Everyone wants a social network. Now eBay is creating online community with their new My Neighborhoods feature. eBay wants to facilitate more interaction between buyers and sellers. There are more than 600 neighborhoods already.
This is a smart way to add more user-generated content instead of just ecommerce to the site. It also gives the community more reasons to stay on the site. The most popular neighborhood is the one for coffee lovers with 146 members. The next popular neighborhood is about jewelry. People can post photos, reviews, and tips.
The interface is intuitive and has a much more web 2.0 feel to it. However, I keep thinking that the scrolling photos are a video. I hope they do add video, if even just to introduce the concept or the neighborhood. If your favorite topic isn’t there, you can request a new neighborhood. When you join a neighborhood, you’ll see a My Neighborhoods link show up in your My eBay section.
eBay plans a complete redesign over the next few months. This is only a small part of it, and I think a very smart move by eBay. I can see this going over with eBay sellers in particular and it seems to be already getting traction. eBay has done an excellent job of creating community offline and now will do more to bring that camaraderie online.