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UK retailers failing to invest in marketplaces – and lose customers as a result

By Paul Skeldon March 19, 2018 - 5:27 am

Half of UK retailers are in decline because they are failing to invest in using marketplace platform as part of an omni-channel strategy, a new study warns.

According to a new study by ecommerce and digital agency Visualsoft, which analysed 240 of the UK’s leading retailers,61% of retailers are neglecting to use marketplace platforms, such as Amazon or eBay, to sell their products and reach a wider customer base.

This is particularly worrying as the latest figures from eBay show that it alone counts an audience of 170 million shoppers, while Amazon continues to dominate online retail on a global scale. The potential for retailers to take their share of this market is therefore significant.

“Despite huge growth opportunities for retailers that use multichannel technology, more than half of the UK’s leading brands are failing to invest in these invaluable platforms – a worryingly large figure. We know that consumer behaviour is changing, with an increasing number of customers starting their purchase journey on Amazon and eBay. Our data shows that mobile devices account for over half of online transactions in the UK, so making it as easy as possible for customers to shop in this way is more important than ever. Retailers need to ensure they maximise sales by making the most of all available marketing tools. This could be particularly important with Easter just around the corner and future spending holidays in the retail calendar on the horizon throughout 2018.”

Chris Fletcher, head of onboarding, Visualsoft

The Visualsoft analysis of 240 of the UK’s leading retailers, revealed that while 98% of brands have a website, there is a shortfall in the number of businesses supporting this with other sales channels, and potentially losing out on millions in revenue as a result.

The research showed that, despite four in five shoppers using a retailer’s mobile app, only 51% of brands have invested in this technology. App conversion rates are also around three to four times higher than mobile sites alone, highlighting the importance of this channel.

In fact, having a transactional app has been shown by Poq to add up to 15% of additional revenue across all channels, when done right.

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