Australia is perhaps the continent of most interest to marketplace sellers – China and India are talked about a lot but the barriers to entry are high – too high for many merchants. Australia is a relatively easy country to trade with and there are three main marketplaces to choose from, so which Australian marketplace should you sell on?
The big three Australian Marketplace options are eBay, Amazon and Catch:
eBay rules the roost in Australia claiming some 21 million visitors a week. You might be forgiven for thinking that that is practically everyone in Australia and you’d be correct, plus a few million probably from neighbouring countries that also choose to buy on eBay.com.au. eBay Australia attracts more visitors than the next seven largest Australian ecommerce sites combined.
eBay has firmly established itself as the go to Australian marketplace with perhaps the biggest market penetration for eBay anywhere in the world. One of the attractions for Aussie buyers is the ability to buy cross border quickly and easily as it’s a country where typically domestic choice is restricted.
For sellers outside Australia, selling the the country is relatively easy if you already sell on your domestic eBay country site.
eBay Global Shipping Program
Simply offer your items through eBay Global Shipping and Australians will be able to purchase them. All you have to do is ship to a local UK address.
Passive selling to Australia
List on eBay UK as per normal (or your domestic country site) and add shipping to Australia.
Active selling on eBay Australia
List on directly onto the eBay Australia site in Aussie dollars
Currently eBay is THE defacto marketplace in Australia and one that sellers targeting the country simply can’t afford to ignore.
Amazon Australia launched late last year but despite being a huge success in Amazon’s eyes has attracted critical press reviews based on buyers eyeing up other Amazon country sites and expecting rock bottom prices and next day, if not same day, delivery. Buyers were somewhat disillusioned to discover prices that weren’t significantly lower than other Australian ecommerce sites and delivery was a couple of days rather than next day.
Amazon have also upset local customers by blocking them from purchasing from Amazon overseas country sites in a spat over how GST (Australian sales tax) would be collected. Amazon insist consumers can only buy through the Amazon Global Store where prices, customer claim, are higher than if they purchased direct from Amazon in the US.
This is all to do with inventory and scale however. As Amazon inevitably scale and build more FBA warehouses delivery times will get faster and as they attract more merchants to sell on the platform prices will fall.
Amazon shouldn’t be ignored by merchants and those who establish themselves on the Amazon marketplace in Australia should be able to capture market share. Don’t expect stellar sales if you ship from the UK – It’s likely that buyers will be purchasing on their favourite marketplace which is eBay for items shipped from overseas. However, it you place your products into Amazon Australia FBA then you’ll be ahead of the pack and, if prices are keen, stand a good chance of cornering the market for your product sets.
Catch is best known for being a cut price daily deals site, although they’ve now morphed into a marketplace. Carrying 1.2 million products from over 1,000 domestic and International sellers they’re relatively small compared to eBay but still an interesting proposition.
Catch are looking for particular types of products and generally at deep discounts so won’t be suitable for all sellers’ inventory. If customers wanted to pay full price then they wouldn’t be visiting Catch so expect to sell below retail price if you want to see success.
Catch is all about clearance deals and excitement – almost impulse purchases. If you have inventory that could fit these requirements then Catch is worth consideration.