At an event in New York this morning, eBay announced that it had acquired Shutl, a UK-based marketplace that uses a network of couriers to deliver local goods the same day.
eBay says it believes the acquisition of Shutl’s “technology, talent and expertise will help eBay reach its goal of expanding its local delivery capabilities.”
We first wrote about Shutl a few years back, just as the Web-based enterprise was starting out. And we’ve kept tabs on the company since it launched at The Next Web Conference in 2010, as it nabbed some big-name clients in the UK, including Argos.
Shutl’s raison d’être is to bridge the gap between e-tailers and local courier services, giving consumers the choice of a speedy delivery (within 90 minutes of purchase) or a one-hour delivery window at any time…24/7. Shutl doesn’t provide a delivery itself – its technology aggregates capacity across local courier companies into a single web-service that retailers can use to speed-up their delivery options.
Coinciding with the acquisition, eBay also announced a slew of new features designed to make browsing and buying through the e-commerce site “more personalized and engaging.”
In real terms, this includes:
- Collections: Groups of products hand-picked from eBay’s listing by curators, buyers, and sellers
- Curators: Trendsetters across a range of categories, who create collections on eBay to help connect users with items they may love
- Follow: A one-click way to personalize your feed by following the collections, curators, eBay users, and interests that interest you
- Profiles: A customizable page – for buyers and sellers – letting you share information about yourself, the collections you’ve created, and the interests, collections, and people you follow
- eBay Today: a new page on eBay for discovering the best collections of items on eBay, selected each day by eBay’s Chief Curator and Editorial Director
In addition to this, eBay also announced that it plans to bring its local same-day delivery service, eBay Now, to 25 markets by the end of 2014 – including Chicago, which launches today. We already knew it was arriving in London in early 2014, and is already available in the US for cities such as San Francisco, New York and San Jose.
Feature Image Credit – Getty