Nowadays the internet allows you easily to reach a global audience. The question is: Besides your own online Ecommerce store, should you also offer your products on online marketplaces such as eBay and Amazon? Bear in mind that what might be working for one company doesn’t necessarily have to be working for your company too. You need to have a closer look at your own situation and ask yourself the following questions:
- Are my products suitable for these kind of marketplaces?
- How big is the competition in my particular sector? Is the market already oversaturated?
- What are the marketplace fees?
- Are there any restrictions that I need to be aware of?
Advantages of selling on Amazon and eBay:
# 1 – YOU will increase the number of sales.
Considering the fact that Amazon has 85 million unique visitors on a monthly basis, you can be sure that your products will be visible to a much bigger audience. The same is valid for eBay. Companies have reported an average increase in sales of 50 % after joining Amazon Marketplace.
# 2 – YOU will acquire new clients.
Let’s be honest, when visitors go to Amazon and eBay they are not looking for your shop BUT they might discover your products, which they might have never come across otherwise. Once you have clients lined up – via marketplaces – your goal should be to gain lots of repeat business. This can be achieved by providing outstanding customer service and exceeding clients’ expectations. It would be particularly useful for products which are not one-off items but require frequent purchases, for example pet accessories etc.
# 3 – YOU will benefit from the marketplace infrastructure.
It doesn’t make a difference whether you are a seller in a farmers’ market, shopping mall, entertainment park or online marketplace, it’s the numbers that matter. Customers do appreciate the fact that they can get a variety of products in one single place. Online marketplaces can offer a smooth process due to their single-stream checkout and fulfilment support.
Disadvantages of selling on eBay and Amazon
We all know that every medal has two sides, the good ones and the bad ones. The drawbacks you might have to consider are as follows:
# 1 – YOU will be charged additional fees.
Your sales figures will increase but this will not come for free. There will be additional fees you need to take into consideration. Every marketplace will have its own terms and fees. Depending on the category and the site you are using, they will deduct a certain percentage of each sale. It is crucial for you to get a good understanding of the fee structure and the real margins that you can make. In certain categories margins for certain products might just be inexistent. Here you can find more information regarding fees on eBay http://pages.ebay.com/help/sell/fees.html and Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=1161240.
# 2 – YOU will be restricted in certain areas.
Marketplaces have not been created just for your business but merely for themselves in order to increase their profits even further. Their focus is not on you, the seller, but on your products. What does that mean? You might have to accept certain limitations, such as the way you can promote your products, communicate with your clientele, decide which products you are allowed to sell and which ones not, etc.
# 3 – YOU might have problems in keeping inventory in sync.
A marketplace is an additional revenue stream. However, it is not always possible to configure it in a way that allows communication with your shopping cart. They can basically both store the same inventory but without being in sync with one another. This makes it difficult to be aware of the real stock levels without lots of manual reconciliation. But there are good news! EReprice is an application that can support you along the way, get in touch with us today to discuss further.
Which one to choose?
Now that you know more about the advantages and disadvantages of selling on Amazon and eBay you need to ask yourself: “Which one should I choose?” You might think that the more exposure you get, the more sales you will make. You will realise that it can be a very time consuming exercise finding out the details for each single marketplace. What restrictions, systems, procedures and pitfalls do they have? The best strategy would be to focus first on one or two marketplaces and later on eventually extending it.
The two names that come to customers’ minds first, when buying products online, are without a doubt Amazon and eBay. Amazon can provide opportunities to third-party sellers to offer their customers a smooth shopping experience with “Fulfillment by Amazon”. That means that you can ship your inventory in bulk to Amazon and they will take care of the shipping. eBay is also a marketplace with a massive reach. Sellers have the opportunity to feature their brand and non-standard items in an easier way by using certain tools and features.
To gain that extra advantance in the marketplace checkout EReprice.com/features for the benefits of sellng on amazon with us.