Business trends in short
Lots of things are going on in the marketplace area. Here are some trends summarized by Schibsted Daily Editor Ellen Montén.
Gen Z goes offline to shop
While Millennials are embracing mobile shopping, Gen Z is searching for ways to disconnect from their phones. The younger, digital-native generation has a more complicated relationship with digital services and is more concerned with the impact they have on their mental health. For these young shoppers, visiting physical stores can be a nice way to disconnect from the stresses of social networks and digital channels. This means e-commerce services need to find a way to make online shopping less stressful for their younger customers.
Amazon is a marketplace
2019 was the year Amazon went from being a retailer to being a marketplace. For the first time, the company reported that a majority of its revenue (58 percent!) came from its third-party marketplace, not from its online retail business. The marketplace has helped the company to grow fast, but handling millions of third-party sellers is not easy. There’s a growing black market that offers Amazon marketplace sellers ways to cheat the platform and mislead customers. Some of the cheats include bribing
Amazon employees to gain information or avoid disciplinary actions, while others focus more on removing negative reviews, set record increase in sales volumes, or paying as much as USD 10,000 a month for the top spot in the marketplace’s product search results.
At the same time, a US Court of Appeal has ruled that Amazon can be held accountable for products sold by third-party sellers on its marketplace. According to the ruling judge, Amazon may be liable since its business model “enables third-party vendors to conceal themselves from the customer, leaving customers injured by defective products with no direct recourse to the third-party vendor.”
Ironically enough, US regulators are also investigating whether Amazon is using its market position to hurt its third-party sellers by, for example,
Next up: Resale-asa-service
Resale-as-a-service (Raas) is a new key business area for the fast-growing resale startup Thredup. The company’s Raasplatform offers retailers secondhand shopping, features like resale popup stores and store credits for retail shoppers who sell their secondhand goods. For example, Thredup will help Macy’s to set up pop-up secondhand shops in selected stores. Thredup already receives over 100,000 secondhand items every day, and now it is building a distribution center that can process up to 50 million unique items each year to handle the new inventory from its Raas partners.