The worlds of online commerce for businesses and online commerce for consumers collided last month when GlobalSpec Inc., a specialized search engine for engineers and technical buyers, signed a marketing agreement with eBay. As a result, users can now go to eBay to bid on conveyor belts, ergonomic lifts and stretch-wrap dispensers the same way they've become accustomed to bidding on baseball cards, "Greatest Hits of Disco" CD sets and digital cameras. Visitors to the site simply type in a manufacturer's name or specs for the industrial supplies or equipment they seek, and GlobalSpec sends back product information results matching the search criteria.
Under the agreement, eBay will promote the GlobalSpec service on its Business & Industrial category pages. In turn, GlobalSpec will promote eBay in its newsletters and online banners, driving potential buyers of industrial equipment to the Web site.
eBay has nearly 86 million registered users and offers a wide selection of machinery, equipment and supplies. Its "marketplace" includes more than 500,000 listings of business items every week.