Innovate and grow your business through marketplaces!
If you’re in the business of buying and selling (and you’re still going,) you’ve probably realised that you need to keep moving to survive! Whether it’s new channels, tech or markets, taking a chance is all but essential for many retailers.
For brands, one of the biggest decisions is whether to go direct to consumers or utilise the size and power of retailers like Amazon and Net-A-Porter.
But there is another option available to brands, one that, as a recent Campaign article points out, already accounts for 90% of Chinese e-commerce: marketplaces.
Marketplaces, such as eBay and Alibaba.com, are a great middle ground option for brands, as they provide a platform to bring buyers and sellers together, while sellers maintain responsibility for trading and fulfilment.
Barriers blocking the adoption of this channel come in the form of brand safety issues and the cost of operating a marketplace store.
However, as the article explains, many of these worries are a result of not understanding how the channel works, although marketplaces are working harder to drive education and push best practice.
If you don’t make your product available in these environments, someone else will, and they won’t be concerned about your recommended retail price.
The other thing to consider is that marketplaces are tech platforms, meaning use of these channels doesn’t have to cost you a lot, as they are easily integrated into existing business models.
What’s more, unlike e-retailers, marketplaces allow brands to keep ownership and management of stock.
Sales growth? In Retail? Where do I sign!
If it’s ease of adoption hasn’t sold you to the idea of marketplaces, then maybe the potential for growth will. According to a study by the Ecommerce Foundation and Nyenrode Business University, marketplaces are predicted to see substantial growth, accounting for 40% of global online retail by 2020.
Ultimately, the marketplace will become a staple of the omnichannel retail landscape, alongside the traditional routes of retailers and direct-to-consumer channels. So why not get ahead of the curve?
How you can cultivate business on marketplaces?
How you can cultivate business on marketplaces? Start with the basics and do them well – make sure product pages have the right content, rich images and a reliable inventory management system. Use owned, earned and paid mechanisms to ensure effective visibility of the marketplace presence. Take your brand international. Thanks to their reach, marketplaces provide global distribution, allowing companies to reach new audiences and test new markets prior to a full-scale launch.
Whether you’re a new brand or have been in the business for a while, don’t be afraid to challenge convention and try new business markets and channels, like marketplaces. With new technology influencing consumer habits, taking the chance to try new options has the potential to pay off in the long run. Need a helping hand? Give Fireworx a call…