eBay and Tellius at Snowflake Summit: Recapping the Conversation and Candid Insights You Don’t Want to Miss!

ebay tellius

Hey folks! We’re back from the Snowflake Summit 2023, which was bustling with energy from the many data and analytics leaders and practitioners converging in one event. Today, I want to walk you through a captivating conversation I had with Shruti Gupta, the Technical Product Manager at eBay, a pioneer in the e-commerce industry. Shruti explained how eBay is supercharging its decision-making process with powerful self-service analytics and data exploration from Tellius.

This conversation made me realize again just how influential our AI-driven self-service analytics platform can be in catering to the dynamic needs of e-commerce, facilitating fluid collaboration between business and data teams, and fueling growth. If you’re into data, decision-making, and self-service analytics, buckle up; we’re about to deep-dive into how eBay is navigating their vast oceans of data.

Understanding the eBay vision 🛒

Since its inception in 1996, eBay has collected petabytes of data spanning every aspect of online sales while on its way to becoming an e-commerce powerhouse. The vision at eBay is to harness this “historical treasure” of data to maximize opportunities for all parties in the ecosystem—buyers, sellers, and shipping providers. They aim to put data directly in the hands of these businesses, empowering them to gain insights, develop strategies, and secure a competitive edge.

One thing that eBay has demonstrated over the years is its ability to adapt and respond to global e-commerce trends. When the pandemic caused a seismic shift in popular shopping categories, they were quick to catch each wave. There was a surge in popularity for categories like home furniture and home office equipment (and who can forget the sudden craze for collectible trading cards?).

Bringing agility to the data landscape 🚀

eBay cleverly developed strategies to capitalize on each shift, placing a spotlight on these emerging categories. For eBay, the execution had to be swift. Agility became their mantra, ensuring they could adjust their strategy according to the changing environment. The name of the game? Implementing “analytics at the speed of business.”

But here’s the challenge: Business users needing answers would often turn to an analyst who’d whip up a new dashboard, report, or spreadsheet, but this process would take longer than the business wanted. To meet the fast-paced demands of the e-commerce world, eBay recognized the need for a tool that would put the power of data analysis directly in the hands of business users.

Tellius magic at eBay 🧙

That’s where the Tellius self-service analytics platform, paired with Snowflake’s cloud data warehouse, stepped in to provide a user-friendly tool for ad hoc data exploration. 

Tellius became the “analytics driver” for Snowflake’s data engine, making it simpler for eBay’s users to discover data and collaborate. With the live connection between Tellius and Snowflake, users can query the data right where it lives without having to move the data into memory. They’re directly connecting their business to the data, ushering in an era of profound analytics transformation.

Leveraging the power of AI-powered self-service analytics, eBay can now easily answer the critical “what,” “why,” and “how” questions from their vast amounts of data.

Here’s a practical example: A category manager can ask about the gross merchandise volume of a specific brand in the U.S. over the past year, and Tellius will generate an easy-to-understand visualization without having to code or write SQL. Additionally, when they want to understand why something has changed, Tellius can identify the factors. And as for the “how,” our AutoML predictive capabilities can uncover key drivers, trends, root causes, and business impacts.

Imagine asking, ‘How many Nike shoes have been sold in the last hour?’ and getting a precise answer in seconds from a browser-based tool. That’s the power we now wield. The best part? People [in other departments] can’t help but notice the difference. We often hear, ‘How come they’re able to swiftly extract those interesting insights when such tasks usually require laborious combing through tons of data?”

-Shruti Gupta, Technical Product Manager, eBay

eBay’s adoption of Tellius enabled several powerful use cases in different parts of the business. Here are some highlights:

  • eBay used Tellius to track the impact of its Authenticity Guarantee program, which was instrumental in building trust with buyers and sellers. 
  • With over 20,000 charitable organizations, eBay’s charitable program donated $163 million in 2022. Tellius helped visualize these donations, enhancing their understanding of the program’s impact and further fine-tuning their approach.
  • eBay used Tellius to forecast how foreign exchange fluctuations could affect their revenue, giving them the ability to plan better and stay ahead of market volatility.

A new era of data exploration: “It's like having ChatGPT for data!” ⭐

Shruti wrapped up our conversation with a delightful comparison, stating that Tellius was like having “ChatGPT for data.” Just as ChatGPT and other AI tools are revolutionizing countless industries, Tellius is empowering anyone in an organization, regardless of their technical proficiency, to derive business-critical insights from volumes of data.

Tellius bridges the gap between data and decision-making. From simple queries to deep dives into data, Tellius makes data analysis intuitive, even for those who may not have a strong technical background. This is the future of self-service analytics, and we’re thrilled to be a part of it. We’re excited to continue our partnership with eBay. We thank eBay for their trust in us, and here’s to our continued journey together. 🥂

ebay tellius

(L to R) Alvin Wong, head of marketing, Tellius; Hardik Chheda, chief product officer, Tellius; Shruti Gupta, technical product manager, eBay; Ajay Khanna, chief executive officer, Tellius


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