eBay calls it Retail Revival, but it sounds more like eBay is going to adopt a bunch of small businesses in Greensboro and raise them up right. What small business wouldn’t want to be adopted eBay one of the country’s most successful internet companies worth about $42 billion.
The announcement that eBay was bringing its Retail Revival program to Greensboro was made Wednesday at the International Civil Rights Center and Museum. Mayor Nancy Vaughan welcomed the folks from eBay and introduced North Carolina Chief Deputy Secretary of Commerce Liz Crabill who talked about the 1.2 million retail jobs in the state.
Suzy Deering, the chief marketing officer for eBay, talked about eBay and its 200,000 active sellers and how they picked Greensboro from a lot of competitors as the next location for the Retail Revival program.
Greensboro is the third city chosen for Retail Revival. The first two were Lansing, Michigan and Akron, Ohio.
And eBay is serious about the program. Four trainers will be set up office in Greensboro for a year probably at Revolution Mill and the total eBay staff here will be about eight. eBay will also give Greensboro a dedicated landing page on its website and that’s pretty pricey property.
The trainers will hold one on one sessions with small business owners to set up their accounts and get a full blown education in how to succeed on eBay including listing optimization, inventory management and promotional tactics. The idea is to help small businesses and entrepreneurs sell their products to the world, or at least the 179 million customers in 190 countries that eBay covers.
After the speeches, Chris Librie, the head of global impact and giving at eBay, explained the way the program worked was that the eBay trainers would work with each business owner one on one for two months.
After that he said they would provide a concierge service where the business owners could pick up the phone and talk to someone they know if they have a problem or a question.
Librie said that the program had been tremendously successful in Lansing and Akron. He said businesses that had participated in those cities had had double digit growth in sales, some as high as 30 percent.
He also said that Vaughan’s goal of getting 100 Greensboro businesses signed up for the program was entirely feasible.
He said the goal of the program was to help businesses “stay local, sell global.”
There is an application process, but anyone with a small business can apply and it’s free. The kick-off event is on March 27.