eBay is an online marketplace that facilitates buying and selling of goods both nationally and internationally. It allows users to bid on items in an auction-style format, and provides options for ‘Buy It Now’ for immediate purchases. It was established in 1995, making it one of the earliest platforms for online trading.


The phonetics of the keyword eBay would be: /ˈiːbeɪ/

Key Takeaways

Sure, here’s the information in HTML numbered form:“`html

  1. eBay is an online auction and shopping platform, where individuals and businesses can buy and sell a wide variety of goods and services.
  2. eBay is known for its buyer protection program that guarantees all purchases are delivered safely, ensuring customer satisfaction and trust.
  3. For sellers, eBay provides a large global marketplace for selling goods and the opportunity to set their own prices through auction or fixed price format.



eBay is significant in the technology world as it fundamentally transformed e-commerce and pioneered the concept of an online auction platform. Founded in 1995, eBay revolutionized the way people buy and sell goods globally by enabling transactions directly between customers around the globe through an innovative, web-based platform. Additionally, by implementing robust user feedback mechanisms and secure payment options like PayPal, it fostered trust and reliability in an otherwise uncertain digital marketplace. Therefore, eBay not only made online shopping accessible and convenient, but it also established key standards and practices that have significantly influenced the global e-commerce industry.


eBay’s essential purpose lies in providing an online platform for individuals and businesses to buy and sell a vast diversity of goods and services worldwide. It is one of the pioneering companies in the sphere of online auctions and e-commerce, essentially revolutionizing the way sales transactions are conducted. eBay functions as a virtual marketplace where sellers can list items for sale, from everyday products to rare collectibles, and buyers can browse through these listings to place bids or make direct purchases.What sets eBay apart is its unique auction-style sales model, in which the potential buyers place progressively higher bids for a product within a stipulated time period set by the seller. However, not all listings are auction-based; many sellers also opt for the ‘Buy It Now’ option that allows instant purchase at a fixed price. It is also widely used for business-to-business transactions. Its extensive global reach and user-friendly interface make eBay a versatile platform for a multitude of buying and selling activities, from clearing out personal clutter to setting up full-scale retail operations.


1. Online Auctions: eBay is famous for its online auction format, where consumers from around the world can bid on items listed by other users. This has broadened the marketplace for rare collectables, vintage items, or second-hand products.2. Peer-to-Peer Selling: eBay popularized the concept of peer-to-peer selling on a massive scale. Anyone, whether a business owner or an individual, can list items for sale. This consumer-to-consumer business model has enabled the growth of small businesses and made it easy for individuals to sell unwanted items online for a profit.3. Feedback & Review Mechanism: eBay was among the first platforms to employ a robust feedback and review system. After a transaction, both buyers and sellers can leave feedback about their experience. This has created a more transparent marketplace and has built trust among users.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

**Q: What is eBay?**A: eBay is an online marketplace that allows individuals and businesses to buy and sell a wide variety of goods and services worldwide. **Q: How do I create an account on eBay?**A: To create an account on eBay, simply visit the eBay homepage and click on “register” at the top left of the page. You will be asked for your name, email address and to create a password.**Q: How can I sell items on eBay?**A: You need to have an eBay account to sell. Click on the “Sell” option on the top right, then follow the site’s step-by-step guide. You can list your product with a fixed price or you can create an auction listing.**Q: How do I make a purchase on eBay?**A: Buying on eBay involves searching for the item you want, bidding on it (or buying it at the stated price), and then paying for it via the site’s secure payment method.**Q: How does bidding work on eBay?**A: eBay allows you to bid on items in auction-style listings. When you place a bid, you are committing to buy the item if you win the auction. The highest bidder at the end of the auction wins the item.**Q: What should I do if I have an issue with a transaction?**A: eBay has an efficient dispute resolution process. If there’s an issue with a transaction, eBay encourages you to communicate directly with the seller. If unresolved, you can file a claim through eBay’s Resolution Centre.**Q: Is it safe to use eBay?**A: Yes, eBay has put in place security measures to ensure a safe trading environment. It also uses a feedback system so you can view a seller’s reputation before making a purchase. However, users should still exercise caution, especially in handling personal information and making payments.**Q: What payment methods does eBay accept?**A: eBay primarily uses PayPal for transactions. It also accepts credit and debit cards, and in some cases, direct bank transfer and cash on pickup.**Q: How does eBay protect my data?**A: eBay uses encryption for data protection, ensuring any sensitive personal and financial information you enter on the site is secure. They also have various policies in place to prevent data misuse. **Q: How can I contact eBay customer service?**A: You can reach eBay customer service by clicking the “Help & Contact” link at the top of most eBay pages. You can then choose to contact them through live chat, email, or phone.

Related Finance Terms

  • eCommerce
  • Online Auction
  • Buy It Now (BIN)
  • PayPal
  • User Feedback

Sources for More Information


About The Authors

The DevX Technology Glossary is reviewed by technology experts and writers from our community. Terms and definitions continue to go under updates to stay relevant and up-to-date. These experts help us maintain the almost 10,000+ technology terms on DevX. Our reviewers have a strong technical background in software development, engineering, and startup businesses. They are experts with real-world experience working in the tech industry and academia.

See our full expert review panel.

These experts include:


About Our Editorial Process

At DevX, we’re dedicated to tech entrepreneurship. Our team closely follows industry shifts, new products, AI breakthroughs, technology trends, and funding announcements. Articles undergo thorough editing to ensure accuracy and clarity, reflecting DevX’s style and supporting entrepreneurs in the tech sphere.

See our full editorial policy.

More Technology Terms

Technology Glossary

Table of Contents