New independent survey reveals online marketplaces boost customer loyalty, increase average order values and build trust

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Mirakl, provider of global Marketplace solutions, and ChannelAdvisor, provider of cloud-based e-commerce solutions, have announced the results of a new study, titled "Retailers Must Seize The Marketplace Opportunity," conducted by Forrester Consulting and commissioned by Mirakl and ChannelAdvisor.

The survey evaluates the success of Marketplace retailers and what they must do to better serve today's empowered customer; it concluded that Marketplaces encourage customer loyalty, increase average order values and build trust.

"As evidenced by the Forrester survey, launching an online Marketplace offers retailers a new opportunity to interact and engage with customers," said Adrien Nussenbaum, U.S. CEO and co-founder, Mirakl. "We've found that, in the UK alone, 70 percent of consumers purchase products from online Marketplaces one to two times per month."

Among the findings uncovered by the survey, three stand out:

Online Marketplaces enhance the customers' shopping experience.

Online Marketplaces allow customers to shop more conveniently, compare a wide assortment of products and discover new retailers. According to the Forrester report, 90 percent of UK respondents agreed that Marketplaces offer the convenience they appreciate.

Building trust is a central part of Marketplaces.

Consumer generated content is a crucial component to building trust with retail shoppers, with 79 percent of UK consumers citing ratings and reviews as important attributes to purchasing via an online Marketplace. To earn the trust of consumers, Marketplace sellers must deliver a high-quality experience, avoiding long delivery times, damaged items and low-quality products. Therefore, Marketplace operators need a robust technology platform that can automate and enforce seller quality control.

Marketplaces create deep customer relationships.

On a global scale, the majority of consumers indicated that they were satisfied with Marketplace purchases, more than 90 percent translating into increased customer loyalty. In the UK alone, 92 percent of consumers said they would shop with same Marketplace again if getting a similar product.

To take advantage of the growing popularity of Marketplaces, Forrester recommends retailers develop a strategy to build their own Marketplaces, with a focus on boosting customer experiences, building trust and getting noticed. Forrester also suggests that retailers building their own Marketplaces should proactively recruit and continuously assess sellers, and enhance their technology capabilities to support their Marketplace strategy.

"Mirakl believes the key to a successful online Marketplace strategy is engaging with partners who can help you deliver an excellent customer experience with the quality sellers and technology," said Nussenbaum. "With Mirakl, a proven online Marketplace software solution, and ChannelAdvisor, the Marketplace provider to one of the largest database of sellers in the world, retailers can have the right components and partners in place to build a loyal customer base for their online Marketplace without risking damage to the overall brand image."

Study Methodology

In this study, Forrester conducted an online survey of 2,520 consumers who have purchased from a Marketplace at least once within the past month in France, Germany, the UK, and the US. Forrester also interviewed five organisations that have an online Marketplace to understand their current strategies, the benefits from having an online Marketplace, and the challenges or barriers in taking their Marketplace strategy to the next stage. The interviewed participants were at the director level or above and influence or give some input into the Marketplace strategy. Interviewed respondents were offered a syndicated Forrester Research report as a thank you for time spent on the survey. The study began in January 2016 and was completed by April 2016.

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