There’s no denying it. E-commerce marketplaces are big business.
Reportedly, 50% of all global e-commerce sales are made through marketplaces.
Last year, a report by Wunderman Thompson Commerce found that 63% of consumers in major e-commerce markets have started their online buying journeys on Amazon’s marketplace alone, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
It’s clear that customers are turning more and more to marketplaces to find what they want when shopping online.
There are a number of reasons for this, including efficiency, convenience, and discovery. The strong SEO authority of marketplaces also means they often rank at the top of product search results, so somebody searching for, say, a blender in Google will often find a marketplace at the top of the results.
But increasingly another major consideration is impacting customer spending choices. And it’s one that online marketplaces may be well positioned to support.
Can E-Commerce Marketplaces Drive the Shift to Sustainability??
One of the biggest recent shifts in consumer buying behavior is the demand for sustainability and eco-friendly products and packaging. A major study by IBM found 57% of consumers are willing to change their purchasing habits to help reduce negative environmental impact.
Almost eight in 10 respondents indicated that sustainability is important to them, which means we could see even more shoppers searching for sustainable options as millennials become older and wealthier–Gartner reported that 73% of that age group prioritize sustainability over price, which is a major shift in focus from even just a few decades ago.
However, shopping sustainably, whether it’s for second-hand products or for environmentally friendly new items, can be difficult for consumers.
Typically, finding suitable products involves more work on the part of the shopper as sustainable options aren’t always prominently displayed or readily available. They may not be highly ranked in search engine results or as prominently advertised through social media. This is where marketplaces can play a key role.
What Can Marketplace Operators Do?
As a marketplace operator, you have the power to work with brands and manufacturers to introduce more sustainable products to your range without having to create them yourself. By putting products where customers are already starting their shopping journeys, you can make it easier for them to shop sustainably.
One way is to create a section or a filter dedicated to sustainable products to make it easier for customers to find them. Online marketplaces have a major advantage over other forms of retail in their capacity for crafting a guided shopping experience that can lead customers where you want them to go.
Also, as a marketplace operator, you can quickly respond to what customers are looking for by using customer behavioral data which is available to you by nature of your platform.
By adding more sustainable products to your marketplace, you are growing your business. You haveminimal risk, anddon’t need to take on additional manufacturing, supply chain and warehouse space.