Linnworks study: Missed sales opportunities

Linnworks are well positioned to see where sales are coming from: they have thousands of merchant’s transactions flowing through their management platform on a daily basis. Today Linnworks look at which online channels you should be targeting to maximise sales, and highlight missed sales opportunities that you could be taking advantage of.

UK online businesses are missing sales opportunities

Businesses that trade online in the UK may be losing out on the chance to exploit vital sales opportunities, according to a study conducted by Linnworks. The findings of the study concluded that online sellers largely failed to implement strategies for cross border trading.

The lack of coherent action plans for cross-border trade means that large numbers of UK businesses are restricting the market in which they operate. With eBay analysts identifying overseas business as the key to burgeoning sales, a multi-channel strategy is becoming an integral part of expanding trade.

That is not to say that some businesses aren’t ahead of the game: sellers using eBay’s latest enhancements have recognised that the level of international business is increasing and are beginning to advertise on eBay sites in other countries, notably France, Germany and Australia.

The success of international selling is confirmed by the Linnworks study, which revealed that UK sellers, using eBay and Amazon internationally, are generating 19% and 11% more revenue respectively, compared to sellers that only target the UK.

Linnworks has thus been able to identify international trading as providing an excellent opportunity for sellers wishing to increase sales. As online business automation makes ecommerce easier, it is highly likely that cross border trading will become one of the most profitable areas of online selling.

Study findings

Linnworks was searching for fundamental information on ways to ensure that businesses could embrace growth and promote the expansion of their online sales. The company based its study on data gathered from 1,500 UK sellers – all of which were selected at random. Data on the accumulated revenue from sales were gathered over a two-year period and revealed the extent to which online businesses used multi-channel selling.

It was expected that major channels, such as Amazon and eBay, would claim higher percentages of sales than others, such as Play.com, Pixmania and Hitmeister. What was not expected, however, was the scale of the difference between the percentages of sales by the principal agencies, compared to the smaller channels. In all, eBay and Amazon sales accounted for 94 per cent of online sales, with a total of 25 other sites* netting only six per cent.

Fedor Dzjuba, the founder and CEO of Linnworks, commented: “Many might say that these results were predictable, but for us it came as a complete surprise to see that the 25 ‘other’ sites were responsible for only six per cent of revenue; we included all major shopping carts and marketplaces in this analysis. It does indicate that, at the current time, maximising sales opportunities on both eBay and Amazon should be considered as a top priority for businesses of all types and sizes when planning their sales strategy.”

* Analysed channels: eBay (all sites), Amazon (all sites), Play.com, Pixmania, Hitmeister.de, Buy.com, Sears.com, Magento, AspDotNetStoreFront, 3DCart, EasyWebstore, BigCommerce, Shopify, X-Cart, ZenCart, OpenCart, Cubecart, osCommerce, creLoaded, Prestashop, Ubercart, WordPress, Virtuemart, JSHOP, Eurocart, CSCart, ClickCartPro

Business automation

Although the results of the study do not suggest that online selling in UK-only marketplaces cannot be profitable, or that having a personalised website in a unique niche market is a bad idea, the findings do indicate that multi-channel selling is ultimately more successful, and especially so if international channels are used. Online business automation is likely to be the key to increasing cross border sales for those wishing to achieve increased revenue via overseas markets.

About Linnworks.com

Our mission is to help entrepreneurs, businesses and organisations to automate and optimise their online selling experience. Since time is a key asset, we focus on ways in which to reclaim this by taking manual tasks completely out of the online selling process. Our customers include Blue Inc, The Officers Club, Parts World Group and Startup Media. The company headquarters are in Chichester, United Kingdom. For more information, visit www.linnworks.com, call +44 20 3651 7045, or email info@linnsystems.com.