EBay’s Click-to-call service: A vaporware?

Yesterday, EBay and Google announced an undisclosed multi-years deal for advertising eBay, Skype and Click-to-call services. The NY Times has asked several specialists on what both companies could gain from the deal. And the majority of answers aren’t that optimist.

Doubts about Click-to-call are:

  • VoIP services tend to tease residential users with regular phones, the ones they use previously, the ones that don’t have any Web browsing features. And we add that Skype is pushing in this direction with its partnership with NetGear and others to bring out cordless and wireless phones.
  • Mass consumers don’t care about the top-notch technologies that will change their habits. They want relevant calls to reach relevant companies.
  • Click-to-call aren’t for every kind of services and goods.

So is eBay really doing something right to invest so much to monetize its Skype technology? Or is Click-to-call simply a niche market?

Aug 29, 2006 | By Nuno

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1 comment

  • #0 Dan:
  • Click to Call isn’t a panacea for all customer contact woes, it’s just part of a strategy for offering potential buyers the right form of contact at the right time to complete an online transaction.

    Depending on the service or product offering, sometimes the phone is the only way to close a sales. Period.

    The fact is that the kinds of products and services that can be found online are becoming more and more complex. We’re not just buying books on Amazon or EBay anymore; we’re buying TVs, Cars and Boats. For these kinds of interactions, consumers have traditionally shown that they’re more comfortable researching online and buying offline. Click to call service bridges that gap.

    However, it’s important to give customers options that allow them to communicate with the business in a manner in which they’re comfortable. That means giving consumers the choice of either talking to the business via their PC or over a regular landline or mobile phone without requiring that the merchant or the buyer download additional software. Forcing buyers and sellers down a single path creates an unnecessary barrier that could interfere with the sale.

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