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How to sell via an online marketplace

Adrien Nussenbaum
September23/ 2014

Online marketplaces are one of the major retail trends of the past few years. More than half of Amazon’s business now comes from Amazon Marketplace and many other major retailers have launched their own marketplaces, attracted by additional e-commerce channels without inventory or logistic constraints and the chance to offer customers increased product choice and more competitive pricing.

Online marketplaces also offer a great opportunity for the smaller retailers that sell their products via online marketplaces. Here are my four top tips on how to sell on them:

Choose the most suitable marketplace for your products. There are now so many online marketplaces for sellers to consider, from major high street retailers to specialists such as Etsy and notonthehighstreet.com. A strong and varied product range is important when choosing which marketplace to sell on, but it is also important to make sure the seller’s products are complimentary to the overall retailer. Sellers should also choose marketplaces with a solid technical platform and the right tools to ease catalogue integration and listings management.

Use attention-grabbing photography. As with anything online, good product imagery is hugely. Any seller will be competing with other sellers of similar products, and they won’t want to stand out for the wrong reasons. Always choose the best images possible, making sure that they fit in with the overall feel of the site and main retailer brand.

Use pricing tools. Price isn’t always the main factor in a purchasing decision, but it stands to reason that a majority of consumers love a bargain. Most good marketplaces will provide a pricing tool, which allows sellers to compare their price with the current best price on each product. Prices can then be adjusted accordingly and gives a seller the chance to be positioned in the Buy Box position, the section on a marketplace that highlights the most competitive prices available at that time.

Label your products carefully. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) principals should also be applied to listing products on an online marketplace. A seller should ask their marketplace account manager what would be an appropriate title on that particular product category, both in terms of being attention-grabbing and doing well with SEO. For example, most customers search for the electronic goods by brand, so including the brand in the title would be key to getting picked up in searches.

Adrien Nussenbaum

Adrien Nussenbaum is co-founder of Mirakl, and has more than 14 years' entrepreneurial and business development experience. After completing his studies at the HEC School of Management in Paris, Adrien Nussenbaum started his career with PARIBAS Investissement in Hong-Kong. After time spent on his own businesses – instant messaging solution All Instant – and also at Deloitte and Fnac, he founded Mirakl with his business partner Philippe Corrot in 2012. Since then it has become the leading provider of online marketplace technology to European retailers.