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eBay Previews Possible Geotargeting Feature for Sellers

eBay Shows Black Friday Activity Through Animated Map

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As you may know, Black Friday is a pretty popular day for online shopping as well as offline. With that in mind, it is no surprise that a lot of people turned to eBay to find deals and work on their holiday gift buying.

eBay has created an interesting visualization of the site’s Black Friday activity across the United States. This comes in the form of an animated map, which shows the areas of the country with the most shopping activity, and shows new areas as their first purchases were made. It’s really easier to grasp if you just watch the short 2-minutes clip eBay provides:

On the eBay Holiday site, the company explains a little bit about the methodology and data execution that went into creating this animated map:

The visualization is based on raw data that includes eBay sales and purchases occurring in approximately 33,000 U.S. ZIP codes. To best represent large population areas and to condense data for a seamless display, ZIP codes were grouped to create 3,118 distinct areas. The methodology used to create these areas was based on the distance from the center of one ZIP code to adjacent ZIP codes. Those with a distance of less than .35 (latitude or longitude) between them were combined into an area.

The size of each point on the map corresponds to the number of ZIP codes encompassed within that area. In other words, the more ZIP codes included in an area, the larger the point on the map. The color of the points ranges in intensity, and areas with lower transaction totals appear in yellow while those with the highest number of total transactions appear in red. The spectrum of color can be most easily understood by comparing points on the map to the Activity Level Indicator, found just beneath it.

The map is available for interested parties as a widget, which can be embedded. That can be found here.

Interestingly, the company notes on the eBay Ink blog: "Even more interesting will be to see if we can make this a regular feature. It takes some fairly detailed transactional data to come up with such a high-level but targeted visual map. Crucial data for sellers looking to see geographical purchasing behavior patterns partnered with peak purchasing times (down to the second)."

This could be a popular feature (if released) for sellers to better target their offerings. This could in turn help with the marketing of their eBay stores. Would you find such a feature useful? Share your thoughts here.


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