eBay to start authenticating sneakers over 100 dollars

Online marketplace eBay, who reportedly sell a pair of sneakers every 1.5 seconds, is expanding its Authenticity Guarantee service for sneaker sales on the platform. Through this program, all new and pre-owned collectible sneakers sold on eBay for over 100 dollars in the U.S. will be fully vetted and verified by an independent team of industry experts. The service launches this month with the initial authentication of the most popular sneaker styles and brands on the marketplace, and will ramp to include all sneakers over 100 dollars by early 2021.

This marks the company’s second significant authentication announcement in as many months. In September, eBay first launched Authenticity Guarantee for every watch sold over  2000 dollars in the U.S. The announcement also builds on eBay canceling selling fees on any sneakers purchase of 100 dollars or more, which has helped attract more top sneaker sellers and bring the most coveted inventory to the marketplace at the most competitive prices.     

“Authentication has become an expectation for today’s consumers in categories of high passion and high value, and this program makes eBay the most attractive platform for enthusiasts in these categories,” said Jordan Sweetnam, senior vice president and general Manager of eBay North America, in a statement. “eBay operates the world’s most diverse sneaker marketplace – with the widest selection and best prices – and by removing any uncertainty with the buying process, our community can buy and sell with total confidence.”

When a sneakers purchase is made, the seller ships it directly to eBay’s independent third-party authentication facility for a comprehensive, multi-point physical inspection. Following this rigorous assessment, the sneakers are sent via expedited shipping to the buyer. 

The process involves proof of Authentication where upon receiving the sneakers, the independent authenticator confirms they are consistent with the listing title, description, and images, and then performs a multi-point physical authentication inspection. An eBay tag, guaranteeing its authenticity is attached to the sneakers to finalize the process, driving confidence in the collectibility and resale value. This is followed by third-party authentication where eBay has partnered with industry leader Sneaker Con to create a new state-of-the-art facility – leveraging the top authenticators in the industry, a robust checklist of product specifications, and best-in-class processes to ensure accuracy and efficiency. With rigorous inspection of the box, shoe, and accessories, the authentication underscores eBay’s commitment to giving shoppers exactly what they want.  Finally, there is the option of verified returns where sellers who choose to offer returns will have eBay’s sneaker authentication program ensure the exact item initially sold is returned to the seller, via a verified returns process. Returns are shipped back directly to the authentication center, where the third-party experts verify each item and its condition before returning to the seller.

The counterfeit fashion industry is currently valued at over 450 billion dollars. Marketplace sites like eBay and Amazon have been making efforts to crackdown on counterfeit fashion products being sold on their websites. 


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