Subscription price calculator

Marketplace integrators; what are they and why does your business need one?

Selling online is about creating a seamless shopping experience. If you’re selling on marketplaces and don’t use an integrator, you may lose out on possible revenue and profit.

Amidst the e-commerce boom, online retailers are facing more competition now than ever. As you navigate the wave of competition, it’s important to remember that it takes more than slashed prices and great products to get your customers to check out. 

Here’s the thing – with so many sellers online, it can be hard to differentiate your products from the next seller. That’s where a good promotion strategy comes in. But when the engagement is up but customers just don’t know where to find you, that’s where you start missing out on a few sales opportunities.

What is a marketplace integrator?

Marketplace integration is an omnichannel approach to connect retailers to various marketplaces through a secure API connection. The integrator allows access to the marketplace data so that e-commerce retailers sync their product catalogs with the marketplace in real-time. 

Establishing a two-way link between a single seller and multiple online marketplace platforms allows the seller to look at the various product and marketplace data on a centralized platform. In addition, the integrator enables the seller to conduct activities like product listing, order management, invoicing, shipping products, doing inventory, and more.

How do marketplace integrators work?

Before engaging any technology for your business, it’s essential to understand how it works. In the e-commerce realm, understanding the bond between your marketplace integrator and your business allows you to dive into specific advantages and functionalities so that you can pick the right software provider. 

Marketplace integration happens in a few stages. So let’s take a look at each stage.

Stage #1: API connection

Marketplace integrators use an Application Programming Interface (API) software to establish a two-way connection between both parties. It’s important to understand that no two marketplaces, or even sellers, work the same way. Each platform is based on API Docs, with a unique structure, bug errors, and traits. This first stage is vital in understanding the specifics of each platform, be it Amazon, eBay, or other marketplaces, and the seller.

Stage #2: Creating the API connection between two parties

Next, the integrator works to create a unique integration with the API of each marketplace and the seller. This is where a secure connection is made, and the seller is officially hooked up to a third party.  

Stage #3: Data transfer

After the connection is established, it reaches the third stage: data transfer. This stage is a crucial part of the marketplace integration process, as it ensures that all information is transferred accurately. First, the seller chooses the type of data they wish to share with the marketplace, including (but not limited to) catalogs, descriptions, prices, images, shipping times, and other helpful product data. The software then uploads this to the marketplace through a secure and automated process.

Stage #4: Information synchronization and order management

Market integration is an ongoing process and doesn’t just stop after the data transfer. The system works to provide a two-way flow of information between each party, fetching timely data as activities occur. This allows real-time updates on a dashboard that is synced across all channels. Sellers have access to all critical information on a centralized dashboard that provides features to help manage product updates, shipment, and communication activities.

Why you need a marketplace integrator

Online shopping is one of the most popular activities globally, gathering $4.28 trillion in sales last year. [1] Modern consumers are making online purchases every day. At the forefront of this market shift, e-retail tools are helping digital businesses automate their processes and speed up efficiency to increase brand growth. 

Here are just some of the reasons your e-commerce business needs a marketplace integrator.

Expand into new audiences

If you’re just showcasing your products in one place, you’re limiting your product potential to a single platform. Thriving marketplaces like Amazon, Etsy, eBay, and more, have billions of visitors each year. Whether they’re browsing for new things to buy or looking for a specific product, this is a whopping amount of traffic. 

They’re not just audiences in your geographical area, too. You’re essentially opening up your product to consumers on a global scale. Marketplace integration allows retailers to leverage new channels for growth, attracting huge audiences to their products. 

Increase accessibility through search engines

Did you know that 81% of consumers searched online for a product or service last year? [2] 

Even when selling through third-party platforms, search engines can help drive revenue by increasing your brand and product visibility. Expanding your digital footprint can also make it easy for interested buyers to find you through search engines. Marketplace integrators enable products to be ranked for specific search terms by using product descriptions and categories. Tapping into data-rich sources also means that brands can beat out competition by ranking higher on multiple marketplaces to increase authority.

Save time and cost through automation

E-commerce is a multifaceted industry, where sellers handle a multitude of processes from end to end. Additionally, many retailers also have brick-and-mortar locations that provide the same brand offerings. 

Efficiency is imperative to business success. However, it can be challenging to maximize output when so many things are taken care of. Marketplace integration plays a crucial role in speeding up the selling process by providing the foundational infrastructure to list and handle product orders. By automating these manual activities, sellers can reduce time and cost to focus on other business activities. 

Secure and optimized data transfer in real-time

Have you ever confirmed an order just to receive a notification telling you that they have to cancel it? Or painstakingly scrolled down the search results only to be shown out-of-stock items?

Order fulfillment is a classic frustration for e-commerce consumers, and it’s easy to see why. Your customers don’t want to spend hours searching for a great product only to realize that it doesn’t even exist in its size or color. With marketplace integration, retailers can send inventory and order updates in real-time through a safe and secure connection. 

Tap into Marketplace features

One of the benefits of marketplace integration is that brands use existing marketplace features for their business. Many marketplaces have efficient shipping and return services for sellers to leverage for ease of delivery. This way, e-retailers can cut down on shipping costs, which is one of the reasons for cart abandonment. [3] Other marketplace features, such as filters and visual search, help deliver a UX experience that can lead to returning customers and higher satisfaction.

Maximizing marketplace integration with a PIM

In the e-commerce sphere, marketplaces are centered in the middle of all the action. These platforms gather millions of products from a range of vendors in one convenient location. But, as much as marketplaces offer many features to sellers, brands have to do their part in delivering unique offerings and differentiation to potential customers. That’s where product information comes in.

According to a survey by Google, 85% of shoppers stated that product information is an important factor in their purchase decision. [4] Consumers nowadays crave knowledge – 81% of shoppers research a product online before purchase. [5] With a growing inventory and list of sale channels, it can be a daunting task to provide your customers with accurate and up-to-date product information. However, more often than not, providing compelling product information through images and descriptions can be what it takes to lock in a sale.

Product Information Management is a vital part of today’s flourishing e-commerce market, empowering businesses to scale through enriched product information. A PIM system stores and manages all data about product offerings in a centralized database and processes this across a network of business systems. Data is collected from various sources, including ERPs, suppliers, internal systems, warehouses, and more.

In the E-Tailize platform, marketplace integrations and the PIM work hand-in-hand to create a seamless distribution and management process through a centralized database. Product teams and managers can then collect, edit and manage product information in real-time and in minute detail to personalize campaigns and promotional efforts across third-party sale channels.

Deliver a stellar product experience with E-Tailize

As the e-commerce industry continues to grow, brands must do more to achieve success in 2021. Investing in the tools is the right step in delivering exceptional customer experiences and increasing efficiency for business success. E-Tailize is an online platform that helps companies realize their full potential on marketplaces by simplifying product management, advertising, and data analytics.

Sources:

[1] https://www.statista.com/statistics/379046/worldwide-retail-e-commerce-sales/

[2] https://www.smartinsights.com/search-engine-marketing/search-engine-statistics/

[3] https://www.conveyco.com/e-commerce-order-fulfillment-statistics/

[4] https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/consumer-insights/consumer-trends/product-information-preference-statistics/

[5] https://transaction.agency/e-commerce-statistics/81-of-shoppers-research-their-product-online-before-purchasing/

Read more

Marketplaces

6 Tips on How to Improve Your Amazon Seller Rating

Read more
Marketplaces

Using predictive analytics and big data in e-commerce

Read more
Marketplaces

Online Marketplaces vs. Own E-commerce Website: What’s the best match?

Read more