As the peak of summer sets in, especially in August, sometimes the news stream coming in to Tamebay quietens down a little. So we try to write different pieces and explore themes to ensure you have plenty of holiday reading. This year we’re going to be thinking about European marketplaces.
The two marketplace titans don’t have a stranglehold. In France, Priceminister (part of the Rakuten Group), Cdiscount and La Redoute are both powerful. For the BeNeLux countries Bol is vital. Looking east, Allegro is bigger than both Amazon and eBay in Poland. Don’t forget the likes of Zalando, Spartoo and Fruugo. All are open to third party retailers who want to sell online via marketplaces in various parts of Europe.
The focus must be on making sales to customers via any channel that doesn’t damage or dilute your brand.
The everyday tasks of fulfilling one marketplace or another are not markedly different as long as you have the back-end management and despatch processes in place. Language can be a problem but once that’s cracked you can sell pretty much anything anywhere. The many multi-channel marketplace providers, that can plug into many (if not all) of the 400 or so EU online retail sites, can do much to grease the wheels.
And what about Brexit? There is an obvious upside: the relative strength of the euro means sales in sterling look rather attractive right now if you’re in the UK and selling to the EU. Naturally, there is uncertainty. Will the UK adopt a Norwegian style EEA position, a hard Brexit or retain free movement of goods? Nobody knows. And any change in circumstance is still nearly two years away. There doesn’t seem much point in dragging your heels until there is clarity. It is likely a long way off.
Even in a hard Brexit situation, it strikes Tamebay that the best place to be is selling on pan-EU marketplaces. It will be expedient to them to help merchants surf any storm. Indeed, that’s exactly what they do already.
It is very tough, and very expensive, to make a splash quickly with your retail brand selling directly from your website. But as a marketplace seller you can find sales more quickly. The question of where you sell depends on you and your goods.
Some marketplaces spring to mind and the territories they serve vary. But here’s a start-off list we’re looking at writing about and talking to. Please suggest other plausible ideas and give us ideas. Are you already selling online on the marketplaces and willing to talk to Tamebay about how it works for you? (We can keep it anonymous.)
France: CDiscount, La Redoute, Priceminister
Germany: Dawanda, Hitmeister, Otto, Yatego
Italy and Spain: Privalia, Westwing
Poland: Allegro, Newegg
And then there are the usual suspects: eBay, Amazon, Etsy, Fnac, Spartoo, Fruugo, Zalando. (All of which, I believe are Europewide to some exent.)
We’d be very grateful for input. Which European marketplaces should we be writing about? Comment below or email me directly [email protected]. we always get our best stories from you, Tamebay readers. And we’re grateful.