A deep dive into eBay Ads with Billy Mills

Profile image of Billy Mills

Billy Mills is no stranger to eBay. He’s been with the marketplace helping sellers connect with buyers and drive sales for over five years. If you ever have an opportunity to grab coffee with him, we highly encourage it. Not only will you hear some great stories from over the years, you’re guaranteed to have a good laugh. Billy is our Director of eBay Ads NA. What does that mean? He manages our Strategic Partnerships team that works with the largest brands and sellers on the marketplace. The team provides full funnel advertising support to help these partners drive sales on the platform and ensure they hit their goals. 

We sat down with Billy to learn a bit more about his passion for eBay, how his team is supporting sellers and brands, and his most recent eBay purchase that might get him in trouble at home.

What Billy values the most at eBay Ads

 What gets you out of bed in the morning?

Nothing is more fulfilling than establishing great relationships with brands and sellers that centers around trust, transparency and hitting shared goals. It’s why I’m not surprised eBay Ads was named the #1 Retail Media Network in eMarketers 2022 benchmark report. [wink] 

Here’s a great example of the team in action. A popular electronics brand selling on the platform secured additional budget (NICE!) and wanted to spend it with eBay Ads but had an extremely high ROAS target (not so nice). We ran the analysis and found we just couldn’t meet the target. Instead of taking the money and running with it, we explained there was an opportunity to move multiple units of product through Ads at a slightly lower ROAS goal – one we were confident we could hit. 

If they had to hit their target ROAS goal, we suggested they find another way to invest. We are not in the business of taking budget knowing we can’t meet a partner’s goals. That’s just bad business and not in the best interest of our partners, who are under a lot of pressure to succeed. The client was shocked we were willing to turn away the incremental budget, saying it was very rare for partners they work with to come with that type of transparency. They ended up investing half the budget with us and we landed the ROAS target right where we said we could hit. Our partner loved our level of support, efforts, strategy and honesty.

Today, they are now one of our largest advertising partners, a direct result of the team delivering best-in-class customer support built upon the foundation of trust. 

The benefits of working with eBay Ads

How are eBay’s advertising solutions supporting sellers of all sizes?

We offer a wide range of advertising solutions to drive sales on the platform that are available to all sellers no matter the size – both large and small.  Our cost-per-sale model (Promoted Listings Standard) is unique to the marketplace and provides a low-risk solution where sellers only have to pay an ad fee post sale. Promoted Listings AdvancedBETA, our cost-per-click model, is an industry standard and is the best way to reach buyers in the most visible placements on eBay, while providing keyword targeting and budget control. 

In addition, we offer other advert top-of-funnel solutions that provide partners more visibility for their larger promotions and support brand awareness initiatives.   

Talk about how eBay Ads is helping sellers and brands with full-funnel advertising solutions. What makes us different from others?

Our variety of full-funnel advertising solutions prove to be valuable tools for sellers and brands on the eBay platform. They vary in lower funnel solutions to upper funnel that help with brand building on the marketplace. Upper funnel solutions can range from Display campaigns on the eBay homepage, cross-site, eBay for Charity integrations and more. 

When sellers bring their inventory on the platform, they are likely to face competition from other sellers carrying those same products or items. Leveraging advertising enables the seller to get their inventory promoted throughout the eBay platform by getting visibility into Search, Category pages and VIP product pages. This helps to combat that cold start that many sellers face when they are bringing that inventory on. 

The great thing about eBay Ads is that the team is open to brainstorming alongside our partners, finding the best ways to integrate into the marketplace and create authentic moments of engagement between sellers and buyers. If you have an idea, let us know. Ideas, feedback, goals and needs of our partners are very influential in our product roadmap.

He knows the ins and outs of eBay – and shops there, too!

In the past, marketers have been quick to perceive eBay as a “garage sale” site – can you walk us through why that view is inaccurate?

While the company is focused on non-new in season and enthusiast categories such as Automotive Parts & Accessories and Collectibles, the eBay marketplace is far from a “garage sale” site. We are enabling our buyers to find unique inventory across a whole range of categories and products. Our Certified Refurbished program allows our buyers to purchase top quality products at discounted prices. The best part is that most of these items come with a 1 or 2 year warranty, giving the buyer greater confidence on the quality of the products they are purchasing. 

We also have great inventory selections in Electronics, Fashion, Luxury items (watches, handbags) that are all from the most well known brands in the world. The team has done a really great job in helping bring on sellers and brands with both unique and in-demand products buyers are looking for.

What is the last thing you bought on eBay?
If you’re not already a sneaker lover when you join eBay, you’re likely to become one. It’s the cost of employment – good or bad.  The last thing I bought on eBay were Air Jordan 1 Low fragment design x Travis Scott’s. But let’s not tell my wife! 🙂 

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