Running online promotions can be a powerful way to boost sales. Having a Marketplace where 3rd party sellers can offer promotions to your customers will increase sales even further. Not only are online sales sensitive to pricing, but a Marketplace is unburdened by the constraints of retail. Without worrying about inventory stock, or the pressure of profitability, you can run Marketplace deals, sales, and marketing campaigns that drive real impact - surprisingly significant impact. The first time a Mirakl customer in the fashion space applied promotions on Marketplace products using the strategies outlined below, they realized a 272% growth in month over month sales revenue.
Consider these 7 steps when designing your Marketplace promotion strategy:
- Product. Which Marketplace products should you promote? Look for best-sellers, products with high conversion rates, great customer ratings or strong traffic. By prioritizing these, you’ll maximize your chance of attracting more customers and more sales.
- Planning and Frequency. Create a promotional plan throughout the year to implement consistent offers to customers, and build in enough time to negotiate details with sellers. Your promotional plan should consider sales seasonality as well as other themes such as the holiday shopping season, Mothers or Fathers’ day, Cyber Monday, and more.
- Sellers. The best Marketplace promotions drive significant traffic, so it’s best to build them with reliable sellers so as to ensure customers receive the best customer experience. Choose sellers with enough sales history and positive ratings to minimize risk.
- Communication support. Your Marketplace promotions should be included in your global website’s merchandising tools, from your homepage to specific category pages, your email strategies, and across social media.
- Price discount. Price matters in your Marketplace. The price discount you choose should be high enough to be impactful - we recommend a minimum of 15% based on our experience working with Mirakl Marketplace customers. Another best practice is to display your promotion price next to a clearly crossed-out price on the product page. This trick clearly communicates the discount to customers.
- Free shipping. Sellers should be aware of the availability of the free shipping option within promotions as it has a considerable impact on a customer’s buying decision. A study led by Invesp found that the most common reason buyers abandon online shopping carts is due to high shipping costs (44%.)
- Analysis. Like most other facets of your strategy, it’s important to track the performance of Marketplace promotions so you can repeat the ones that work, and avoid those that don’t. Test other products, brands, categories or higher price discounts to see what’s most effective for your unique audience.
As a way to drive sales increases, create urgency with a limited-time offer, and boost online sales with a smart Marketplace promotion strategy. And enjoy the lack of contraints that a Marketplace provides.
Written by Barry Murphy
Barry Murphy is the Director of Content and Product Marketing at Mirakl. In this role, Barry leads the alignment of Mirakl's offerings to market needs for the next generation of online commerce. Barry previously ran product marketing organizations for X1 and Mimosa Systems (now part of HPE). Barry also had a highly successful stint as Principal Analyst at Forrester Research. Barry received a B.S. from the State University of New York at Binghamton and an M.B.A from the University of Notre Dame.