Home / Blog / Using online marketplaces to build your customer base
Published on 25 Mar, 2020
One of the biggest challenges facing any retailer is how to reach new customers. No matter how good your online store is, potential customers first need to find it before they can browse (and hopefully buy) your products, and for many people the first port of call when shopping online is one of the global marketplaces such as Amazon or eBay. They already use these sites, they have their buying details set up (often for one click purchasing), and they’re familiar with and trust the shipment and returns process.
Savvy retailers therefore need to find the most effective way to take advantage of these marketplaces. As the consultants at Deloitte point out in their Future of Digital report: “don’t try to build everything yourself! Retailers should embrace the native capabilities of their digital touchpoints and integrate with platforms where their customers are already interacting at scale rather than trying to build such platforms themselves.”
In other words, you should take advantage of all the hard work that these marketplaces have already put in to grow their sites. They’ve spent huge amounts of time and budget raising awareness through marketing and advertising, so why shouldn’t your business benefit? Selling on popular retail channels such as Amazon, eBay, Fruugo, Rakuten and Cdiscount is a great way to build your customer base and grow your sales with no upfront marketing costs.
The biggest challenge in implementing this strategy is keeping track of multiple channels. You don’t want to duplicate effort by having to enter details of each product several times, or to run out of your most popular item because you haven’t been able to track sales across all marketplaces quickly enough to respond to demand.
The solution is digital – ecommerce software such as Varistha’s vChannel. This makes it easy to create and manage multiple listings across a range of retail channels in multiple currencies, including Amazon, eBay, Fruugo, Rakuten and Cdiscount. It gives you instant national or international reach – whichever you choose – from any location with no duplication of effort. You can manage orders, monitor stock levels in real time, create promotions and check sales on individual marketplaces whenever you wish. Analysis tools enable you to see which is the most successful and understand how selling patterns vary with different audiences.
The right multichannel software will also make it easier to manage shipments, as Varistha customer and one of the UK’s top independent footwear resellers Galaxy Sports discovered. Galaxy Sports director Sam Jacobs says: “One of the most tangible benefits for the team is the chronological production of pick lists, invoices, and shipping labels. The time and cost-saving impact of this one feature has enabled the business to become much more streamlined and efficient, allowing us to focus on procuring and selling the latest footwear which our customers love.”
If you’d like to find out more about how multichannel software could help you your business, you can find out more about Galaxy Sports’ experience here, or get in touch with us for a chat.