on eBay's acquisition of Milo and, in simple terms, gives shoppers a real-time search engine for the products in all of the big-box retailers near their homes.
Using eBay Local Shopping
Using eBay Local Shopping is easy; follow these steps to search for an item that is in stock near you.
- Visit the eBay Local Shopping home page.
- Check the location box to be sure that your correct location (in the
U.S. this will be a city, state, and ZIP code combination) is correct. If
eBay has gotten it wrong and it isn't for some reason, click on the "Change"
link to enter your actual location.
- Once the location is correct, type the name of the product you're interested in ("Microsoft XBox 360" or "decorative fence panel" or "Bissell DigiPro Vacuum" or just "blender" for example) into the search box and click "Search" to see a list of local retailers that have the item you're interested in, as well as the prices at which they're selling in-store.
Searching Farther or Searching eBay Sellers
Once you've run an initial search there are a couple of options that can provide you with additional useful information about getting your hands on whatever it is you're looking for.
- Change the search radius. You can shrink or enlarge your search
radius (the number of miles surrounding your location to include in the
search) by sliding the "miles" tab at the upper-left of the search results
page. You can search an area as small as half a mile around you in any
direction or as large as a hundred miles around you in any direction.
- Search by price range. In the "By Price:" boxes at the upper-left
of the search results, you can enter the minimum or maximum price(s) you'd
like to pay for the item to narrow your results.
- Search eBay sellers instead of retailers. To search items that
match your other criteria but are being sold on the eBay marketplace (i.e.
listings of one format or another that are being sold by eBay sellers
within your search radius at the price you've specified, if any), select the
"eBay Sellers" option at the upper-left of search results.
- Product brands and retailers to include. On the left edge of the
search results page you can also opt to view items only of a specific brand
(click on the brand to narrow your search) or that are being sold at a
specific major retailer (click on the name of the retailer to narrow your
- Search eBay. If all else has failed and you can't locate the item you'd like to purchase on eBay Local, click the "View results on ebay.com" link at the bottom left of the search results page to search for the same item on eBay and, potentially, buy it there.