If your store has been existing on Amazon alone, it’s time to diversify your revenue streams.
It’s a fact: Amazon is one of the biggest ecommerce markets in the world. According to a 2016 study by BloomReach, fifty-five percent (55%) of surveyed American consumers headed for Amazon first when searching for products online.
The Forbes’ Global 2000 reported Amazon as the world’s third-largest retailer, ranking 83rd globally on Forbes’ list of the largest public companies, and ranking 6th on their list of the world’s most valuable brands. In comparison, Wal-Mart is the largest retailer on the planet (ranked 17th) followed by CVS (ranked 66th), with Alibaba taking the title of sixth largest retailer (ranked 140th).
There’s no expectation of slowing down either; Amazon Prime has doubled in size in two years. An analysis released in April by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) indicates that Amazon Prime currently boasts an estimated 80 million U.S. members, an increase of 38% in membership over the previous year. It’s worth noting that Prime members have an average spending amount of $1,300 per year – almost double the spend of the average non-member customer.
But, while Amazon may have helped your business grow to its current heights, your brand could be missing out on the massive sales and marketing potential of a diversified, multi-channel ecommerce strategy. If you’re unsure whether your business can benefit from being in more of the world’s top marketplaces places, keep reading.
Here’s why you need to diversify your sales channels to include Walmart and Jet.com:
Sellers must diversify their revenue streams with sales through multiple channels. Existing in multiple marketplaces means you’re not keeping all of your eggs in one basket.
Remember that Amazon is, at the end of the day, interested in making the most profitable moves it can make. If you don’t want cutthroat competition on low price… then you should avoid Amazon. Because the moment they sense that your product is selling well, they’ll ensure that they start selling it too from their own connections for less money than you are… effectively using your own success against you.
New and Different Audiences
A multi-channel ecommerce approach allows your business to tap new markets with different audiences. Every top marketplace caters to specific buyer personas and an existing base of loyal, trusting consumers.
Unique Market Positioning
Every marketplace has its own potential benefits. Although Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. bought Jet.com in 2016 (for approximately $3 billion in cash), Walmart and Jet.com are two very different platforms – with two vastly different audiences – aimed at different demographics. Where Walmart.com is known for their everyday low prices, Jet.com is positioned for bulk purchases. While Walmart.com assists over 1.2 million unique visitors daily, Jet.com sees approximately 138,000 users each day. Both marketplaces charge sellers a 15% fee on sales, but you may enable a higher average volume of product per sale on Jet.com orders.
“If you build it, they will come” is not a viable ecommerce strategy. In 2017, you must bring your storefront to the consumer. In an increasingly saturated market, many shoppers still don’t rely on Amazon as their initial product search resource, preferring other platforms like Walmart and Jet.com. For a chance to capture those market segments, you must apply the foundation of contextual commerce: Be where the consumers are.
With a diversified multi-channel strategy, shoppers can choose the marketplace they are most comfortable with for online shopping, while you optimize discovery of your products. Consider where buyers in your niche are purchasing or searching for your products or similar items in your product categories.
Consumers often use sites like Amazon and Walmart to research and compare products on other search engines and retailers. It’s probable that some customers will discover your products on one search engine and then purchase from your website. However, for the many consumers who are more comfortable purchasing on a well-known marketplace, the ability to purchase on the website they prefer can give enough peace of mind to convert a shopper into a buyer.
Listing your products on multiple channels also ensures they are more likely to show up in search results for related keywords.
Agility and Digital Resilience
Another reason your brand must have a presence in multiple marketplaces is the possibility of unexpected distribution obstacles with a single channel: Imagine the horror if Amazon suspends your account and it takes 30-60 days to resolve the issue. Unfortunately, even if your account is reinstated, the damage to your reputation and bottom-line may be permanent.
We’d be remiss not to emphasize this point: If your company currently relies on a single point of distribution, digital diversification could ultimately save your business.
How to diversify your sales channels to include Walmart and Jet.com:
Expanding into new markets does necessitate research and strategy to optimize your impact, and it’s imperative that your company is structured and prepared to embrace the new distribution channels. Every channel has its own costs and policies to abide by.
But launching and maintaining multiple distribution platforms doesn’t have to be difficult. We believe you should make online marketplaces work for you, not the other way around. Reliable integrations are the key to streamlining this process. That’s why ShipMonk has partnered with GeekSeller to help sellers diversify their sales channels to include marketplaces such as Walmart and Jet.com.
Our integrated tools make it more efficient than ever for your business to be in multiple marketplaces seamlessly by using synchronized inventory and automated order fulfillment services. Now your company can easily list products to multiple channels with tools like GeekSeller, then utilize ShipMonk to automagically ship orders.
GeekSeller offers simple inventory management with its user-friendly dashboard, allowing your company to easily manage products and sales to stay competitive. In addition to inventory and order management using the GeekSeller dashboard or via their shipping software partners, their services can help you improve sales by using built-in reporting tools, repricing, and insights functionality to ensure your listings are optimized to compete in a multi-channel environment.
Add in ShipMonk’s order fulfillment services and you can run your ecommerce empire from anywhere in the world (as long as you have internet access and, perhaps, a good cup of coffee).
Of course, it all comes back to user experience. Customers will still expect your brand to exceed their customer service expectations regardless of where they purchased your product, so ensure your service team is capable of responding to increased inquiries from your new distribution channels.
Position your business to capture more revenue and serve new audiences by maintaining a presence on multiple distribution channels. With ShipMonk’s holistic suite of tools and partners, your company can stay agile in the ever-evolving landscape of ecommerce.
Contact us today to see how your business can benefit from our integrated services.