Enterprise marketplace and dropship businesses grew by 38% year-over-year in 2022, more than six times the rate of ecommerce overall. That’s the key finding from Mirakl’s 2023 Enterprise Marketplace Index (EMI) report out this week.
This dramatic growth in the Enterprise marketplace and dropship sector has widened the gap between platform businesses and traditional online retailers even further than before: marketplaces had grown consistently at twice the overall ecommerce rate in 2020 and 2021.
In 2022, the number of businesses that began selling on marketplaces increased 31% over 2021. 53% of businesses said they are selling on more marketplaces this year than a year ago, and 62% say they’ll sell on more channels in the next 12 months.
Why the move to selling on enterprise marketplace and dropship platforms? Well 94% of consumers worldwide expect to use marketplaces about the same or more in the future and 89% of consumers globally say inflation has made them look for better value. This quest disproportionately favours marketplaces and dropship businesses, which grew by 38% (6x more than overall ecommerce) in 2022.
Product assortment on established marketplace and dropship platforms grew faster in 2022, increasing by 49% YoY, as retailers looked to meet the mandate for wider assortment profitability by reducing inventory and fulfillment costs.
It’s quite possible that these numbers are underestimating the impact for the enterprise marketplace sector as Mirakl’s Enterprise Marketplace Index uses a year-over-year, “same-marketplace-sales” analysis to track the progress of platforms that were live during the two-year period from 2021 through 2022. Relatively new marketplaces like B&Q and Debenhams in the UK won’t yet be included in the data and we know that these platforms have explosive growth.
Our target is for marketplace to reach 1 million SKUs in the medium term and to scale in new markets, generating 40% of the group’s eCommerce sales, excluding Screwfix, over time.– Thierry Garnier, CEO, Kingfisher (B&Q Marketplace)
For those looking to trade on marketplaces, the report reveals average marketplace commission rates by category which vary from between 6% and 10% in tech to between 15% and 25% in Apparel and Accessories. Most other categories fall between these ranges.
Brands on marketplaces and dropship platforms are selling more through those channels, with GMV per
seller reaching $146,016 in 2022. For marketplace and dropship operators, that means the average amount of revenue generated by individual sellers increased 42% year over year, reaching $20,647 in 2022.
While traditional marketplace channels offer significant revenue opportunities, the new Enterprise marketplace channel powered by retailers opening up their platforms to third party sellers is a massive new opportunity and one that looks set to continue outpacing ecommerce and has to be embraced.