eBay has partnered with the Mozilla Foundation to offer a new browser extension that could bring retailers more traffic.

The Firefox Companion for eBay entered an alpha test phase, inviting help from “experienced eBay users”.

The Companion is the first project to bear fruit from a closer working relationship announced by the pair in March.

The two companies will work together on browser technology to be rolled out initially in the UK, Germany and France.

“We’re still testing and improving the Firefox Companion for eBay, but we want quality feedback from eBay members who enjoy an interesting challenge,” the official site reads. “We’re slowly adding people to our alpha test group every day.”

As yet unseen, the Companion is believed to be a browser extension that ties the auction site more closely in with the open source browser.

That could mean many more visitors for eBay merchants.

Google has already benefited to the tune of millions of additional search queries thanks to a deal that makes the search site the primary search tool available inside the Firefox window, going to show that, far from being mere on-ramps to the web, browser application code itself still has a considerable part to play in the online economy.