eBay offers authenticity testing for sneakers

To make buying and selling high-quality sneakers safer, eBay Germany is now offering a new service. From a retail price of 100 euros, the company offers a free authenticity check for new and worn sneakers.

The popularity of branded sneakers continues to increase. In the first quarter of 2021, a pair of sneakers was sold every 18 seconds on the platform. The highly limited quantities of certain hyped models drive desirability on the market and create great demand on resale platforms. However, more and more “black sheep” – i.e. fake sneakers – are finding their way onto the market.

For this reason, eBay has already introduced sneaker authentication in the US, UK, Canada and Australia to protect consumers. This service will now also be available for German users of the platform. “Sneaker buyers buy on eBay in ten different categories every year on average, which is more than twice as much as other eBay buyers. To ensure that this growth is sustainable, the launch in Germany is now taking place,” says Oliver Klinck, Managing Director of eBay Germany .

Independent, external testing team

To verify authenticity, eBay works with an independent, external testing team from Sneaker Con. There is an extensive brand catalog for new and worn sneakers, which applies to fixed price and auction offers posted on with an item and delivery location in Germany. With five percent sales commission and two percent for every portion of the sales price over 990 euros plus 35 cents fixed sales commission as well as the free authenticity check, eBay says it currently has the most favorable conditions on the market for commercial sellers.

All sneakers sold with eBay Authentication are marked on the website with the “Authenticated” logo and a check mark. The (initially) free authenticity check is then started automatically upon purchase. The seller is instructed to ship the item to the Authentication Center. There, Sneaker Con’s experts check various specified test points – packaging, size labels, soles, seams, logos, heel tabs, shoelaces and more – and also compare the sneakers with the description on offer.

NFC tag

Once the authenticity of the sneakers is confirmed, an NFC tag is attached to the left sneaker. This is intended to provide detailed information about the shoes and also make it easier to sell the shoes again if necessary. The order is then carefully packaged and sent safely using a fast shipping method including tracking. For returns, authenticity verification ensures that the item originally sold is returned via a verified returns process.

The introduction of the authenticity test is accompanied by a marketing campaign with the claim “Genuine. Safe. Verified”. There is also a campaign video that shows the solidarity in the sneakerhead scene as well as the love and enthusiasm of the community for the coveted shoes. Collaborations with influencers are intended to draw additional attention to the new service.