Interestingly, a number of bricks and mortar retailers have been investing in launching marketplaces, specifically to support the growth of indie beauty brands. Since the pandemic, ecommerce has seen a significant growth, with consumers spending more time working from home, online, prioritising their health, beauty, and wellbeing. A direct outcome has resulted in the growth of online marketplaces and as a growing sector, it’s essential that brands consider this part of their ecommerce strategy.
So which marketplaces?
With aspirations of becoming the UK’s number one online department store, Debenhams has launched a marketplace to support growing indie beauty brands. Debenhams was brought out by Boohoo in early 2021 – it disappeared from the high street and built a strong online presence. With their strong former reputation they established a high level of traffic from health and beauty customers and according to Boohoo, the acquisition of Debenhams allows them to capitalise on accelerating their shift to online retail, with their marketplace representing a major growth opportunity to build their presence in the beauty arena. Debenhams is currently the number two retailer of skincare products in the UK and has the largest market share in make-up products. Mirakl, which provides the digital framework for a few major retailers’ marketplaces including Urban Outfitters and Carrefour, says that marketplaces grew by more than 80% in 2020.
UK and Ireland high street health and beauty products retailer Superdrug launched a new e-marketplace for hundreds of new vendor partners in November 2022. Fully integrated with its main website, Superdrug.com, the move allows the retailer to offer an extended range that includes many new homegrown, female-founded, sustainable, and inclusive brands. Their USP is to promote diversity by supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses in the health and beauty market – and a lot more besides. This includes their ability to extend the range Superdrug buyers can purchase in a risk-free way to their bricks and mortar business whilst broadening and strengthening their overall offering.
Early Spring 2023, Boots launched a new online marketplace welcoming third party brands into their digital offering. This is part of Boots’ ongoing digital strategy to rapidly extend the range of the UK’s most visited health and beauty website and explore new and diverse categories for their customers. Powered by Mirakl – the industry’s first and most advanced enterprise marketplace SaaS platform – customers can enjoy a single checkout for mixed baskets and access all the benefits of shopping with Boots – including utilising their Boots Advantage Card points.
Amazon is currently the largest online marketplace in the world. Amazon Premium Beauty (formerly called Luxury Beauty) is an exclusive program that allows select brands to sell their products on Amazon’s platform within their gated “premium beauty” category. Brands can apply to be a part of Premium Beauty, and sellers who are invited to the program can list their products in this exclusive category. For brands, the program offers access to a huge audience actively looking for high-quality beauty products. Being a part of this program increases a brand’s visibility and credibility on Amazon, which can lead to higher sales and customer loyalty.
Marketplaces add an extra dimension to a brand’s sales strategy, and are an important consideration when selecting channels. As an international beauty brand consultancy, we support our clients in growing their brands across market. If you are looking for support with planning your retail strategy, or in getting your brand to market, Get in Touch.
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