Last editedJul 20222 min read
The United Kingdom is the third largest ecommerce market in the world, behind China and the US. The UK is also one of the most developed markets for ecommerce, with online sales comprising 23% of total UK retail sales.
There are therefore a lot of options when it comes to online marketplaces. In this post, we’ll take you through some of the best online marketplaces available in the UK today.
What is an online marketplace?
An online marketplace is an ecommerce site where a large number of buyers and sellers shop and trade, as well as a place where shoppers can purchase products on the site itself without leaving it.
By this definition, price comparison pages are not considered online marketplaces.
Top 5 UK online marketplaces
Without further ado, let’s get into the top online marketplaces in the UK.
It will surprise no-one to hear that Amazon is the top British ecommerce market.
With same-day and next-day delivery, the platform focuses on convenience as well as affordability, which accounts for its popularity. The main advantage of the site as a seller is that it’s such a well-known brand that you don’t have to put in much work to gain the trust of customers. The other advantage, of course, is the sheer number of visitors to the site, making the potential market huge.
The only other online marketplace that can rival Amazon in terms of brand recognition is eBay,
With a huge number of users and convenient delivery options, a lot of the same advantages of Amazon apply to eBay. However, while there are slightly fewer visitors by comparison with Amazon, eBay does charge lower fees to sellers on the platform.
Etsy is another familiar name, but has significantly fewer visitors compared with market leaders Amazon and eBay.
One of the key differences with a platform like Etsy, compared to the two big players listed above, is that Etsy has a more collaborative approach to buying and selling, with slightly more intimacy between the two parties. The site is also known for having more unique items, particularly vintage and handmade products.
Founded in 2014, OnBuy was initially launched as a British alternative to the American titan Amazon. Since launching, they’ve built a study body of frequent and loyal customers. With expansion plans in place, the company is potentially looking at becoming an international household name before too long.
As a UK-based marketplace, a big advantage of selling on the platform is that it tailors to the tastes and whims of British shoppers — perfect for companies that operate domestically. Another benefit is that it’s said to be the fastest-growing online marketplace globally. This means that securing a good presence on the site now could help your company grow rapidly as well.
For homeware and furniture, Wayfair is by far the most popular ecommerce marketplace in the UK.
With a niche product range, visitors typically only visit on one occasion, with many making infrequent visits. However, usually these visitors will spend far more than in marketplaces such as Amazon as products tend to be higher value.
When selling on Wayfair, one of the main advantages is that there is relatively little competition compared to other marketplaces. For instance, on Amazon you may be up against thousands of other similar sellers and tens of thousands of customers browsing for the kinds of products you sell. On Wayfair, however, there is a much more reasonable ratio of potential customers to sellers.
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