The product data feed is what counts
If, as a brand or seller you want to get started in other markets and countries, you can’t get around marketplaces. In 2020, cross-border e-commerce sales in Europe amounted to 199 billion euros, far more than half of which (58 percent, equivalent to 116 billion euros) were generated in online marketplaces. This share is expected to grow to 65 percent by 2025. Amazon and eBay together account for 57.7 percent of these cross-border marketplace purchases (source: Cross-Border Commerce Europe).
The fact that the majority of cross-border sales take place via marketplaces is explained, among other things, by the fact that two-thirds of consumers are not at all paying attention to the origin of a seller when shopping at renowned players such as Amazon, Otto or Zalando. They trust the reputation of the marketplace brand (source: ECC Cologne/Lengow 2021).
And why do consumers not pay attention to the origin of a seller? In addition to the credit of trust, online marketplaces offer sellers a whole host of other advantages in terms of cross-border sales: Established marketplaces already have a high level of web traffic and awareness in the target countries, they offer widely accepted and thus also correct payment methods, they have working relationships with proven service providers and in total they offer these advantages on the basis of manageable acquisition costs. For brands or retailers, this means that there
is no high level of investment for the launch of online shops in the respective target markets, and there are broad opportunities to test the local appetite of their target group for their own products in the appropriate brand and subject area.
It becomes tricky in the search for the appropriate marketplaces in the respective destination countries. Here, it does not always have to be, nor should it be, only international top online marketplaces such as Amazon or eBay that have a presence in numerous countries. Instead, regional, nationally strong platforms can often be the better choice (e.g. OnBuy and Fruugo in the UK, Cdiscount, Fnac/Darty, La Redoute in France or bol.com in the Netherlands and Allegro in Poland). Using specialized tools such as Lengow Insights, companies can use their EANs and categories to research the marketplaces that are most suitable for their products and to have algorithms calculate the potential revenue for a marketplace.
Case studies: Successful on marketplaces in
Europe with efficient feed management
The effort involved in maintaining the international marketplace business can be considerably reduced by efficient feed management. The leading German online shop for curated art and home accessories, JUNIQE, currently sells more than 50,000 products on six marketplaces in four countries. In order to implement this European marketplace strategy, the company, with the support of Lengow, connects various marketplaces within Europe via a single product data feed. The feed needs to be updated centrally only once, in order to be used correctly on all marketplaces. “This enabled us to better manage our product catalog and manage the various marketplaces more efficiently,” said Senior Operations Manager Alexandra Knaak.
Similar experiences were made by Design-Bestseller, a German etailer for designer furniture and home accessories. Initially, the aim of the company was rapid access to a new market (France). Design-Bestseller saw a way of doing this in the
listing of products on French marketplaces, not only among the big players, but also among specialists in the interior sector. Because Lengow offers interfaces to a wide range of French marketplaces, the company decided to control its product data feed. Currently, more than 20,000 articles are listed on seven marketplaces in two countries. “We can now connect and test new channels relatively quickly, especially marketplaces,” says Geoffroy Dickson, Head of International Business Development at Design-Bestseller. In addition, the service provider supports the adaptation of the catalog for each marketplace with channel-specific guidelines. “We have now done initial tests with the Dutch marketplace Bol.com, which are extremely promising,” says Dickson.
A big thank you to Oliver Bogatu for the interesting insights.
You can find this case study and many more insights in our Market Place Study 2022.
About the author:
Oliver Bogatu is General Manager DACH at Lengow. He first worked for Nike and Champion USA. After that he was at s.Oliver Fashion Group as Head of Sports Division and at Cognis Special Chemicals (Henkel KGaA) as Director of Global Sales & Marketing. This was followed by leading managerial positions at vente-privee.com, eBay/Brands4Friends and Astound Commerce.