As an ad partner, you can either drive traffic to eBay via the traditional affiliate model, or you can refer transactions without your customers ever leaving the site they’re already on—also known as contextual commerce.

As a developer, you can create experiences that seamlessly integrate eBay shopping into social sites, DIY blogs, and specialized digital magazines and forums; or you can create websites and applications that bring eBay inventory into new geographical markets or into other enterprise shopping experiences.

eBay’s commerce platform provides a range of shopping integration opportunities for developers and affiliates to leverage:

With eBay’s new Buy APIs, eligible developers and eBay affiliates can help shoppers find fixed-price eBay items and then checkout and pay from anywhere, anytime—without visiting eBay.com.

With eBay’s PlaceOffer APIs, all developers can create applications for eBay affiliates, who earn commissions by helping shoppers find eBay items and then go to eBay.com to checkout and pay.

 Buy APIs (Beta) for Guest Checkout

eBay’s latest Buy APIs are designed to enable social sites, merchants, marketplaces or any developer to virtually increase the inventory they offer to their customers. The Buy APIs allow developers to integrate searching, finding and buying eBay inventory into websites and apps, provides a new opportunity for eBay affiliates to bring off-eBay purchases to their site—and earn commissions from eBay.

Guest Checkout Business Model
  • Traffic: Application drives eBay transactions (not traffic)
  • Payments: Buyer pays seller as guest (credit card)
  • Shipping & Logistics: As supported by seller on eBay.com
  • Financial Risk:Application sends risk data to PayPal
  • CRM: Application manages messaging between buyers and eBay sellers via eBay’s Messaging API (in the Trading APIs)
Benefits of Using the Buy API for Guest Checkout Use Cases
  • End-to-end, off-platform eBay buying experience
  • Enables publishers to drive eBay transactions
  • Contextual buying experience

To learn more about using the Buy APIs, see the Buy API documentation, and run the sample API requests in the Sandbox by using eBay's API Explorer.

Eligibility to Use eBay’s Buy APIs

We are excited see your ideas for how you will build amazing new buying experiences that leverage eBay’s Buy APIs.

All developers are welcome to explore ideas for integrating with the Buy APIs in the eBay Sandbox (our public test environment), including searching for and viewing items, and completing guest checkout.

As checkout and pay capabilities require strong security controls in eBay’s production (live) environment, as well as contracts beyond eBay’s API License Agreement, please submit your interest and application ideas to the eBay Partner Network for consideration. For more details about eligibility and getting access to the Buy APIs in production, see the Buy API Production Eligibility Requirements in the API Documentation.

 

 Buy API Capabilities

eBay’s latest APIs are designed with a common, consistent interface for all applications. They use modern API standards, such as OAuth 2.0 for authentication, JSON payloads, and RESTful design guidelines. They have been carefully designed to ensure data consistency across all buying and selling tools--both those created within eBay as well as applications created by 3rd-party developers. Learn more about the technology behind our new APIs in The API Journey  on the eBay Tech Blog.

We announced the Buy APIs (Beta) in October 2016. The Beta release gives developers the opportunity to get early access to our new APIs before General Availability (GA). The Buy APIs are subject to change and the GA release may not be backward compatible with the Beta. For information about eBay Beta releases, see eBay API Launch Stages in the API Documentation.

The Buy API is categorized into search and item capabilities (Browse API), item feed capabilities (Feed API), merchandising capabilities (Marketing API), and checkout and order capabilities (Order API). See the Buying Integration Guide for details. The initial release of the Browse API supports searching for fixed price listings. Checkout on your app or website is only available for fixed-price listings. For auction listings, buyers will be sent to the eBay site to complete the purchase.

Checkout is supported for listings posted on the eBay US site. Stay tuned for expansion to new markets in the coming months.

Affiliate APIs

Buyer applications can also help shoppers perform research to make good buying decisions:

  • Compare listing details, such as buying format, price, shipping, and return policy

  • Ability to search for products using standard identifiers like ISBN and UPC

  • Show rating and review information on sellers

  • Display pictures, sizes, colors, and other item specifics or variations

  • Retrieve relevant item and product recommendations to cross-sell and up-sell additional items on eBay for buyers

The traditional buying application sends buyers to eBay to complete the purchase. Application owners can earn commission from the eBay Partner Network by directing high quality buyers to eBay.

During the bidding and buying process, eBay APIs can keep buyers informed on the status of their buying activities and help them with after-sale activities, such as order/shipment tracking, seller feedback, and more.

For details about affiliate (traffic driver) use cases, see the eBay Partner Network  website. To create applications that support this use case, see eBay’s Finding, Shopping, Merchandising, and PlaceOfferAPIs.

Note: Access to PlaceOffer requires approval from the eBay Partner Network to use in the production environment. The PlaceOffer call does not support checkout and pay capabilities. When you use PlaceOffer, the buyer checks out on the eBay website. The buyer pays via traditional means supported by the eBay website.

Other Buying Resources

See the following eBay resources to get the most out of your buying integration: