Russian Interactive Week
Alexei Romanenkov, CEO United Company Begun, Ferra and Price.ru was panel moderator.
Participants of the discussion:
- Vladimir Dolgov, eBay Russia
- Mark Zavadsky, AliExpress
- Igor Tarasenko, Yandex Market
- Alexey Petrovsky, United Company Begun, Ferra and Price.ru
- Miroslav Zubachevsky, KupiVIP E-Commerce Services
The main concern of the forum was the current situation in the niche of Russian marketplaces and near-term prospects of this segment.
• Auditory indicators of large online stores and marketplaces
• Conclusion: Yandex Market and Aliexpress are absolute leaders (more than 1.45 million of unique users per day)
• The number of Internet malls needed by the Russian e-commerce market today
• Conclusion: there will be no new global marketplaces in the coming years but niche players will necessarily appear
• Plans to include vendors and manufacturers in marketplaces
• Conclusion: This strategy is already being implemented by marketplaces on a priority basis; the problem lies in the reputational risks for brands
• Responsibility of marketplaces for the entire sales chain: from the choice of goods to the security of the transaction and delivery
• Conclusion: assurance of a reliable purchase for a customer from any seller on a marketplace is a direct concern of this marketplace
• Ratings and reviews on marketplaces
• Conclusion: ratings and reviews are the most important factors of the successful operation of a marketplace
In the course of this discussion the experts have formulated a number of abstracts reflecting its stages:
1. SMM and marketplaces weakly correlate with each other. People come to social networks in order to socialize and have fun and to marketplaces - to shop
2. A promoted and popular marketplace, especially niche one, can do without large advertising budgets
3. Some of the fundamental principles of any marketplace - customer's confidence and honest reviews/ratings on the website
4. It is extremely important for marketplace CRM-services to publish and respond to negative reviews about products, this increases the conversion manifold
5. A new trend when non-specialized companies create marketplaces (Russian Post) usually does not assure leading positions for these projects
Alexey Petrovsky (Begun) has started the discussion, he began with a review of a specially prepared presentation on marketplace sector in China and Russia. According to Alexey, the evolution of an online store to a marketplace occurs given a constant growth of the visit depth of the number of pages on a website, from low customer loyalty to higher one. A marketplace at its height creates a "cloud" of additional services around itself (discounts, delivery, tracking, reviews, experience exchange, partnership projects.)
Vladimir Dolgov (eBay) continued, he said that he finds it strange when a marketplace purchases goods for its warehouses and simultaneously attracts competitors' products on its platform.
To the question on competition of individual stores and marketplace Vladimir replied that eBay provides both the eBay Enterprise as a complete service for brands to create a business on the Internet "from scratch" and the built-in eBay service that allows creating a store inside an online auction.
Miroslav Zubachevsky (KupiVIP E-Commerce Services) told the audience that there are certain reputation risks for "luxury" and "premium" class brands at an early stage of taking the decision to work with a marketplace. Marketing along with no-name brands, according to the owners of the world largest fashion-companies, may negatively impact the image of an expensive brand.
Igor Tarasenko (Yandex Market), in turn, expressed doubts about the direct connection between the users' presence in social networks and marketplaces.
Despite the equally huge traffic and the amount of time spent, these indicators, according to Igor, almost do not coincide with each other in the purpose of visits. People come to social networks in order to socialize and have fun and to marketplaces - to shop.
In the end of the discussion the experts answered to questions from the audience, the leitmotif of which was the idea of the need for cooperation of small and medium online businesses with large marketplaces. All speakers of the section have unanimously expressed the view that marketplaces are an additional sales channel and by no means the "killers" of small online stores.