Maximizing the Impact of a Multiple Marketplace Presence
Any new entrant to the online multi-marketplace retailing sector could be forgiven for taking one look at the complexity and competition and retreating to the relative safety of a brick-and-mortar shop. Selling online — successfully — is no longer simply a case of setting up an e-commerce-enabled website and promoting the fact.
Today’s online world is an ever-changing environment that needs to be dynamically leveraged, where the staid will stagnate and the nimble and agile will flourish. It’s a world where retailers need as many windows into their offering as possible — with multiple marketplaces across all geographies.
The sector has experienced a revolution largely catalyzed by the pandemic, but remains in a rapidly evolving state, with impressive growth potential and predictions. According to Statista, retail e-commerce sales are set to increase by 56 percent from 2021 to 2026, where the figure will stand at US $8.1 trillion worldwide.
Last year, unsurprisingly China was forecast to have the largest e-commerce market. Second was the U.K. with 36 percent of retail sales taking place online. The fastest growth — 25 percent — is predicted to be in Asia. Opportunities are everywhere.
So, How Can Brands Ensure That They Benefit?
A clear, structured, strategic plan is essential in order to turn these opportunities into sustainable, profitable, long-term growth. The more marketplaces on which brands have a presence, the broader the potential customer base. However, competition is fierce and customer service reviews have a real impact. It's therefore essential that brands present their products in the most attractive manner, and that the full service offering — from the online store to delivery at the customer’s door, and onwards to the returns and refund process — is as flawless as possible.
In most customers’ minds, value is determined not necessarily by the best price, but by the best overall value for money and the best experience. The online consumer can be impatient, unforgiving and impulsive, and usually has many options in terms of where to buy what they're looking for. If one online retailer doesn’t fulfil the need well, you can be sure another will.
A strong go-to-market strategy should look at who and where the brand target audience is, assess the best ways to reach and influence that audience, and how to make the most impactful new product launches. What are the most profitable options to activate and promote brands and products? Is there one logistics and delivery model that will suit all marketplaces, or are tailored ones required for different regions? How should pricing be set, managed and dynamically adjusted to ensure maximum profitability while not being undercut by competitors? What's the best inventory management system to avoid the dreaded out-of-stock message?
These are just a selection of considerations that need to be taken into account. Having the right technology in place, as well as properly trained personnel to manage it, is also a challenge, particularly in the current climate where technology is changing almost on a daily basis and there's an acute shortage of talent in the e-commerce space. But getting it right has its rewards. According to eMarketer, 80 percent of retailers worldwide agree that cross-border trade has been profitable. Sellers have increased sales by as much as 1000 percent after expanding their marketplace presence. With a strong strategy and partnerships with the right organizations, brands can accelerate their e-commerce expansion and reap the rewards.
Orla Power is the marketing director at Luzern eCommerce, an e-commerce acceleration platform for brands.
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Orla Power leads global marketing for Luzern eCommerce, the leading European managed eCommerce platform provider. With 20 years of experience, Orla is a seasoned business and marketing leader with a focus on creating strategies to help eCommerce Brands grow profitably and sustainably online. Orla is well versed in the disciplines of eCommerce Brand Management, CX and go to market strategies using real world insights.