Top Global Online Fashion Marketplaces
The increasing convenience of online shopping paired with the new social distancing norms has culminated in the rise of online fashion marketplaces.
In a time where many retailers are struggling to survive, marketplaces like Asos and Amazon have emerged even more profitable than before.
Asos announced it had surpassed $1.2 billion in revenue after experiencing a 10% sales boom in the past four months. European behemoth, Zalando, had an increase in 20% of active customers and recorded 1.29 billion site visits, all within the second quarter of the year. As a result, it gained another 180 brands on the platform’s partnership program.
What was even more remarkable was the agility brands had in the sudden pivot to e-commerce.
The luxury segment, in particular, had always been slow to embrace digitalisation but recent events prove the importance of having diversified stock allocation. Digital channels had only accounted for 12% up to last year but Bain consultancy company expects it to grow by 29-30% by 2025.
The race to go omnichannel is on.
As conditions of the Covid-19 pandemic continue to fluctuate in certain countries, brands are now more desperate than ever to increase their online presence and move beyond any physical borders. And the easiest way to do so is by penetrating online fashion marketplaces.
Unlike a traditional online retailer, marketplaces are defined as third-party sellers that process customer purchases but are fulfilled by the participating brand or retailer.
By listing your products on a popular fashion marketplace, there is a higher chance to capture online traffic and broaden your brand awareness.
While there are plenty of online marketplaces out there, in fashion, it is crucial to identify the right marketplace that fits your product, pricing and brand positioning.
Let’s take a look at the top five global online fashion marketplaces.
Established in 2000, Asos was an early pioneer in the e-commerce landscape. Initially started in the UK, it aimed to provide trendy fast fashion to young women at an affordable price. It has now grown to be one of the biggest fashion marketplaces in the world, distributed in over 235 countries.
As of August 2020, Asos has 1,650 brands listed and predominantly carries fast fashion to mid-range brands. The median price of all brands available on the site is $26 USD – making it one of the most affordable marketplaces on our list.
Although its customer base is mainly women, Asos also has a significant male following. The ratio of womenswear to menswear is 67:33. The top three categories with the highest sell-out rates are jumpsuits & playsuits, accessories and shorts. In addition to the brands listed, Asos also has a number of private labels such as Asos Design, Asos Curve and more.
European-focused Zalando is currently the most visited fashion e-commerce platform in the world, at an average of 380 million views per month. It currently operates in 17 countries with more than 2,070 brands listed. It carries a wide range of brands, from fast fashion to a handful of designer names.
The current median price of the brands on this platform is $48 USD. It caters to both womenswear and menswear, the gender mix is 69:31. The top three categories are shoes, dresses, and jumpsuits & playsuits. Similar to Asos, it also has its own private label called Zalando Essentials.
Farfetch is a luxury unique modular retail platform that connects customers to luxury brands, boutiques and department stores. It offers over 3,000 brands, ranging from heritage luxury brands to emerging, contemporary designers and distributes to 190 countries.
Not just limited to the typical designer houses, Farfetch also carries the latest streetwear and sportswear brands such as Heron Preston and Nike. The median price of the products offered on this platform is $335 USD.
The gender mix of its consumer group is the most balanced of our list at 63:37, womenswear to menswear – and it also offers a small assortment of luxury kidswear. The categories with high sell-out rates are bags and accessories.
Moving East, Zalora is the biggest fashion marketplace platform in the Southeast Asian region. It receives 50 million average site visits monthly, with 2 million customers across seven countries.
Zalora carries a wide variety of categories including sportswear, fast fashion and ethnicwear. It currently offers 4,255 brands, although not all available in every market. It has a highly localised approach to its assortment, only selecting relevant categories and segments for each country. Overall, the top three categories with the highest sell-out rates are jeans, activewear and pants & leggings.
The median price of the brands listed across markets is $26 USD and the ratio of its womenswear to menswear assortment is 73:27. Zalora also has a number of private labels in various categories such as basics and modest wear.
Sister company to Zalora, The Iconic serves the Australian and New Zealand markets. It has 13 million average visit sites across both countries. The Iconic has over 1,706 brands listed, ranging from a mix of fast fashion to mid-range brands. It also has distribution partnerships with major brands in the region including Topshop, Marc Jacobs, Marc and Camilla and more.
The median price of the brands listed on The Iconic is $51 USD and its womenswear to menswear ratio is 74:26. The categories with high sell-out rates are activewear, jumpsuits and outerwear.
Selecting The Right Fashion Marketplace
With this information at hand, it is important to align your marketplace expansion strategy with your business plan. Having an omnichannel strategy is not about creating a presence everywhere but being where your customers are.
To select the right fashion marketplace for your business, you must ensure the value proposition offered by the marketplace matches your product and brand.
No two marketplaces are completely alike, therefore tailoring the assortment to maximise opportunities available on each marketplace is key to having success in this arena – especially when faced with many competing brands on the same platform.
Before opting to join a marketplace, refer to market insights, evaluate the data available and compare the sales performance of similar products to understand if this marketplace is right for you.
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